Buy Brian Macrae's Book, The Sky's Eyes: Amazon
I recently enjoyed an exclusive author interview with Brian Macrae, author of The Sky's Eyes. Brian shares his story on becoming a published author, as well as what he finds most challenging and rewarding in his writing life. Enjoy the interview- below!
Tell us a little about yourself…
I have many passions and interests. For this reason, I found it very difficult to work in the typical corporate culture. I am a writer (of course), a yoga teacher, a house renovator and very soon I will be a coffee shop proprietor. I am 46 years old and I have lived in 7 different states (I was never in the military). I prefer the mountains to the ocean. I enjoy digging deep into a new subject on a regular basis. While I am comfortable in front of crowds, I need to be alone in order to recharge my batteries. I take my coffee with cream and my favorite color is blue.
When did you know you wanted to be a writer?
Wanting to be a writer is a fairly recent development for me. It started one day, when I walked out of a movie theater, angry that Hollywood makes millions of dollars on each film and they cannot be bothered to avoid holes in the plots and discontinuity in the stories. I thought to myself that I could do better, so I began playing with the idea of writing.
Can you share your journey to becoming a published author?
While I toyed with the idea of becoming a writer, no particular story was drawing me in. One day, I was on a cross-country flight and I had few entertainment options. Thumbing through the SkyMall Catalog, I saw that they were selling drones and I thought to myself, ‘How long before everyone has a drone.’ A short while later, I was reading an article in a magazine that I brought with me that was about activists using drones to fly over unpopulated areas, looking for illegal mining or hunting or something. Over the course of the flight, I created an outline for the story that would become my first novel, The Sky’s Eyes.
I decided to self-publish because everything that I read told me that it is very rare for first-time authors to receive any support from publishing houses. If they are not going to support me, why should I give them a piece of the pie, especially if the pie is very, very small. I also enjoy learning about new subjects. So, I began a new research project; how to self-publish a novel.
What do you find to be the biggest challenge, as an author?
Because I start with an outline and the story fleshes out as I write, the evolution is difficult to keep track of. When I begin editing, I must remember, is the main character a morning person or a night person. Is she tall or short? Did he begin their relationship hating her and grow to respect her, or was he immediately smitten? The big points are easy to keep straight, but it is the little details that readers will notice. This goes back to the origins of my writing and what Hollywood misses; they can’t be bothered to check the details, but to me they are so important.
What do you find most rewarding, as an author?
Starting a new story. That is when the possibilities are limitless. That is when you begin to layout the constraints and set the foundation. Just like building a house; the room layout is determined by the frame, the frame is determined by the foundation and the foundation is determined by the lot. Once you complete each stage, you have taken away a number of possibilities.
Share with us a daily habit of yours, that helps you reach your goals.
Because of my personality, I don’t set daily habits. There are some days (weeks) that other projects require my complete attention. At the moment, I am in Dallas, taking part in a study to determine how burn scars impact the body’s ability to regulate temperature (I have 30% scarring from a hot oil burn that occurred 13 years ago). I am also working on a project to help veterans become yoga teachers and a Business Program for Yoga Teachers. At this point, my creative writing output is about 3 pages per week. In a few weeks that will shift significantly. As long as I keep track of my goals, and keep awareness to the deadlines for the various projects that I am working on, I allow my timeline to have wiggle room. Sometimes this is frustrating: At the moment, I have some really interesting ideas about my novel-in-progress and want to put them on paper, but they will wait.
What is one piece of advice you would share with an aspiring author?
Every path is different. Don’t read about the practices of a successful author and mimic their approach. Find your own way and your own method.
Finish these sentences:
I am most grateful for…
My drive to answer questions that I pose for myself
If I could give my 18 year-old self one piece of advice it would be…
Stop worrying and start doing.
My favorite thing about being a writer is…
Telling myself a story
My least favorite thing about being a writer is…
Once the story is finished, going back and making it readable to others
My goals for the future are…
Keep entertaining myself
I love living a creative life because…
I have a reason to wake up every morning
The last book I read was…
Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
My favorite book, ever, is…
Anything by Neal Stephenson
Outside of writing, my favorite hobby is…
AcroYoga. No, hiking. No, designing living spaces. I can’t decide...
The most important thing to do if you want to achieve your goals is…
On a regular basis, go back and look at your goals and ask yourself, “am I moving in the right direction?”
A few more questions...
Do you have any New Years Resolutions for 2017?
Nope, I don’t make resolutions yearly, I make them weekly.
Tell us about your books (genre, where we can find them, etc.)
So far, I have published one book, The Sky’s Eyes. It is a Young Adult Thriller, and only 188 pages so it is an easy read. It can be found at all major online retailers and the paperback version can be purchased directly from me. List of sites, below.
Where can readers find you (i.e. website, social media, etc.)?
http://brianmacrae.com – author’s website
http://theskyseyes.com – novel’s website
http://boundlessservice.org – Helping Vets Help Vets
firstname.lastname@example.org – email
http://facebook.com/authormacrae – facebook page
@authormacrae – twitter
http://bit.ly/skyseyes – Novel’s Amazon page
http://bit.ly/BNskyes – Novel’s Barnes & Noble page
http://apple.co/2lIpT7E – Novel’s iBook page
Anything else you'd like to add…
Thank you for the opportunity to share. I believe that no matter what we do, the only person that needs to approve is ourself. If others enjoy our work, that is a bonus. That applies to everything that we do.
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