Interview with author Quentin Cope
Q: What is your take on the importance of a good cover and title for your book?
A: An eye catching cover and title that accurately reflect the fiction or non-fiction story-line of your book are essential. One point to consider is that the cover must transmit information to the potential reader in seconds ... and this must be legible not only as a full high definition artwork but also as a very small thumbnail object for catalogue listing.
Q: Writing can be an emotionally draining and stressful pursuit. Any tips for aspiring writers?
A: If you want to write successful fiction you need to have the right IDEA! You need to be INSPIRED, DETERMINED, ENERGIZED and AMBITIOUS. You will, without doubt, become 'drained' and 'stressed' if you attempt to tackle such a monumental task without the security of these essential creative foundations to lean upon. An unfortunate fact is that 97% of writers never complete their book or novel project!
Q: Many people are unsure about the writing process seeing it sometimes described as an ‘art’ above all else. What are your thoughts on that?
A: Writing is simply a skill and one you can train yourself to master in the same way you would train to improve any other kind of skill. A wordsmith is not born … a wordsmith learns his or her craft over a period of years. It starts with having a complete knowledge of the language you are writing in of course.
Q: Do you consider fiction to be a difficult start for the first time writer?
A: Writing fiction is a very orderly process, so you need to start in an orderly fashion. Firstly, you will need to create a new folder on your PC specifically for your book. Give it a title, maybe the working title of the book itself or simply 'My Book'. This first stage of getting organized to write your book is very important, because whatever you are planning to write, you will need to 'plan' the writing of it. Fiction is built on a platform of fantasy … so if you have a mind filled with fantastic ideas, then writing good fiction is no more difficult than any other genre.
Q: Can real people become part of the mix in the fantasy world of ‘fiction’?
A: Most who write fiction do so by referring to a memory bank of people, places and events needing to be recalled in order to mix with a set of fictional circumstances that actually make up the story. A fiction writer is simply a 'story teller' who will often admit that many of the characters, some of the places and an embellished set of events, have been gathered together from real memories of real people in real situations.
Q: From your point of view, is there any real secret to the process of simply writing?
A: There is no secret other than planning … and then sticking to the plan. However, you do need help, no matter how good you think you are as a writer; help from family to give you the time to write and help from friends to provide sensible critique.
Q: Once you have finished your book, is self-publishing a good option or should a new writer persevere in the laborious task of finding a traditional publisher.
A: In the midst of this rather frantic 21st Century, self-publishing with a good name like Amazon will cost you nothing, give you a worldwide shop front, help you with free marketing initiatives and always pay you on time. What’s not to like about that?
Q: Considering the broad selection of books you have published over the past years, do you have a particular favourite?
A: No. My most favourite book is always the last one to be published … and this is the little something that drives me on to write the next one … and the best one!
Quentin Cope - Bio.
Having lived a colourful life, survived the Iran-Iraq war of the eighties and the Gulf War of the nineties, popular author Quentin Cope has managed an exciting life of travel and adventure that shines through those of his books reflecting some difficult times in the Middle East. His writing style can sometimes be punchy and direct with similar approaches to story-telling as other well known wordsmiths such as Jack Higgins, Glover Wright and Lee Child. Cope also has a sense of humour and as well as setting out to entertain in the murky worlds of deathly conflict, black politics and mysterious murder events, he also likes to amuse to the point of laughing out loud. There are some great titles to play with in this writers humorous catalogue such as ‘The Things You Should Know About Women (Written By A Man)’, ‘The Travels of Herbert T. Eustace’ and the wonderful ‘Em’; a living snapshot of a determined female character in the North East of England as she acts out every single hour of one single day in a troubled life. Having learnt much on his life journey, Quentin Cope also writes to help other aspiring writers in a series of titles designed to be readable, informative and hopefully the right kind of advice and information that will create quality writers and authors of the future.