Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Meet the Amazing Writer - Scott Burrows

Hey readers,

I am here to introduce you to another amazing writer. He goes by the name of Scott Burrows. He has so many great stories to share and has traveled a lot to such beautiful places. I can't wait for you to discover more about this writer by reading the interview. 







To start off this interview, tell us a little about yourself. 

I have lived in western New York all my life. I’ve been married to a wonderful woman for almost a quarter century now and have two adult children, a son and a daughter. Our fur-baby Staffie, Dehlia, has been in the family for a little over two years. I live a relatively peaceful life and am blessed to have a job that not only pays well but affords me a week off every month and has enabled me to travel multiple times a year. Our big road trip took my wife and I out west for 20 days to Minnesota, South Dakota, Montana, Wyoming and Colorado, but most of our trips are in our time zone. I enjoy writing, reading, learning new things, drawing (although I don’t enjoy it nearly as much as writing, I can still do it), hiking, exercise and shooting. I’ve recently discovered I enjoy horseback riding and, as of this writing, I will have gone skydiving for the first time.


When did you start writing? 

It’s hard to say exactly when, but I remember all the way back to being pre-teen my aunt wanting to get me a manual typewriter so I wouldn’t have to hand-write my stories. I will say, operating without a typewriter helped me during my developmental years to have at least decent hand-writing.

I do remember also being very much into comic books and not only illustrating them but coming up with story-lines. 

I’ve always felt that there is a story to tell inside everyone, whether it is autobiographical or just something that the world needs to hear. I’ve felt that writing is an excellent way to express that.


How many books have you written? I would love for you to share a couple of titles with a little description for our readers. 

I’ve written two novels for publication so far, one poem for a compilation, and several published short stories.

Of the two novels, The Surgeon is a slow-burn crime thriller about a mafia hitman trying to restart his life in witness protection only to have things not work out so well. Guns and Crosses is in process of being published and will be in production in November, soon to be distributed after that point. It is a western tale about an outlaw who converted to Christianity and the conflict that arose from his decision.

The poem, “Frost Bite, Star Light” is in a compilation and is a word picture on the beauty of a polar night.

The short stories I’ve had published are “Big AL”, a dystopian look at a rogue risk-assessment AI whose recommendations cause legislation that runs everyone’s life. I wrote it in light of the current pandemic situation as a way for us to look at how much risk avoidance runs our lives and the way we think about things. There will always be people who are risk-takers or risk-averse, so there will probably be a gamut of opinions on the subject. The other published short story, “The Sea Always Takes What is Hers” is a Lovecraftian horror story. H.P. Lovecraft has long been one of my favorite horror authors and this story is told in the same manner of minimal dialogue and a lot of descriptions which will cause the reader to have to use their imaginations.


Is there a book you enjoyed writing more than others? If so, which one and why? 

Guns and Crosses was a labor of love for me and written over a period of almost fifteen years (with some expansive time off in between). I enjoyed parts of writing it and other times it was tough, which was probably why I didn’t wrap it up very quickly. There were a lot of plot holes to iron out and things that just seemed plain silly to me after reading it. A lot of rewrites involved.

For pure fun, The Surgeon tops the list. It was just a fun, free-flowing novel and I finished it in about six months. It certainly required a lot less research since it takes place in today’s era.


What is your process of choosing your book covers? 

I wouldn’t say that I have a process for choosing. I’ve taken to drawing one of my covers, but while I am pretty good at drawing, I don’t enjoy it enough to want to do it continuously. I have actually modeled for my own cover for The Surgeon. Typically, whatever I go with I put to a vote to see what would draw the most interest. If the cover isn’t intriguing, people aren’t going to be apt to buy it.


Walk us through a typical writing day of yours. 

I don’t know that I have what would be deemed a “typical” day for writing. I write when I have available time and it all depends on the phase of production I happen to be in.

When I am having the most fun I am “free writing” where I just get the words on the page and let them be fine-tuned and sorted out later. I don’t really have a page or word count in mind. I feel in doing so you can pigeon-hole yourself into putting words there that are unnecessary to the plot or omit key pieces of information from your story. If I write a story that is only a hundred pages, that is the length it’s supposed to be.

Once the free writing is completed, I go back through and make changes and get more serious about the plausibility of situations, dialogue, characters, etc.

Oh, and I drink lots of coffee!


What motivates you to write? What keeps you going? 

I don’t know exactly what it is other than I love it. I am introverted by nature in that I express myself best in writing rather than verbally. There is no shortage of things spinning through my brain begging to be told.


