About the Author – Castiel Gutierrez
Q. When did you first decide you were going to become a writer?
A. I think I first started wanting to become a writer when I was around 7. Although I couldn’t read or write all that well due to my Dyslexia, I was adamant on becoming a writer. I would just scribble in books or on paper; which my parents saw as a waste. But in reality, it really helps me to realise what I wanted to do.
Q. How long did it take you to write your first book?
A. It took me around six months to write my first book. I was in year eight, in high school, and I didn’t really have many friends and I was ill a lot. So, what does a poor kid do when all they have is a computer that has no internet access? It took a while, and looking back on that book now I can see how awful it was. But I was a kid with dyslexia who had been kicked out of English classes to go into a classroom with troubled kids because my teachers thought I was “thick”. For a kid with the reading and writing capability of an eight-year-old, writing a young adult fiction, I did pretty damn well.
Q. Do you have a work schedule for writing?
A. I used to. But I have Somniphobia and Insomnia, as well as chronic fatigue, so I have to work around my day job and my brain’s schedule, which changes daily. I may be writing at 5 AM before I start work, or 1AM because I can’t sleep. I barely do any work during the day, it’s almost all written while I should be sleeping.
Q. Where do you get your ideas from?
A. I get all my ideas from life experiences and the people around me. I’m the type of person that sees a story unfolding and grabs it before it’s lost. But, because of this, I have a lot of books that have been started but not finished. After all, if you cut ties with a person – you don’t always get to see the ending of the story you started with them.
Q. When did you start writing your first book and how old were you?
A. I started writing Forever Forbidden while I was in year eight. I was partially paralysed, ill, and I didn’t really have much to do in the area. I had a computer with no internet access, and that was about it. I was twelve going on thirteen, and bullied relentlessly. If I wasn’t ill at home, I was hiding in the school library.
Q. When you’re not writing, what are you doing?
A. When I’m not writing, I’m either working as a Technician or spending time with my fiance and/or friends. I play a lot of video games, I often go out of a few pints of cider with friends. And I’m obsessed with film, so you can probably catch me in a Yorkshire Cinema most weeks.
Q. What does your family think about you being a writer?
A. I’m not sure, if I’m being perfectly honest. Although my parents have bought a copy of every book I’ve published so far, neither of them have attempted to finish a single one. My mother has tried her best, but she seems to get a third of the way into it and then drops off. She seems to have the same relationship with my books than I do with most length novels, they make me ignore my somniphobia and allow me to sleep.
Q. How many books have you written?
A. I’ve finished ten in total. However, behind the scenes, in my vault of shame – I have over a hundred short stories and novels that have been started but not finished. It’s a situation that really annoys me. But between being a procrastinator and struggling with my attention span, getting ten books completed is pretty good for me.
Q. Do you ever get contacted by your readers?
A. I get contacted every so often. More so about my LGBT+ books than anything else. It’s something that I enjoy making, and it’s something people seem interested in. I’ve had people come to me asking “what” I am. The issue with being an LGBT+ author, however, is that not all the contact I get is good. Some readers don’t like the LGBT+ which seems silly, why buy an LGBT+ book when you don’t like them, right? Well, it happens sometimes, it doesn’t personally bother me. But anyone wanting to be an author, just take comments from angry readers with a pinch of salt.
Q. Do you prefer to write children’s books, young adult, or adult books?
A. I much prefer adult books. I do dabble in young adult, but I can’t write children’s books anymore. They’re so short and extremely stressful to make – you have to be very careful about the information and language you put in because children are like sponges.
Q. If you were to read a book, what would you want in it?
A. I’d want something under four hundred pages – between having a poor memory, a bad attention span, and being dyslexic, I hate having to read a book over four hundred pages – I will either forget all of the book after a thirty minute cat nap, or I will get bored of reading half way through. I don’t like filler in books. Don’t pack it with stuff the book doesn’t need. It makes about fifty percent of the book obsolete.
Q. Have you ever had writer’s block?
A. I get writer’s block all the time. It’s why I’m so surprised that I’ve finished ten books. I’ve got so many that aren’t finished, and more that are barely even started. The trick to beating it, is finding something that always puts you in the mood and never giving up.
Q. Have you had reader’s block?
A. Constantly. I haven’t read a full book in a month! I used to read daily when in high school, but now – I’m lucky to read one book a year.
Q. Do you ever get attached to your characters?
A. I have had days of crying after accidentally killing off a character. I’m not sure how it is for others, but when I’m writing it’s like I’m in a trance. So I don’t actually realise what is happening or what has happened until I break from it. I found out of a death in my second published book My Mate during editing and honestly, it broke me – I really liked that character, and considering there are follow-on books linking to that universe – the lack of that character in my new book linking with it was upsetting. I may just have to find a way to do a flashback to have them in my life again, even if it’s only for a day or two.
If you have any questions you’d like to ask Castiel that hasn’t been answered here, or you’d like them to elaborate, fill in the below form: