Bio: John Steiner earned his Associate of Biology at Salt Lake Community College, where he is currently working as a tutor in math and chemistry. He exercises an avid interest in history, science, philosophy, mythology, martial arts as well as military tactics and technology.
Mr. Steiner, please pull up a seat and tell us how life's been since last November. What have you been doing besides writing?
Literally fighting City Hall, and I have the letter to the editor and original long draft thereof, if that's of interest to your readers. Also, we're gearing up for the release of the third Squad V book, Barer of the Ghost Nation.
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By far, the response has been how much they like the character Vance, the 19th century lawyer, turned vigilante outlaw, turned vampire. Also, it's been reviewed in a college paper, the SLCC Globe. It was described as the seamless fusion of Anne Rice and Tom Clancy, which the reviewer told me he hadn't thought that was possible before I came along.
When can we expect Book Three, and can you tell us a little about it? From the cover, it looks like Native American lore might be involved. Am I right?
Are you planning more books for the series, and are there any other books of other genres in the works?
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Because I've been having a spaceflight jones so bad, I started a series of spaceflight short stories called Flipspace, which centers on a NATO airforce crew of a military spaceship in 2175. I've completely two of these, and I'm awaiting feedback from a test audience. If any of your readers are interested in joining in I welcome the chance to reveal the creative process with those two installments.
Now that you've been in the writing business for a while, has anything surprised you (good or bad) about the process from draft to marketing?
The interpretation of your lines has been the biggest. Something that reads well to me might completely throw an editor for a loop, and on rare occasion the suggested replacement strikes me as not making sense or completely erases my intent. I'm learning that something I devise to add artistic value to the language might not always been called for, and I'm often reminded to work toward the tenth grade reading level. That I'm a huge science geek creates issues with readers who might not want to run to a dictionary or Answers.com for every scientific idea posed in my stories. Another thing is- and this might shock budding authors, your work doesn't magically blast off a launch pad into the higher orbits of book sales numbers. I used to think the hard was getting published. That's a lot of phone calls and emails to distributors, to reviewers and anyone else needed to grow awareness of your work.
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I think this won't settle out for a while yet. Small press companies have dived into a huge ocean with lots of sharks, and really loud fog horns. I leaned toward traditional simply because they have the bigger market share, but that's a small crack for so many authors to leap for prior to the door slamming shut. Small press has difficulty getting heard over the background noise, and shifting market moment is a herculean effort, which can easily be reversed and erased by the next rather shallow best seller, that some of us can't believe got past an editor. What small press will do is beef up their advertising efforts and work more with major distributors to make their authors' works available to a larger reader base.
It takes a world thundering meteor to take out dinosaurs.
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Oh, gotta be Transfromers! My very first one was Megatron, who turns into a gun and a few other neat shapes. Sure the leader of the good guys turned into a truck, but Megatron and his Decepticon underlings turned into military grade hardware and more imaginative stuff beyond simply cars, trucks and vans. While I have fond memories of those, I enjoy more where the concept went in the movies. Granted Hasbro will be hard pressed to capture all of that into bits of plastic and metal.
Would you now be so kind as to share an excerpt of your work?
Namaste and I wish you the best of luck! I hope you'll return soon.
Thank you again for this opportunity.