Meet Author Alan Cass

Next up in my occasional series, Debut Author Q&A, is one of my favorite writer tweeps, Alan Cass, whom I affectionately call @alancass2010:
Name: Alan Cass
Name of book: My Name Is Death
Book genre: Supernatural thriller
Date Published: September 2010
Publisher: Authorhouse
What is your book about? It’s a modern-day reworking of the fabled Grim Reaper and focuses on the spiritual/psychic bond between twins — even after death.
Most challenging part of the writing process: Maintaining my motivation in the early stages. I’m a sprinter, not a long distance runner. Therefore, with no finishing line in sight, I struggled with self-discipline.
What motivates you to write? I HAVE to write, like waves have to crash. It’s my way of releasing emotionally. I see clearly who I am between the lines of my work, whereas my reflection in the mirror is merely the facade.
Did you experience writer’s block? If so, how did you overcome it? Occasionally, I did shut down and failed to generate even a simple line that I could stand by. Quite simply, I had to walk away on those occasions. “Block” is the mind’s way of telling you, “You’re trying to hard, dummy!”
How long did it take you to write this book? It took me two years to complete, but it’s a 15-year-old idea that was finally ready to have its silky veil removed.
What was your favorite aspect of the writing process for this book? My favorite part of this journey was the people I got to know between the pages. These characters come alive and, in a silly way, walking away from them is difficult. (Not silly at all, Alan!)
You chose to self-publish this work. Why? I chose to self-publish to get my work out immediately. I couldn’t bear the thought that my manuscript would sit in a publisher’s tray gathering dust when it should be taking off and gathering awards!
Biggest misconception about writing a book: That “anyone can write a book.” This is rubbish. No question. Whilst I do not doubt most people’s ability to place words on a screen, I do doubt their dedication to the years of self-sacrifice required to complete a book. If I had a penny for the number of people who informed me that they’re writing a book, “but just ain’t finished it…” It takes a certain type in my estimation.
Do you plan to do this again? I’m writing a sequel as we speak.
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