Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Scott Clements Interview

Welcome Scott Clements thanks for talking to us today and letting us have a little insight into you and your books.

Q: Tell us about Gasparilla’s Treasure………………
CLEMENTS: Gasparilla’s Treasure is an adventurous treasure hunt through historic St Augustine Florida .  Our thirteen-year-old hero, Trip Montgomery, has to solve clues and sets out on the quest to find the treasure of famed pirate, Gasparilla.  Trip has no idea what’s in store for him!

Q: What’s your genre and why did you choose it?
CLEMENTS: I wrote Gasparilla’s Treasure as a middle grade novel.  I wanted to write something my ten year old son could really sink his teeth into; something that any kid from age eight to fourteen would not want to put down.  And truth be told, I think my brain is stuck at age thirteen anyway, just ask my wife.  I’ve been pleasantly surprised that many of my most satisfied readers are adults that just love the feeling of a “The Goonies” style book.  I think they enjoy the fact that it’s transporting them back to their youth.

Q: What’s the biggest obstacle you faced with your writing journey?
CLEMENTS: I think the biggest obstacles are the ones we put in front of ourselves.  It’s way easier to say, “I don’t have time right now” than it is to sit down and write.  It’s also easy to tell yourself that you’re not good enough, or that it’s too hard.  You just have to put those thoughts out of your head and make it happen.

Q: Where do you get your ideas and inspiration from?
CLEMENTS: With Gasparilla’s Treasure, I started with the single sentence, “A Thirteen-year-old boy wants to find the treasure his family has been searching for for three generations.”  I went with the idea that everything in my book must serve that sentence.  Then the book just started pouring out.  Now that I’ve finished, I see stories in everything around me.  Now I just have to sort out which ones will actually be interesting.

Q: Who or what are your influences?
CLEMENTS:  As a writer, I hate to admit it, but I think I am most influenced by movies.  I work as a sound mixer in the movie and TV business, and my mind always plays out a book as a movie.  When you read Gasparilla’s Treasure, you will quickly see some influences from “The Goonies”, “National Treasure”, “Indiana Jones”, etc... A great story is a great story, and I just want to tell great stories with great characters.

Q: Are you self-published, legacy or a combination?
CLEMENTS:  I am self published, and knew I would be from the beginning.  When I first started looking at writing a book, the prospect of finding an agent and then a publisher was so daunting.  And if I did find one, I realized they would likely make me do most of the work anyway.  Then I discovered self-publishing, and knew it was a fit for me.

Q: What was the hardest part of your self-pub / publishing journey?
CLEMENTS:  I think most indie authors would answer this question with publicity and getting the book into the hands of readers.  I did the free Kindle promotion and got 3200 downloads, which resulted in zero reviews so far.  I know when people read Gasparilla’s Treasure, they will love it, but it’s getting them to read it.  Publishers have huge advertising budgets and built in readers.  Us indie authors rely on readers, reviews, and word of mouth to get our books out there.

Q: What format are your books available in?
CLEMENTS:  As I mentioned, I did the Kindle free promo which requires an author to be ebook exclusive to Kindle for three months, so Gasparilla’s Treasure is currently available for Kindle and in paperback.  It was briefly available for the Nook and through Smashwords, and will relaunch on those sites in June.

Q: How many books have you published so far?
CLEMENTS:  Gasparilla’s Treasure was my first book... hopefully of many.      I hope to find readers that are hungry for my books, so I want to have more out there for them to read, and I’m working on it.  Many of the people who have read Gasparilla’s Treasure are screaming for a sequel.  When you read it, you’ll know why.

Q: What things did you outsource, if any at all?
CLEMENTS:  I have no artistic talent, so I found an amazing artist to do my cover.  I think everyone will agree that she does amazing work.  Other than that, I have done everything myself, and it’s all gone pretty smoothly.  Sure there have been a few bumps in the road, but that is the journey of self-publishing.

Q: What’s the best bit of advice you received when starting out?
CLEMENTS:  The best advice I got was when I was writing scripts.  I handed a script to a screen-writer friend of mine, and after reading it, he advised me to throw it away and read the books “Screenplay”, and “Writing Screenplays That Sell”.  I took his advice and started with a new understanding of structure, story, and characters.  I think that advice has helped me write fast moving, fun, character driven stories.

Q: What advice would you offer to the future Debut Authors out there?
CLEMENTS:  Get ready for the bad with the good.  Not everyone is going to like your work, and when someone has something bad to say about your work, it feels like they are stomping on your soul.   But then a reader tells you that they couldn’t sleep until they finished the book, or that your book really connected with them and you forget all about the bad things.

Q: What’s next for you? Any projects in the pipeline for us to look forward to?
CLEMENTS:  I’m just finishing the final chapters of my next book.  It’s about Chet Parker, a shy, animal loving kid without many friends.  His dog leads him to the house of the most popular girl in school, and her cat, Mr. Fluffy Pants has gone missing.  Mr. Fluffy Pants was wearing the mom’s diamond tennis bracelet and Chet decides to help her find Mr. Fluffy Pants, Ace Ventura style.  It’s a fun detective story.

Q: Any favourite Author that you are a fan of and would recommend?
CLEMENTS:  If you haven’t had a chance to read Orson Scott Card, I think you’re missing out.  A friend of mine turned me on to “Enders Game” a few years back, and I have since read almost all of Card’s work.  His latest, “Pathfinder” is a great read.

Q: Give us one of your favourite quotes……………….
CLEMENTS:  When my son tells me he can’t do something, I always tell him, “Can’t is just can with a t at the end.” Mostly, he just thinks his dad is crazy, but I think it will sink in some day.  I’ve also noticed he avoids saying “can’t” now, and finds a different way to tell me he can’t do something.

Q: And finally tell us something random about yourself to make us chuckle………………………….
CLEMENTS:  I have consistently been able to beat my friends on the golf course.  Not with my score, but in the “number of balls lost” contest.  In that contest, there is no one better.

Thanks so much for joining us on the blog Scott, it's been a real pleasure having you!!

You can find Gasparilla's Treasure by following these links

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