Meet Dennis Milam Bensie

Kiersten Marie Photography

Dennis Milam Bensie (Photo by Kiersten Marie Photography)

What have you been up to? What are your latest projects?

My latest book Flit: A Poetry Mashup of Classic Literature just came out. In the months since I wrote it, I have been concentrating on flash fiction (stories under 1,000 words). I have managed to get 25 short stories published since 2012 and hope my fourth book with be those stories in an anthology.

flit

Is there any advice you can give other authors?

Don’t be lazy. Remember –being an author is about 20% sitting down and writing wonderful things, and 80% marketing yourself (until you become Stephen King). Even if you don’t sit down and write every day, you should be planning and marketing every day.

What is your writing process?

I like to write quickly until the idea clicks. Then I let it rest for a day, then go back in for round two with fresh eyes. It’s amazing what letting your work rest for 24 hours will bring. Do round two, round three and round four if you have to. Those breaks in thought are invaluable.

How do you get your inspiration?

Everywhere, but most of my work starts with my own life. An emotion or event. Then I fictionalize what I need to. My life is in all my poetry and fiction.

What promotional tool has worked best for you?

Kickstarter. I successfully funded my book of poetry FLIT. Five Thousand dollars from 105 backers. Once people invest their money they invest in YOU. But if you go this route you really have to be a cheerleader for yourself to get people to donate.

Which promotional tools have been the least effective?

I still don’t quite get twitter.

What is the most valuable lesson you’ve learned since you started publishing?

Marketing. I see a lot of writers who are wonderful and talented but can’t market their work to save their lives. No one can read you if they can’t find you.

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