Sean Ferrell – The Author Talks About Writing

It is with much delight that I get to introduce Sean Ferrell as my guest writer for today. I’m still in a state of shock that he said yes and that it only took a few days to get all this in motion. See what two chilled-out people can accomplish? Imagine we put some drive into it, we’d conquer the world. That’s another story for another time, me thinks.

How did we ‘meet’?

I checked out Sean’s book trailer for his book “Numb” which I found clever and funny and left a comment saying:

Funny book trailer. Is that really you, Sean Ferrell, talking? But that Kindle is ugly compared to the iPad. Sorry, I’m a lover of Apple.

Then he responded:

Yes, it really is me talking, and yes, it really is ugly. It looks like something from 1986.

And we got talking and voila, I asked him if I could interview him and the good giving man said yes – thanks Sean – I wasn’t being sarcastic, in the world of publishing everything works well when people can be both good and giving.

So, the interview is below for you to enjoy as well. Later on this week, pop by again won’t you because we have more of Sean Ferrell answering questions on his main character in Numb and how he created his book trailer. So, don’t forget to come back for that. And of course, as always, I’ll remind you.

This is novelist Sean Ferrell giving advice to aspiring writers like me and you:

1) What advice or tip would you give an aspiring novelist still to make it?

Write toward the things that scare you. That’s where the energy is. Low energy writing is hard to pump up, and it will read as inauthentic. If you write to the things that scare you–revelations about you, your past, your family, whatever–that energy that you’ve used for so long to keep that stuff hidden will infuse the writing with energy and authenticity. If you don’t share it with others, so be it, but you’ll feel better and you’ll know you can tackle anything in your writing. And I don’t mean write memoir. I mean, if there is a topic you’re worried you “shouldn’t” try to handle in your fiction, that’s exactly what you should write about.

Also, find your own process. Don’t invest too much faith in any “process that works” touted by teachers or books or famous writers. Find your own way to get the words out. Try everything, adapt, trust your gut.

2) What noticeable thing has changed since you got the book deal?

I discovered I could fly! Actually, no, I always knew I could fly. What did change was I stopped thinking that publication would cure my writer’s insecurities. I still have plenty of opportunities to question my ability, to see the fault-lines and failures.

Publication doesn’t solve anything. If anything it made me realize that I write because I have to. It’s easy to get distracted by goals: if I can only finish a novel, if I can only get an agent, if I can only sell a book THEN I’ll be happy. And that stuff happens and you still find your shoes smell like shit and the dishes are dirty and not much has changed. So nothing changes, nothing is solved, and you still sit down and start writing again. In a weird way, getting published removed the distraction of publication.

3) How do you feel about author marketing? Has it always been that way?

I think that the way marketing and publishing work now puts much more opportunity into the author’s hands than it used to. I say opportunity and not pressure because honestly who would I rather have out there representing me than me? I am by nature an incredibly shy person. I think all my Twitter followers just collectively wet themselves laughing, but it is true. So, as a shy person I find that blogging and twitter have given me a great way to meet readers and writers, and to enjoy talking about books and to sometimes be stupid. Okay, I am often stupid. I am now on the verge of doing some readings where there will be GASP people GASP in front of me and I feel much better about it than I would a few years ago because social networking has made me feel like those who want to hear me will enjoy it, those who don’t won’t, and I can’t control either response so I’ll just try and have fun.

