Kindle Author Interview With Emily C. Burger

Thursday, 4 February 2016
Next up to be quizzed on the craft of writing is kindle author Emily C. Burger. Join us as she tells talks about why she writes and her new book Thieves Of Greatness which is available on the amazon kindle store now.

Why do you write?

I used to write to entertain myself but as I discovered the impact that writing could have on those around me, I began to write with purpose. I want to inspire people, to make them question their surroundings and to stretch their imagination in a way that effects the spectacles through which they view the world. 

When did you decide to become a writer?

Writing stories was always a part of who I was, but I think it was when I was about 10 or so that I decided I wanted to one day be a published author. 

What genre are your books?

A twist of Fantasy and Historical Fiction.

What draws you to this genre?

I find the stories of real people fascinating, the various time frames and cultures and global happenings, which is where the Historical Fiction comes in. On the other hand, absolutely anything is possible with Fantasy and your imagination is your only limitation. For me, combining the two genres seemed an absolute gold mine of story opportunities and I believe Thieves of Greatness has formed its own genre completely unique to the world of books. 

What made you decide to sit down and actually start something?

Starting had never been an issue for me. It was the finishing that proved a challenge. By the time I was 13, I had about four novels going, all half-finished. Thieves of Greatness just happens to have been the one I decided to push for, I guess because its message was something I felt strongly about and I believed the story had potential. 

Do you write full-time or part-time?

Part time, I wrote Thieves of Greatness during High School. 

Do you have a special time to write or how is your day structured?

I write whenever I get the chance to, usually Saturday mornings or late at night. During High School I spent a lot of time writing in the holidays, because for entire weeks I could just shut myself off from the world and let myself get lost in the story. 

How do you think you’ve evolved creatively?

I think my creative voice has matured a lot over the years. My topics have more meaning behind them, my stories have purpose. Even since publishing Thieves of Greatness I feel I have so much more to say and I have a lot to learn before what I write is exceptional, but creatively it’s about more than just finishing a fun story now. 

What have you written?

I’ve written a fantasy novel which follows the adventures of famous historical figures, only depicted as children. The idea is to demonstrate how we all start out as children with big dreams, but the question is what are you going to do about those dreams? The message of self-belief is an important one in the book, but it’s also highly entertaining and a fantasy binge for fans of the genre. 

Do you work to an outline or plot or do you prefer just seeing where an idea takes you?

I like to have an overall goal for a story, a particular message I wish to convey. Then I construct my plot line and characters around the theme, beef it up with some smaller themes, lace it with twists, challenges and discoveries and then just let the story grow into what it needs to be. 

How do you market your books?

I love doing public speaking, whether it’s at book events or schools or signings. The internet is of course extremely important so I try to post things on various platforms as well and build an online awareness through those. 

Is there any marketing technique you used that had an immediate impact on your sales figures?

Thieves of Greatness hasn’t really been out long enough for me to see any trends with sales yet, but I definitely think Facebook was an important step in reaching readers across the country and spreading awareness. 

What advice would you give to aspiring authors?

Don’t stop writing and don’t give up. If you keep working, editing, re-editing, submitting, editing and never stop believing in yourself, eventually it will pay off. Giving up is the equivalent of literary suicide. 

Give us an insight into your main character. What does he do that is so special?

Despite being a princess, Elizabeth finds herself feeling vulnerable and unwanted under the egotistical nose of her neglectful father – King Henry 8th. She dreams of Greatness, of making a name for herself, but battles internally with self-doubt, fear and the brutal death of her mother. It is through the epic adventure which Captain and his flying ship whisk her away on, that she must learn to overcome her fears and value the strength hiding within her. 

Where do your ideas come from? 

The message behind the book – of self-belief and fighting for your dreams, came to me after I noticed a tendency in my classmates to underestimate themselves and give in to their fears and doubts over their dreams. I wanted to write something that would inspire kids to chase their true potentials and to realize that Greatness is a characteristic every individual is capable of. 

In terms of the fantastical characters and adventures, I was largely inspired by the famous works of CS Lewis and JRR Tolkien – who I think are geniuses. 

What is the hardest thing about writing?

Sometimes you’re just not sure how you want the story to progress or what turn of events would best suit the motion of the story and this can be incredibly frustrating. You have to be willing to sacrifice chunks of work you spent hours on for the good of the plot’s momentum and you have to continuously adapt and refresh characters until they’re full and deep and not just flat. 

What was the hardest thing about writing your latest book?

Finding a way to be true to the characters and be as accurate as possible when it came to places, events and the types of children these famous figures might have been, whilst simultaneously creating room for fantasy and character arcs and completely wild tangents of adventure. It was an interesting mix to find the balance of. 

Which writers inspire you?

CS Lewis, JRR Tolkien, Dr Seuss and Roald Dhal. 

If there was one thing you could do to change the world, what would it be?

If all people just loved each other, if there was no hate or violence or discrimination or exclusion or labels, if everyone dropped their masks and walls and allowed themselves to be who they were born to be and not who they’ve tried to become, I think the world would be a far greater place. 

What is one great lesson you have learned as a writer?

Perseverance, because without it you’ve just got scribbles on a notepad. 

Tell us something unique about you

I was born in South Africa, moved to and lived in England for three years before starting my teenage years back in South Africa. It’s given me a global perspective I don’t think I would have had otherwise and it’s shaped me to be a person eager to embrace new cultures and people. All credit to my parents on that one. 

Is there anything else you would like to add that I’ve not included?

If there’s one thing I want readers to walk away with after reading Thieves of Greatness it’s this: You are capable of far more than you think. Your age does not have to be a limitation that holds you back from achieving your Greatness. If you believe in yourself and work hard for your dreams, nothing is impossible. Put aside your fears, put aside your doubts, because they’re robbing you of your future. You can be more. You can find Greatness. 

How can readers discover more about you and you work?




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