John’s top tip for aspiring authors: Read Steven King’s excellent memoir/coaching guide called ‘On writing.’
John D Murphy is an Australian author based in Queensland, He has had a lifelong attraction to storytelling; from stories ranging across family entertainment skits as a child, to turning his life into story as an art of understanding his adult purpose. This first of his novels is, above all, designed to entertain readers and he hopes they will be open to the tale he has crafted within.
Why do you write? For the pleasure which writing affords me.
What would you be doing if you weren’t a writer? Teaching and travelling – preferably together.
What was your toughest obstacle to becoming published? Finding ‘that’ publisher who operates between the big end of town and the self-publishing domains.
How involved have you been in the development of your book? Did you have input into the cover? With respect to the development, I have had full engagement. With respect to the cover, I suggested some themes which I considered important; then a creative interpreted those ideas with required commercial focus. I was very pleased with the results.
What’s the best aspect of your writing life? Taking a fleeting dream sequence and turning it into a kind of reality which will appeal to a reader.
—the worst? 1. Constant interruptions by cats whose dominant thoughts are that I should be focused on them rather than writing. 2. Covid 19 chaos for grounding the launch of my first novel in April 2020.
What would you do differently if you were starting out now as a writer? Dream less and read more.
What do you wish you’d been told before you set out to become an author? To read Steven King’s excellent memoir/coaching guide called ‘On writing.’
What’s the best advice you were ever given? Writers write; Authors publish.
How important is social media to you as an author? I am a shy, retiring, outgoing, loquacious type who really has to have something of substance to say before engaging with SM.
Do you experience ‘writer’s block’ and if so, how do you overcome it? Never been a problem. Nor talking incessantly, as my dear wife and close friends would earnestly confirm.
How do you deal with rejection (of a manuscript)? Just the same as any other bump I have had on my life’s paths. Identify the issues and address them. Only happened once, because I had far too many typographical errors in the manuscript to be considered seriously. Having fixed said typographical errors with some stiff editing, I submitted to a Melbourne publishing house and the rest is going to be history.
In three words, how would you describe your writing? Engaging. Relevant. Reflective.
If you had the chance to spend an hour with any writer of your choice, living or dead, who would it be and what would you most like them to tell you about living a writing life? David H Richter. Falling into Theory (1994). I would be pleased for this author to expand on those of his words which told me that I was going to walk on a writing path.
‘If in my life I have developed any ability to understand those who are other than me, other in race or gender or culture or sexual practice, a good deal of my training in empathy must have come from the practice fiction and poetry have given me in taking on other selves, other lives.’
Maeve Fossard, a nurse during the bombings of Bristol in WW1 wants to escape the pain and suffering around her. A trip to a pub and a chance meeting with a stranger named Colin, changes her life. The shadow world of spies and politics becomes a reality.
Through two World Wars, the Cold War and into the Sixties; from England to Australia, she encounters ultimate highs and soul sapping lows.
Every action has consequences. Her companions, Margaret and Allison, their fates entwined, join a rich tapestry of characters, in her endeavours to create an invisible dynasty of social reform which will continue through to the future and span the globe…
“A fantastic read from a new Australian Author who has a flair for the period of such a wonderful storyline…authentic and moving with beautiful nuances and themes…5 Stars…” Gail, IndieBooks Reviewer.