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Exclusive Interview with

Graham Wilson

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When did you start writing?

I started writing with the death of my mother in 2000. I had a desire to record the story of her and our family who had lived amazing lives in the remotest parts of Australia's Northern Territory, an aboriginal community in Arnhem Land. The death of my father in 2007 gave me added impetus to complete this. Finally I published this memoir titled "Kaleidoscope"

Graham Wilson
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What makes writing your passion?

I got stuck for an extended period trying to complete my memoir, and in a writing course, to help deal with writers block we were each asked to imagine the novel we did not know we would write. We had found a hidden photo of an 8 year old girl in our house from 100 years ago and I imagined a story of her life. This became my first novel, "The Old Balmain House" As I began this story it became a living thing in my mind which captivated me . I worked almost non stop for a week until I had a first draft. I loved the experience of living inside a story as I created this novel. I still get the same pleasure with each new book as words begin to flow.

Graham Wilson
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How long have you been writing?

I have been writing now for 15 years and most years I publish another book - now 12 novels in addition to the memoir. I particularly love writing series where I can continue to develop a story in new and originally unimagined ways/

Graham Wilson
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What was the feeling when you published your first book?

When people on the other side of the world began to buy it as an ebook I was amazed at their interest and then even more amazed when they wrote glowing reviews

Graham Wilson
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What’s the story behind your choice of characters?

My real life experience of growing up and working in remote Australia gave me the pictures in my head of the places and the types of characters which inhabit my Crocodile Dreaming Series - a combination of beautiful and terrifying. We lived in the house in which we found the picture an 8 year old girl which inspired the Old Balmain House Series. It is a house in a locality rich in the history of early Sydney and a mix of true and imagined history became the foundations for this work

Graham Wilson
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What annoys you the most in pursuing a writing career?

It is very hard to earn a living as a writer, however as I have a well paid job that pays the bills it is a minor annoyance, but I do feel for those trying to support themselves in this way.

Graham Wilson
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How do you get over the “writer’s block”?

I start work on something else, sometimes a new chapter, sometimes a new book. At odd times when stuck on how to complete a scene I go out for a walk or a swim in Sydney Horbour and I often find part way through my exercise that the idea for the missing bit pops into my head.

Graham Wilson
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We all know the writer’s path is never easy, what makes you keep going? What advice would you give to new authors?

I write for the love of creating stories, and the pleasure I get as a new story is running through my head. The positive responses of readers who have read and enjoyed one of my books is also a big motivator. For new writers I say, "Persevere and do it for the love of writing"

Graham Wilson
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If you could go back in time and talk to your younger self, what would you say?

Never pretend you know more than you do and be open to learning new things.

Graham Wilson
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Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with the bad ones?

I read all my book reviews both good and bad. I find the bad ones particularly useful as it helps me see things about my writing that have not worked for a reader. I try and use this insight for future improvement.

Graham Wilson
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What is the feeling when you get a good review?

I feel amazingly gratified that someone else has invested many hours reading something I have written and come away with a highly pleasurable experience.

Graham Wilson
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Have you ever incorporated something that happened to you in real life into your novels?

My memoir tells of my own survival of a crocodile attach along with many hours of flying and an emergency landing a helicopter. I use these experiences in my Crocodile Dreaming Series as key parts of the book and its characters

Graham Wilson
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Which of your characters you can compare yourself with? Did you base that character on you?

I am the narrator of the first book of my Old Balmain House Series which begins with the key event of discovery of a real photo in our house. In the Crocodile Dreaming Series I base small bits on my own character but much more on the characters of other people I knew when I worked across remote Australia

Graham Wilson
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What do you think, the book cover is as important as the story?

The cover is what decides a person to focus on a particular book. It is important for Print books to encourage people to pick a book off the shelf and look at it. It is doubly important for online books as it must capture the instant attention amongst all the other online books for the person to click on the link and look further

Graham Wilson
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Do you connect with your readers? Do you mind having a chat with them or you prefer to express yourself through your writing?

I include my email address in the back of my book and encourage readers to contact me directly if they want to. I also use Facebook and other author platforms to engage with readers, but don't do much wider social media. I try to respond promptly to all reader contacts. I am happy to hear from readers but really my writing is its own story.

Graham Wilson
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How do you feel when people appreciate your work or recognize you in public?

Public recognition is appreciated but secondary to reader appreciation. I think it is a trap to base one's self worth or importance on public recognition.

Graham Wilson
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Who is your favorite author? Why?

Too many to name - I love imagined stories with an element of magic like Lord of the Rings but also vast historical saga's like War and Peace. I love mystery and adventure stories all eras, Wilkie Collins, Enid Blyton and Agatha Christie were early favourites. I also love books with an unexpected twist where you think you see where the story is going but find it is really quite different. Gone Girl is a good example

Graham Wilson
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What’s the dream? Whom would you like to be as big as?

No dream - we each need to be as big as we are and as good as can be. But mostly we want to satisfy our readers by taking them on an imagined, fascinating and pleasurable journey.

Graham Wilson
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Would you rewrite any of your books? Why?

I continually re-write my books. As a self published author of ebooks this is easy to do. My concept is a story is never perfect and can be improved. So as readers give me new ideas I make adjustments to improve a story, and do a more substantial revision about every 5 years.

Graham Wilson
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