Hello and welcome to my blog, Author Interviews. My name is Fiona Mcvie.
Let’s get you introduced to everyone, shall we? Tell us your name. What is your age?
My name is Shawn Gale, and I am 39 going on 100.
Fiona: Where are you from?
I have lived all across Canada, but currently I live in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia.
Fiona: A little about your self (ie, your education, family life, etc.).
I am a graduate of Humber College’s School for Writers, where I earned a Letter of Distinction. I graduated from the Fraser Valley Writers’ School with a Master’s diploma. I have a Bachelor’s degree in Creative Writing. I completed three years at the University of Wisconsin – Madison with a focus on script and screen writing. I am engaged to a lovely, brilliant woman. I have a 16-yr-old daughter and a newborn son.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news.
Great question. I have a lot of “latest news,” but I think I’ll just stick with one. I am revising the screenplay of World of Dawn: Arise, book 1 of my YA fantasy series for all ages. I’ve been in talks with an entertainment company for some time with regards to book to film adaptation. This latest news is a huge step towards making WOD into film.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
I began writing in 2010 with the hope to elevate, educate, enlighten, and of course entertain people around the globe. I call this the Four-E’s. And in doing so, leave a legacy for future generations.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I considered myself a writer after my first fictional story publication in a National Canadian magazine in 2012.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
My first published book was a story collection, The Stories That Make Us. It went on to garner acclaim and be nominated for the Whistler Book Award. The inspiration behind it was all the classic and contemporary short stories I had been reading in my early writing education. Also, I had unique stories that needed to be told.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
I chose World of Dawn as a title of my YA fantasy series because the world my band of young misfits land on is where all life on earth originated, or where this life dawned. Plus, World of Dawn has a good ring to it.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?
Writing style consists of diction, syntax, imagery, and sentence rhythm. When it comes to my writing style, I consider the point-of-view character and the tone of the genre. Then I slowly find a style that works. This style is made more consistent through revisions.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
I believe all writers draw on their unique experiences to write. Either consciously or unconsciously they mull over these experiences then, they mix, shape, and sculpt them into a coherent story world. As they say, “It’s all grist for the mill.”
Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?
I prefer to hunker down and write the book’s first draft from start to finish. Of course, this is usually after I spent weeks or months mixing, shaping, and sculpting in my mind.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
For World of Dawn: Arise and World of Dawn: Reveal, a graphic designer and myself designed the book covers. You will notice the layout and images are the same. The differences are the color and font styles.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
I hope that WOD readers will grasp that you can always make changes in your life, earn redemption, and be a hero in your own way.
Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest? Who is your favorite writer, and what is it about their work that really strikes you?
Patrick DeWitt is a Canadian author who has caught my interest over the last few years. He wrote The Sisters Brothers, which was adapted into a new movie starring actor Joaquin Phoenix and John C. Riley. I am looking forward to reading his latest novel, French Exit. One of my favorite authorsis Cormac McCarthy. Simply put, he captures “the weird” better than anyone.
Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.
I owe a great deal to the Burnaby Writers Society and the Writers’ Union of Canada whose support has been uplifting and unwavering. However, I owe an immense deal to my family and friends.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
I definitely view writing as a career. A long time ago, I learned that where you direct your thoughts is where you direct your energy. Some part of me is always thinking of my writing projects and the best way I can evoke the Four-E’s when I write.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
That is another great question. I am impressed, Fiona. More often than not, I find myself wanting to make changes to stories or books that I have published. I think this is typical of writers. I once read a story about the Irish writer Frank O’Connor in which he revised his already published short stories over and over. With that said, the changes I’ve wanted to make have always been minor. Thankfully, I have found less and less of these as I have developed artistically.
In my WOD series, I learned how to write several round, or main, characters into the story. It is challenging to ensure they all receive adequate airtime, so to speak. I also learned how to make them grow mentally, emotionally, and spiritually in their own unique way. This was all very challenging yet very gratifying.
Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?
Yet another great question, Fiona. I have my eye on Emery Cohen to play Tanner Kurtz in the WOD movies. He starred as the lead in Stealing Cars, which was produced my Mark Wahlberg. I think he’s got the wit, grit, and “it” factor needed to play Tanner Kurtz. Of course, all the other boys and girls in World of Dawn are big shoes to fill.
Fiona: Any advice for other writers?
My advice to aspiring writers is to direct your thoughts on writing and energy will follow. Most importantly, never ever give up.
Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?
Readers, enjoy WOD and share it with others.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
I am reading Star Rebel by F.M. Busby and The Evolving Self by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi (say that last name 10 times as quick as you can).
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
The first books I really remember reading were the Choose Your Own Adventures series.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
There is so much that makes me cry/laugh. For cry, I will go with well-done book and movie conclusions. For laugh, I will go with American politics.
Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?
I would love to meet the Polish-British author Joseph Conrad, who wrote works such as Lord Jim and Heart of Darkness. He and I have some things in common, in particular, wild youthful experiences and love of redemptive journeys.
Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?
My main hobbies are walking, plumbing the human condition, and watching quality films and listening to classical music. One of my favorite composers is Gustav Holst.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
My favorite TV shows are Ancient Aliens, BBC World News, and quality documentaries. Some of my favorite movies are Gladiator, Thelma & Louise, and anything directed by Michael Mann.
Fiona: Favorite foods, colors, music?
My favorite foods are my fiancée’s pork adobo and any type of fresh, organic vegetables. I value and appreciate all colors of the spectrum. Like emotions, they are all vital to the human experience.
Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?
I would probably wither and die, sort of like Hemingway.
Fiona: You only have 24 hours to live how would you spend that time?
If I had 24 hours to live I would spend it with my closest family members. In fact, that’s the plan if a giant asteroid is on a collision course with Earth. Of course, that would be accompanied with Gustav Holst’s orchestral suite The Planets.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?
That’s easy. Under my name I would inscribe: “Fortune favors the bold.”
Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?
Readers can follow me @AuthorShawnGale, https://www.worldofdawn.com, and Shawn Gale-Author@Facebook.
Check out World of Dawn at https://www.amazon.com/World-Dawn-Reveal-Shawn-Gale/dp/1543425208/ref=sr_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1539088612&sr=1-3&refinements=p_27%3AShawn+Gale&dpID=51p2Y-AtPHL&preST=_SY344_BO1,204,203,200_QL70_&dpSrc=srch