The Writing Life of: Dane Cobain
This week on ‘The Writing Life of:‘ I am thrilled to be interviewing author Dane Cobain. Dane will be sharing with us detail of his writing life, telling us all about his latest book ‘No Rest for the Wicked‘, which was released on 22nd May 2015 and answering a few fun questions too. This post contains affiliate links.
Dane Cobain is a writer, poet and musician from a place you’ve probably never heard of, somewhere in England. When he’s not writing books, he’s reading and reviewing them on his book blog – Social Bookshelves – or working at his day job in social media marketing.
1) Do you remember the moment you decided that you would like to become a writer?
No, not really. I suppose the crowning moment was when I decided to study creative writing instead of web development at university – web development was the more ‘practical’ choice, but my heart lay with writing and so I decided to follow up with that. I’m glad that I did.
2) How did you go about following your dream?
Other than going to university? Ha! One thing that I’ve learned over the years is that the world doesn’t owe you anything – if you have a dream, you have to pursue it.
Branding myself as a writer and working my socks off has done more for me than anything else – if you want to be a writer, act like a writer, work like a writer, and you’ll either get there or you’ll give up. And if you give up, you’re not a writer.
3) Is there a particular author that inspires you?
I think that authors find inspiration from all other authors – we’re all in it together, and there’s no such thing as a competitor.
The people who inspire me the most are the people who manage to write prolifically, releasing awesome book after awesome book, especially if they have a family to support (which I don’t).
4) What is your average writing day like? Do you have any strange writing habits?
I’m not really sure that there is an average writing day – I just write whenever I can, including on my cigarette breaks at work.
As for strange writing habits, I follow something that I call ‘the schedule’. Basically, I listen to music, and every time that the song changes, I change activity, cycling through doing stuff on my computer, tidying my house and writing stuff. It’s pretty OCD, but it seems to work well for me!
5) Do you write Longhand, Type writer, Computer?
I usually work on a computer, although I write almost all of my poetry by hand in my notebook, or occasionally on my mobile phone. I also write my journal by hand. I then type up the stuff that I write by hand and look over it at a later date.
6) From all your books, do you have a favourite character?
My favourite is probably Father Montgomery from No Rest for the Wicked, because he’s so wise and because despite his job, which is all about helping others, he’s unable to help himself.
I also quite like Flick, from my upcoming techno-thriller, Former.ly. She’s also my editor’s favourite character – she’s probably the strongest female character that I’ve written, and a lot of fun to play with.
7) Do you plot your books completely before hand or do you let your imagination flow whilst in the writing process?
I usually plot things out pretty thoroughly beforehand – I create character profiles and chapter plans, and then go from there. But I do tend to leave myself enough leeway to play around with and to change things, if I want to.
Concerning your latest book:
Author – Dane Cobain
Publisher – Forsaken
Pages – 128
Release Date – 22nd May 2015
Format – ebook, paperback
When the Angels attack, there’s NO REST FOR THE WICKED.
Father Montgomery, an elderly priest with a secret past, begins to investigate after his parishioners come under attack, and with the help of Jones, a young businessman with an estranged child, Montgomery begins to track down the origin of the Angels.
The Angels are naked and androgynous. They speak in a dreadful harmony with no clear leader. These aren’t biblical cherubs tasked with the protection of the righteous – these are deadly creatures of light that have the power to completely eradicate.
When Jones himself is attacked, Father Montgomery knows he has to act fast. He speaks to the Angels and organises a final showdown where he’s asked to make the ultimate sacrifice.
8) How long did it take to get from the ideas stage, to the date of publication?
About four or five years. It’s interesting – I had the initial idea for the book as the result of a bad dream, and I jotted down the ideas during my first year at university. I wrote the book about a year after that, but it took me several years to get a publisher to run with it.
Once I was accepted by Booktrope, I still had to go through rounds of editing and the layout stage, and so it was a pretty long process. But now I have several books queued up for release, so I can’t complain!
9) Did you suffer from writer’s block at any stage? How did you overcome it?
Not with No Rest for the Wicked – I kept the writing pretty short and snappy, and so the chapters weren’t long enough for writers’ block to set in.
I’ve heard from readers that it’s ‘too short’ and that it ‘could have been longer’. Why? It didn’t need to be longer – that would have just diluted it.
10) How did you come up with the name(s)for your lead character(s)?
You know, it’s been so long since I jotted down my initial notes that I honestly don’t remember. There’s actually a part of the book that explains how Jones, the secondary character (behind Montgomery, the protagonist), was given his name. But if I told you about it, it’d contain spoilers by its very nature.
11) If your book was made in to a film, who would you love to play the lead character(s)?
I’ve been asked this before, and so I’ve put some thought into it. Father Montgomery would probably be played by someone like Sir Ian McKellen, and Robert Jones would be played by Paddy Considine.
12) Did you get anyone in particular to read your work before sending it to the publisher i.e family member, friend etc?
Not really! I just wrote it and then started sending it out, and hoping that publishers would enjoy it as much as I did. Eventually, it worked!