Mason Cooley said, “Reading gives us some place to go when we have to stay where we are.”
A Center Stage Moment shines a spotlight on writers who give us great places to visit with the characters we love and want to call friends.
Today, I have the pleasure of introducing to you Ryan Hill!
Have you always wanted to be a writer? Yes. Either a screenwriter or novelist.
Why did you choose to write your genre? Silly paranormal tends to fit my sensibilities better than, say, epic romance or hard drama. I read all genres, but my favorite authors (Christopher Moore, Drew Hayes, etc.) tend to write paranormal comedies.
What is the strangest story you’ve ever written? I once wrote about how (and this is true) it was considered an honor to wipe a king after he finished his business. It was considered a sign of great trust, and those wipers also usually managed the king’s fortune.
What are you currently working on? I’m finishing up edits on Bart of Darkness – The Book of Bart Verse 2. Out July 11!
What motivated the plot of your latest book? My WIP is a sequel, so the plot was motivated by digging deeper into the main character’s psyches, especially their issues, while having them chase after something new and fresh that hopefully has never been done before.
What was the hardest story for you to write? None of them are what I’d call easy, but The Conch Shell of Doom was probably the hardest. I’m super proud of it, but it took a few years to nail it down.
What process do you use to plan your novels? I’m a plotter and pantser. I’ll get an overall idea for a story or character, flesh out the world, the supporting cast, everyone’s drive/character arc, then figure out how the story will begin and end. Once I have those two things, I can pretty much let my characters take control of the wheel from there.
Who has been your favorite character to write and why? Bart from my Book of Bart series. He says whatever he wants, doesn’t care what anyone thinks, and goes about things his own way. Plus, his snark is on a world-class level.
Do any of your characters reflect facets of your personality? I won’t say any one character is a true reflection (though those who know me say Bart is a somewhat close resemblance), but I do give some characters issues that I myself am trying to sort through. I feel it helps add an additional layer to characters, since it’s a conflict I’m familiar with, i.e. its easier to write about in detail.
Have you ever experienced writer’s block? If so, how did you overcome it? Yep. If it’s just with a scene, sometimes changing the weather helps. If it’s with a WIP, even I’ll go back and do a rough online to hone my direction, or I’ll just walk away from it for a period of time and move on to something else. By the time I’m back to that original WIP, my brain is refreshed and ready to go.
If you were to choose another genre to write in, what would it be? Mystery/noir. Colorful characters, great language, and all sorts of fun.
Which authors inspire you? All of them? I try to learn a little from every author I read. Clearly, they’re doing something right, so it’d be silly not to study their style.
What novel would you read multiple times? The Harry Potter series, Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion, and I’m not ashamed to admit I re-read the Twilight series. Not one book. The entire series.
If you could meet anyone in the world, alive or deceased, who would it be and why? (Person could be a fictional character) Shakespeare? Maybe Mark Twain? That’s a tough one.
What is your favorite quote? Off the top of my head? “So long, and thanks for all the fish.” [from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (the fourth book) by Douglas Adams]
What is your favorite animal, real or imaginary? Hippogriffs are pretty awesome, but I’d have to say my Miniature Schnauzer, Hunter S. Gonzodog. She’s my favorite.
What is your favorite color? Green.
When you’re not writing… I wish writing was a full-time career! I have a day job, doing communications for the state of North Carolina. I’m also a film critic. [Interesting!]
Thanks for joining me today Ryan!