It is with great pleasure that No Wasted Ink introduces science fiction author Adam Gillrie.
My name is Adam Gillrie. I am the least terrible writer you will hear about today. I have a wonderful wife, four kids and a fifth on the way. I live in Sunny Florida, I have a very lazy horse and an extensive knowledge of modern day firearms (research purposes only).
When and why did you begin writing?
There are always two camps of writers. Those that are inspired by a good book and those inspired by a bad one. I’m in the bad one camp.
I can’t put a book down once I start it. Even when I know five pages in, it’s a disaster. I find myself getting more and more upset when a great idea or character is being lead through a formulaic disaster of a book. Nothing sends me faster to my computer to write than a terrible movie or a bad book.
When did you first consider yourself a writer?
In my heart I’ve been a writer since I published my first book to the School Library at age 6. In reality I told very few people that I’m a writer until my first book was published. I have had wonderful jobs in promising fields but kept finding myself drawn back to writing. In reality I never saw myself doing anything else. I am happiest banging away in front of a computer telling one of the hundreds of stories trapped in my head.
Can you share a little about your current book with us?
My current book Silent Intrusion took three years to write and edit the last time I wrote it. I wanted a universal story that connected all the alien abduction stories in a uniform pattern. Something that brought it all together. To give you an idea how long this book has been under construction, I typed the last page of the first draft minutes before my brother called me to watch a movie trailer for a movie called Independence Day.
Nothing was more frustrating than seeing what I thought were my best ideas already on the big screen. I sat back down threw out the draft I had and started writing a new version of the story focusing on the Men In Black aspect.
Needless to say Men In Black was released after I finished the second draft. Will Smith just has it in for me. I was frustrated and shelved the book for a number of years. To be fair, although Independence Day had some neat similarities to my book it wasn’t the same story, and Men In Black was also very different. Then three years later I decided to try again. By now I knew the book series incredibly well and decided that it needed something more, humor.
Everyone does scary aliens, but not many people write a good story that is generally funny at the same time. (Don’t say Men In Black this is different) So I locked myself in a hotel room for months and wrote Silent Intrusion for the last time, and it’s funny.
What inspired you to write this book?
The need to let my characters outside of my head. I’ve carried them inside for long enough, it’s time for the rest of the world to meet them. Also I have a childhood dream of world domination and being adored by millions is a big part of that.
Do you have a specific writing style?
Being homeschooled sometimes I don’t fully understand the question, so I’m going to answer this question twice. Something I was able to do in homeschooling, “thank’s mom!”
Answer 1: I do, I try to write with absolute minimalism. I hate reading a book where they talk about the colors of a field for twenty pages. My attitude is if it doesn’t make the story better it’s out. I’d rather have a shorter book that covers the story that needs to be told than a longer book with a strange singing fairy guy in the middle (guess that Lord of the Rings character I’m referencing for a bonus point).
Answer 2: How I write is unique. I wish I was one of those writers that could get it right the first draft but I end up rewriting hundreds of pages throughout the process. I’ve taken to writing the beginning and end and figuring out how to get the characters there after. I may write ten pages for every page that makes it into the final book. So if you thought those pages were bad, let me tell you there are nine others that are much worse.
How did you come up with the title of this book?
Surprisingly it’s been the title I’ve wanted to use from the beginning. It also happened to be available. It’s a subtle attack (intrusion) happening quietly (silent). See what I did there?
Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
This Author is not an idiot! A secondary message revolves around Breaker’s sacrifice. I want people to know that strangers will give their all to help someone being wronged. There is always hope.
Are experiences in this book based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
I pulled a lot from my life. I have four wonderful over opinionated sisters who I have a special bond with. I think often of them when I write a brother sister relationship. I think of my own personal struggles to save those I love, sometimes successfully sometimes not. Despite a great desire to be abducted by aliens as a kid, it never happened. So I was not able to pull from any of those types of experiences.
What authors have most influenced your life? What about them do you find inspiring?
J.K. Rowling – She caught me by surprise and took me on a wonderful journey. (Through her books, we are in no way friends, sadly).
Tom Clancy – I was a kid who knew nothing and he taught me how the military worked. It’s not my genre but his influences are all through my writing. I also wrote him a letter on Prodigy once and he wrote me back. I still have it.
Orson Scott Card – Enders game is still my favorite book. I believe he perfectly captured the endless possibilities of a talented child.
C.S. Lewis – What a great message of good. C.S. Lewis shaped much of my child hood with his books.
If you had to choose, is there a writer would you consider a mentor? Why?
This is a hard one. I feel that I’ve pulled a lot from other writers. One indirect help was Brandon Mull. A friend of the family I peppered him with questions on publishing and writing for years before he had his successes.
Hugh Howey did an incredible job with Wool. I originally intended on combining the first three books of Silent Intrusion into one large volume but after reading his 60 page book. I recognized people would appreciate a book now and a book later, instead of me waiting another three years to get the other two books done. Also he’s successful, which is great and another reason I want him as a mentor.
Who designed the cover of your book? Why did you select this illustrator?
I have a great Illustrator in Christopher Hayes and some of his work is on my site, but for the cover I did my own photography and Photoshop work. It was right after I completed the cover that I hired Christopher so I would never have to do that again.
Do you have any advice for other writers?
Two pieces of advice. The usual is to get a good editor. You’ll learn more from them than any English class you’ve ever taken.
The second is to spend as much time mapping out the structure of your book as you do writing it.
Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
I’m sorry. I mean, Book 2 is coming along nicely and I promise a few things are resolved. As a writer a short note from a fan who liked the book is absolutely a day maker. It’s why we write books in the first place, to feed our ego. Well besides trying to prove everyone we know wrong.
Book: Silent Intrusion
Publisher: Iron Rod Publishing