Name: Dane Cobain
Where are you from: High Wycombe, United Kingdom
A little about your self `ie your education Family life etc
I grew up in a working class town called Tamworth, in the English Midlands, and studied creative writing at university in London. After that, I moved just outside London to High Wycombe, where I work in social media marketing by day and write books by night.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news?
There’s a huge amount happening for me at the moment, but I think the latest piece of news is that my editor has almost finished her first pass on my upcoming novel, Former.ly. She’ll send that back to me, then I’ll go through it and make some amends then get it over to her again for a second pass. Then, it goes into proofreading!
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
I started out by writing songs, literally as a six-year-old kid – I used to make up melodies and lyrics, although I didn’t start playing guitar and writing ‘proper’ songs until I was about fourteen. From there, it was a natural progression to move into fiction, non-fiction and poetry.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I don’t think there was really a definite moment, it was just a slow shift that occurred over several years. But signing with Booktrope, receiving my first copies of No Rest for the Wicked and hosting the launch party were all symbolic, in many ways.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
I’m not sure, really! I just had a story in my head, and so I planned it out and started writing it. It was just a fun thing to do, and it solidified the buzz for writing that I still enjoy. It wasn’t very good, though. Since then, I’ve written about a dozen more, but No Rest for the Wicked is the only one that’s been properly published.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style?
Not necessarily – I tend to write in multiple different genres and formats, but I also think that there’s something about my ‘voice’ that unifies them all.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
For No Rest for the Wicked? It was interesting – it was originally just called ‘Angels’, but I had some interest from a publisher who thought I should change the name. One of the characters used the line, and it stuck in my head. I knew I had my new title!
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Not really! Not in No Rest for the Wicked – it’s a piece of entertainment. I thought that would be the best way to get interest from a publisher and from my readers, and I was right!
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic ?
I tried to make it as realistic as possible, and all of the science is either scientifically accurate or based upon real science. But that’s up for the readers to decide.
Fiona: Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
Fiona: What books have most influenced your life most? a mentor?
It’s a hard one to answer, but I do think that Terry Pratchett and Philip Pullman both inspired my hunger for reading, which continues to this day.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
I was hoping you wouldn’t answer this, because it’s the bookish equivalent of a guilty pleasure – I’m reading Vinnie Jones’ autobiography. I felt like something light after a few heavy reads, and I picked this up a while back from a charity shop. It’s actually not too bad!
Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?
Hard to mention them all by name, really! At Booktrope, there are literally hundreds of authors all working and collaborating together, and so a lot of up-and-coming authors are good friends of mine. But I’d give a particular shout out to Michael-Israel Jarvis and J. G. Clay.
Fiona: What are your current projects?
I’m working on loads of stuff! I have three books coming out in 2016:
- Eyes Like Lighthouses When the Boats Come Home: A book of alternative/experimental poetry
- ly: A literary thriller about a social networking site for the dead
- Social Paranoia: A non-fiction book explaining how consumers and brands can stay safe in a connected world
Fiona: Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.
My friends have been just as supportive, but again, there are too many to name. I do my best to name the most important ones in my dedications.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
It’s not a career at the moment, but it could be – in many ways, copywriting is an important part of my day job, and it’s no big stretch to imagine myself working as a freelancer, or something like that. We’ll see what happens.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
Nope, I was really happy with it – then again, it did go through a lot of editing over several years.
Fiona: Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
It’s just always been there, really. I was always reading and writing stuff, even as a kid!
Fiona: Can you share a little of your current work with us?
Unfortunately not as it’s in a weird stage in between drafts at the moment and so by the time you published it, it’d already be out of date – sorry!
Fiona: Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
I think the hardest part is letting go of things – when you do some work on something and it doesn’t turn out how you wanted it to. Sometimes it’s hard to know when to stop and to divert your energies somewhere else.
Fiona: Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
It’s hard to pick just one, but I always thought that Charles Bukowski’s style in particular is unique, and that it sort of hits you in the face and grabs your attention. Everyone has to develop their own style, but I’d like to think that mine has the same effect.
Fiona: Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?
Unfortunately, I don’t really have the money to – however, that might change over the next couple of years, so we’ll see.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
The cover of No Rest for the Wicked was done by Ashley Ruggirello, who also designed the cover of Tales of Blood and Sulphur by J. G. Clay, a good friend of mine. My latest covers are design by Michelle Fairbanks of Fresh Design, who did a fantastic job. The cover reveal for Eyes Like Lighthouses When the Boats Come Home is coming up at the end of January.
Fiona: What was the hardest part of writing your book?
Finding a publisher – it took me almost six years, but I’m really happy with where I’ve ended up.
Fiona: Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?
I learned more during the publication of it – that was the first time that I’d worked with editors, proofreaders and designers to get a proper, professional book out, and there was a lot there for me to learn.
Fiona: Do you have any advice for other writers?
Just keep writing – oh, and don’t make excuses.
Fiona: Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
Nothing specific really, but I am very grateful to have them and I think them at every opportunity I can think of. Thanks!
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
No – I just read too many of them. Some of my earliest book memories are of series like Goosebumps and Mr. Men, though.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
The ending of Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials trilogy, at the end of The Amber Spyglass, is the only thing that’s guaranteed to make me cry. It’s just so sad.
Fiona: Is there one person pass or present you would meet and why?
Again, it’s hard to pick just one! Terry Pratchett would have been fun – I was devastated when he died.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone and why ?
Good question – I’ve never thought about it! But I’d prefer to donate my organs and get cremated, anyway.
Fiona: Other than writing do you have any hobbies ?
I also like making music, but that’s kind of connected to writing. Other than that, I don’t have much time for anything else!
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
I tend to just watch random things on Netflix, these days. I watch a lot of documentaries, and maybe the occasional horror film from time to time.
Fiona: Favorite foods / Colors/ Music
I like pizza, although I’m vegetarian so I don’t eat pizza with meat on it. Red and black are my favourite colours, and I listen to all sorts of music, from indie folk and rock ‘n’ roll to dubstep and underground rap.
Fiona: If you were not a writer what else would you like to have done?
I always used to want to be a rock star, although when I realised I was better at writing, I sort of stopped thinking that it was achievable.
Fiona: Do you have a blog/website? If so what is it?
I have loads! I have www.danecobain.com for my writing, and a book called SocialBookshelves.com, which has been going for three or four years now. I’m also currently in the process of launching www.postcardpoetryproject.com, where I’ll be sending out postcards to people with poems on the back of them.
No Rest for the Wicked: Synopsis
When the Angels attack, there’s NO REST FOR THE WICKED.
Father Montgomery, an elderly priest with a secret past, begins to investigate after his parishioners come under attack, and with the help of Jones, a young businessman with an estranged child, Montgomery begins to track down the origin of the Angels.
The Angels are naked and androgynous. They speak in a dreadful harmony with no clear leader. These aren’t biblical cherubs tasked with the protection of the righteous – these are deadly creatures of light that have the power to completely eradicate.
When Jones himself is attacked, Father Montgomery knows he has to act fast. He speaks to the Angels and organises a final showdown where he’s asked to make the ultimate sacrifice.
Dane Cobain is a writer, poet and musician from a place you’ve probably never heard of, somewhere in England. When he’s not writing books, he’s reading and reviewing them on his book blog – SocialBookshelves.com – or working at his day job in social media marketing. Find him at Facebook.com/DaneCobainMusic or follow @DaneCobain on Twitter.