Martin Owton is the UK-based author of the Nandor Tales duology. He has also written a contemporary fantasy set in his native New Forest and is working on a “more epic” series. He is represented by Ian Drury of Shiel Land Associates and is a member of the Gravity’s Angels writing group of London.
1. Why storytelling? What made you yearn to tell a good story, and how long was this story within you before it came out?
I’ve always been a storyteller ever since I was 11 and wrote a 200 page adventure story in 2 weeks for a school project. The first complete draft of Exile was 6 years in the making, though I fitted it between short stories which were my main focus at the time.
2.What is it about your genre that speaks to you?
The possibilities and freedom from the constraints of this world.
3.Without giving any spoilers, what is your favorite thing about this book?
How well the sub-plots tie up at the end.
4.What character from your work frightens you, makes you feel dirty to write?
Lord Tirellan, the bad guy. Very smart, ambitious and totally amoral but he has all the best lines.
5.Your main character walks into a bar. What happens?
Nothing, unless someone picks on him – which is essentially chapter 1
6.What is the most fascinating thing about your main character?
His character arc – going from being totally focused on revenge to finding there’s more in life that he wants to live for.
7.If I were stuck in a room with your main character, what would we be doing?
Depends on if this is Aron before the events of the books or after; probably talking about his adventures in the Holy City and the fringes of the court.
8.You have unlimited money to buy a gift for your main character. What would you buy?
Some new clothes
9.How do you police your production? Do you have a word quota, or a page goal, maybe you work for a set amount of time? Do you place demands on yourself when you’re working? How do you meet those demands?
I try to write every day and succeed on 5/7 days. I try to have what happens next worked out before I sit down to write.
10.Everyone has at least one specific challenge that holds them back. What is that challenge in your work and how do you overcome it?
Character!! I’m good with plot and most of my rewriting is focused on the developing the characters.
11.If you could change any one thing about your work, what would it be?
Be more productive and plot quicker. I’m really slow compared to most writers I know.
12.If you could change any one thing about the writing industry, what would it be?
More money for authors!
13.You’re going to go back and visit yourself when you first started writing, at whatever age it was, and you can give yourself one piece of advice. What would it be?
Quit f#cking around with bands. I know its fun, but you’re not a good enough singer and a much better writer.
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