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Exclusive Interview with

John Henley

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When did you start writing?

Actively writing, for the purpose of it becoming published, spring of 2020. Within one year I co-wrote five military romance novels with author Melody Anne. Since that time I have co-wrote three additional novels with Melody Anne, two military/political thrillers and co-wrote two fantasy novels with Roger L. Osborne.

John Henley
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What makes writing your passion?

Creating situations and stories where we have heroes, especially within a brotherhood or family unit, is a strong driving force. I enjoy the idea of someone reading through my work, evoking a sense of pride in themselves and wondering if they could be the lead character in the book because every person I create is just as real as the reader.

John Henley
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How long have you been writing?

I'll ask my mom, but probably around 4ish. ;)

John Henley
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What was the feeling when you published your first book?

A lot of odd emotions. Melody Anne is a multiple NYT and USA Today Bestselling author, so there was an underlying expectation of some success with the book(s). The book was a surprise release, and due to that, it got off to a little bit slower start than her other books, including the reviews. The first week I constantly hit refresh to see what people were saying about the book. When the first review that included my name came through, I read it one time, nodded my head in agreement and then got back to work.

John Henley
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What’s the story behind your choice of characters?

Military men and women
First responders
Family

John Henley
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What annoys you the most in pursuing a writing career?

Doing EVERYTHING else but writing. The marketing, the social media, the covers, the this and that, and everything else but writing. It is a pain that we must go through at the beginning of our writing careers, but we won't get anywhere if we don't keep pushing at it.
"Do what you have to do until you get to do what you want to do"

John Henley
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How do you get over the “writer’s block”?

I'm a planner, researcher, and outliner. By the time I'm ready to sit down and write, I don't really get writers block.

John Henley
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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?

Keep grinding. I don't mean that to create an image of prodding along but to have the discipline to not give up as you hit bumps along the way. If it matters to you, then keep grinding it out. Much of the success found is via staying with it when others quit.

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

Relax.
Chill Out.
Take a breath.
Find at least a little joy in the small things.

John Henley
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Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with the bad ones?

I was thankful that a mentor gave me some good advice on book reviews. She said, "If Dr. Suess gets one-star reviews, then you better believe you're going to get them."
And I have no grandiose thoughts on me being better than Dr. Suess.

John Henley
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What is the feeling when you get a good review?

"Cool"

John Henley
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Have you ever incorporated something that happened to you in real life into your novels?

Many times. Almost every book I've written has a situation or scenario based on real-life experiences.

John Henley
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Which of your characters you can compare yourself with? Did you base that character on you?

I don't compare myself completely to any of my own characters.

John Henley
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What do you think, the book cover is as important as the story?

The cover brings 'em in; the story keeps 'em there.

John Henley
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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?

Either / Or

John Henley
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How do you feel when people appreciate your work or recognize you in public?

It takes time to feel comfortable with someone connecting with you based on a book you've written, but I have the thought that if they took the time to read my book, and then to engage in conversation with me about the book, then it is my honor to speak with them.

John Henley
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Who is your favorite author? Why?

No chance to be able to name one.
Dickens, Twain, C.S. Lewis, Joe Abercrombie, Jack Carr, and so many more.

John Henley
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What’s the dream? Whom would you like to be as big as?

Wherever the road leads. The focus now is to get stories that are stored up out of my head. Then to partner with those who write stories that interest me. I enjoy the effort of writing a story with another person. Bouncing ideas off each other, bringing different styles to the pages, the tug and pull of when to not give up on an idea and when to let go and never look back.

John Henley
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Would you rewrite any of your books? Why?

nope.

John Henley
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If you could switch places with any author – who would that be?

nope.

John Henley