Steve Feasey Interview
Posted on 10 January 2010. © Copyright 2004-2024 WriteWords
WriteWords talks to novelist Steve Feasey aka Writewords member Stefland
Tell us something about your background.
My writing CV is pretty sparse. Iíd never written anything until I started Changeling, so I donít have a graveyard of manuscripts in the loft somewhere. Having said that, since I became published, Iíve been a busy bee: Changeling came out in January 2009, Iíve recently finished copy editing on C3 (Blood Wolf) for the Feb release, and Iím currently about a third of the way through C4 (no title yet).
I write full-time now. I used to work in the photographic industry with professional photographers and imaging houses. Iím a very Ďvisual writerí and I need to Ďseeí everything before I transcribe it onto the page, so maybe those years of looking at all those wonderful images taken by experts in their field had some effect on me.
How, when and why did you first start writing?
I started writing toward the end of 2007 after watching a BBC4 programme about how childrenís fiction (aimed specifically at the male reader) had evolved through the years. The books that they discussed early on in the programme were all of the stories Iíd fallen in love with as a teenager, and at the end of the show I started to scribble some ideas for a novel about a teenage werewolf. It became a bit of a marathon evening of ideas and note making, and I finally crawled up to bed at about 3am, my head abuzz with possibilities.
Who are your favourite writers and why?
I love so many different writers and genres, and Iím always trying to find something new. I love the works of my childhood favourites: Stephenson, Kipling, and Blyton. And then there are the sci-fi and fantasy writers that I discovered in my teens. But as an adult I think that the three authors I most admire would be Cormac McCarthy, Stephen King and Donna Tartt. I think that theyíre all great storytellers who aren't afraid to push the limits of their craft.
How did you get your first agent/ commission?
I was blissfully naÔve about the whole Ďroad to publishingí process. Iíd written what I thought was a pretty good story, and I roughly knew how the series would work out (Iíd always planned it as a five-book series). So I got a copy of The Writersí and Artistsí Yearbook, and sent out my ms to every agency that accepted childrenís fiction. The rejections rolled in thick and fast. So thick and fast that it was soul destroying. So when my 48th reply suggested I might like to send in a full, I did a little dance (later to become my Happy Author Dance). Strangely, after so many rejections, I had two other agents also request fulls at about the same time, and all of them were interested in meeting me. But those 47 rejections taught me an awful lot about the industry, and how difficult it can be at times.
What's the worst thing about writing?
The guilt you feel when you donít write. Iím hopeless at organising myself, and Iíve a propensity to faff around when I should be tapping away at the keys of my laptop. When I have a couple of days in which I havenít written very much I tend to kick myself around a bit and get moody.
And the best?
Experiencing the sheer thrill of reading back your words and realising that you might actually be quite good at this writing malarkey.
Tell us what kind of responses you get from audiences\ readers.
I do lots of school visits, and Iím often taken aback at the enthusiasm for reading that I experience. Teenagers are brutal in their honesty. They tell you exactly what they like and donít like in your books, and I love that Ė itís refreshing and often quite helpful. I also get lots of emails from people via my website.
Meeting up with my future agent for the first time (she was about to offer me representation), and hearing her say that I was a talented writer. I took a little glance over my shoulder to see who she was talking to.
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