Who’s That Indie Author? Graeme Cumming

Author name: Graeme Cumming

Genre: Where do I start? Seriously, I’d say I write thrillers, but they often cross genres.

Books: Ravens Gathering; Carrion

What’s your story and how did you become a writer? I live in Robin Hood country, so there’s plenty of atmosphere to soak up here. Not that I’ve needed it especially. I’ve enjoyed making up and telling stories since I was a child, though it wasn’t until I was in my 40s that I started taking it more seriously. I have wide and varied tastes when it comes to fiction, which is reflected in my writing.

How do you balance your work with other demands? With difficulty, if I’m honest. I’m not the most disciplined person in the world and find it very easy to get side-tracked on to less important things. But I’m getting better as I get older. Mortality is a big motivator.

Name one of the happiest moments in your life: There are so many to choose from but, bearing in mind this is about my writing life, I’ll pick out selling my business a few years ago. As an event, it happened with very little fanfare, but it allowed me to take five years off work so I could focus on my writing. I’m near the end of year three, so I’ve got even more motivation now!

What’s your approach to writing? Are you a “pantser” or a planner? Planner. My latest book, Carrion, was written without a plan, and it’s taken over a decade to get it how it should have been in the first place. From start to publication, Ravens Gathering took just over eighteen months. That’s still a long time, but it went a lot faster because it was planned.

Could you write in a café with people around? I doubt it. I need a lot of space and quietness around me.

Have you ever written dialogue in a second language? If so, how did you do it? Short answer: no.

What’s your favorite book and what are you reading now? A favourite book would be hard to pin down. There are so many good ones, and often in different ways. I suppose the closest I can get to that would be to say that I’ve read Eagle in the Sky by Wilbur Smith more often than any other. Some of it feels dated now, but the closing pages always leave me with a tear in my eye.

Right now, I’m reading The Last Will of Sven Andersen by fellow Indie author Geoff Le Pard. His books always entertain.

What’s your favorite way to read a book: hardcover, paperback, eReader?  eReader – though I took some convincing in the early days.

Do you think print books will always be around? Yes. In spite of my preference, I do still enjoy picking up and reading a paperback now and again, and I know a lot of people who wouldn’t dream of touching an eReader. There’s also the fact that you can’t get an author to sign an eReader – well, you could, but it wouldn’t be as long lasting!

Would you ever read a book on your phone? I have done, though probably not the whole thing. Usually it’s because I’ve suddenly found myself at a loose end and don’t have anything else to read from.

What’s your go-to device? iPhone, Android or something else? Android, I suppose, but really – in spite of what I’ve said about reading on it – I try not to be too attached to it.

How long could you go without checking your phone? The answer to that varies depending on how engaged I am in what I’m doing. If I’m sailing, for example, I can go for hours without touching it. At the other extreme, there are times when I check it every five minutes.

Do you listen to audiobooks? If you do, what do you do while you’re listening? It’s not something I’ve done in a while. When I did it was usually while I was driving.

Do you like using social media to promote yourself and your book? If so, what’s your favorite platform? Does anyone actually like using social media to promote themselves? Clearly, I do use it, but I don’t feel I’m very good at it. At the moment, aside from my blog, I’m only active on Twitter and Facebook. Of those, I seem to get the better interaction with Facebook.

Website and social media links:
Website: graemecumming.co.uk
Facebook: @GraemeCummingAuthor
Twitter: @GraemeCumming63

Awards/special recognition: Sadly, none I can think of – though I have had some excellent reviews from well-respected book bloggers.


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34 thoughts on “Who’s That Indie Author? Graeme Cumming

    1. I’m not sure what was funny about my social media comment, Jill. Sometimes I just lie awake all night trying to shut out the screaming in my head when I think about it…
      Seriously, there are people out there who seem to thrive on it, but I’d rather get out and meet people – which is easier said than done in the present climate!

      1. I’m jumping in here too because I don’t like the social element of social media, but I do like seeing how it works with businesses and writers. I think it can be a powerful tool, especially during these times. That said, it can drive me crazy and I do burn out. I definitely don’t thrive on it.

    2. Hi Jill. I feel somewhat the same way. I’m very interested in how social media works with businesses and writers etc., but not at all interested in the posts with painted toes and an umbrella drink!

  1. What a great opportunity for you to write, Graeme, with five years financial freedom! Carrion is indeed an interesting book. A huge different time spans in your writing of the two books. We all have different writing styles. Thank you, Barbara for introducing Graeme!

    1. Thanks, Miriam. It does sound like a great opportunity, but things don’t always work out the way you plan them. Still, I’m hoping the next book won’t take anything like as long!

  2. Great questions in this interview and I feel like Graeme was so open and honest in his answers. Yes, I laughed about the social media comment also. Who really enjoys it? On the other hand I’ve met so many meet wonderful people, like Barb and now Graeme, through blogging, which is my favorite type of social media. And I’ve learned much about writing and writers, like Graeme and his books. Twitter and Facebook? Not so much.

    1. Hi Pam – yes, for me, social media is only fun as it applies to my blog. I’m also having fun tweeting for my library job. As for personal social media – I don’t like it at all. And above all, blogging is the best kind of social media. We were just talking about whether blogging counts as social media at dinner last week. I said a definite yes! Thanks for visiting, Pam. Hope you are doing well.

    2. I do agree about the blogging aspect of social media, Pamela, though I do go through phases where I don’t blog often enough. Even so, I like following blogs and dipping in and out when I can – especially in the book blogging world. There does seem to be an awful lot of support among writers and readers, and I’m always grateful for that.

    1. Hi Donna – I enjoy meeting authors too – great to learn more about Graeme and his books. The merits of social media is indeed a hot topic. Thanks for stopping by 🙂

  3. Great interview, Barbara. Nice to see you here, Graeme. As you both know (I think), I have a love/hate relationship with social media so interesting to read your comments here, Graeme. Also, took a lot of convincing for me to get that ereader out but, unlike you, it still does. 😉 Paperbacks for the WIN!

    1. Hi Sarah, thanks for stopping by and for sharing Graeme’s profile. I’m doing a lot of social media for my library job so sometimes I run out of pep to do it for my blog. I do like it though. I like both paperbacks and ereaders. I can hide a lot of books on my Kindle! Thanks for the visit – hope you are doing well 🙂

      1. True. That is a huge bonus of ereaders–keeping a lot of books in one, tiny, portable place. But I still love the feel of a book in my hands. (I sometimes run out of pep to do social media in general. At least you have an excuse.) I’m getting by is all. I hope you and your family are doing well and having a lovely summer. 🙂 ❤

    2. Clearly, I’ve had a bit of a social media break myself over the last few days, Sarah (though cleaning up after my son has eaten into my time somewhat!), which is why I haven’t been over here for a while. I won’t try to change your mind on the e-reader front – other than to remind you that’s probably where my books are and why you haven’t read them yet! – because as long as people are reading it doesn’t really matter what the format is.

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