Author Interview — Ed Robinson
For the fourth installment in my author interview series, I had the chance to interview Ed Robinson. He's a prolific writer with a loyal following of readers who stick with him as he takes his characters on adventures from the coast to the mountains.
— Sarah Flores
Ed Robinson, fiction and nonfiction author of the best-selling Bluewater Breeze Series, the Mountain Breeze Series, and the Trawler Trash Books.
SF: Your first nonfiction book, Leap of Faith: Quit Your Job and Live on a Boat, is a dream come true for many landlocked corporate souls in America. How did writing the nonfiction books affect your fictional work?
ED: I had no idea what I was doing when I wrote my first few books, but their success encouraged me to try my hand at fiction. Our travels had given me plenty of inspiration for off-beat characters and out-of-the-ordinary adventures. It also taught me a bunch about the publishing process, especially what not to do. I’ve learned plenty since then and publish a much more professional product these days.
SF: It appears that Breeze, the main character in your series, travels with you wherever you go. Are you inspired by your surroundings to set your novels in locations you happen to be in, or is there another motivation for Breeze’s co-travels with you?
ED: I write what I know and try to incorporate current events often. It’s a lot easier to describe a mountain waterfall or a tropical beach if you’ve actually been there. I hope that makes the writing authentic. I have a great depth of knowledge about Breeze’s favorite haunts like Cayo Costa and Fort Myers Beach. Maybe someday I’ll delve deeper into the Crystal Coast of North Carolina where we now live.
SF: In the Bluewater Breeze Series, you dig deep into Breeze’s loneliness and his comfort with that emotion. Did you find it difficult to write a character who chooses to stay in the shadows?
ED: A writer’s life can be a lonely one. Beyond that, I’ve spent many days, weeks, and months isolated from human contact living on a boat in far-away places. If not for my wife, I’d rarely socialize. On the other hand, she and I enjoy a close relationship. I’ve tried to incorporate that into Breeze’s life. Main characters in adventure fiction are rarely introspective. I think it’s supposed to be against the rules, but I use the device freely. I want readers to know what my character is thinking.
SF: What is your writing process, and on average, how long does it take you to write a book?
ED: I try to write every single day and average 28 days per month at my desk. I can produce a complete novel in two months, including editing and revisions. I have no outline and no known direction when I start a new project. I’m winging it, basically. I start with one simple notion and let the story develop on its own. I often don’t know how it ends myself until I write it.
SF: What advice do you have for aspiring authors?
ED: Don’t listen to Hemingway! Writing drunk and editing sober is a terrible idea. The writing is the fun part. The proofreading, editing, revisions, etc. are real work and must be taken seriously. An author can’t do it themselves. You need a team of capable people to produce a good finished product.
SF: You mention that you model characters after real people in your life. Do you ever worry they won’t be happy with how they’ve been portrayed?
ED: That’s happened a few times. I met a guy named Rabble on a beach in the Bahamas. He asked to be a character, so I made him a bad guy. One female character contacted me about her role. She wasn’t thrilled with how she was portrayed. Most of them are happy to be in a book that gets widely read, regardless of how their character performed. I have hundreds of requests from readers to have their names used. I’ll never be able to use them all.
SF: You are a proclaimed boat lover, so what prompted you and your wife’s move to a log cabin in the woods for a year? Was it to help write the Mountain Breeze Series?
ED: I described Breeze’s disaffection with his old trawler in Benevolent Breeze. It was actually a true story. We were ready for a change, so we decided to make a big one. We’ve never been afraid to take a Leap of Faith.
SF: Based on the obvious admiration you have for your wife, Kim, it’s reasonable to assume she plays a huge role in your writing process. How has her support improved your career over the years?
ED: I can’t express how grateful I am to Kim for allowing me to do this. She’s very patient with all the time I spend banging away at the keyboard. I bounce ideas off her a lot, too. As a book progresses, I tell her parts of the plot and where I think it’s going. She is always encouraging me, which I need sometimes. We’re a good team.
Series and Books by Ed Robinson
Connect with Ed Robinson
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Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/EdRobinsonAuthor/
Ed lived on a boat and traveled throughout Florida and the Bahamas for many years. The people he met and the places he went became the basis of his popular Trawler Trash Series, featuring Meade Breeze. The adventures continue with the new Bluewater Breeze Series. When not banging away at a keyboard, he can be found somewhere on a beach.
Check out previous WDTL author interviews:
Sarah Flores, Editor
Write Down the Line, LLC
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