Born in London to Scottish and Irish parents, Sean spent most of his childhood and teenage years growing up on the move in the likes of Cyprus, Germany, Wales and England as an army brat. With a keen interest in both reading and writing he was diagnosed with the travel and writing bugs very early on in life.
Now, writing, reading and traveling are his main passions in life, but he also loves outdoor sports too from Rugby and Hiking to Tennis and Boxing.
His main inspiration for writing today comes from living in such a beautiful, Gothic, hauntingly, awe inspiring city such as Edinburgh. This place has given Sean so much amazing inspiration to write the more time he spends here.
At this moment he is writing another two books, one is about a young man working in a dead end job and going nowhere in life, who discovers that he has a terminal brain cancer and decides to just go out with a bang. The other book is about his recent back packing adventure through Eastern Europe.
Could you tell the readers a little bit about yourself?
I was born in London in 1978 to Scottish and Irish parents (conceived apparently in Belfast) and now reside in West Lothian, Scotland, where I work as a part time plumber/part time writer. I'll give you one guess which one pays the bills right now :)
I've been writing on and off since the age of thirteen when I decided to write my own sequel to the movie Bram Stokers Dracula lol Since then I've tried writing screenplays and came close on three occasions over the past ten years to getting them made into actual movies, but alas, all of them fell through.
In 2011 I went traveling around Eastern Europe for 6 months. When I came back I decided to try and focus my attention on writing short stories and books instead of screenplays and quickly became hooked. I would now like to dedicate my writing future to writing more novels and short stories.
To date I have one published novel and four self published titles, with a lot more on the way. Including planned sequels to both Ugly Beautiful and Alone.
Do you prefer the term Horror, Weird Fiction or Dark Fiction?
Never really thought about it to tell you the truth. Horror feels very old school to me, it's very familiar, comfortable and I like the visual flashbacks it creates when I think about the word. Which I automatically think Christopher Lee and Dracula and staying with my Grandparents on my Father's side when I was a young boy :) But two of my novels that have elements of 'horror' (Alone and Ugly Beautiful) I would definitely class them as Dark Fiction now that it's been presented to me. Can I adopt that phrase now? Is it copywrited to anyone?
Who are some of your favourite authors?
Irvine Welsh, Charles Bukowski, Knut Hamsun, Stephen King, Nic Pizzolatto, Tom Rob Smith, George Orwell, John Fante,
What was the last great book you read, and what was the last book that disappointed you?
Ernest Hemingway, The Old man and the sea, I've tried reading Hemingway before and I've rarely finished any of his books I am ashamed to say. I've had a copy of Old man and the sea for a good long while there and I've tried reading it three times in as many years. Yet I always get fed up after the first fifteen pages. i can't explain it. It just bored me to tears. A couple of weeks ago I just picked it up one day and finally got past that 15 page mark, after 25 pages I couldn't put it down. It totally blew me away and never panned out to how I expected it to either. It was a beautiful novel. One I will definitely be reading again. It taught me many things too, about life and about my own writing. Be warned though you might not enjoy this book until you hit your mid thirties and are able to open your way of thinking to a particular maturer frame of mind. Get some life experience first before you read and can relate to this book.
Charles Bukowski's Hollywood disappointed me immensely. After reading such greats of his like Post Office, Women, Factotum. Hollywood was... forgettable. It just didn't engage me like the rest of his work. But that is only my opinion.
How would you describe your writing style?
Simple and visual lol With more focus on Dialogue than description. (Apart from Alone) One reviewer a few years back described my writing to that of a 12 year old child ha :) Make of that what you will. These Oxford and Cambridge grads are hard to please.
Are there any reviews of your work, positive or negative that have stayed with you?
I actually don't really pay too much attention to the positive reviews, I mean hell they're great, nice, sometimes even spine-tingling awesome. But you learn so much more from the negatives and it forces you to take action. But as a poor self published writer, I'm still not at the stage yet where I can afford a decent proof reader and editor (Had one quote of £800 just a few weeks ago to proof read a 60,000 word novel of mine :( That's two weeks rent for me ha) I do have some friends though who proofread my work along with some light editing, but obviously they are not professional. And of course, because the majority of my books are self published there are gonna be some mistakes in there for sure. Which, I guess, is the main reason why self published novels are so cheap.
I remember one of my very first reviews for a book I made free for a few days - It just read something like 'Always read a sample first.' I thought you cheeky git lol It was a bloody free book ha :)
So this is why I welcome negative reviews, especially detailed ones. They kind of act like my editor/proof reader so to speak. Take for example my very first self published novel 'Ugly Beautiful' It really got beaten down by reviewers when I first released it. And I mean BAD. Mainly because I was a young, dumb, inexperienced new writer, who just assumed I could take a good story, put it in a book and punt it out into the world with only me doing the proofreading. Three years and three or four edits later the story is at a place right now where I am eventually happy and satisfied with it. And it couldn't have made it there without all those first few negative reviews. And of course everything you learn and take in from them, you automatically apply it to your next book. It's a slow painful process to becoming a half decent writer and I'd like to think that I am finally on the right path.
