I was born in Pikeville, Kentucky and mostly raised in the same, with prior life as a military brat in Texas, California, Ohio, Illinois, and Germany three separate times before my father died of a heart attack in the military.
What was it that first got you into writing and when did you start writing?
Influence of movies and TV shows mostly at first, usually about Africa and such. Later the same as well as many books brought me into the worlds of science fiction, fantasy, and horror as I wrote many short or long stories during my high school years for the fun of it.
Robert Silverberg, Edgar Rice Burrows, Kenneth Robeson and his Doc Savage novels, Richard Matheson, Ray Bradbury, Stephen King (you had to see that one coming), Dean R. Koontz, Robert R. McCammon, Andre Norton, Peter Benchley, Anne Rice, J. K. Rowling (that one too), and a host of others, though I don’t have any particular favorite one.
I do write poetry. But I mostly write science fiction, fantasy, horror, and adventure, with some detours into historical areas.
A lot. I’m struggling with notes and outlines during lunch hours at work and working on manuscripts during what free time I do have. What I do have on the current agenda is among the four genres answered in question 4.
I do have two books through Publish America, titled TRICKS, TREATS, AND TINSEL and MY NEW KENTUCKY HOME, that are available on your web site as well as others.
The first one, TRICKS, TREATS, AND TINSEL, is a collection of poetry about Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas as well as the seasons that surround all three wonderful holidays. It is a fun and spooky read for children to enjoy by themselves or be read with their parents. One former schoolmate of mine did read one of the poems in this book to her daughter when it appeared in the local newspaper’s Halloween poetry section one year. A lot of the other poems also appeared in the same paper over the years.
The second, MY NEW KENTUCKY HOME, is a collection of poems about miscellaneous subjects; from fun things to very serious, heart felt meanderings and some soul searching, which the readers might derive some familiarity from.
At the moment I am also in the process of self-publishing two other books, SALUTE and TIME FOLLY.
SALUTE is a short collection of poetry about and dedicated to all of the men and women who served in all military branches; past, present, and future. I have received great response on this one and need only to arrange for copies for sale. It is my wish that SALUTE might end up in the hands of service men and women during war or peace and that they might open their copy each and derive some solace from the pages. The same would result from their loved ones waiting for them in their absence. This is my ultimate appreciation for their service and sacrifice for our great country.
TIME FOLLY is a novelette dealing with time travel and murder and the unravelling of the culprit’s conscience and sanity.
Not as busy as I would like at the moment, with the writing I mean. I do have no problem with writer’s block. I’m always coming up with some new story line to add to the list of a hundred some ideas I already have.
Well, one of the more exciting things is thinking about an idea and building the concept, characters, and worlds that play apart in any story line. I can really throw it all together in a really short time. Once I thought up a complete story line for a wagon train novel I am messing with now, with the characters, adventures, and situations all fleshed out before morning as I lay there in the wee hours of the morning, planning and memorising it all until I later took extensive notes and outlines. I was in a foot cast at the moment and lying on my mother’s couch. This one was inspired by Steven Spielberg’s TV miniseries, INTO THE WEST.
I watched that whole show, particularly the wagon train episode. I thought to myself what a neat idea it would be to extend and detail such a wagon train story, such as a miniseries or even a regular episodic series, detailing the lives and struggles, and even deaths, of the characters involved.
Then I decided to take on such a concept myself. I plan on the book being extremely long, which is necessary to detail the lives of those characters concerned in their journey West. I want to touch on what makes the large ensemble of travellers want to go West in each their own decisions, then through the preparations at a point where they all come together from their different origins and life styles, then bringing them all together even more as they head West. From there on it is a struggle for a destination wrought with sorrow and death of some of the character and what that means to the surviving ones.
Once completed and hopefully published, I want readers who pick up the book and follow the characters in their paths to feel as though they too have endured the adventure themselves, as if they too had their own personal wagon in the party. For a reason, I will call the historical adventure MEMORIAL.
I am also currently undergoing some emotional turmoil that has invaded my writing goals along with some prior, severe procrastination in getting anything done with my writing.
What’s the best piece of feedback that you’ve had from your audience?
Some have expressed interest in SALUTE. Others, including fellow writers, have expressed excitement as some of the ideas I have pitched to them when discussing writing.
Do you write for a particular audience, or is your first priority to satisfy your own creativity?
Yes on both. If I write a book in any of the particular genres, then of course I’m aiming at the audience favouring the same, but before I, like any other author, can write for a particular audience, they have to first write for themselves, their own creativity. Obviously in this one is writing what they know and like. If one writes something they are not interested in, just because the audience may be high in such a genre, then it will show. The excitement of the author’s own self gratification will bleed through on the pages and create and drive the same excitement of the readers, the audience.
After all, the writer is also part of the audience if he or she reads or watches the same. Writing provides the writer’s own input, his or hers own additional contribution the genre bandwagons.
If the author can’t look at his or her own stuff and go “Wow!” then the audience isn’t going to go “Wow!” when they read it.
In short, one has to write for him or herself to write for the audience. Or it won’t work. And it would definitely fail.
Do you have a homepage? Do you have any short stories or poems published online? (If so, please provide the URLs):
My homepage is www.freewebs.com/thomaswelamofficial/.