Sunday, May 29, 2011

Up Close & Personal with Author Greg Schwartz

Where do you call home?
Framingham, MA

What is your book about?
My book is about a teenage boy named Josh from southern England who gets transported to another world while running away. A farmer and his daughter find him and take him to their capital to help him find a way home, but an unprecedented attack occurs and wreaks havoc in the land. Josh has to decide whether or not to help stop a war with the people who saved his life, or go back to a home he doesn’t care for. Needless to say, there wouldn’t be much of a story if he just went back home :)

Do you have plans for a new book?
The next book is already in the works—I have high hopes to turn this into a series.

What inspired you to write your book?
I had a dream one night back in 2008 and just started writing when I woke up. It all sort of just came together.

How did you come up with the title and cover design?
Honestly, I hated the title for the longest time. I came up with it right around, I don’t know, chapter six, I think. At the time it didn’t have much meaning, and I was using it as a placeholder while I finished writing. After I finished, I went back and read the book start-to-finish, and found out the title actually worked pretty well.

As for the cover art, I have an old friend who freelances as an artist, and she offered to do it at a discount. She read the book and we talked about several ideas before settling on the horse, which is a very symbolic part of the book. The background spiral was her idea, and is actually an integral concept to the series, and I liked it enough to okay it.

Have you based any of your characters on someone you know, or real events in your own life?
One of the characters is named after someone I know in real life, but the personalities are different. Aside from that, “all characters appearing in this work are fictitious. Any resemblance to real persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.” Same with events. ;)

What books have most influenced your writing most and why?
The Harry Potter series, by far. I started writing back in 2004, and my works were all Harry Potter fanfiction. When book six came out, I was so disappointed that I started trying to create my own stories—I figured, if J.K. couldn’t write the story I wanted to read, I’d have to do it myself. Her writing style has rubbed off on me, definitely.

Is there an Author that you would really like to meet?
Tolkien, without a doubt. But since that can’t happen, Stephen King, since he’s a fellow Red Sox fan. :)

Do you prefer ebooks, paperbacks or hardcovers?
To read? Either ebooks or hardcovers. I always have trouble getting the pages to lie flat when I’m reading a paperback.

Have you ever read a book more than once?
Oh yes, I’ve been doing that ever since I read Fantastic Mr. Fox by Roald Dahl when I was in fourth grade. In fact, I can’t say there are very many books that I’ve once and haven’t read at least twice.

Is there a particular movie that you preferred over the book version?
No. The book is always better. The closest call was Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, in which they added a couple scenes that weren’t in the book that I really enjoyed.

What book are you currently reading?
Currently, I’m re-reading Bringing Down the House, the exaggerated re-telling of the MIT Blackjack Team’s 1990s history.

What book do you know that you will never read?
Atlas Shrugged.

Is there anything you would change in your last book and why?
When the formatting was done for the ebook, some of the paragraph spacing got screwed up, so I think I’d fix that. Other than that, I’m content with it :)

Who designed the cover of your book?
Jennifer Carter, and she’s very good at what she does.

Do you have a book trailer?
Currently, no. If there’s enough demand though, I will certainly make one.

Do you have any advice for other writers?
Don’t write to get paid, write because you have a story to tell.

Where can your readers follow you?

I just started using twitter, so there aren’t many posts (one, to be exact). I’ll be using it to update progress on the second book.
The book is available on:

iBookstore via iTunes

And the Sony Bookstore for the Sony Reader (although the product description still doesn't seem to be up):

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  1. Excellent interview - good to know more about the book and author - and *thanks* for supporting and introducing new authors. I like this blog!

  2. You are very welcome. Thnaks for dropping by for a read. All the very best to you. Patti


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