Encouragement Speaker Derrick Hayes gives a DERRICK Interview by asking 7 questions through each letter of his first name to give you an insightful perspective from other experts, entrepreneurs, celebrities and up and coming super stars.
Today’s DERRICK Interview is with C.J. Daniels who has penned three novels, as well as a short story within the Lost Planets anthology alongside Ray Bradbury, Philip K. Dick and Edgar Allan Poe. He is the founder of Off the Beaten Path Press, which he first created for Evolution’s End, then opened up to others looking for a publisher offering freedom to publish under a label while collecting their net royalties.
D is for Dream: What is your dream, goals or what have you achieved?
My goal is to become a writer of thought provoking literature. I wanted to create the stories that I grew up enjoying, but with a bit of my own DNA inserted in it.
E is for Education: What is your educational background and how do you use it daily?
I have a degree in communications and a minor in English. As a writer I find use for both as an asset in finding ways to communicate my stories in ways that readers can not only enjoy as fiction, but also write in a way that can be appreciated for its style.
R is for Resources: What resources do you bring to the table that makes you unique or stand out?
I think the more than 50 years of genre exposure and an almost youthful love of superheroes gives me a leg up.
R is for Ready: When did you realize you were ready for what you are doing now?
I think I was about ten years old when I dug out an ancient typewriter and started crafting my first story- about a moonbase under attack by aliens.
I is for Individual: Name at least one individual in your network that others should learn more about and why?
Gordon Bean. I met Gordon during my time with the New England Horror Writers Association. He’s a heck of a horror writer, and a friend.
C is for Challenges: What challenges have you had to overcome?
I’m a cancer survivor. I had stage 3 colon cancer after my first book came out in 2002. After that, it was balancing work with family and my own health commitments.
K is for Keys: What keys to success can you leave for upcoming entrepreneurs and leaders?
In a line from one of my favorite movies, Galaxy Quest. “Never give up. Never surrender.”
Is there anything that we did not touch on that you would like to inspire others with?
Just the fact that if you become a writer, it takes patience to hone your skills. No one becomes a bestselling writer overnight. In addition to that, you need a thick skin if you want to succeed. This is not a business that compliments you easily or often, and as I said before, if you want something like this enough, and you have something that you know people want to read about, then keep at it.
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