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Behind the Words with Multi-published Author, Grant Leishman

Today, on author spotlight, we go behind the words with a good colleague and Indie Author supporter, Grant Leishman. Grant is an expatriate New Zealander, living in Manila, Philippines, with his wife and two daughters. We have yet to meet at Starbucks, can you believe that? Maybe one of these days.

How did you become a writer? What circumstances led you to writing and publishing books?

I think I was always going to be a writer one day. I still vividly recall telling my mother, when I was eight, I was going to be an author, when I grew up. It just took me longer to grow up than I’d planned. In the end, it was a series of personal disasters and a decision to start a new life in The Philippines, that ultimately led me to writing. I found myself with a lot more time on my hands, than I knew what to do with and I knew I had to find something to keep myself busy, so I started writing. I quickly realised this was where my passion and where my life lay, from then on. I found something in the written word that I hadn’t found anywhere else; peace.   

How many books have you published so far?

Five books by myself. The Second Coming Trilogy: The Second Coming, Rise of the AntiChrist and Holy War, plus The Photograph and Just A Drop in the Ocean. I’ve also written an anthology of short stories, with my son, Chris. We wrote seven stories, each, in total. It is weird, wonderful, paranormal/horror/twisty and is titled, Paranormal Alley. I also wrote a Supernatural, Psychological Thriller, called Tortured Minds along with two authors I met on Social Media; Rachel McGrath and Colin Griffiths. So, seven books in total.     

Do you have other books in the pipeline?

Not right at this moment. I’m not, not writing, but just not writing novels, right now. I’m on a sabbatical if you like. I’m doing some editing, to try and keep the wolf from the door, plus a few writing projects, like a blogging magazine, titled Read My Mind, with some fellow authors and a short story anthology, titled, Limitless, with more authors.   

Your books belong to different genres. Which genre is your favorite and why?

If I’m totally honest, my favourite genre is suspenseful romance, because I’m just a sucker for a love story and a hopeless romantic, to boot. I do like paranormal as well, though, because it gives you much more creative freedom to make shit up.  

Which of your books is dearest to you? Why?

That would definitely be Just A Drop n the Ocean because, despite my protestations at the beginning of the book that it is a work of fiction, it is actually my story and as such is very personal to me. I should add, that the character of Nick, may well be me, but the character of Teresa, was totally created out of my head. Her life story is in no way to be confused with the life story of my beautiful wife, Thess. (She told me to say that, by the way!)    

Who is Grant Leishman, the man? 

OMG! What sort of question is that Eeva? Grant Leishman, the man, has changed so much over the
past six years. If you’d asked me that question ten years ago, I probably would have given you my son’s standard assessment of me. “He’s just a grumpy, old man.” So, much has changed in my life and so much has changed in me. If I was to sum my philosophy on who I am, in one sentence, it would be; “I live for today, to create my tomorrows and anything I can do to help others find their bliss, it is my duty, to do”. If that sounds a little pretentious, I don't make any apologies. I am happy and I want others to realise that happiness is a choice and is not dictated by circumstances.                

If you could do something else aside from write, what would you be doing?

Ayyyyy, what’s with all the deep questions? If I could do absolutely anything, I’d want to own and run my own bookstore. Guess whose books would get the most prominent display? Seriously, I’d be happiest working in a library or a bookstore, but if money was not an issue, I’d just travel the world and write – what bliss.

What challenges have you encountered as an author, and how did you deal with them?

There are just so many challenges facing a self-published author. Marketing is a big one, especially for authors, most of whom seem to be introverts, by nature. The biggest issue I face and many other authors tell me the same thing, is time management. This life we have chosen requires, more than anything, discipline. Anyone who went into the world of writing and believed it was the “easy route” in life, would soon discover their folly. That being said, I wouldn’t change it for the world.       

You have self-published some of your books, what is your advice to new authors venturing into the Indie Industry?

Be realistic, be patient and work your arse off. Despite the odds, I would still say to anyone who’s dream it is to be an author. DO IT! And DREAM BIG! If you don’t have big dreams, big dreams can't come true. Write for the joy of writing and the rewards will come (they may not be financial, immediately, but the rewards will come). WRITE! WRITE! WRITE! I think Stephen King said, “The worst thing I ever wrote, was still way better than the best thing that I never wrote.”        

What do you love about being a writer?

Freedom and knowing that someone, somewhere, who I don’t even know, may have read my words and been affected by them. There’s no greater knowledge than that and it makes all the effort worthwhile.

That wasn't so hard, was it? You are a grumpy, old man!

Thanks so much, Grant, for helping us get to know you better, and for everything you do for authors.

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  1. Thanks for the "kind" words son will be thrilled that you agree with him. I'd forgotten what I said, so it was interesting to read the interview and relive my utter pretentiousness. Thanks - much appreciated.

    1. Hahaha! Pretentious is not a word to describe you, my friend. Thanks for the interview!


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