Please welcome Author Anthony Vicino to THE KATY blog today! Read a little bit more about this awesome author and then enter the giveaway!
Anthony Vicino writes Science Fiction and Fantasy in Oakland, CA where it never rains unless he has to ride his bike someplace.
When he isn’t sitting in front of a computer screen contemplating the thousand different ways to escape an asylum with nothing but a fork, a shoelace, some chutzpah, and a lot of snark, he is undoubtedly out climbing a rock in the Sierra Mountains. If not there, you may find him in the ocean pretending to surf.
How did you decide to become an author? Any books, movie, or people that inspired you to pursue your dream?
Sometime during my awkward high school years, my dad (probably having grown frightened of the wild hand gesticulations I use to tell stories orally) got me Stephen King’s On Writing, and paid me ten cents a word for any short stories I wrote and signed over to him. He had his eye on the long con. A small investment with the hopes that I’d actually amount to something someday.
Those stories in particular will never be worth the paper they’re printed on, but they got me writing (and thinking about storytelling in a more formalized way) years before I ever actually sat down and said to myself, “Huh, I think I can actually do this.”
Are you self-published or traditionally published? Why did you choose to go that route?
I’ve gone both routes and they both have their ups and downs. Recently I’ve put all my publishing efforts exclusively into self-publishing as the control it gives me over my own creative work is invaluable. If I want to throw some planet eating space whales into my next short story, I can (and did!). Nobody is there to hold me back and say, “Maybe you shouldn’t have quite so many robot pirates.” To which I respond, “I’m writing Moby Dick in space, and everybody knows Moby Dick is littered with pirates!”
Okay, here’s the seedy, dark underbelly side of self-publishing. Since nobody can limit your creativity, you’re gonna have to do that yourself and curb your own enthusiasm at times. Either that, or find an alpha/beta reader you trust that can reign you in when you start getting too far out into left field. Then again, this might be a problem unique to me.
Are you a plotter or a panster?
Plotter. The longer I’ve been doing this, the more organized I’ve become in my plotting. My first few stories/novels were a hybrid of pantsing/plotting, and I think the stories sort of reflect that. In the last year or so I’ve put a lot of time and effort into nailing down my exact process which turns out to be a fairly involved outlining phase so that by the time I sit down for the first draft, I have a detailed overview of where the story is going. If I skimp on this stage, then I end up with stories that meander uncontrollably.
How did you get involved with Future Chronicles anthologies?
By pure luck! Another author dropped out of The Time Travel Chronicles at the last minute and Samuel Peralta was left trying to fill the spot. Next thing I know, he’s knocking on my digital door inviting me into the magical Future Chronicles kingdom. The only tricky bit was that I only had fourteen days to get a story off to the editor (which was slightly stressful), but I’m a firm believer that you never say no to an opportunity.
Do you prefer writing short stories or full-length novels? Why?
Both are great for entirely different reasons. I love short stories because they can afford to be more concept driven, meaning they revolve around an idea more so than strict characterization. Novels are great for all opposite reasons. Of course you can still have a great concept/idea driving the story, but it’s really the characters carrying the day.
My personal preference these days tends to be towards the longer form (though I still write plenty of short stories). Novels allow me more room to really grow the story to its full potential.
What scientific advancement do you feel is right around the corner?
It’s a big corner, but I think teleportation is coming quicker than any of us even know. Okay, so maybe this opinion isn’t founded in any sort of scientific reasoning, but rather, a whole lot of wishful thinking. Which, in my experience, can be just as important.
Do any of your characters represent you as a whole or someone you know? Or are they qualities you admire in others?
I think it’s inevitable that you’re going to write pieces of yourself and others into your characters. There’s no good way around it. We’re all writing what we know, and what we know is us (and those around us). This doesn’t mean you write down all your sisters most admirable/loathsome traits and then plug those into your Mary-Beth character (because that’s just caricature), but it might mean taking one or two of those traits and smooshing them together with one or two other traits from your weird Uncle Bill to come up with something completely new and refreshing.
There is one character in my Firstborn Saga that my girlfriend is convinced is me in a nutshell. If anybody can guess which character that is, I shall award them a pickle!
Are there any genres of literature or movies that you won’t read or watch? What’s your favorite genre to read/watch?
It’s all fair game. I prefer action/adventure with some thriller thrown in for good measure, but I’ve never said no to a good rom-com.
Do you have an advice for aspiring writers?
Keep at it. You’ve got to write a whole bunch of crappy words before you find your personal style, so you might as well sit down everyday and chip away at those words. Eventually, after a fairly significant period of pulling teeth, it’ll get better. I promise.
Oh, and remember that even after you’ve got it all figured out, there’ll be days you wake up and think, “I don’t have a clue what I’m doing.” That’s natural and all part of the writing process. Don’t let it get you down. Just keep writing.
Any upcoming projects you’d like to share?
Mind Breach (Book 2 in the Firstborn Saga) is available for preorder at iTunes, Barnes and Noble, and Kobo and will be out on October 1st. After that, this Fall is going to be a landslide of new stories coming out. If anybody wants to keep in touch, get some free stories, and learn about all those new releases then I definitely recommend signing up for my newsletter at anthonyvicino.com/newsletter.
Anything else you’d like to add?
Just a big old THANK YOU to Katy for having me today!
GIVEAWAY TIME! Anthony was gracious enough to give away 3 e-book copies and 3 audio-book copies of his novel, “Time Heist!”
Catch His Wife’s Killer, Stop A War, Save The World.
“The break neck pace of an action movie, the beautiful language of a beloved classic, and the vivid imagery I wish existed in more contemporary works of this genre.” – Andrea Luhman
Former Detective Tom Mandel was the best Time Vice had to offer, but even he wasn’t good enough to stop Malcolm Wolfe from pulling off the biggest heist in Unity history. Tom finally caught his man, justice was served, but not before losing his wife. It wasn’t a fair trade.
Now, after a decade of slumming around the Lowers, the numbers on Tom’s arm say he’ll be dead soon. Less than a day remaining. A guy with his skills could earn more time, but he’s not interested. He’s ready to be done. Ready to join his wife in whatever comes next.
That is until his ex-partner, Alaina Raines, brings news that Malcolm Wolfe has escaped from prison with the help of a Unity Leader.
Torn between justice and vengeance, Tom Mandel must return to the life he left behind to catch his wife’s killer and save countless lives.
But catching Malcolm means uncovering secrets better left buried. Secrets that could tear Unity apart from the inside. Then again, if Tom doesn’t stop Malcolm, there probably won’t be anything left of Unity to save anyhow.
To stop the coming war, Tom’s just got to catch Malcolm before the numbers catch him.
Buy Time Heist today to join Tom’s quest to catch his wife’s killer!