Thursday, 25 July 2013

Interview: Andy Dale

What have you had published?
‘First Years – Piranhas in the Bedroom’ is my first novel, but I have written a number of plays over the years. I have also written a series of children books about a King called Derek who lives in Dudley. Derek is never quite happy with his life and in each book calls upon the services of ‘Wonder Wizards’ whose moto is ‘Wonder Wizards make all things Wonderful’. Each book features a different colour wizard and things just never go to plan. The ‘King Derek and the Wonder Wizards’ series will eventually contain 7 books and so far the first 3 have been published.
What genre(s) of book do you write?
I like to write comedy and I like to write from the unfortunate in-love male character. Although, I have been planning recently to write a murder mystery which might be quite dark.
What inspired you to write your first book?
I actually wrote the first two thirds of the book 25 years ago but never got round to finishing it until last year. I suppose I was very influenced by reading books written by Mike Gayle that are aimed at the 30 –something male audience. When I hit my 40th birthday I set myself the challenge of finishing the book and publishing it.
How long did it take you to write “First Years – Piranhas in the Bedroom”? 
As I say it took 26 years but I am hoping to complete the sequel in less than a year.
What is the working title of your next book(s)?
It is the sequel. ‘First Years – Snakes in the Stores’.
When and why did you begin writing?
I have always written and even in my junior school I started to win awards for my writing. I suppose my overactive imagination was to blame. Comedy writing, for me, really started in my late teens as I wrote scripts for pantomimes and amateur drama groups. In the last ten years I have written many blogs including an online fictional story called ‘Tell the Groom’. That I hope one day might become a book. It features an unlucky man who is jilted on the morning of his wedding day.   
Do you self publish your books or go through an agency?
I have so far Self Published and marketed them myself. A process I like doing and even if my books become more popular I might stick to Self Publishing. It allows me to write the story that I want to write without censorship.
What part of writing books do you find the hardest?
Probably the ending. My ideas for plots come to me quite easily and I can get on a real roll, but it is normally at the end when I hit the block. The wrapping up part is the place where I sometimes struggle.
What do you do in your spare time?
I write in my spare time because during the day I am an IT Consultant. But when I am not writing my main passion is supporting Aston Villa. A team that seems to get a mention in most of my books. I have had a season ticket for 33 years and write on a number of the Villa blogs.
Who is your favourite author?
I have three whose books I always rush to buy (or download these days). They are Nick Hornby, Mike Gayle and Dan Brown. I really enjoy the style of both Nick and Mike’s writing. They both write, like myself, as if you are inside the head of the leading male character. They seems to really understand how the modern male thinks. The humour helps and I am a romantic so this ladlit is very well suited to me. Dan Brown’s books are obviously very different but virtually all of them have gripped me from the start. If you pushed me to choose one though it would be Mike Gayle.
What’s your favourite genre to read?
Probably just answered that one. I like fictional romantic comedy and not too erotic. The sort your old dad could read without blushing Also I love football books. My favourite two being ‘Fever Pitch’ and ‘The Damned United’. Interestingly both of these are classed as Fiction but based on real events.
Do you have any advice for other writers?
My advice really is just do it, but write first and for most for yourself. Very few authors get noticed or make a living out of it, but there is still a buzz to seeing your work in print. So Self Publish first and use the free Social Media routes to get yourself known. Oh, and don’t be afraid to give your book away.
Is there anything else you’d like to add?
Just thank you for allowing me this opportunity and I hope people have as many laughs reading ‘First Year – Piranhas in the Bedroom’ as I had writing it.

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