5-STAR Fantasy / Sci-Fi

Monday, November 18, 2013

Indie Author Interview: Stevie Kopas

Indie Author Interview with Stevie Kopas - Author of the Post-Apocalyptic Horror Novel The Breadwinner.

Stevie Kopas was born and raised in Perth Amboy, NJ. She moved to Florida in 2004 and currently resides in Panama City Beach, FL where she works in sales management. Although The Breadwinner contains zombies, Author Stevie Kopas doesn’t consider it to be a typical zombie novel as she focused on a lot of character development and how people react differently to the end of the world.

Interview with Stevie Kopas

Author Stevie Kopas
Author Stevie Kopas
Alan Kealey (Indie Author News): What is your (writing) background?
Stevie Kopas: Well, I have always had a love for writing. I have great parents who encouraged self-expression and creativity at a young age. When I started high school, I got a job as a proofreader for a newspaper and then it went from there. I began writing my own columns and press releases, doing interviews and ended up with my own regular column in the Arts & Entertainment section. I did that for a few years and kind of went on a writing hiatus, did a bit of blogging here and there, lyrics, poetry, nothing major. The last year though has been really creative for me, so I’ve channeled all that into completing my first novel.

Who are your favorite writers, your favorite books, and who or what are your writing influences?
I love reading, I’ll read anything once, even if it’s bad. I have no way of not finishing a book, even the awful ones. My favorite short story is There Will Come Soft Rains by Ray Bradbury and one of my all-time favorite books is Swan Song by Robert McCammon. As soon as I read the first sentence, I fell in love with it. I was a big Stephen King reader when I was a child and that’s probably what got me so into horror novels and the horror genre as a whole. I read a lot of Hubert Selby Jr and Irvine Welsh in high school. Over the last couple of years I’ve become a huge fan of David Moody. But I can’t leave songwriters out of the equation. Eddie Vedder of Pearl Jam is my favorite lyricist, I’ve been a Pearl Jam fan since I was 5 years old.

When did you first know that you wanted to be a writer?
I don’t think I ever said “I want to be a writer.” I just knew that I was. It’s a matter of putting words to paper and setting the gears in motion to get your material out there in order for the world to enjoy it.

"You create whatever you want to create."

Tell us about your writing process. Do you have a writing routine?

I normally do a rough outline, then I summarize, and then I change the whole thing when I actually sit down and begin to write it. If you were to go back through any of my outlines, plot summaries or notes you would be so confused because I never stick to my original thought process. That’s what I love about writing. You create whatever you want to create. Most of the time the unplanned things are the best parts.

What do you find easiest about writing? What the hardest?
The hardest part about writing is definitely staying on top of it. Being a self-published author especially. I don’t have to answer to anyone, so I have to make myself stick to a schedule. Otherwise I’d have a lot of mad people waiting around for my finished work that I promised them! The easiest part would be finding the passion for it, I don’t have to look very hard, the passion is there. I love it.

Stevie, please tell us a little about your Post-Apocalyptic Horror Novel 'The Breadwinner.'
The Breadwinner is the first book in an anticipated trilogy. Each book is divided up into three separate parts. Part 1 follows the story of Samson, a very wealthy lawyer, and his trophy wife, Moira. Samson is a family man, thrust into the apocalypse, faced with decisions he would otherwise never have to make on behalf of his family. As his wife likes to remind him, he is The Breadwinner. Part two is delivered in the form of a flashback, introducing us to straight A student and star athlete Veronica, her older brother Isaac, and their father James. This storyline follows this very close family from the very start of the apocalypse and what a family is willing to do for one another at the end of the world. The book wraps up in Part 3, with newer characters that you’re introduced to (no spoilers) and all three storylines intercept at the end, bringing all of our hardened survivors together for an adventurous conclusion. Even though the events of the book take place during a zombie apocalypse, it’s very character and decision driven. You might even find that the true meaning of the word “Breadwinner” may not mean the one who provides, but the one who inspires survival.

The Breadwinner (Stevie Kopas)
Click to Read an Excerpt

What inspired you to write the book?
The Breadwinner was originally a short story I had written for a science fiction contest. I didn’t win the contest but everyone who had read The Breadwinner was really impressed and excited about it. Everyone encouraged me to write more, to turn it into a full novel. The story totally changed a lot, the characters originally weren’t the same people that they are now. I’m really glad that I ever wrote the short story, but I’m especially glad that I made the decision and had so much encouragement to further develop it and turn it into something I’m proud of and that people are sharing and enjoying.

Who do you see as your target audience and where can we buy the book?
Well, I think the target audience is pretty obvious (ha-ha), fans of the zombie apocalypse, people who enjoy gore and adult language, dark humor and dystopian environments. But I’ve had a lot of feedback from people who generally don’t read this genre of fiction and it’s all been positive. I’m not going to sit here and say everyone is going to like it, but I would definitely encourage people with open minds to step outside their comfort zone and give it a read. The book is now available on all eBook retailers. All you have to do is search for the title and my author name on your online eBook retailer of choice and it’s the first one that pops up!

"If you sell one book, you’ve done a great job."

