16 January 2014

Author Interview - Jas T. Ward

Please welcome Jas T. Ward for this week's interview!

1. Have you always had a passion for writing? 

Always. Started since I was able to write at around the age of 7. It was a much needed escape from a difficult childhood.

2. Does what you read influence what you write and what are some of your favourite authors/books? 

I tend not to read when I'm writing--I don't want someone else's seed planted in my creative soil. But many current author's influence me. Laura Tisdale's current book- Circle of Secrets is my current read and I am really enjoying it. My favorite authors are Amy Tan and Ken Follett. Tan's book the Joy Luck Club was one of most cherished possessions when I had very little. I must have read that book a 100 times. Follett is my style idol. The man has a gift of spinning a story around history into fiction and make it all seem so real.

3. What are your biggest inspirations? 

Everything. My brain is always taking it in and giving me something. It can be something as simple as traffic on a rainy day. I keep a notebook with me constantly. Inspiration doesn't wait for you to be ready for it...its up to you to be prepared.

4. Do you have a technique in how you choose characters and/or locational settings? 

 I like wounded, flawed characters. One where the odds are completely against them and fate has twisted them to the point you have no idea how its going to work out. Location? I love New Orleans. But haven't based a book there yet. Plan to though.

5. Do you listen to music while you are creating your masterpieces? 

I do. Really, really loud. It varies to classical to hard rock. To movie soundtracks. However, when I edit? I need complete and total silence.

6. What do you do to stay motivated and avoid writer’s block? 

I've only had the horrible condition known as writer's block. And boy was it a doozie. It occurred after I lost my soulmate to suicide and it lasted for years. I don't know--maybe destroying it cleaned out the creative pathways for it hasn't tormented me since.

7. How has becoming a published author (independent or traditional) changed your perspective on life and is it everything you expected it to be? (If you are not published yet – what changes do you foresee?) 

Writing a book is hard. What's even harder is the pressure you put on yourself to make it the best it can be. You have people telling you have talent. You have people saying they love what you write. But until YOU can believe it? Their words have almost no power. Now that I have the book that I've been working on for almost a year out there, I am afraid with each review. I've been very lucky--I have a pretty sizable and loyal fanbase and they have worked very hard to get me some attention. That's the key. Be sincere and respectful to them and your talent and it will all work out as its meant to be.

8. What are your biggest challenges as an author? 

Stopping. I would write night, day, all the time. Lose my job, forget to eat. The works. I love writing. And it apparently loves me. It wants me all to itself all the time. :)

9. Do you have any pets? 

I do! An Writer Dog name Pumkin (1/2 boxer and 1/2 doberman rescue puppy--now four years old) and the Author Kitty Orleans (a stray I couldn't resist).

10. What hobbies do you have outside of reading and writing? 

I love camping and the outdoors. I also dabble in art. Pencil and ink is my medium. I also enjoy just going to the dog park and taking long drives with my dog.

11. Where is the most exciting/memorable place you have been in the world? 

India. Loved it. I went there for work and though it was a business trip and I didn't get to fully experience it, I want to go back there so I can.

12. Tell us about your latest work in progress or most recent published work…

My most recent work is Madness. Madness was actually born from role play creative writing. I wrote him out as a split personality in a hero's head. I also killed that split side off. The fans completely revolted. There were even pages set up to save Candyman- the main character Reno Sundown's nickname. So I had to scramble to bring him back to life. And boy did my creative muse aka my 'demon' Twiz come up with a grand scheme.

Madness is the first book in the Shadow-Keepers series and its Reno and his forbidden love- Emma's story. He was cut away from the hero and given a life of his own. A body of his own. But not to see Emma. We find out there are many reasons for this. And that destiny had its own plans for Reno. It's a darkly sweet, retelling of Beauty and the Beast. And most definitely a modern fairy tale for adults.

More information can be found here:

GoodReads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18781500-madness
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Madness-Shadow-Keepers-Jas-T-Ward-ebook/dp/B00H3I2NP2
Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/madness-jas-t-ward/1117552018?ean=2940148981794

And my author page is: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorJasTWard

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