Monday, 2 September 2013

Q & A with D.M. Livingston

Title: Nyx

Author: D.M. Livingston

Genre: Fantasy

Page Count: 480

Published: April 5th 2013

Book Description: 

A heart-warming fantasy-horror novel about Nyx, a sarcastic, mildly homicidal fairy, who is hurled into Hell, but instead of damned souls and devils, she finds only a group of confused, young human witches.

It’s hate at first sight.

But Nyx and the witches, whose magical skills are not quite polished, must work together to survive the ravages of Hell, and then the demon-infested nightmare Earth has become.

The motley crew searches for the Keys of Iron, Flame, and Sorrow, which will (hopefully) close the Gates of Hell. However, the dark queen Morda, who opened the Gates by tricking Lucifer himself, takes a special interest in obliterating the bickering group.

That is, if they don’t obliterate each other first…

 

 
Q & A with D.M. Livingston

Q:  Tell us a little bit about your title character, Nyx.
A:
  Nyx is incredibly fun to write. She’s vain, sarcastic, mouthy, untrustworthy, unscrupulous, unapologetic, and has no issue with being evil if the situation requires it (or if it doesn’t).


On the physical side, she’s short, bluish, has wings, and as one of the Fae, is made of magic.

Q:  What was your favorite scene to write?
A:
  My favorite one I can't tell you about, because it'd give too much away. However, I loved writing the scene where hundreds of young human witches wake up in Hell and everyone is attacked. Since these witches are from all over the world, they all use wildly different kinds of magic. For example, an ancient Egyptian witch does something totally different than the Indian, Mayan, Aborigine, Italian, or Viking witches. Creating a big battle with weird Hell monsters and all manner of magic is zapping through the air was damn fun.


Q:  I have to mention the eye catching cover. Who designed the cover for your book and what is that process like for you as an author?
A:
  I’m glad you like it! After spending two and half years writing the damn book, I wanted the best cover I could get. As a reader, I enjoy a great cover.


I tried to design the cover myself, but no matter what, it just looked cheap and self-published (which it was, but you don’t want it to look like that). I found dozens of book cover designers online, but the vast majority were talented illustrators that slapped a title and author on a picture of a guy with a sword or a busty elf maiden. So as soon as I found theBookDesigners (http://bookdesigners.com/), it was obvious they were the right choice. Not surprisingly, they were also five times more expensive than most of the other designers. But I plunked down the cash, and they soon came up with a bunch of great and divergent designs. After several rounds of back and forth, we ended up with the current design.

The process was exciting and a little nerve-wracking. When I finish the sequel to Nyx, I’m definitely going back to them.

I have a blog post about this at http://dmlivingston.com/blog/2013/04/deciding-on-a-cover/.


 




Q:  What is the best advice you have been given?
A:
  The past is untouchable and the future, unknowable. In other words, it’s pointless to spend too much time wishing that things had turned out differently. They didn’t. What’s in front of you is what’s in front of you. As for the future, some planning is good, but don’t go overboard trying to figure out every possible scenario. The most likely outcome, by far, is something you didn’t think of.


Q:  As a new author what do you see as the biggest challenge for indie authors and what have you been doing to overcome that?
A:
  Two things: writing well and marketing. For the writing, having an editor was absolutely vital for me. Fortunately, I was able to work with Annie Auerbach, who’s been on the New York Times bestseller list herself, and was an editor at Disney for years. She improved the quality of Nyx a gajillionfold. I’m a better writer for having worked with her. Full disclosure: we’re married. I didn’t marry her for her editing skills, but I could have.


As for marketing, well, I’m still learning. I’ve been guided by posts by Michael J. Sullivan, a bestselling fantasy author who’s been generous with what he’s learned about marketing. A good place to start is here: http://www.reddit.com/r/Write2Publish/comments/1aqjxy/authors_guide_to_self_promotion/

I’ve also heard from multiple authors that the best marketing for your current book is the next one. So I’m already working on the sequel.

Q:  If you could have any superpower, what would you choose?
A:
  Flight. No question. I don’t know exactly how propulsion would work (which muscle, precisely, does Superman use to go faster?), but I wouldn’t let that stop me.


Q:  Hard/paperbacks or eBooks?
A:
  I love holding a physical book. I like technology, but given the choice between my Kindle and a paperback, I’ll choose the paperback every time.


Q:  What book are you reading now?
A:
  I’m reading two books: Thud! by Terry Pratchett, who’s one of the smartest and funniest writers that has ever existed. Honest.


I’m also reading A Guide to the Good Life: The Ancient Art of Stoic Joy, which is the best damn book on philosophy I’ve ever read, because it actually teaches you practical steps to live a happier life. Turns out those ancient Greeks and Romans had some pretty good ideas. Who knew?


About the Author: 
 
D. M. Livingston has been a pin monkey, nude model, logic tutor, pizza maker, graphic designer, and web developer.

He grew up in the sparse beauty of the Mojave desert, and his first school was actually called Tumbleweed Elementary. Since then, he lived in San Francisco, Brooklyn, and Hollywood before settling down in the lush beauty of Oregon with his wife and son. Being from the desert, the rain doesn't bother him. In fact, it's still kind of exotic, as are all the green things growing right out of the ground.

Contact Info: 

Email: dm@dmlivingston.com

Website: http://dmlivingston.com/

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7159995.D_M_Livingston

1 comment:

  1. I like the sound of this book and I enjoyed the interview as well. Thanks!

    ReplyDelete