How would you describe the success of your book so far?
Considering the book has only been out 4 months, I’m pretty impressed with the reception. I’ve heard tons of positive feedback, have gotten some amazing reviews and kind words from readers. When I initially published it, I told myself “If you sell one book, you’ve done a great job.” I’ve definitely sold a lot more than 1, and I’m pretty stoked about it. I can’t wait to see what the future holds for The Breadwinner and my future books.

How long did it take it to write the book?
Right at a year.

Please, tell us where you self-published the book.
I self-published The Breadwinner on Smashwords.com.

"[...] the process at Smashwords was seamless and practically effortless."

How smooth went the self-publishing process? Any issues?
I have to say, being a newbie at the whole thing, the process at Smashwords was seamless and practically effortless. My dad did an excellent job at formatting my book for me and that helped streamline it into the premium catalog which got me distribution to other channels.

What are things to look for when self-publishing a book?
You definitely want to make sure you have good formatting for the book. I scoured the internet for reasons that an eBook wouldn’t do very well and the number one thing on almost every site I read was poor formatting (followed by poor editing). So those two things for sure.

Did you hire an editor and/or Cover Designer for your book?
I did the editing myself but I do have a cover designer. His name is Evan Lerman, and he did a fantastic job! We live in different states but he knew exactly what I wanted on the cover, he’s got a way of taking the description I give him and turning it into a picture. He is a very talented friend and I’m lucky to have him doing the cover for my next book as well.

"Stay true to what you enjoy writing."

Can you give some tips for other Indie Authors regarding the writing and self-publishing process?
Stay true to what you enjoy writing. I was told once “Don’t write what others want to read” and I feel that it rings so true. I know that seems a little counter-productive, I mean, of course you want to write something that people want to read! But if you think about it, if you’re writing something based on the sole purpose of impressing others or making a ton of money on pop culture, then I don’t feel that you’re going to give it your best, put your heart into it or even enjoy writing at all. So just make sure you do it for the enjoyment, and I feel like you create your best self in your work. And like I said earlier, when self-publishing, make sure you have a good format, it’s edited well and that you aren’t afraid to put your name out there at all times. Make sure you enjoy talking about yourself and you enjoy selling yourself 24/7.

Are you working on another book project? Can you tell us a little about it?
Absolutely! I’ve just recently finished up Part 2 of Haven, book two in The Breadwinner Trilogy. Haven is divided into three parts, just as The Breadwinner. It picks up where the last book left us, and the post-apocalyptic survival adventure takes you to new places, introduces you to new characters and delivers new heartaches. I’m hoping, if things go as planned, to have it published in February 2014.

"I will be moving forward as an Indie Author."

Are you planning to move forward as an Indie author or are you looking forward to have one of your next books to be traditionally published?
I will be moving forward as an Indie Author.

Where do you see the book market in 5 or 10 years? Will there be only eBooks and will book stores disappear like record stores disappeared?
I hate to imagine a world without book stores. It breaks my heart. When all the Borders bookstores closed down, it was so awful. As much as I love eReaders and eBooks, I want there to always be bookstores, but technology is growing and changing every day. I work in the telecom industry and I’ve seen wireless technology transform drastically over the last decade. It’s amazing. The eBook industry is growing every day. I don’t want to make predictions though “haha”, it makes me nervous.

"I love it, but I love writing more."

Do you write full-time or do you have a day job?
I look forward to the day that I can say I am a full time writer. As of right now I have a full time job that fortunately allows me the time outside of work to write as I need to. I have a great job working with the public and technology, I love it, but I love writing more.

How can readers connect with you?
I love meeting and interacting with new people. I love feedback and constructive criticism, I love discussing The Breadwinner, but I also love general discussion about anything. Readers can connect with me by following me on twitter at www.twitter.com/ApacoTaco and they can become fans of The Breadwinner Trilogy on Facebook at www.facebook.com/thebreadwinnertrilogy . I also don’t mind if people email me with questions, feedback, review inquiries, giveaways, whatever. My email address is typeitordie@gmail.com and then The Breadwinner has an official website as well that people can visit at www.someonereadthis.com but I’ll be honest, I need to work on being a better webmaster!!

Thank you very much for the Interview, Stevie.

About the Book The Breadwinner

The Breadwinner (Stevie Kopas)
Click to Read an Excerpt
The end of the world is not glamorous.

In a matter of days the human race was reduced to nothing more than vicious, flesh hungry creatures. This story takes you into the world of the survivors, coming from different generations and different sides of the tracks, they all share one thing in common: who you once were can no longer determine who you will be in the face of catastrophe.

Samson, a once wealthy and powerful criminal defense attorney struggles to keep his family safe and keep his sanity intact when the world comes apart at the seams. Veronica, the high school track star races to get her brother out of the city and into the safety of Franklin Woods.

Along the way we come across the struggles of finding solace, finding out who you really are, and making decisions in a post apocalyptic world.

Link to the Book

Link to the eBook The Breadwinner with Excerpt on Amazon


Anonymous said...

Off to a great start! Cannot wait to read Part two - Haven. Like waiting for the next season of your favorite show!

Anonymous said...


Unknown said...

Great interview....get rich and famous so I can live with you

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