Sunday, 23 September 2012

Interrogating Jonathan Hill

Heeeeere's Jonny

How do you strike the balance between writing something you want to write and writing something that people want to read, in terms of the compromises you make, if any?

I think authors must write about what they want. I have tried writing something that doesn't interest me and it doesn't work. The reader will pick up on your lack of enthusiasm. If you write about something with interest and passion then it should naturally follow that the reader will want to read it.

What excites, attracts or appeals to you about the genre(s) you write in.

At the moment, I am writing all sorts of genres. My book 'ECLECTIC: Ten Very Different Tales' contains humour, horror, drama, sadness, hope...the full range of emotions. I love to challenge myself and to be able to write a funny story and then suddenly switch to darker material is something that excites me. I am happy that readers have picked up on this and have found my book varied and enjoyable. That was my aim when writing the book - to cover a range of genres and write a book where everyone can take something from it.

How do you manage plot bunnies (ideas that invade your mind that aren’t usually helpful to the story you’re writing but breed

I send the plot farmer out armed with his shotgun!
Seriously, though, I usually write them to get them out of my system and then delete them when editing.

How much of you is in your characters? Which of your characters is the you that you’d most like to be? Or be with ? 

My characters have bits of me in but not to too great an extent. I draw inspiration from people around me and from people I have known in the past. Sometimes, characters just pop into my head and I develop them without consciously thinking.

What type of book do you like reading? Is it the same genre as you write?

Well, my book is an eclectic mix of genres and that reflects my reading. I read all sorts, from comedy to drama, tragedy to horror. I tend to enjoy darker 'depressing' books more, simply because I want to be moved when reading a book. Comedy books and light-hearted books are great entertainment but don't satisfy me as much as emotional books.

What lengths do you go to to convince us readers that your book has the X factor?

Quite simply, I try to write short stories that are as rounded, engaging and surprising as possible. Some stories will move you and others have twists that will shock or surprise you.
To me, reviews and word of mouth are the most important factors in selling a book and there is nothing more rewarding than garnering honest positive reviews. It is such a shame that some authors feel the need to write their own reviews or negatively review others' work. It devalues honestly earnt reviews that independent authors, like me, are so proud of.

How do you feel when a reader points out the spelling mistake(s) you have made?

I'm fine with that. Although I'm a perfectionist and aim for perfect spelling and grammar before publishing so, if you find a mistake, you'll be very eagle-eyed indeed!

What do you like most about visiting KUF/forums?

The atmosphere is always pleasant. It is an informative place to visit. I would love to post more often there but usually only have time to catch up on the latest threads.

What is on your near horizon?

Well, I am writing more stories for the follow-up to my first book. The sequel will be along the same lines - a varied bunch of genres. 

The Royal Exchange theatre in Manchester (near where I live) runs a playwriting competition every couple of years and I fancy having a go at writing a play for that.

Where can we find you for more information?

My blog is and I post book reviews, author interviews, Kindle and book news, quizzes, competitions and more...
I am on twitter (@jhillwriter) and you can follow my mini eclectic tweet tales there - stories contained in a single tweet.
I also have a Facebook page (Jonathan Hill: Writer, Reader, Book Lover).
My blog is the main method I use to update my readers.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you, Joo, it was a pleasure answering your questions!