Kansas-based author Robert Collins loves to cross the genre aisles. He has published three science fiction novels, one young adult novel, a couple biographies, and a bunch of non-fiction exploring railroad history… not to mention the occasional veer into writing about writing.
A little about you, first. Do you have any hidden talents?
RC: I write science fiction and fantasy. I also write nonfiction about Kansas history. I wish I had a hidden talent, but I don’t.
Tell us about Lisa’s Way — what themes does it tackle?
RC: Teenager Lisa Herbert lives in the small town of Mountain View on the planet Fairfield. The “Savage Rain” decades earlier shut down the hyperspace gate and isolated her world. A casual remark from her sister gets Lisa to ask a simple question: “If life was better before the ‘Savage Rain,’ why couldn’t it be better again?”
That question starts Lisa on a journey. She reactivates Fairfield’s H-gate and travels to three worlds. Each planet offers her a chance to improve life by hard work, by trade, or by making friends. She relies on her brains, her compassion, and a little sneakiness to solve the problems she faces.
Is there anything you want readers to take away from your writing?
RC: As far as Lisa’s Way goes, I hope readers are entertained by her story. Lisa isn’t a romantic, prefers talking to fighting, and will think before acting. I know that won’t be everyone’s cup of tea. That’s okay; I’ll keep telling her story no matter what.
Which other indie authors do you recommend or admire?
RC: I don’t know you’d quite call Kristine Kathryn Rusch an indie author, but I listen to what she says. She’s been an editor and a publisher as well as an author. She keeps keeps her feet in both the indie and traditional worlds. She also pays attention to what goes on behind the scenes of publishing.
As a reader, I don’t go for authors as much as I do stories. If I’m going to look to an author, it’s for what they say about writing and publishing. It’s why I like Kris, and her husband Dean Wesley Smith. I encourage other indie authors to follow their blogs.
Lastly, what question should I have asked you, and why?
RC: What’s your goal as an indie writer?
I would like to earn a respectable income from my writing. Right now, I’d just like some more readers.