Wednesday, May 20, 2015


Tell me a about yourself. What got you started in writing?

Hi, I’m James C. Duckett. By day I work with technology but by night I put words on paper—unless I’m out fighting crime. I live in St. George Utah with my beautiful wife, son, and dog.

I started writing when I was seven. My 2nd grade teacher told us to write and illustrate a story. It was horrendous, but I fell in love with the process of creating new worlds.

How and where do you write? Do you prefer a lap top or do you prefer writing freehand?

I have been trying to answer this first question forever. I've tried everywhere in the house and everywhere I would sit for a few hours on end would put me in a lot of back pain. I recently picked up a recliner to help me recover from surgery. I haven’t been able to put in any marathon writing sessions, but recuperating in that chair hasn't destroyed my back. I have high hopes I've finally found a place I can crank out some serious wordage.

My first book, written in high school, was written long-hand. I did like that, but I have fallen in love with the backspace key. Also, I type much faster than I can write. Ability to read it afterwards is a bonus, too. Now everything is written from my trusty laptop.

What's your favorite part about writing? Your least favorite part about writing?

Creating the story. Coming up with ideas. Worldbuilding. I just like working with all the new stuff. I’m okay with the editing until I get around my tenth draft and I can’t stand to re-read a word of it anymore (please tell me that is normal!). I’m not the biggest fan of marketing because I don't like writing messages that sound like, “I’m so cool and so is my book. Send money. Thanks!”

Even though I am pretty cool. And so is my book. ;)

How do you come up with your characters? Why would readers want to get to know them?

Other than my memoirs, they usually just pop in and surprise me. In a recent story I had character who was really nice, funny, easy going, supporting, and interesting. Her interactions where so flat and boring, so on a whim I re-wrote her first appearance with a critical, older lady who would rather die than give somebody a warm smile. I liked how she made things happen, which is what I needed in my book. I kept her. It just worked. I go by the general rule that if I’m bored by the characters, my readers will be too. I hope I have interesting characters.

What types of marketing do you do to promote your writing?

I told my Mom to tell everybody she knows that she liked my book. Just kidding!! (Mostly) I’m horrible at marketing. It might be a self-esteem issue. It might be a lack-of-time issue. It is certainly my biggest weak spot. No, no… it’s my biggest work in progress. How’s that?

How do you schedule your writing time? When do you write?

I get most of my writing at insane hours in the morning. I’ll bust out some words at night too, but often the planets need to fall into a certain alignment before I can do that.

What are you currently working on? Do you have a new book out?

I have two new books out!

First is my memoir called Pushing the Wall. In it, I tell my whimsical story of how I ran my first marathon without training. While it does focus on running, I’m noticing more and more that it is really a book about following your dreams—even if you have to take unconventional
routes in order to do so.

Get the book here

I also have a romance out called Undercover Lover. It is part of the Sweet and Sassy anthology. Most people think I’m joking when I say I wrote a romance, but hey, I loved it 
and plan to write more.
Get the book at Amazon

I’m answering your question out of order because one of the things I’m working on is a sequel to Pushing the Wall. I’m working on another memoir and a young adult fantasy.

Do you have a project on the back burner? Tell me about it.

So. Many. PROJECTS!!

Yes. I have more ideas than time to convert them to stories. I keep a file of ideas to consider. It’s pretty large. I have a few pet projects I’d like to get to. I’m a big fan of time travel stories, and I think coming up with the right time travel story (I've got a few ideas) will be my dream project.

What would you tell a beginning writer who wants to publish but doesn't believe he/she has enough talent?

You don’t, just give up now.

However, if you were upset that I just said that, then that means you've got passion. And if you've got passion backed by persistence, patience, ambition, and drive, then I’d put my money on you finding success. Just don’t ever give up.


Thanks James! 

Learn more about James and his writing projects here:

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