An Interview with Matthew Speak
Here is yet another Kindle Scout author I am featuring during this Kindle Scout anniversary sale! If you haven't checked it out yet, it is the Scout Feature landing page with over 200 books marked down to 99 cents (sometimes 70% off!)
Go check out those books after you check out my interview with Matt!
Questions for Matt
1. Do you want each book to stand on its own, or are you trying to build a body of work with connections between each book?
Well, with the Bettendorf Tales series, I want it to be told as one continuous story. However, I am working on a couple long term projects that will have nothing to do with this series.
2. What’s the most difficult thing about writing characters from the opposite sex?
Not being stereotypical. I want my female characters to be strong and I want them to drive the story as much as the male characters. Devils Glen has a few strong female characters who are as integral to the plot as any of the males.
3. What do you like about Kindle Scout?
I love that it’s a nice bridge between traditional publishing and self-publishing. I have a lot of freedom and responsibility, but I have the benefit of having Amazon promoting and supporting my work. Their commercial reach is obviously quite great to have on your side. The advance was nice and the royalty percentage is good too.
4. What do you hate about Kindle Scout?
I don’t know if I would say I “hate” this, but I do wish the editing process was a bit longer and more in depth. I felt like my book could have used a couple rounds of deeper editing and communication between the editor and the author. That part of Kindle Press should be more like traditional publishing, in my opinion.
5. Would you use Kindle Scout again?
I will most certainly use it again for the next Bettendorf Tales book. It’s been a fantastic experience—kind of a whirlwind really.
6. What is your favorite childhood book?
7. How fast do you write?
It really depends. Once I get into a rhythm I can write five to ten thousand words per week, or so. I don’t think I could write multiple books per year, but I’m just starting out, so we shall see. I think I’m finding out a lot about myself as a writer, right now. I might be able to answer this question better in another year or two.
8. Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with bad or good ones?
I’ve read all the reviews, so far. Fortunately, I haven’t had any really bad ones yet, so I guess I’ll see how I deal with that when it happens.
Bonus Question: What are common traps for aspiring writers?
The biggest trap, I think, is inspiration. Too many writers, myself included, wait around for inspiration as if it’s going to drop out of the sky at some point, or hit them on the head. Inspiration isn’t something you wait for; it’s something you make happen. You make it happen by writing and keeping to your schedule—by working.
I think aspiring writers also forget to be patient. When you finish that first draft of your first full novel, there’s a tendency to want to send it out immediately to agents and publishers. I think you must give it time. You have to walk away from it for a while and do something else. Work on a short story or another novel for a couple months, then go back to it and come at fresh.
Welcome to Bettendorf. At first glance, it seems like a typical Midwestern town, but take a closer look and you might be surprised.
High schooler Jack Davies sees the darkness coming; he lives with it. Cold voices call out from the closet door; dead hands reach up from under his bed. Although he doesn't know it, Jack wields a great power.
Now, a smooth-talking preacher has come to town promising freedom and redemption for all who follow his words. But like Jack, this preacher has a secret. Those who heed his call find themselves pawns in his plan to awaken an ancient evil, long ago imprisoned in the dank caves of Devils Glen Park.
With the help of a widowed police officer, a babysitter, and a mysterious spirit called Ava, Jack must find the truth about his hidden power in time to battle the dark forces that have descended upon his town. If he fails, our world will be cast into darkness forever.
About Matthew Speak
Matthew Speak grew up in Bettendorf, Iowa, within sight of the Mississippi River. He moved to Chicago after college, performing in and directing several plays around the Midwest. Eventually, he moved to California where he appeared on stage and in a few short films before seeking his teaching credential. Though he has written numerous short stories throughout his life, this is his first full-length novel and his first published work. Matthew is a special education teacher at Northpoint School in Northridge, CA. He lives in Burbank, CA, with his family. Check out his website here.
Help support a fellow Kindle Press author by picking up his book while it is only 99 cents! He's one of the newer authors out here, and his book is really good. I got my copy already, so get yours here!