Author interview: Scott B. Delaney
Author Scott B. Delaney chats about his latest book, The Tiger’s Eye, Angels in Mumbai, his writing journey, and his next book:
Describe yourself in three words. How did your writing journey start? And, why Christian thrillers?
Driven, Christian Motivator. In the late 80s/early 90s, my mom introduced me to Frank S. Peretti’s work (This Present Darkness, Piercing The Darkness, etc….). Being more of a Stephen King/Robert Ludlum type reader, I put them on the backburner for a year or so, finally picking them up on a trip for a Christian Youth Camp week called ‘Centrifuge’. His books really impacted my thoughts/beliefs regarding spiritual warfare. I’ve always enjoyed writing, and had a strong desire to take the spiritual warfare baton from Peretti, and bring this type (in my own unique suspense-packed, thriller way) of Christian Fiction 30 years into the future. Started writing the first book about eight years ago, played around with it for over five years until I finally got serious and focused my effort on getting the first book, “The Shaft, A Supernatural Thriller” to the finish line. With a better process now in place, the 2nd book was much easier to create and launch.
What is the inspiration behind the Global Calling series?
We live in a remarkably broken world, with people throughout the world moving further and further away from Christianity or organized religion in general. We see more and more people, especially young people, believing that either, there is no God, or that simply being good people is good enough. No need for church, no need for rules, no responsibilities due to our faith…very depressing. Working in India, I see first-hand the need for the message of God and I see him working in amazing ways to reach people. I felt called to do something that enhanced the Kingdom of God, not just business or my life. As I contemplated how I could find the intersection of my faith and my vocation, I decided to write a series I hoped would capture the hearts and minds of those who might be looking for an answer, trying to fill holes in their lives that they can’t quite understand, or who are simply curious about the existence and the heart of God. So much of the Christian literature today is preachy or very deep in theology, and tend to lose those that are not already committed Christian in the first few chapters. I wanted to present people with something dynamic, fun, exciting, energy-packed and real world oriented.
The setting for The Tiger's Eye is very rich and detailed. What is your advice to aspiring authors when it comes to setting?
Setting is incredibly important to me as a reader, and vivid detail, when done right, can really place your reader inside your story. I would advise new writers to be careful, though, as you can get lost in flowery details at the inexcusable expense of losing your reader’s interest. It’s an art to creating a setting that sings to the reader. Write what you know, where you have been, including enough sense-focused detail to draw your readers in. They need to feel, hear, smell, and touch the places you are writing about, without getting lost in overdone, unnecessary detail. Cardinal rule: Don’t write about places you aren’t intimately familiar with as you will invariably lose credibility with readers.
What is your writing process: how do you make time to write, and do you set goals for yourself?
I start the process by spit balling a ton of ideas. I run these by my Beta community and narrow them down to just a couple. After deciding which story to focus on, I start the meticulous outlining process. The creation of an incredibly detailed outline helps the story write itself once I begin the writing process. When I say detailed, I mean ages, personalities, and habits of characters, descriptive words for settings, many different ideas/thoughts for each chapter, notes that tie back to my other books in the series, important dates, names, etc… Often, I will write a chapter, then rewrite it four or five times until I am pleased with what is on the page. After completing the initial manuscript, I will revise and edit the entire document a few times before sending it to Beta readers for initial edits, ideas, suggestions, complaints, etc… After receiving all of their valuable feedback, I will go through the personal editing/revising process a couple more times before sending it to professional editors for the strategic and copy edits. After another few personal editing passes, I am ready for the publishing process.
How do I make time to write? As a pharma executive, I spend a ton of time on the road. When I find myself on a long flight or stuck in a hotel in a much different time zone, I carve out time to put pen to paper, or in my case, fingers to keyboard. As I get deeper into the process of writing, I find myself spending more time at night and on the weekends writing. During the last few months of the project, it is very time consuming as we move towards a finished product.
Goals: At present, my pace seems to be around one book every 18 months. This seems to work very comfortably for me. As I wind down my pharma career, I will certainly change my writing goals to better fit my schedule, likely moving the timeline for new books up to one every 9 to 12 months.
If you could invite any three top writers for dinner, who would that be and why?
Stephen King – because of his mastery of character development and his impact on me. I couldn’t put his books down when I was a teenager.
Robin Cook – love his creation of suspense, and his chosen genre. He is simply a great medical thriller writer. Love his stuff.
Gregory David Roberts (Shantaram) – just a cool backstory and his writing takes you places in a way that I’ve never otherwise experienced.
As an author, would you rather be famous but poor, or obscure and rich?
As a pharma executive, I would opt for obscure and rich, but as an author, famous but poor. For me, getting the message to as many people as possible with respect to God’s love, along with his promises and expectations, is of paramount importance… making money is a secondary or tertiary objective that I would hope to roll back in to future projects of this nature for His benefit.
What is your next writing project about and when can your fans expect it?
My next project will take some of the characters from ‘The Shaft’ and ‘The Tiger’s Eye’ back to the U.S in the 3rd book of The Global Calling Series (early 2023). There will be a compelling and interesting political element. In this book, Andrew’s son Cade will take a much larger role, taking a new job as an Aide for the President of the United States, Barry Hatcher. What he uncovers behind the scenes and in the hallowed halls of Washington D.C. will be chilling and scary. Once again, angels and demons will be on full display in another epic battle of good versus evil.
Where to find Scott’s books:
“The Shaft, A Supernatural Thriller”:
Kindle Version: https://amzn.to/2Y1IrqW
Print and Audible Versions: https://amzn.to/3zq54TT
“The Tiger’s Eye, Angels in Mumbai”:
Kindle Version: https://amzn.to/3sYkwnP
Print Versions: https://amzn.to/38pBD8v
Audible to be released in September or October