Gerald M Kilby

Gerald M. Kilby grew up on a diet of Isaac Asimov, Arthur C. Clark, and Frank Herbert, which developed into a taste for Iain M. Banks and everything ever written by Neal Stephenson. Understandable then, that he should choose science fiction as his weapon of choice when entering the fray of storytelling.

REACTION is his first novel and is very much in the old-school techno-thriller style while his latest book series, COLONY MARS and THE BELT, are both best sellers, topping Amazon charts for Hard Science Fiction and Space Exploration.

He lives in the city of Dublin, Ireland, in the same neighborhood as Bram Stoker and can be sometimes seen tapping away on a laptop in the local cafe with his dog Loki.

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How long have you been writing for and how much of that time have you spent writing fiction?

8 years

What’s the average word count for the books you write and how long does it take you to write your average book?

55k words. Generally 5 months to write a book

What is your writing routine (Do you have a daily word count goal? Do you write whenever the spirit moves you?)

I write approx. 1-1.5k words a day when I’m in the writing phase, after I’ve figured out the plot.

How much do you research for a book before you start writing?

I’m always researching, always interested in new technologies.

What do you find most difficult about writing a book?

Feeling that what I’m writing is complete crap. But I think every writer feels this at some time.

Which of your books are you most proud of and why?

My first book REACTION, not because it’s a great book but because I actually finished it and it set me up to write other, arguably better, books.

Which of your books was the most difficult to write and why?

Had to be the first, because it’s unknown territory.

Which self-publishing platform do you like the most and why?

Amazon, simply because it’s by far the biggest.

Would you publish with a traditional publisher if they contacted you? Why?

Have had offers, not taken anyone up on them yet. But I wouldn’t rule it out.

How many unfinished or unpublished works do you have?

None, I always finish.

Do you prefer creating stand-alone books or series?

A series, but have done stand-alones and will probably write more.

What’s one character you wish you would have created? What do you find compelling or interesting about this character?

Hmmmm… not sure I have one.

What book do you wish you would have written? Why?

Dune, but I suspect most science fiction authors would like to have written that one.

Do you find it challenging to write characters of a different gender, race, or culture than you? Do you do any special research for these characters?

Not really, in fact, I particularly like writing female characters. I also have a soft spot for androids and AIs.

What does success as a writer look like for you?

What I see in the mirror in the morning. 😉

Writing can be a lonely job. Do you take any special steps to ensure you remain part of the world?

Lots of social contacts both on and offline.

Constantly sitting and writing can be physically debilitating. How do you take care of yourself, physically?

Walking, cycling, building.

Do you read your reviews? How do you deal with bad ones?

Only when a new book comes out and then just the first few. After that I generally ignore them – good or bad.

What books have you read that were particularly inspiring?

That’s a huge question, probably a whole podcast in itself. But off the top of my head: Dune, Seveneves, Altered Carbon, Neuromancer, Cloud Atlas, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay… to mention a few.

Do you have a favourite author? A favourite book?

My favorite book of all time has to be Cloud Atlas.

Do you plot your stories in great detail before starting to write, or fly by the seat of your pants?

I have a general plot, not very detailed.

Of all the characters in your stories, which is your favourite?


Have you based any characters on real people? If they found out, how did they respond?


What’s the best thing about being an independent author? The worst?

The complete control and the potential to earn a good income. But you have to be a self-starter.

Do you make a living selling your books?


What advice would you give to a new author?

Write. Then write some more.

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