Featured Authors Talk About It
ATAI: Tell us a little about you.
Stephen Murray: My name is Stephen Murray. The Nevada desert is a far cry from my birthplace of England and that of the countries in Southern Africa where I was raised. I am currently a partner of a small computer software company that was started in California in 1982, but was moved to Las Vegas, Nevada, in 2003.
Besides writing, I enjoy traveling, and have been fortunate to enough to explore the world extensively, having traveled to all continents. Bhutan, Machu Picchu and the Galapagos Islands are just a few of my favorite trips. When I am not writing, I enjoy live theater, concerts, most kinds of music, and current affairs.
I am the author of the three fictional novels, The Chapel of Eternal Love – Wedding Stories from Las Vegas, the sequel Return to the Chapel of Eternal Love – Marriage Stories from Las Vegas, and for a change of tempo, Murder Aboard the Queen Elizabeth II.
ATAI: How long have you been writing?
Stephen Murray: I came to writing relatively late in life. I always enjoyed writing as a child, and as an adult I’ve written several articles focused on current affairs which have been published in assorted newsletters and online blogs. It has only been in the last ten years, that I actually discovered the joy of writing complete novels – and what a joy it has been!
ATAI: What was your most recent release?
Stephen Murray: Murder Aboard the Queen Elizabeth II.
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ATAI: What do you love most about writing?
Stephen Murray: The creativity and imagination, no question about it. Conjuring up the story lines and the characters. It is wonderful when it all comes together.
ATAI: What do you find most challenging?
Stephen Murray: Creating the characters. My books rely on very diverse cast of characters. When the characters have attributes or personality traits that are alien to me, it is interesting digging deep inside myself to see if I can create a realistic portrayal of whom I am trying to create.
ATAI: Where do your ideas come from?
Stephen Murray: My imagination. None of my characters are based people I know or have read about – at least not consciously. Of course, who knows what tricks the subconscious plays?
ATAI: What is your writing process?
Stephen Murray: Very disciplined. I do not write just when the spirit moves me. I try and set aside a certain time each week when I can have complete quiet. When I am not writing, I am formulating the development of the novels – this can be while driving to the supermarket, during commercial breaks of a TV show, while I am eating my lunch or even dozing off to sleep at night.
ATAI: Do your characters (or message) ever seem to have a life of their own or an agenda of their own?
Stephen Murray: Most certainly the characters take on a life of their own. Especially when I am typing dialogue, and the angry voice of the character inside of me snaps “I would never say/behave like that.” I have to remove and replace the dialogue and replace with what ‘the voice’ tells me to write. I find this extremely gratifying. It signifies the character is well developed – well hopefully so, anyway. With non-fiction – when I initially wrote my biography, I was amazed at how many times the direction changed. Discovering what was important enough to include – and what to exclude – was incredible. The book shifted directions more times than I cared to count.
ATAI: What’s your favorite part of your book (or one of your books)?
Stephen Murray: In both of the Chapel books, it’s definitely the last chapters, when the novels have come ‘full circle.’ At least, I hope they have.
ATAI: What are you working on next?
Stephen Murray: Another fictional murder. This one set in Las Vegas.
ATAI: Where can people find you online?
Stephen Murray: www.authorstephenmurray.com
ATAI: Thank you for sharing with us and our audience.
Stephen Murray: It has been a real pleasure. It is always a joy with Authors Talk About It. Good luck with this new venture of yours, and my grateful thanks for all you do to promote the literary community.
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