Paperback Writer would like to introduce our author for today Herbert Howard Jones, author of The Pyewiz and the Amazing Mobile Phone. Herbert is on his first book tour with Pump Up Your Book Promotion and as part of his virtual book tour you have a chance to win prizes.
WIN PRIZES As a special promotion for all our authors, Pump Up Your Book Promotion is giving away a FREE virtual book tour to a published author or a $50 Amazon gift certificate to those not published who comments on our authors’ blog stops. More prizes will be announced as they become available.
ABOUT THE BOOK: Journey to a frozen planet to find a long lost twin an amazing crystal phone with incredible powers and a cunning old pirate wizard who must be stopped.
Schoolboy Terry Mctrain thinks the new tenant in his parent’s guesthouse is strange. Stranger still is the reason why she is here. Then Terry learns about a twin brother he never knew he had, kidnapped by a pirate wizard years ago. Baffled by all this, Terry realizes there’s a mystery to be solved, and a secret to be uncovered. But when he discovers that the fate of the world is also in his hands, he wonders..
Could this turn into the adventure of a lifetime?
Perhaps, but unless Terry and his friend Will travel to the other side of the solar system to solve this puzzle there’s a danger that the world would be destroyed, and his twin brother lost forever.
Hi, Herbert Howard Jones,
Welcome to Paperback Writer
Q: Will you share with us how you came up with the idea for this book?
A: Thank you for asking me. But unfortunately, there was nothing profound about the stimulus for my book, which came quite unexpectedly, early one afternoon, in the form of a workman that I had employed to remove some junk. But it was his manner, the way he held himself, his appearance, his aura, which reeked of the sea and planted the thought of The Pyewiz in my head! He was the very incarnation of a fictitious character yet to be born on paper. He had two help mates with him, Terry and Will, and they too became the young protagonists in my swashbuckling adventure. I also borrowed ideas from Tolkien, but not too blatantly that you would notice. But he did invent the ultimate adventure travelogue, and I used this format in my book. I also wanted to write the book as a kind of cathartic therapy and see what I would come up with.
Q: Do you plan your stories first with an outline or does it come to you as write it?
A: I think that it is essential to have an outline, and then fill in the details as you go along. Once you know what your parameters are, you know when you are out of bounds. I believe that it keeps everything tight and under control.
Q: Do you know the end of the story at the beginning?
A: The end of the book is surely the back story, isn’t it? The book in hand is the sequel to the back story! First you work out the character’s motivations and reasons for their actions, and then you tuck this away somewhere, and start work on your novel, which deliberately leaves out these very elements. Then at the end of the book, you tack on the back story. So you really have to know the end, even before you get to work on the book itself. Well for certain types of fiction, anyway. But if you don’t keep your readers guessing, which is what this method achieves, then you may as well stick to writing letters!
Q: Do you have a process for developing your characters?
A: The J.R Rowling method is the best in my view. She kept note books, and wrote notes about them, what they looked like, what they wore, and what their general preferences were. She built up a character dossier, and got to know her characters so well that she knew how they would behave in any situation. This gave her characters consistency and believability. I use this method myself. But it also helps to draw a little picture or caricature of them too. Then there really is no going back. The character springs to life and there is nothing you can do about it, other than finish the story. Because obviously, it is the characters who are the true authors of your tale.
Q: It is said that authors write themselves into their characters. Is there any part of you in your characters and what they would be?
A: Yep, I’m Terry! I felt closer to this character than any of the others. I could never be the Pyewiz. The guy’s karma would freak me out for one thing!
Q: What is your most favorite part about this book?
A: The Pyewiz conducts mock war games to keep his crew on their toes. Terry and Will find themselves getting enmeshed in this. They manage to commandeer one of the galleons and play loud rock music over the PA system! I thought this might tickle some readers.
Q: When in the process of writing your book did you begin to look for a publisher?
A: At the end of the project, which probably isn’t the wisest thing to do. But I hate the idea of writing story proposals. I don’t think I could cope with the pressure if one of them was taken up.
Q: What struggles have you had on the road to being published?
A: The usual round of rejections, bouts of self doubt, envy of those who are published, tendency to subscribe to conspiracy theories about the industry, formation of sweat beads on forehead when opening agent’s letters, nightmares, inane looping of self-talk; was it the folder? Yes it was the folder; I knew I shouldn’t have used that yellow folder with the Homer Simpson logo on it! Rollercoaster’s have an easier time! Aside from all that, there is a feeling that the industry is oversubscribed, and that it would doing agents a big favour if people stopped writing books for a while. I also don’t think it’s healthy for authors to get too wrapped up in their brainchild. I think you have to distance yourself emotionally from it, and at an appropriate time, let it go! The mental, emotional and physical struggles of an author are truly the struggles of the damned.
Q: What has been the best part about being published?
A: The reaction of people around me. I have been invited to quite a few dinner parties since getting into print. Also, I’d say handling the book for the first time in the knowledge that the British Museum has a policy of keeping a copy in their archives. Well, they used to, and it’s a damn nice thought!
Q: What do you want readers to remember and carry with them after reading your novel?
A: I want them to say to them, ‘I can’t wait for the movie’. No, seriously, I want them to think fondly of The Pyewiz, despite his failings as a human being. And I hope this doesn’t sound big headed, but it is surely ever writers dream to have their characters creep into twenty-first century culture as mini icons of sorts. If not, my book is big enough to be used as a door stop! Either way I can’t loose!
Q: Do you have plans to write another book?
A: Well I’ve set myself a target of writing 500 pages a year, which equates to two books year. At the present time I am writing the sequel to my first book, entitled, The Pyewiz and The Sons of Terrafirma, and I’m tapping out my first occult thriller about an unusual archaeological find which has curious implications for the heroine of the story.
Q: Would you care to share with us how the virtual book tour experience with Pump up Your Book Promotion has been for you?
A: Simply thrilling! It is also a great honour to be on the same promotional pages as Barry Eisler and Jamie Ford! These guys really are the top guns, and so with any luck some of their talent will rub off on me! And by way of a quick infomercial, let me tell all authors out there to immediately down tools and sign up with Dorothy Thompson’s agency right now! Pumpupyourbookpromotion has to be the best value for money PR outfit on the internet. I’m happy because there are already there are over 18,600 listings for the word ‘Pyewiz’ on Yahoo, and it is all down to Dorothy Thompson. I even made the Chicago Times and libreria universitaria! Thank you Dorothy and partners!! Also, it really is fun to be given carte blanche to write anything you like and have it posted on all these sympathetic blogs. I’ve really indulged myself. If Dorothy will have me again, I’ll sign up with her like a shot.
Q: Where can readers find a copy of your book?
A: From Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk also Amazon.com.jp (I do actually have a Japanese character in the story), Barnesandnoble.com, Powells.com. Whsmiths.com, to name but a few.
Thank you, Herbert Howard Jones for sharing your book and characters with us today. It has been a pleasure and I hope you have had a successful virtual book tour.
Thank you Rebecca for taking such a kind interest in my work.
THE PYEWIZ AND THE AMAZING MOBILE PHONE VIRTUAL BLOG TOUR ’09 will officially begin on May 4 and end on June 26. You can visit Howard’s blog stops at http://www.virtualbooktours.wordpress.com in May and June to find out more about this talented author!