Scott J. Toney
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Where did you grow up?
The Suburbs of Pittsburgh, PA
When did you start writing?
It all began as a youth when I wrote tales to go with the computer game Oregon Trail, creating stories to go with Jimmie getting typhoid or Susie getting small pox. Oh the fun of younger days... but one must advance. From there I tackled poetry and received a $100 prize in High School for winning a poetry contest. In college I earned degrees in Journalism and Public Relations.
What made you start writing?
I originally began writing as something to do with my neighbour. We both loved Oregon Trail. But the poetry… that began because of a girl. All the best things happen because of a girl, don’t they? :)
Is it something that you have always wanted to do?
I've wanted to be an author since I was in Middle School. My family and friends always said that I had an excellent voice and should pursue voice, doing opera or something else vocal, but my passion is in the written word.
What is your favorite genre to read, and do you have any favorite books or authors you would like to recommend?
I have two favorite genres, Fantasy and Historical Fiction, preferably a mix of the two. As for favorite authors… Here’s my current top 3.
1. Tad Williams. Read him, there is no other in the world like him and he is truly amazing.
2. Jim Darcy. Jim is publishing his first novel later this year with BHB. He is a phenom. If you miss out on Fire Lord’s Crown then I pity you.
3. Mike Lee. If you enjoy Sci-Fi then you have to run and go check out StarFire. Lee is amazing.
I could list so many more, but these are my true and honest top 3. I am a huge fan of all of our BHB authors. We have immense talent being birthed here.
What is your favorite genre to write?
Oh, you’ve caught me; I am definitely a genre hopper. So far I’ve dabbled in Fantasy, Sci-Fi, Christian and Romantic Suspense. And up to this point, I have to say that I enjoy writing Fantasy / Sci-Fi the most. I like the chance to control all aspects of a character’s world and not be restricted by earthly
things like gravity. Who needs gravity anyway?
Do you write full time? If not, what do you do?
Right now I have 3 jobs. I’m a Stay-at-Home-Dad, full time Founder of Breakwater Harbor Books and I’ll soon be waiting tables again at TGIFridays part time. I’ll also be the Vacation Bible School teacher for a group of three year olds soon, which should be a blast. But my most important and valued
job is always that of Father and Husband. I am incredibly blessed.
Do you ever base your characters on anyone that you know, or are they solely from your imagination?
In case anyone I’ve based them on is reading ;) NEVER. Lol. But seriously, I’m not sure I’ve ever based a character on anyone I knew. I’ve been told that Maanta and myself in The Ark of Humanity are quite similar. That would probably be as close as it gets. I’m also told that I reflect Ben in Hearts of Avon.
Tell us about your latest book. The story/plot.
I’ll let the pitch speak for itself. The book is Hearts of Avon.
In Avon, a beach town along the Outer Banks of North Carolina, Ben is falling fast for the beautiful and intelligent Caroline, even as they both deal with her stalker ex-boyfriend who has followed her south on vacation.
As Ben learns the depths of the other man's madness his and Caroline's relationship runs into another wall, level 3 Hurricane Irene moving quickly toward the Outer Banks. When the storm arrives, all of their lives will be drastically changed.
How will they learn to cope with the consequences? When they are tested with a disaster on the brink of their comprehension, how will they pick up the pieces of their lives
What gave you the idea?
My wife is a huge fan of Nicholas Sparks, and Hearts of Avon was written specifically to dedicate something in her favorite genre to her. It is a Romantic Suspense novel with faith woven in.
Who is your favorite character?
My favorite character is probably Caroline, Ben’s love interest. I worked in some of me and my wife’s real-life experience’s between her and Ben, and so I guess that’s why I like her so much.
Caroline’s ex-fiancé John. Stalker, jerk, you get the gist.
What are your hopes for it?
Well it’s one of my most popular books so far, and so a sequel is in the works, but what I want most is to have this book forever to share with my family and know that generations to come will have it and be able to read it and know me a little better through my writing.
What’s the next project that you’re working on?
Bishop: Book 1 of the NovaForge Trilogy, a PULP Sci-Fi novel. Talk about switching genres ;).
What’s the best piece of advice that you have been given in regards to your writing?
Stick true to who you are and write for you first. Publishers and others will tell you many things to change, and that’s good to take in and consider, but in the end you want your books to show you as a writer, not something the industry has chewed up and spat out through you. Oh and, prepare to never sleep ;).