More about Numb:

Numb, a man who feels no pain and has no memory of how he came to be this way, travels to New York City after a short stint in the circus to search for the answers to his past. But when word of his condition spreads–sparked by the attention he attracts from letting people nail his hands to bars for money–he quickly finds himself hounded on all sides by those who would use his unique ability in their own pursuits of fame and fortune. There’s the best friend who doesn’t quite know how to handle Numb’s newfound celebrity, the savvy talent agent who may or may not have Numb’s best interests in mind, the sadistic supermodel whose idea of a good time involves lion claws and can openers, and the blind girlfriend who might actually see something in Numb others don’t. As Numb navigates this strange world, and as he continues to search for clues from his past, he is forced to confront one of life’s toughest questions: Who am I?
(via Sean Ferrell’s website)

Numb, coming from HarperPerennial in August, 2010

Sean Ferrell – The Author Talks About Numb the Character

Sean Ferrell – The Author Talks About the Book Trailer Numb

Chuck Sambuchino – An Interview: Published Book, Writing and a Writer’s Life (Part 1)

“It is good to have money and the things that money can buy, but it’s good too, to check up once in a while and make sure you haven’t lost the things money can’t buy.”

George Lorimer – Editor of Saturday Evening Post

CURRENT STATUS: Reminder, Motivator and Daily Review Meeting (Read on if you want to join me in my Corporation of One meeting)

What l have learnt:

What I have done:

  • My friend Oosters is to write film reviews on my blog. I have another one ‘Whatever Works’ coming to you tomorrow. Yeah!
  • Author Sean Ferrell is to answer questions that I wanted to know and hopefully will benefit you as well. Hurrah!
  • Author Chuck Sambuchino’s interview as my guest blogger has been confirmed for mid-September. Yeah!
  • Talking to a book group run by another friend to see if they would consider writing their book reviews on my blog. Yeah! You can only but ask, right?

WORD COUNT: Night Walker 133,000 in total. Friday 23 July 1,000 words

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10 Responses to Sean Ferrell – The Author Talks About Writing

  1. Garry Marcrum says:

    Your blog page is incredibly fascinating,I wish to communicate with u,could i sent email for you?

  2. Don - your father-in-law says:

    Hello Sean,
    I was wondering if you were the one who put together the Star Trek montage? It was very entertaining. However, weren’t you somewhat worried that taking the images from several episodes and mixing up the original order could possibly cause a pertubation in the time-space continuum? I am not suggesting that you did anything wrong. However, Star-Trek is not just science fiction. Whether it is real or not will only be revealed to us in the future, when it happens. Therefore we must take care to present our data streams(of possible future events)to the continuum in as original condition as possible in order to avoid unwanted eruptions of the synchoid process. I believe that covers it, just my two cents, have a nice day. Don

  3. Patty Blount says:

    I follow Sean and admit I did wet myself (just a little) when he said he’s shy. Sure. *rolls eyes* He’s brilliant… “write toward the things that scare you…” Genius.

    Sean’s blog posts lean toward ultra-insightful – at least for me, a writer with no publishing credits who struggles with huge dips in self-confidence. It’s incredibly comforting to hear that even publication, which has been “the prize” I so long to win, doesn’t solve anything for Sean and hasn’t changed him.

    Sean has no idea how much he’s helped me… and the dozens of other writers like me who follow him online and wish him boatloads of success with NUMB!

  4. Ling-tzu Liao says:

    I found the advice is very useful as I recently rewrote my script and discovered that I sometimes simplified the conversation and skipped the conflicts because I try to make a more straightforward tempo. However, this only made the story dull. One of my friends has quoted the advice from a famous scriptwriter, ‘A good script should have a simple story and complicated plots. It may also apply to a novel.

  5. Jessie Mac says:

    You are such a darling, Patty. Thanks so much.

  6. Jessie Mac says:

    Thanks Ling for popping by and commenting. So good to see you on my blog. Hehehe. Glad you found the advice helpful ; )

  7. Stuart Flentge says:

    Hello! I was searching for how to write a book, and found your website. I really like your blog.

  8. Jessie Mac says:

    Thanks for visiting Stuart. Glad you enjoy my blog.

  9. Pingback: Sean Ferrell Talks About Numb The Character Who Wants to Be a Monkey if He Could be an Animal |

  10. Pingback: Sean Ferrell - The Author Talks About the Book Trailer Numb - The Kindle Trailer |

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