Shane W. Smith According to the first true American, Benjamin Franklin, 'Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing'. According to me though, 'Blah-blah-blah! Boogha-boogha-booo! And then when you have the time please check out the following interview I did with my mate Shane W Smith. The 'W' stands for wigwam'. 

Shane W. Smith On Amazon

1) What are your own origins, Shane? Plus what path did you take in life prior to getting to where you are today?   As a kid, I always wanted to be a writer. It’s sort of defined and directed most of my big life choices along the way. My leisure time was spent writing stories and drawing pictures, often at the expense of a social life. I did well at school to keep my parents happy, and even had a near miss with a career in the military (best thing that ever happened to me was being rejected), but writing fiction was always the dream.

Shane W. Smith 3D Art
I’ve always taken it pretty seriously and been devoted to it as a vocation. But ever since I got married and had kids and landed full-time work and basically became extremely busy, I’ve descended into a kind of desperate mania about my writing. It’s no longer an option to use leisure time to write, because by and large, leisure time doesn’t really exist anymore in meaningful quantities.

2) What inspired you to become a writer?   Honestly, I don’t remember where this all started. It’s something I’ve wanted for my entire living memory -- I got my first rejection letter when I was just seven. It’s been all-consuming for my whole life, and it was the only life goal I ever set for myself. I guess it probably all started when my parents encouraged a deep love of books when I was little, and that’s never left me. I learned everything I ever needed to know from fiction -- it’s the prism through which I understand the world. To me, it seems natural that writing stories would help me to understand myself and grow as a person.

The Lesser Evil
3) Can you give us a brief run down on some of your projects?   I’ve got a number of books out at the moment. My first major publication was 'The Lesser Evil', an epic sci-fi comic that was 15 years from conception to publication. Its sequel, 'Peaceful Tomorrows', was a finalist in the 2013 Aurealis Awards, and I have equally high hopes for the next book in the series, 'The Game'. I also have a partially complete fantasy series entitled 'Triumviratus', which features a love triangle with the world at stake. But my biggest current project is 'Undad', a miniseries that was recently funded on Kickstarter. Undad is more than a zombie comic; it’s about the difficulties facing a husband and father who is under attack from within, who is figuratively (and literally) dead inside.

4) What song would you say best represents your style of story-telling and why?   The Lesser Evil – by James Flamestar. Not only was the track written by a good friend of mine (in part to celebrate my work), but the style of this music builds upon itself as it goes on, getting richer and deeper until a triumphant crescendo. People familiar with my writing will probably recognize that my books work in a similar vein, building intrigue and tension and thematic content, and bringing it all to a huge dramatic climax at the end of the book. Also, it’s just a damn cool piece of music that is in my permanent music-for-writing rotation. 

Brian K Vaughan
5) If you could get a celebrity – either living or dead – to promote your wares, who would you choose, and why would you want to choose this particular person?   Well, an endorsement from Oprah would translate into sales, but overall I’d probably choose Brian K Vaughan. I really respect his writing and his approach to creator-owned content (and from all accounts, he’s a really nice guy to boot); to have earned his approval would be a pretty amazing feeling. I think that validation would be worth more to me than the actual value of the promotion itself. 

6) What have you learnt about yourself through this endeavour?   In most respects, I’m not really good at dealing with difficulties and setbacks. I have a preference for things to be easy, to coast. But my writing career has caused me to discover (and forced me to cultivate) a huge reservoir of determination and resolve within myself, to have the patience to deal with disappointments and the drive to persevere in the face of improbable odds. It taught me that when things really matter, I’m capable of fighting for them, and I’ve been able to bring that kind of commitment into my personal life as well. I’ve seen enough people (including plenty of people with considerably more talent than me) quit out of the creative arts to be aware that this kind of unwavering determination isn’t all that common. 
Shane W. Smith 3D Art
[ Shane W. Smith On Amazon ]
7) During your time in this field, what is the one thing that has kept you in good stead?   Balance. It’s so important to writing. I’m married with three kids and a full-time job, but I’m writing more (and better) than I was before. Life is richer and fuller and easier to channel onto the page. But equally important is discipline. Routine. Even on days when I don’t especially feel like working on my books (they happen from time to time), I still make myself do it. That’s not the romantic side of writing that’s so celebrated in amateur circles, but the truth is that it’s not always free play. Some days it feels like work, and you just have to do it. Without that self-motivation, the determination, and the discipline, you’re going nowhere fast.

8) If you had a personal motto, what would it be?   “Never give up. No excuses”. It’s a little hardline, admittedly, but it’s served me well so far, in whatever avenue of life I’ve applied it.

Now for any more information on my mate Shane please check out his official website, facebook page, and twitter stream. Go on. It'll do you some good. 

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