The End of Year Interviews – #15 Drew Bankston
Before we get stuck in, can you tell our readers a little about yourself?
Of course! I live in Northern Colorado with my wife and 3 of my 5 children. (The other two have gone off on their own!) I own a video production company called, Star Painter Productions as well as being a full-time detective for Macy’s Department store. In my spare time, I enjoy creating worlds and characters in the pages of books for all to read. I have currently self-published 11 books and am working on 5 more to be published in 2017. I like to think that I create stories to “entertain your imagination” each time I sit down and begin to write.
If you’ve released new work in the past twelve months, can you tell us about it, and how you think it’s done, thus far?
My latest book is the third in the Tokorel series and is called, The Eyes of Tokorel: The Scope of Emotion. The series overall is being received quite well, however, not being a marketer I’m not certain that I effectively reaching the public so that sales, although steady, are not huge by any means. 100% of the people thus far who have read book 1, return to purchase book 2. I’m just waiting for that one, affluential person to pick up my book and tell their hundreds of followers that, “This is the next epic saga in the world of sci-fi, action, adventure, romance. Read it!”
Was there anything about your release(s) that you wish you’d done differently?
Not really. I would love to have an actual launch party someday, but for now I settle for the quiet announcements over social media!
How do you feel your writing style or process has changed this past year?
I believe that my writing style has grown and matured this past year. I’m always amazed when I go back and proof my books that I don’t have to change much. With this recent book I really enjoyed reading it and, although I did make a few changes, I was very pleased with the character development and how the plot moved along quickly. Made for a very nice read indeed! I believe that fans of the series will be excited with this story and anticipating the next installment.
Do you have a proudest moment of the year?
Each time I look at my family I feel that I couldn’t be more proud.
Do you have a surprising fan/reader moment of 2016?
I do. Just recently I had a woman call me. I’m still not certain how she found my number, but she called to ask if the third book would be out before Christmas, saying that she bought the first two books for her son and wanted to get the next as well. That was, most certainly, a wonderful and uplifting surprise!
Do you have a favorite 2016 interaction with a reader or a favorite review?
An old friend of mine, who is also an author with Harlequin, read and reviewed the first book in the Tokorel series and called it “Epic Science Fiction” which made this, by far, my most favorite Amazon review yet!
Has anything occurred that you’ve had to put down as a learning experience?
Do you have any advice for new authors or anything about the industry that’s changed that you think new authors should really know about?
Make sure that you proofread your manuscript several times before sending it out into the world on its own. I’ve read some pretty damning reviews that talk about how bad a book is due to poor grammar, repeated sections and so on. Don’t let your book be one of those!
Do you have a favorite book from the past year?
I actually read my friend’s romance novel, “Come Home, Cowboy” and really enjoyed it!
What are you currently working on?
Oh gosh! I’m currently working on a book called “Alpha 279” about a planet that appears in the night sky once every 100 years and then vanishes again after 3 months. I’m also working on book four in the Tokorel series, tentatively called “Center Stone” and another story called “Remember” so I’m really trying to crank out the ideas in my head since we never know how much longer we’ll be able to do these things!
What do you have planned for 2017?
I’m looking at publishing at least 5 more books this coming year, making numerous appearances and trying hard to increase awareness of what I do to the public. Now that I’ve practiced polishing, it’s time to shine!
Where is the best place to keep up to date with you and your work?
People can follow me on my website, Facebook, as well as twitter, Instagram and tumblr. I try to be everywhere, lol. I update my pages daily and write a weekly blog. Hope to see you all visiting my pages. Write or message me anytime. I love interacting with fans!
Thank you for your time, and all the best for the year ahead.
Thanks for the interview! I appreciate it and look forward to a great and productive year working with SPS!