NT Franklin - I write after my real job hoping one day to have it be my real job. When I’m not reading or writing short stories, you might find me fishing or solving crossword puzzles.
INTERVIEW WITH NT FRANKLIN
Welcome to Scarlet Leaf Review!
Q: Tell us a little about yourself and your background.
I am a professional scientist/University Professor. I have decades of experience writing for academic journals, but I am new to writing fiction. I don’t spend enough time fishing or writing fiction. That needs to change.
Q: Do you think that your school years have had an impact in your writing career? If so, what were you like at school?
Of course! What other response could an academician give? I was a good student, perhaps under challenged at times.
Q: Were you good at English or like Einstein you excel now in a field that was a nightmare for you as a student?
I liked English, particularly sentenced structure and grammar. My focus was on the sciences, not on English. But reading is some of the best training for writing.
Q: What are your future ambitions for your writing career?
Career may be too strong of a word. I hope to continue to have people enjoy my prose.
Q: Which poets have inspired you and how? What was their impact on your work or your literary perspective?
I have never read much poetry, but I have read Walt Whitman. I would say less in was writing and more in perspective. I gleaned “be yourself” from Leaves of Grass.
Q: So, would you mind telling us what you have written so far?
I have two short stories published right here on The Scarlet Leaf Review (The Hitman, April 2016; Stolen Life, July 2016). I have been experimenting with some Flash Fiction and have had a few published.
Q: Where can we buy or see them?
My two short stories are available here on The Scarlet Leaf Review!
Q: What are you working on at the minute? What’s it about?
I’m writing a series of middle group (MG) stories about the misadventures of two young teenage boys, “Me and Bart.” The stories are set in the late 1960’s when it was a simpler time with no cell phones and free-range kids. They go on escapades that result in harmless mischief. The stories are intended to entertain. There is no intent to deliver a moral message, just stories about rambunctious young boys.
And of course, I’m still writing cozy mysteries.
Q: What genre are your books and what draws you to this genre?
I don’t have any books, but I am planning to put “Me and Bart” stories into a book.
Q: Which actor/actress would you like to see playing the lead character from your most recent book?
Like everyone else, the best and most popular ones!
Q: How much research do you do for your books?
So far, my stories settings are very familiar to me, so limited research is needed. I do research details to provide realism in my stories. For instance, how long does it take for a body to bleed out when the femoral artery is cut through.
Q: Have you written any other novels/novellas in collaboration with other writers? Why did you do decide to collaborate and did that affect your sales?
I have not.
Q: When did you decide to become a writer and why? What was the principal reason for taking up a pen (metaphorical speaking) and write that first sentence?
I have always enjoyed creative writing. I needed an outlet to escape from work pressures and just started.
Q: Do you write full-time or part-time? Do you have a special time to write or do you write every day, 5 days a week or as and when?
I have no set writing schedule, I write when I have the time, which is not often enough.
Q: Where do your ideas come from? Or is it just the spur of the moment, a special feeling you experience or a specific conjuncture that offers you inspiration?
Sometimes my ideas come from past experiences, but much of the time, events that occur trigger an idea. If I see a building being torn down, maybe there is a body in a wall cavity. That sort of thing.
Q: How do you think you’ve evolved creatively?
I don’t think I’ve been writing long enough to have evolved creatively, but I do feel my writing has improved.
Q: Do you work to an outline or plot or do you prefer just see where an idea takes you?
I do make sketchy notes for ideas, but I let the ideas take me directions as I am writing.
Q: In your opinion, what is the hardest thing about writing?
Writing in a such a manner your reader sees and feels they are part of the story as they are reading.
Q: Now, what about the easiest thing about writing?
I don’t really know. Like most things, doing it well is not easy.
Q: Do you ever get writer’s Block and if so do you have any tips on how to get through the dreaded writer’s block?
If I am stumbling on a portion of a story, I put it aside and read something.
Q: Do you read much and if so who are your favorite authors? For your own reading, do you prefer eBooks or traditional paper/hard back books?
I read short stories; my favorite genre is cozy. I tend to go more for the genre than specific authors. I do a great deal of professional reading and never seem to have enough time to read fiction.
Q: What books are you reading at present?
I’m reading short stories. The last few books I’ve read were nonfiction.
Q: Do you proofread/edit all your own books or do you get someone to do that for you?
I proofread and edit my own work, but that is not enough. I use the Scribophile site for editing and proofing. There are terrific writers on the site where critiques are exchanged. I’d recommend the site to anyone that wants to improve their writing.
Q: Do you let the book stew – leave it for a month and then come back to it to edit?
No, edit it as much as I can. It is difficult to edit your own work. As a final procedure, I use the voice-to-text option in Word for my final edit. Then I put it up on the Scribophile site.
Q: Who edited your last book and how did you select him/her?
My short stories here on The Scarlet Leaf Review were critiques and edited on the Scribophile site.
Q: How do you relax?
With my family. I like being outdoors.
Q: What is your favorite motivational phrase? What is your favorite positive saying?
What’s the worst that can happen?
Q: What is your favorite book and why?
Sad to say, but it would be an academic text in my field.
Q: What is your favorite quote?
I have several. Most all the good quotes come from “The Wizard of Oz” or the “Star Wars” series of movies.
Q: Where can you see yourself in 5 years-time?
Hopefully a better writer and possibly expanding my writing genre.
Q: What advice would you give to your younger self?
Let’s just say that all past experiences contribute to one’s character.
Q: Which famous person, living or dead would you like to meet and why?
Wow, too many (none of them living) to narrow down to one.
Q: If you could have been the original author of any book, what would it have been and why?
Because I’m a biologist, Origin of the Species by Charles Darwin.
Q: What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
Get on a critique site, have a thick skin, and listen to advice on the site. Don’t expect to be a good writer when you start. Plan to get better to hopefully become a good writer. Like education, it is a journey, not a destination.
Q: Where do you see publishing going in the future?
More electronic publishing and less print; more self-publishing and less traditional publishing.
To bring joy to readers everywhere.