Today our Spring interview series continues with science fiction author Eric Klein.
Tell us about your book.
The One: a Cruise Through the Solar System is a hard science fiction novel about the various colonies and a bit about the conditions there. In many ways it is designed to inspire colonization, and also to set up for book two.
It follows BJ Armstrong, a MacGyver like solutions expert on his journey around the solar system as part of a cruise he won. It is filled with homages to past sci-fi writers, and has many parts that were inspired by my own travels.
When did you realize that you were a writer?
This is a hard one, back in school I tried my hand at what would now be called fanfic for The Moon is a Harsh Mistress. I got about 3 chapters in on a sequel but dropped it. After that it was all writing chapters and articles for work, so it took almost 30 years for me to get back to writing fiction.
Do you have any books coming out this year?
Not clear yet, I am working on 2 collaborations and don’t know when they will be done.
If readers are looking to connect with you, what’s the best way to do it?
Best way to connect with me is either via my Facebook author’s page or twitter. Both can be found on my site www.ericlkein.com.
What are you working on right now?
As I mentioned, I am working on 2 collaborations. The first is the sequel to The One, and the second is a more tongue in cheek tales of support staff that we are hoping to turn into a series.
Tell us about submitting your book. What was that like for you?
Actually that was quite easy, I had an in with the publisher (he is family) and it is a hybrid publishing house. So it was easy to submit it and then work out the details to prep it for publication.
What author would you say inspires you the most?
I was inspired more by a generation than an author, but if I had to name one it would be Robert A. Heinlein. He took so many ideas and kind of created the field with them. Some better than others, but he was the first in so many I would have to say he inspired me.
Who is your current favorite author?
I have been going back to Spider Robinson a lot lately, so it would be him for his Callahan’s Crosstime Saloon series or Doc Smith for his Lensman series. I love the story telling techniques that they use.
What was your first favorite book as a child?
Where Wild Things Are was probably one of my first favorites after I graduated out of the Dr. Seuss books. But my favorite childhood book came later, and that was The Phantom Tollbooth.
What advice would you give yourself if you could go back to when you first started writing?
Keep writing, even if it is only a little bit a day. You can not edit or publish blank pages (yes I know that some people have done just that). And that first draft is just a more complete outline not a final book.
What would you consider the best thing you’ve ever done for your writing career.
Taking a wild chance. I noticed one of the scifi sites does a monthly “new books coming out” article almost every month. So I pushed my publisher to contact the article’s author. She never responded, but I was the first one listed for the month I launched. Got me a good start.
What would you consider the most fulfilling moment you’ve experienced as a writer?
I went back to my old high school and gave a series of talks to several classes of seniors. Was great to help inspire them and to show it is possible. Their questions and concerns were real and it made me feel good to pay it forward.
What book would you suggest to anyone who wants to write?
These days I am not sure that any writing book will be more useful than the tools you use to write. That said, Elements of Style would be a must. There are so many little things (like spelling out numbers) that you need to know to do a good book.