So yeah, I know I’ve been quiet lately. Been writing a lot, been dealing with family things, and haven’t had much to say. But hey, it’s Thursday! That means another author interview. Today I have Wesley Robert Lowe, writer of thrillers with an Asian flare. You can find out more about Wesley at his author page on Amazon here: http://www.amazon.com/Wesley-Robert-Lowe/e/B00GMQDWYW/
1. What made you want to write?
I have been writing since I was in elementary school and in fact completed my first novel in Grade Five. Sadly, I lost it and nothing I’ve written since then has measured up to it. Seriously, I love to tell stories and communicate – and not simply with words. I played in an R & B band for years and have a Masters of Music and have many film and TV credits as a composer including four seasons on Sesame St. However, in the last dozen years or so, I’ve felt more desire to show how ethnic minorities are becoming more part of the mainstream. I’ve made a feature film about a Russian defector and several documentaries about the Chinese North American experience. It is this desire to show a broader perspective of the world and my take on it that makes me want to write.
2. You’ve recently published books 4 and 5 of your Shaolin Darkness Thrillers. Tell me about the series.
I love big action movies and stories and wanted to put into words some of that electric thrill. I travel for a month or two a year and always like to inject myself into the lives of the locals and wanted to put some of that personal flavor in as well. That being said, my personal world is rich spiritually – brought up in both Christianity and Chinese folk religions, further exploration of each in subsequent years. East meets West. East versus West. East with West.
3. Did you have knowledge about Kung Fu and martial arts before writing the series? If so, what?
I have a good friend who is a Shaolin Kung Fu Grandmaster. He and I have traveled together, I spent much time at his school before he retired and he went through extensively TIGER, the first in the series and gave it his blessing in terms of authenticity – recognizing of course that this is still a work of fiction where “creative license” is required. In fact the character of Chin is based on his looks. Tough, lithe, angular… with the ability to kick the ass of people a third his age.
4. What is your background? How has it influenced you in your writing?
I am a fourth generation Chinese Canadian with deep roots in the community. For the first hundred years that we were in North America, we suffered incredible discrimination and while we are now much more fully accepted and integrated, we are not quite there yet. Much of my writing features Chinese in prominent roles as part of a multicultural society. However, I’m not a “flag waving ethnic.” My main interest is to tell a great story regardless of ethnicity.
5. What are you working on next?
A few things. I am writing a couple of paranormal thriller series based in Vancouver’s Chinatown which will be launched quite shortly. I am also sketching out another action thriller series which I will launch in 2015.
6. Who is your favorite writer, and why?
I don’t have any one favorite writer. This is not a copout answer, although it may seem like one. The reason is that I like and learn from many writers from a huge variety of genres. Russell Blake, Amy Tan, Mario Puzo are just a few.
7. What’s the strangest thing you’ve had to research?
I do a lot of research into religious/spiritual/paranormal realms. It is quite strange in how there are many similarities in beliefs but it’s the differences that cause so much tension.
8. What advice do you have for other writers?
I was once invited to an arts conference to speak on writing. During the Q & A, most of the questions were about how to make money or get a grant to support their writing. My answer was, “Don’t even think about it. If you want to write, then write. And one more thing. Seat of the pants to the seat of the chair.”
I was never invited back to speak again.