Welcome to another edition of…
The Story of the Writer Series
with Author Gavin Mills
Gavin Mills is the author of Dup Departs: A Time to Go and Seed of Reason. He’s an entrepreneur of two companies, a former world dancer, and all around awesome dude. Gavin is also one of our participating authors of this years inaugural Mystery Thriller Week Event taking place this February 12-22. Don’t miss it!!
So, who is Gavin Mills? And what is his story?
*Where are you originally from?
I am South African born and bred, hailing from Springs, a small mining town on the apron of Johannesburg, the city of Gold.
Awesome!! I know a few peeps in S. Africa. In Cape Town and Johannesburg.
*What kind of band were you in?
LOL! I was never in a band. I was a dancer. I started in engineering then computers and then did a flip flop and became a dancer. I must have been pretty good at it – I did my first professional show before taking a class! I went on to perform as principal dancer at the Moulin Rouge in Paris – a show with the hottest women on Earth. What a life!
Wow! I’m trying to picture you dancing in my head.
*Introduce us to your main character.
Arnold Dup Preez makes movies – and everyone calls him Dup. He was a dancer when he was younger (funny that), and followed a natural progression into movie production. He has an ex beauty queen wife and two young kids, but his life is a shambles. His business is going to the dogs and he is less than impressed with life in the new South Africa. He is not overly ambitious and his business is floundering. He has reached a cross-roads in his life. He knows the journey ahead will not have a happy ending the way things are going, but does not know how to change. He is pretty desperate and open to suggestions – that could have bad outcomes. But deep down he has character and strength even he never knew he had. And being forced into corners will reveal his true mettle.
Nice. Our true colors shine when we’re under pressure. Way to go Dup!
“Character is the real foundation of all worthwhile success.”-John Hays Hammond
*You’re a writer; so whats your story, or what inspired you?
Frustration in a world going bonkers? My first book was Seed of Reason – a fantasy. It is about a New Order that was going to right all wrongs – which then goes pear-shaped when the darker attributes of puppet-masters reveal themselves. It is a book that takes a look at people and society and questions a lot of things about life. It took me 7 years to complete and I am very proud of it. After that I decided to have some fun, and Dup was written with a very different intent –basically to press buttons and get pulses racing.
Interesting. At least your persistence paid off after 7 years. At this rate, my first book will be done after 7 years.
*What’s your GOAL in becoming a writer?
I s’pose to be read – and hope some people like my stuff. Writing is a very frightening prospect at times. It is human nature to want people to like you when you are bearing your soul and placing your talents up for scrutiny. But the Goal? Hey: Fame and fortune! Lol!
Hahahhaha!! That’s great. I understand and agree about bearing your soul to the page wondering how it’ll turn out. I”m there right now. I love the simplicity of wanting to be read. That says it all.
*What 3 things have hindered you from completing your projects? (CONFLICT)
Three things that hinder? Me, me and me. We can all do what we set our minds to, but sometimes life gets in the way …Or that’s what we tell ourselves. I believe I can write, but sometimes when writing, question this conviction. But always, we have it within us to do. But that doing is sometimes really difficult.
I totally relate to this. Why is it so hard get past our fears? It’s a very subtle feeling.
“Conflict cannot survive without your participation.”-Wayne Dyer
*What keeps you motivated in achieving your dream? (DESIRE)
Ask that to the worker bee. It is in my nature. I chizel away in my little playground and believe that one day, some of the things I do will be great.
That’s right! If we believe it, it will happen. Plain and simple.
*What’s your ANTAGONIST? What’s in the way?
Family and professional obligations. I once heard that if a guy hasn’t made it by forty, he never will. I don’t think it’s as much an age thing as a family thing. When still single, I could do with my time what I wanted. Now my first responsibility is my family – and that’s not only financial. It’s love, my company, my time. This is a blessing, but with regard to dedication to creation, certainly a challenge – But one well appreciated!
Those are all wonderful things! I’m in the same boat.
*If you have given up your dream, why?
I believe dreams change. What I dreamt for in my twenties are not the same things I dream about now. And it is this fact that brings the dynamics which forge our characters. When you get stuck in a dream, you miss out on the world of opportunities that pass you every day.
I like the spin on this. Very true.
*Why do writers give up, quit or never complete their projects?
I don’t think it’s only writers that give up. People give up in all careers and situations – the same as there are success stories everywhere in life. Giving up is not a milestone, it is a state of mind. We can achieve whatever we want so long as we believe it can be done, we believe we personally can do it; we start and then keep going, and resolve never to give up until it’s done. This is the mindset of success.
I love that statement!! Lovely. The mindset means a lot. Our state of mind throughout the process has a lot to do with it. Thanks for sharing.
*What would you say to a struggling writer who’s given up?
Don’t be so dumb. Stop feeling sorry for yourself and looking to blame someone or something. And stop being so precious about whether it is a success or not. Set a date, stick to the date and get down to it. Keep going ‘til the end, and whether it is a best seller or spaghetti, pat yourself on the back for writing a book – because not everyone can do that…
Amen to that brother! I love the bluntness to this one. In other words, get ‘er done! Totally needed to hear that one.
BONUS: What else do you have coming down the pike?
I’ve got three other stories swimming around in my head. I have started on two of them. One is a prequel to Dup. A somewhat darkly humorous love story. Should be interesting…Beside that, life, life and more life – warm in the love of my family.
ME – GAVIN MILLS
Gavin Mills started out studying Chemical Engineering before two year’s military service, becoming a 2nd lieutenant and serving as transport officer for 52 Battalion out of Ogongo in Namibia in the late ‘70s. Then into computers before giving up corporate life to become a professional dancer, performing first in South Africa and later in London, Paris, Spain and Portugal -some of the highlights being principal dancer in Moulin Rouge Paris France, Scala in Spain and Canary Islands, and Estoril Casino in Lisbon, Portugal. On returning to South Africa, he got into choreography, stage production and industrial theatre playing a significant role in voter education leading up to the historic SA 1994 elections. Then back to the corporate world focusing on event marketing and production. Today apart from his passion for storytelling, he also runs two successful
How can readers find out more about you and your work? Anyone wishing to find out more about me and my books can find me on Goodreads, my FB author’s page and Pinterest:
Don’t be a stranger!