What’s your favourite food?
Hmmm This is harder than the last question. Korma, Lasagne, Haggis Supper, Fish Supper, Sausage supper and my Girlfriend makes a mean and beautiful Baklava.
Who would be on the soundtrack to your life story?
Iggy pop, Bastille, David Gray, Coldplay, Michael Jackson, Underworld, East 17, Pro Green, Guns N Roses.
What’s the most important lesson you have learned about writing?
Just write, see a blank page and just write, and about any old shit too, anything! Then go back and make it better.
Same rules apply to writing a novel. Just write it, rough as hell, get it finished, get it out there and onto the page, then leave it for a week or two, come back to it, re write, re edit, make it better. Wash, rinse, repeat.
What aspects of writing to do you find the most difficult?
The first ten minutes of just sitting down and concentrating on the blank screen in front of you in the morning. There are so many bloody distractions from Facebook, E-mails, internet surfing to catching up on TV shows/books/movies and before you know it it's a nearly 6pm. Try cutting turning your fuse box off for the day, once a week, and trying to write then. That will separate the guys in it for the long haul to the guys just trying to make a quick cheap pound.
How do you think you’ve evolved creatively?
Slowly, painfully, painfully slowly, but surely and maturely.
What is the best piece of advice you ever received from another author?
Write your book then instead of rushing like a lunatic to self publish it, getting it out there ASAP, and mailing it off to twenty thousand different publishers. Just let the book sit a while. Go and do something else, take a holiday, go and write another book for Christ sake. But just let it stew for a while, then, and only then... come back to it. Oh, and two, get a good proofreader. I'm still working on the second one.
Who is your favourite character from your book and why?
Without naming names, I have a few, but most of the ones I favour turn out to be absolute monsters, yet they never even realise it.
How about your least favourite character? What makes them less appealing to you?
I don't think I have one! I'd never write about someone or something if it didn't appeal to me in someway or another.
Fame, fortune, or respect?
Can I take 33.3333 percent from all three?
What piece of your own work are you most proud of?
The two endings to both Alone and Ugly Beautiful. Before I even started writing anything I always had those two endings sitting in the back of my mind for years. All I had to do was create a story and a set of characters which could get me to those endings, while making it both a magical and engrossing journey at the same time too easy, no?
Can you tell us about your last book, and can you tell us about what you are working on next?
My last book was a very short, black comedy, tongue in cheek, satire novel, about Scottish Independence. It's about the lives of a group of Cafe workers, Chefs and Waitresses and their weird, wacky and crazy customers, throughout one day. The day of the Scottish independence referendum on September 18th 2014, when everyone goes to the polls to vote and what there thoughts are.
My next book - I'm actually working on two right now, one is about my travels through Eastern Europe (And yes there is a wee bit of a horror element in there too, especially with some Latvian strippers :)) And a new novel I have almost completed 'Lust4Life' It's about a man who finds out he has incurable Brain Cancer and decides to just live his life from now on, without regret, while putting right a few of his past wrongs in the process, while he still has a healthy mind.
What's the one question you wish you would get asked but never do?
Would you like this one million pound advance for your book in Cash or as a Cheque?
FOR MORE INFORMATION ON SEAN PLEASE FOLLOW THE LINKS BELOW
Amazon Author Page:
A young man awakens from a long hibernation sleep on-board an eerie and crew-less space shuttle with no memory of who he is or how he ended up on board.
When a young woman awakens from hibernation shortly after him and curiously has no previous memories about her past either, our protagonist is forced to solve the mystery of the 'lost in space' vessel, who the pair really are and what became of the other crew members who haunt him frequently with their ghostly and chilling apparitions.
Soon the young man must come to terms with his own lonely fate, his possible limited existence and a dangerous sexual urge towards his fellow amnesiac companion.
'A tragic tale of doomed romance.'
Jason a tormented soul and womanizing gangster, does a runner with a suitcase full of drug money after an earth shattering tragedy which rips his world apart. Running for his life he disappears into the heart of the gorgeous Scottish highlands to lay low in a secluded cottage before plotting his next move.
On his second day of hiding Jason discovers the mysterious body of a young and hauntingly beautiful woman lying unconscious at the bottom of a hill. The woman has no memory of who she is or how she ended up there. So Jason carries the beauty back to his cottage and tenderly nurses her back to health.
Jason soon gains the woman's trust and friendship by confiding in her his own personal past sins and infidelities. Deep and soulful confessions he'd never told anyone before, especially a woman.
Eventually Jason coaxes the woman into unraveling her own eerily forgotten past and tormenting mad nightmare visions of terror... But doing so without the hindsight of the chilling, sickening acts of horror which are about to be unleashed.
'Strong language and graphic scenes of violence in parts.'
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