Interview with Christopher Galvin: author of Strings and Bit Grim, Isn’t It?

Christopher Galvin is a writer and short film director. His background is in Television and Film, with a B.A. Honours Degree in Video. He has written and directed short films which have being part of prestigious Short Film Festivals including the Galway Film Fleadh. His latest short film he wrote ‘Stuck’, has been on the Festival circuit for nearly two years, and ended its run with a screening at the SBE’s Hamilton (New York) International Film Festival in July.

Christopher is also a writer and editor for the website ComicsVerse which provides comics analysis, reviews and interviews. His reviews have been used for blurbs on various comics publications, including Marvel Comics and Image Comics. He has published two webcomics which he has written with ComicsVerse.

When he is not writing reviews, he has contributed to the Irish education publisher Folens Christmas annuals, writing pieces for Sonas and Siamsa. He has written about Star Wars, Comic Conventions, and super heroes.
‘Strings’, his children’s fantasy book, is his first self-published work. He has just launched his second book, ‘Bit Grim, Isn’t It?’ a collection of short stories.

Can you tell us a bit about your background, and why you started writing?
I’m from County Offaly, in Ireland and I’ve always loved writing. Even from an early age I wrote short stories a lot. It just always appealed to me. I’d get an idea and have to write it down.
Where do you get your ideas?
I think, with me, it starts with a ‘what if’? What if there was a town somewhere that was inhabited solely by puppets? What if there was an apartment block that only appeared to the dead? What if there was an orc trapped in a situation with a human and didn’t want to kill and eat him? They pop up in my head, almost fully formed, and I jot them down as quickly as I can.

How do you market your work? What avenues have you found to work best for your genre?
Marketing is tough. A part of you is ‘hey I wrote this book!’ and another part is saying ‘you don’t have to be boasting about it’ so I find it a struggle. ‘Strings’ I just launched with not much fan fair. I didn’t know I was going to self-publish it until I did. From that I learned a bit about marketing and used that to push ‘Bit Grim, Isn’t It?’ So I wrote a list of places I thought I could post about it, all over various social media, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr. Strangely Facebook seems to get the most traction (or readers from anyway). I’ve made trailers for both books and they both get a good reaction.

How important are the character names you choose? Is there a special meaning to any of the names?
Names are difficult. Well, first names are okay but thinking of a good last name is challenging. But I think names are important as they define the character. It’s rare I can come up with a good name straight away. On saying that, when I thought of the bully from ‘Strings’, the name Abigail Hodges came straight to mind.

Is there a genre that you’ve been wanting to experiment with that you haven’t tried to write before?
Nothing I can think of. I tend to write whatever idea suggests itself. Maybe sci-fi. That seems a bit daunting though.

How do you choose what you are going to work on? Do you write one story at a time, or are you working on multiple pieces from multiple storylines at any given moment?
Sometimes it’s spur of the moment, other times I plan a little bit ahead. I usually work on one story at a time. At the moment, I am working on a sequel to ‘Strings’, another draft of a YA fantasy novel, more short stories and a horror novel too. But I will only focus on one of them at a time. Once that is finished, I can move on to the next thing.
Is there anything that you would like to say to your readers and fans?
I’d like to say thank you to anyone who has read either of my books. For that I am grateful. What I have found when self-publishing is that authors need a louder voice than someone who is traditionally published. That’s where the reader comes in, sharing posts, liking stuff, retweeting, but, most importantly, leaving reviews for my work. It gives me confidence and helps other people pick up my work too. So to everyone who has done this, it is appreciated.
Thank you for sharing with us, Christopher!
You can purchase his books at the following links:

Strings – US

Strings – UK

Bit Grim, Isn’t It? – US

Bit Grim, Isn’t It? – UK

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