Do you have a specific schedule or do you simply write whenever you wish to? 

I try carving out blocks of time to write, but let’s face it, our available time is not always in synch with our creative juices. I don’t have a per-day word count or a time I want my writing to go to market as I have to juggle other things in my life.


What is one thing you would like to share with us?

When I was out west earlier this year, I knocked a bunch of things off my bucket list including, shooting a Gatling Gun, riding a horse, going to a rodeo in Wyoming, taking a helicopter over the Badlands, rock climbing in Colorado. We got to see Old Faithful, Wind River Reservation, pronghorn antelope, bison and bighorn sheep. I also “proposed” to my wife on our 24th anniversary to renew our vows on the 25th. It was the trip of a lifetime and we will have a hard time outdoing ourselves for next time!


Have you always wanted to be a writer? If not, what did you want to be?

As long as I can remember I always wanted to be a writer. Then, I had to grow up and put it on the back-burner for a while but the love of it has never left me and I have to answer the call.


Who is your favorite author and why? 

I’ve always enjoyed Steinbeck, ever since high school and I had to read Of Mice and Men. I finished it in one night. 

I’ve lately gotten into Lee Child and the Jack Reacher series. Child’s concise writing style has been a recent influence into some of my own writing.

H.P. Lovecraft is another favorite of mine. Not heavy on dialogue or plodding storylines. He uses a lot of descriptions that are mind-bending before mind-bending was even a thing.


What is the most difficult part of your writing process? 

Having to do research and button up any inaccuracies. Most readers probably won’t catch these things, but depending on the genre you will get a following who catch historical or factual inaccuracies. Trying to make the facts work within your fiction is a fine balance.


How do you come up with names for your characters? 

Naming a character (or even a book, for that matter) is like naming a child. You pick a name that sounds good for the character, then you think of something better. I don’t really have a “process” for this; I just know it when I hear it. Many protagonist names should be strong-sounding; antagonist names should have a more ominous sound.


What do you consider to be your best accomplishment?

Raising and graduating two wonderful kids!


How do you handle literary criticism? 

I try to handle it in the spirit it’s intended. The only way any of us will ever be better at anything is by accepting criticism, if done respectfully.


Do you read a lot? If yes, what is your favorite genre? 

I read as time and mood permits, but I love it! I’ve been indulging in the Jack Reacher series, as well as other suspense or thrillers that catch my eye. I also love to learn about new things, so I have been reading about cybersecurity and psychology (currently trying to learn about phobias and why two people in a situation may have a completely different reaction to that situation). I also like to read things that have the opposite viewpoint that I have to challenge myself to think differently about a subject.


What do you like to do when you are not writing? 

I enjoy writing, reading, learning new things, drawing, hiking, exercise and shooting. 


If you could choose to invite three writers to a dinner party, who would they be and why?

Never really met any of them to get a good sense of their personalities, but I guess it would be fun to hang out with Stephen King (dude, how do you make stuff sound so scary?), Jules Verne (a science guy before science fiction was popular) and John Steinbeck (love his works).


Are you working on anything at the moment that you would like to share with our readers?

I have about 13 projects on WIP right now, but the one I am hoping to wrap up before the end of the year is book one of The Hound series called The Montana Enterprise. It is about a private investigator in the late 1800’s who was a tracker during the Civil War and used his talents to find missing persons. The main character, John Garrity, is an different kind of old west character. He is uber smart, uber resourceful and has a good nature but is troubled by his past and seems to constantly be trying to atone. A flawed but likeable character.

Some of my other WIP are other installments in the series which are much less far along. I have some others on deck: The Progeny which is a superhero origin saga; Pearl of Great Price about a lesbian daughter in an early 1960’s baptist community, Where, Oh Death, Is Thy Sting? where the main character struggles with his decision for immortality and The Salem Tree, a horror story about a cursed tree in Salem, Massachusetts that was used for hanging witches.


Is there anything that you would like to add or share in this interview?

I am currently working on a webpage which will be a one-stop-shop for my released work and any WIP I have. People who follow will be able to see and order for my selection and see what else I have up-and-coming and where in the process it is. I hope it will be a fun and interactive site. My picture will be available on that site so people are able to put a face to the name.


You can follow Scott Burrows on twitter as he is quite active over there and enjoys meeting new people.

Twitter


Stay tuned for his upcoming projects, novels and more. He has great plans coming for you. 


~Thank you for reading & happy blogging~







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