I’m always on the lookout for diverse authors and books. Last month, A.D. Britten contacted me about featuring his latest release, A Soul Unbroken. I convinced him to sit down for an interview. June is Pride month which is perfect to feature both A.D. and his book. So grab your favorite beverage and enjoy getting to know A.D. Take it away, A.D.:
What is your writing process?
I usually get an idea out of the blue or something inspires a story, like a news story that I saw or heard about or a scene in a movie. I usually don’t have to wait for an idea to come. I usually write the idea down then and there, unless, I am at work, then I might text it into my phone. Afterwards, I’ll write a draft of the story, poem, etc. and just edit it several times then will ask a writer friend of mine to read it and make suggestions. Often times, especially if it’s short story or poem, I will try to place it on a writing site online. I have also written screenplays and for those I have used screenwriting feedback websites by people who have experience with that sort of writing.
Do you have any odd writing habits?
Not really, sorry to disappoint. I just start writing. Then edit a lot, even a little during the writing process which I know is not the recommended way to write. But usually try to not edit too much when doing initial writing.
What book do you wish you could have written?
I can’t really say there are any books I have read that I wish I had written. Every story is unique to a particular author, generally. Perhaps I have a weird imagination, but most of the stories that I have written, I have not seen anywhere else, so I think what I am writing is unique enough, perhaps too unique.
Just as your books inspire authors, what authors have inspired you?
That’s a difficult question, but writers I have been inspired by include James Joyce and Tony Morrison.
If you could cast your characters in the Hollywood adaptation of your book, who would play your characters?
The main character would be played by someone who looked like a young Brad Pitt but will dark hair.
How important are names to you in your books? Do you choose the names based on liking the way it sounds or the meaning?
Names are especially important. Perhaps they sound corny at times, but they are supposed to indicate something about the characters generally. For instance, Dr. Phuong in the story is a minor character but his suggestion helps the main character move in the right direction, and Phuong means direction in Vietnamese.
What do you consider to be your best accomplishment?
In terms of writing, my best accomplishment I’d say was winning a screenplay award from a Canadian screenwriting contest. It is not as major as the contest and is not very well-known, but it was cool since a group of local actors acted out the first scene and the audience provided feedback.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
I see myself writing creatively even more and perhaps doing it full-time.
Have you always liked to write?
Yes, I have always written, since I was a kid. I do it professionally, but rather than creative writing I do technical/scientific writing. Soon I’ll be adding business writing to the list.
What writing advice do you have for other aspiring authors?
Write often and get feedback. Also, read a lot because reading other published and accomplished writers help you get better, and can teach you a lot about the power of language, setting a scene, character development, etc.
Are you a plotter or a pantster?
I’m a little of both. It depends on the story. For a recent story, I was a pantser. For the first book I completed, I was a plotter.
Do you read your reviews? Do you respond to them, good or bad? Do you have any advice on how to deal with the bad?
I have not gotten a lot of reviews, as of yet for this book, but the few I have received, I have read them. They are positive. Even if the reviews were negative I think I would still read them. Everyone is not going to like what I write. If there were hateful and mean-spirited, I’d ignore them.
What is your best marketing tip?
Doing readings at local places like churches or bookstores can be a good way to get the message out about your book. I’ve done that in the past and it was definitely was helpful. I actually sold a decent amount of books as a result. In the current quarantine situation, online book reading is possible and maybe just as effective.
What is your least favorite part of the publishing/writing process?
My least favorite part is marketing. Because of some of the topics I write about, I have to be selective about where I want to market things. It is a hassle sometimes, but it has to be done to get the story out people who might get something good from it.
What do you want your tombstone to say?
I was a loving and good person.
If you had a superpower, what would it be?
I’d like to be able to fly and not be afraid of being so high up in the air!
Where is one place you want to visit that you haven’t been before?
If you were an animal, what would you be and why?
A Bear, they are big and fuzzy and eat fresh fish. Yum!
What’s on your bucket list (things to do before you die)?
I am in desperate need of a real vacation. I’d love to visit many of the major cities in the world before I die.
What were you like as a child? Your favorite toy?
A Monchhichi. No one probably remembers what they were. But they were Japanese toys that were popular several, several years ago! They had a cartoon, song and everything.
Title A Soul Unbroken: A Journey
Author A.D. Britten
Genre Realistic Fiction, LGBT
Joey Christopher has never had an easy life. Hustling for over ten years with his close friend Allen, he is used to surviving on the street. Yet he never anticipated being homeless. After Allen is arrested during a drug bust, Joey is forced to enter a homeless shelter for several months. It is here where he meets Mrs. Winston, the kindly older woman who runs the shelter. Just talking to her makes him feel better about things. She's like the mother he never had. The seeds of hope she plants during their casual talks help give him what no one else ever has-a sense of importance. Though he continues to hustle, he ultimately stops, realizing that his life must change, as it does in unimaginable ways.
Excerpt via Amazon:
I’m one of the authors participating in the Beach Blanket Book Giveaway and you can win a print copy of A Soul Unbroken: A Journey by A.D. Britten (US only).
Runs June 5 - June 30 and is open internationally for most prizes.
Winner will be drawn on July 1, 2020.
A.D. Britten is a published author of numerous short stories, poems, and other writings, A Soul Unbroken: A Journey is Britten’s second novel.
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