March 5, 2016
CTC – Today I am excited to interview David Estes, author of The Dwellers Saga, The Country Sage, The Slip Trilogy, and many others.
Thank you so much, David, for taking time out of your busy schedule to answer some questions for my readers today. So, let’s get started.
When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
DE – Thanks very much for having me on your awesome blog for this interview!
I’m a little slow, so it took me a LONG time to realize that I wanted–no, needed–to be a writer. First it took a big push from my wife, Adele, to convince me to even start writing, when I was 29 years old and working as an accountant in Sydney. After that, it didn’t take me long to realize how much I loved writing, and that I had a talent for coming up with creative stories and using the right words to tell them.
CTC – How long does it take you to write a book?
DE – It’s varied throughout my career, but generally between three and five weeks for the first draft, and another 3-4 weeks for revisions. I write every day and work hard to publish 3-4 books per year, so my readers don’t have to wait long for sequels.
CTC – What is your work schedule like when you’re writing?
DE – Well, I’m ALWAYS writing, so my schedule is pretty consistent. I usually write 6 days a week, starting early. I wake up around 6:30am, eat breakfast, grab a coffee, and get going. I’ll typically write for 2-3 hours, until I’ve hit my daily word count goal, which is 3,000 words. Then I’ll grab a morning snack, and start on the business side of things, connecting with readers and bloggers, doing interviews or guest blog posts, hitting my social media, or setting up promotions. That sort of thing. Whenever I finish, generally mid-afternoon, I’ll have lunch and then spend the rest of the afternoon with my wife and newborn son, Beau, either going to the beach or the pool for a swim. I love my schedule and it has helped me find success in my career!
CTC – What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
DE – Maybe just that I’m obsessive about my daily word count goal. If I don’t hit it for some reason, I get really stressed out. I rarely miss my goal, which has allowed me to write 28 books in a little over five years.
CTC – Where do you get your information or ideas for your books?
DE – All different places. Honestly, most of the time they just pop into my head out of nowhere, which is really cool. A good example of this is when I was writing the sequel to The Moon Dwellers, my most popular series which I’d originally planned to be a trilogy. A character with a funny slang accent started talking in my head! Her name came to me immediately–Siena–and she wouldn’t shut up! I started taking a bunch of notes, and that’s when I realized she was in a different place than my other characters, but would eventually connect with them. Instead of a trilogy I discovered I had a sister series and then a 7th book to bring both series together! Siena was the EASIEST character I ever wrote..she practically wrote herself!
CTC – What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
DE – Well, I live in Hawaii, so spending time outdoors is a major part of life here, something I place a very high value on! We usually spend time at the beach or the pool, swimming and reading. I also like playing all sports, as well as watching them. In the evening we like to watch TV or movies.
CTC – What does your family think of your writing?
DE – Ha! Of course they are very supportive, and my mom is always the first to read my new books. But they also worry about my financial future because of how uncertain sales can be from month to month. Sometimes my parents ask me if I’ll go back to being an accountant if my sales ever lag. My answer is a resounding “Never!” For the first time in my life, I don’t want a back up plan. I am going to do whatever it takes to continue in this career path, and I am forever indebted to my incredibly generous and supportive readers for everything they do for me!
CTC – What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books?
DE – That I COULD write! Before I started, I knew I had a lot of ideas, but had no clue whether I’d be able to turn them into books I could be proud of. It was only after received thousands of reviews and sold tens of thousands of books that I truly believed I had what it took to be an author!
CTC – How many books have you written? Which is your favorite?
DE – I’ve written 28 books, 24 of which are published and available for purchase on Amazon. My most popular book is The Moon Dwellers, but a fan favorite has been Fire Country, which has a cult following (the book that practically wrote itself). However, my personal favorite is Slip, which is getting the highest ratings from reviewers. My writing really matured during The Slip Trilogy, something I’m extremely proud of. A close second would be my latest book, Strings, which is a SciFi retelling of Pinocchio that is getting incredible early reviews!
CTC – Do you have any suggestions to help me become a better writer? If so, what are they?
DE – Two things: 1) Read as much as you can. Observe your favorite authors and the techniques they use to create suspense, convey emotions, build characters, and develop plot lines. Learn from them! 2) Write every day. Even if you don’t feel like it. Even if you only have 15 minutes to spare. Write something. It doesn’t matter what it is, just that you are constantly practicing your craft. Trust me, it will pay off!
CTC – Do you hear from your readers much? What kinds of things do they say?
DE – All the time! I love that I hear from my readers every single day, sometimes via social media or e-mail, but mostly through my Goodreads YA/Fan Group, David Estes Fans and YA Book Lovers Unite! I love my readers, and they often provide inspiration, kind words about my books, or humorous anecdotes that make me smile. They are THE BEST PEOPLE IN THE WORLD. And I’m not biased.
CTC – Do you like to create books for adults?
DE – Yes! Although my books are pegged as YA simply because many of my characters are young, in reality they are written for anyone who likes fast-paced stories with complex, colorful characters and crazy twists. I write the kinds of books that I like to read, and I’m an adult, so I suspect anyone who’s like me and enjoys SciFi and Fantasy books will appreciate my books, whether adult or young adult!
CTC – Is there anything else that you would like for the audience to know?
DE – Don’t forget to enter the giveaway below, you can win a free book! Also, if you join my mailing list (see link within the giveaway), you can get the David Estes Starter Library (for books) for free! I hope you all enjoy my books and I’d love to hear from you! Thanks again for having my on your blog and for asking such great questions!
Get the David Estes Starter Library (FOUR books!) for FREE by joining my mailing list: http://s.privy.com/s8hg9k5g
Author of Strings, The Dwellers Saga, The Country Saga, Salem’s
Revenge, the Slip Trilogy, and The Evolution Trilogy, and The Adventures of Nikki Powergloves
*For queries regarding the film options or publishing rights for my books,
please contact my agent, Andrea Hurst at firstname.lastname@example.org
In a desperate attempt to escape destruction decades earlier, humankind was forced underground, into the depths of the earth, creating a new society called the Tri-Realms.