- a multi-genre author, composer, guitarist, and artist, with a Bachelor of Music and Education
Readers, thanks for checking out another Author Spotlight Interview. Let’s give a good, hearty welcome to this week’s guest!
Leon Stevens is a multi-genre author, composer, guitarist, and artist, with a Bachelor of Music and Education. He published his first book of poetry in 2020, followed by a book of original classical guitar compositions and a short story collection of science fiction/post-apocalyptic tales.
His newest publications are the first two books of a sci-fi trilogy, The View from Here and The Second View, and a new collection of poetry titled, A Wonder of Words.
Leon Stevens, thanks for agreeing to be here today. Most author spotlight interviews start off with the boring stuff, but I know what readers REALLY want to know.
If you could have any pet (real/fantasy/no-allergies/no worries about feeding it) what would it be?
As much as I love animals, they are a lot of work. Many years ago, I did have two cats that kept living on and on and on. The decision to put them down was the hardest (but the right one) to make. I didn’t like that feeling, but at least their last moments were at home, on their favorite blankets, and loved.
Excuse me …
[Sigh] Next question?
I totally understand. I have pets I still miss. I’m glad you were able to be there for them.
What do you write? And how did you get started?
Writing for me was therapeutic. I began to write songs and lyrics to get through a difficult time. Some of the lyrics became shorter poems and the beginnings of others. I had other story ideas that I jotted down which became my short story collection, then I decided to continue one of those stories and it became a novella. I was hoping for a novel, but I’ll settle for a trilogy.
It’s always a roller-coaster when a short story idea turns itself into a trilogy!
What do you like to read?
I am a very picky reader. If a book doesn’t hook me right away, it’s shelved. My favorite is science fiction, usually the older ones—the classics and not so classic. I also enjoy some historical non-fiction.
Do you snack when you write/edit? What are your favorites?
I can’t eat or listen to music when I write. I often will have a coffee on hand or on rare occasions, a glass of wine.
Ah, as opposed to a certain interviewer who’s entirely snack-driven.
Name one commonly accepted piece of writing advice that doesn’t work for you
Don’t design your own covers
While it’s not so much writing advice, but publishing advice: Don’t design your own covers and if you do, see what the book covers look like in your genre. I thought most of the sci-fi covers were too busy, so I made what I liked.
The rules were made to be broken! But only after you examine why they exist and do your research on what appeals to you.
Name one commonly accepted piece of writing advice they can pry out of your cold, dead hands
Shameless Self-Promotion time!
What would you do if you found yourself on or in another world? Do you have the skills and knowledge needed to survive or to make sense of what you see?
Thomas sets out on a hike he has done many times before. Taking only what he needs for the three or four hours he expects to be gone, he passes a vehicle in the parking lot. The handwritten note on the dashboard read: Not Abandoned. The view at the end of the trail was not what he expected—neither were the friendships.
Two people with adventurous spirits, heading off into the unknown with only their physical fitness and combined knowledge to get them through everything they may encounter.
The Outer Limits meets the Twilight Zone…
13 new science fiction stories and post-apocalyptic tales!
A journey to the center of the universe. Humanity’s final days. A strange midnight visitor. A faster than light test with unforeseen results. Writings found in a desolate world. These are just some of the short stories in this entertaining and thought-provoking collection which are sure to kickstart your imagination.
An eclectic mix of poetry, prose, and short stories that address the subjects of loss, struggle, human behavior, and environment in both humorous and thought-provoking ways.
The author invites his readers to laugh, think, cry, and meditate on the wide variety of topics. Scattered throughout the book are sketches of various subjects, many that relate to the poems and stories they illustrate; others speak for themselves.