Chris O'Guinn is visiting with us today as part of his virtual book tour with Goddess Fish Promotions. Sit back and visit as he chats with us a bit.
Welcome, Chris. Tell me about your most recent book.
Fearless is the story of a teenager named Justin who has basically given up. He sees everything as a threat or a possible disappointment. He’s cut himself off from the world to protect himself.
Then he meets Liam, who is his polar opposite in many ways. Liam fears nothing at all. He crashes into Justin’s world like a speeding train. And he shows Justin how to be fearless.
This is not a love story, and yet it is. It’s a platonic love shared by two teens who would do anything for each other. Together, they face many challenges and their bond sees them through.
Is your book self-published? If not, who is your publisher?
Self-published. I’m a control freak and I don’t want publishers telling me to change the orientation of my characters to sell books. I’ve read and heard enough horror stories of what publishing houses put their writers through that I am hoping to make it on my own.
Are there any other books or projects that you are working on that you would like to share?
Of course! My next book is going to be the first in my new action adventure series, Hybrids. It’s called Arrival and it stars Joaquin, a high school junior who finds himself swept up in world-changing events.
What got you into writing?
Insanity. No, not really. Well, I have long theorized that creativity is a form of insanity. But really, I started writing because I wanted to make books that had the things I liked to read in them and didn’t do things that bothered me. I thought I was starting a revolution. But I was fifteen, so I can be forgiven.
Where can potential readers find your book?
Amazon is my main distribution center. I also put my books on Barnes and Noble as well as Omni-lit. Soon, I hope to work out a way to make paper copies available in my very own CreateSpace store.
Are you on social networking? Where can we follow you?
I have a Facebook page where one can keep up with the latest news. https://www.facebook.com/pages/Chris-OGuinn/642976635736171
Do you have a website?
What inspired your most recent work?
Specifically, it was a letter sent to the advice columnist at the site I work for, TheBacklot.com. A gay high school student was asking if he should ask another gay high school student out. And this led me to think of the many similar letters that have been published on the site. And that made me remember this phrase, “the only thing worse than fear is regret.”
And I started to think of how a boy who is so afraid of risk could become fearless. And the story came together like a bolt of lightning.
Do you do your own marketing or do you have other people handle it?
I do my own, but I would love to find someone to help me out with it.
In your opinion, what makes a great author?
Well, I am rather easily charmed by clever phrasing. Josh Atervois used a phrase like, “He was having a love affair with his own voice and we were all just voyeurs.” That’s what I mean by clever. You take a stock phrase like, “he loves the sound of his own voice” and you dress it up and make it fresh.
Clever phrasing will save most any book for me. But it’s the characters that I really need to like. An author who can make characters that are human, real, that are people I can imagine meeting, those are the sort of authors I respect most.
Are you a social butterfly or do you prefer to keep social relationships to a minimum?
I’ve always been a bit of a hermit. Seriously, even as a kid, I liked spending a lot of time by myself.
What is your biggest pet peeve?
Close-mindedness. I can totally respect a person’s differing point of view. I mean, that’s what makes us all human, right? But the utter unwillingness to consider that another perspective has any merit drives me crazy.
What has been the biggest struggle you have overcome in your life so far?
The passing of my wife in 2005. I just had no idea what to do or where to go from there.
What topic that is close to your heart, do you feel doesn’t get talked or written about enough?
Bisexuality. And I’m guilty of this too. We bisexuals are rarely seen in TV, movies or books. I want to write about a bisexual character, but I want it to be a good idea. So I’m waiting for my Muse to get back to me on that.
Where are you from? Sunny southern California—just like Justin.
Self-publishing or traditional publishing. In your opinion, what is the best route to go?
This is a tough question. Each writer needs to choose their own path. But it’s important to understand that publishers are not all-wise and all-knowing judges of quality. Somewhere out there are one, maybe two, that said, “no thanks” to J.K. Rowling and Harry Potter. These people are using their experience and their instincts to gamble and they have a lot riding on each gamble.
At the same time, self-publishing isn’t “the easy route” that some people claim. Done right, and if you’re serious about writing you must do it right, it’s a ton of work. All the things your publisher would do, you now have to do. You need to find a good editor, a cover artist and maybe even someone to help you with the technical aspects of e-book formatting. You are in charge of marketing and promoting.
So, if all you want to do is write, the answer is easy—go with traditional publishing. If you want to have complete creative control over every aspect, that answer is equally obvious—self-publish.
But if you want the easier path? Well, sorry, but there isn’t one. It’s a tough road and not for the faint of heart.
Do you have another career besides writing?
I contribute to the gay entertainment web site, TheBacklot.com. Right now, I do TV recaps for Arrow and Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
About the Author:
You can follow me on Facebook and you can keep up to date with my works via Lightbane.com.
His self-imposed exile from high school life is threatened when Liam, the scary stoner, reaches out to him. What starts out as a strange and unsettling encounter with the unnerving, pot-smoking teenager evolves into the sort of friendship that changes the course of a person’s life.
But as Liam drags the reluctant Justin out of his shell, Liam’s own secret is revealed.
Fearless is the story of the myriad shades of love, how to find one’s courage and the transformative power of friendship.