ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Andrew Buckley attended the Vancouver Film School’s Writing for Film and Television program. After pitching and developing several screenplay projects for film and television, he worked in marketing and public relations, before becoming a professional copy and content writer. During this time Andrew began writing his first adult novel, DEATH, THE DEVIL AND THE GOLDFISH, followed closely by his second novel, STILTSKIN both published by Curiosity Quills Press.
Andrew also co-hosts a geek movie podcast, is working on several new novels, and has a stunning amount of other ideas. He now lives happily in the Okanagan Valley, BC with three kids, one cat, one needy dog, one beautiful wife, and a multitude of characters that live comfortably inside of his mind.
Look for the DEATH, THE DEVIL, AND THE GOLDFISH comic book coming soon from Artisync Technologies, and his first middle grade fantasy published by Month9Books in Fall 2015.
Andrew is represented by Mark Gottlieb at the Trident Media Group.
“Ahhhrrgghhh!” I hear writers everywhere scream in response to the title of this blog post. But it’s true. This is not intended to be a depressing post, far from it! I’d much prefer this to be a bit more on the inspiring side while giving some realistic expectations.
If you’re a writer, author, self-pubbed author, traditionally published author, bestselling author, small press, author, aspiring doodler, or someone who has leant one iota of brain power to the notion of writing a novel, you will hopefully find this post useful and/or familiar.
I’m uniquely positioned in this vast literary world. I was born in the UK and grew up watching and reading all sorts of silly nonsense that clearly shaped my personality and sense of humor, as it exists today. At 17 I moved with my parents just up the road, to the left, and across a vast amount of water to an entirely different continent, to a country called Canada where they’re fond of hockey, beavers, and maple syrup.
At 19 I went to the Vancouver Film School (a school famous for Kevin Smith never having graduated from there), and graduated with excellence from the Writing for Film and Television program. I switched to novel writing because, by god, everyone and their dog were writing a screenplay. Starbucks across North America were strewn with pre-hipster models frantically tapping away at their laptops hoping to become the next big Hollywood sensation. “Psh,” I said to such happenings, and instead decided to take on the more difficult task of writing a novel. After 6 years of occasionally writing the novel sometimes in an occasional drunken stupor, I finished it. Then followed 3 years of nothingness, a black hole filled with literary agency rejection letters, rewritten versions of the manuscript, and one disappointing slamming of the door incidents after another. So I wrote another book, this one only took a year. Then Social Media became a thing and I started Tweeting. If you had told someone twenty years ago that you were busy ‘tweeting’ they would have looked at you while tilting their heads to the side in a questioning manner that suggested they were worried about your sanity.
I feel like I’m droning, am I droning? Is this thing on? I’ll move it along as there is a point here somewhere.
To cut to the chase, I can easily attribute my being published to Twitter (thank you tiny time sucking blue bird). I met my publisher, Curiosity Quills Press, on there and my first book was released in 2012 with my second following closely in 2013. I then started working with that same publishing company as an acquisitions editor, then as acquisitions manager, then VP of Operations. Through those positions I met my agent, Mark Gottlieb (he has a wonderfully weird sense of humor) at the Trident Media Group and, through him, met my second publisher, Month9Books. I was still working a day job as a student advisor (someone who cons students into signing up for expensive schooling), which I promptly quit and went to work for a web marketing company where I have a fabulous time and work with awesome people, AND I get to write all day.
I am now writing a comic book adaptation of my first novel for my third publisher (Artisync Technologies) and working on a serialized novel under a pen name for Curiosity Quills Press. I have a day job where I write constantly, a contract position with CQ Press who continue to grow in leaps and bounds (and are awesome), and a family that I adore.
What’s the point? I got here through perseverance and being in the right place at the right time. I know, the latter is terrible advice, but it’s true. Most authors, and I’ve interviewed a lot of them, fall ass over backwards into a publishing contract. The right person reading your query at the write time on a particular day when the moon is ideally placed (hopefully in the sky). Continuing to write and continuing to meet people, even if it’s only online, is the best way to get published. The moment you stop writing and interacting, you’re done. The days of being discovered without effort are over. The world changed, which brings me to the final point…
Every writer would love to be a full time author. And it’s not impossible, because I know lots who are. The literary landscape has been flattened and the playing field has been re-turfed. I state that mixed sports metaphor because self-publishing and digital publishing have changed the way books are bought, sold, and read. Being a full time author means having a consistent best seller, which is more and more difficult to attain. And it’s not because the writing isn’t good. It’s because of that same problem, the reason I stopped screenwriting: because now everyone and their dog are writing books and getting them published (thanks Amazon).
My advice to writers is to write. Write books. Write to your friends. Write to strangers. Write on social media. You’re writers. If you want to be successful, then keep writing and eventually you’ll get what you want. I truly believe this.
My advice to writers who wish to write for a living: Find a job where you’re able to write every day and keep writing your own stuff on the side until you attain your dream or die. Guaranteed, one will precede the other.
Also, find a magic lamp with a genie in it, those things are extremely helpful.
WHAT'S YOUR BEST ADVICE? Tell us or leave a comment for Andrew on the blog below or on our Facebook page and you’ll be entered to win a copy of HAVELOCK from Andrew's friend Jane D. Everly! (US entrants only, please.)
Blogs - Reviews - Interviews - Giveaways