Meet Graham Smith!
Graham Smith is married with a young son. A time served joiner he has built bridges, houses, dug drains and slated roofs to make ends meet. For the last eleven years he has been manager of a busy hotel and wedding venue near Gretna Green, Scotland.
An avid fan of crime fiction since being given one of Enid Blyton’s Famous Five books at the age of eight, he has also been a regular reviewer for the well respected review site Crimesquad.com for over two years.
As well as reviewing for Crimesquad.com Graham has also interviewed such stellar names as David Baldacci, Jeffrey Deaver, Dennis Lehane, Lee Child, Matt Hilton, current CWA Chair Peter James, Mark Billingham and many others.
When not working, his time is spent reading, writing and playing games with his son. He enjoys socialising and spending time with friends and family.
Hello! What’s your name?
Graham Smith – I’m 39, and happily married with a six year old son.
What do you write and why?
I write short stories which carry across various sub genre’s under the broader umbrella of crime fiction. I tend not to think too much about genres. To me the story is everything, if I feel I should tell then I do regardless of genre. Although having said that I write what I’m familiar with. I’m also two thirds of the way through my debut novel which is crime fiction.
Do you read the same genre that you write? Why or why not?
I have read crime fiction for years now and couldn’t see myself reading anything else unless it was for research purposes. Since I’ve started writing, my reading has taken a real hit though.
What is the title you are promoting right now?
My debut book 11 The Hard Way
What is it about?
It’s an eclectic collection of short stories featuring a stalker, a gumshoe detective, assassins, hard working cops, and a couple of stories which carry over into psychological horror thriller territory
What makes this book different from others in your genre?
The diversity of the stories is different from some collections as I have never tried to fit my work within a specific gene. Some of the tales are very hard hitting and I like to end with a killer twist where possible.
What’s the story behind the story?
I have read avidly for over thirty years, and for the last two years I have reviewed crime fiction for the well respected website www.crimesquad.com. The next logical move was to try my own hand and writing. I had stumbled around with a novel for eighteen months until Col Bury introduced me into a Facebook group where you had only 100 words to tell a story. The brevity and power of some of the pieces there blew me away. Tentatively I submitted a story or two and I got great support from the guys there and one or two invitations to submit longer pieces for blogs. The rest as they say is history.
What is your goal as an author?
To be able to get a publishing deal which will allow me to write full time. I am aware though that very very few authors are lucky enough to achieve this.
Are you working on anything new? Give us a preview of what’s to come!
I have two projects in the pipeline. The first one I started is a novel featuring a team of detectives and is set in the English Lake District. The second project which will in all probability be finished first is a collection of short stories featuring a gumshoe detective called Harry Charters. Harry has had a couple of blog outings and has garnered some positive reviews.
Who is your favorite author and what is your favorite book?
I have too many authors as friends and acquaintances to possibly name one when they collectively all offer me different things. My favourite book is HMS Ulysses by Alistair MacLean. It is basically the story of a ship on an escort duty but every time I read it I get something different from it.
Where can readers find you and your work?
I have been featured on a few blogs but I do not yet have my own blog or website. I guess it’s time I built one, I’d much sooner write or read though and I enjoy writing guest blogs or interviews such as this one.
What’s your view on the self-publishing/traditional publishing thing? Ideally, which one would you prefer and why?
I’m currently published as Ebook only but one day I’d love to see my works in print. Just to hold my book in my hand and do signings etc would be great. I have to say though that the support and help from my Epublisher Trestle Press has been fantastic.
Do you have a favorite quote?
It’s a quote attributed to Groucho Marx which goes as follows “If a man wants to argue with you, try walking a mile in his shoes. If he still wants to argue with you, he’s a mile away and you’ve got his shoes”
What is the most important advice you have for aspiring authors?
Be patient. Read the type of book you want to write to get familiar with the genre and then write a critical review of what you’ve just read. I have found that through my reviewing I can dismantle books while reading and really put my finger on the tradecraft used by authors. Sometimes reading a book you don’t really enjoy can teach you a lot, even if it is things to avoid. The try and write every day, even if it is only a couple of hundred words.
Is there anything else you’d like to say before we finish up?
Nothing other than thank you for having me over to chat and good luck with the new blog.
Awesome, thanks for allowing me to interview you!