Domenic Italo Composto-Hart commonly known as @thelegacycycle on Wattpad, agreed to an interview for The CHRONICALIST. He has self published his amazing Dark Legacy series together with other books on sites like Amazon, Kobo and Lulu.
*click on the links above to purchase his books.
His books are also available on Google play, iBookstore, Barnes and Noble as well as other retailers.
Question #1: How long have you been using Wattpad?
I joined Wattpad in May of 2013. Gavin Wilson (a Wattpad Ambassador) emailed me to join the community offering to have my recently published science fiction and fantasy novel Dark Legacy: Book I – Trinity to be featured on the platform. I didn’t know much about Wattpad at that time, but I did some research and decided that it was a fantastic platform for writers worldwide. I accepted the offer and got a lot of support from the Wattpad staff to have the prologue of Dark Legacy, entitled The End of the Kai, to be featured. I was amazed to see the rapid number of reads of The End of the Kai when it was featured; it hit 250,000 reads or so in just a couple of weeks.
QUESTION #2: How has Wattpad changed since 2013?
Over the years Wattpad has just exploded compared to where it was in 2013. I am continually amazed by how it has adapted, improved, and expanded within that time period. Before, the platform was simply a community of readers and writers supporting each other, but now, commercially, it is becoming a significant force in the areas of traditional publishing, providing content for paid televised subscription services, and film.
Wattpad has definitely proven themselves to the entertainment industry that through their ability to track and mine Wattpad data trends they are able to offer content that will be financially successful. Overall, these are positive changes for upcoming writers. Writers now do not have to deal with the old process of finding a literary agent to find a publishing deal. Now, they can publish directly on Wattpad, build their audience, and if they have a significant following, can gain the attention of Wattpad who will pitch them to traditional publishers, TV and film producers, or they will offer you the opportunity to join Wattpad Paid Stories, or to publish through their publishing division, Wattpad Books.
QUESTION #3: What impact did Wattpad have on your life?
Wattpad has enabled me to build my audience over the last seven years to nearly ten thousand. I am quite proud of that accomplishment, and I often find myself promoting my Wattpad profile page on social media platforms more than promoting my other social media pages. On a daily basis, it is nice to read the supporting comments from Wattpad readers of my stories and to be in contact with them through the platform.
QUESTION #4: Do you have any Wattpad goals?
No, not necessarily. I am happy with how my following has come along over the years, but I do not have any specific goals. I just focus on trying to work on the next story so that once I am satisfied with it I can share it with fans on the platform and get their reactions and feedback.
QUESTION #5: Would you recommend Wattpad to writers and readers?
Yes, definitely. Wattpad is a wonderful online community where I have found members to be very supportive of each other. In my experience, members often offer support and/or constructive criticism toward the vast literary works available. It is great for a writer to be exposed to the reactions and thoughts of their readers so that they can get out of a writer’s mindset and see how readers perceive their work so that they can improve their writing skills.
QUESTION #6: What advice would you give to writers who join Wattpad?
To be patient and persistent. The media seems so focused on publicizing a few amazing success stories of young writers making it big with a book deal, a film deal, etc. I would say, do not be too distracted by that. If you love to write, you write with no expectations other than the satisfaction that is to come from finishing a story, a book, and sharing it with the world. Whether one person reads it or tens of thousands, it doesn’t matter. What matters is that you are doing it. You are writing and publishing your work for you and the world. That is the greatest reward. The fact that you did it!
QUESTION #7: How would you describe yourself as a person?
In terms of how I am as a person, I think that I am–to a degree–a loner, an introvert. My parents and members of my extended family remember me as a child who was very entertained playing alone with my toys. If I could choose between going out with friends or reading a book, I would most likely choose to stay at home, in a comfortable chair, reading with a hot cup of tea or coffee.
There is that other side of me that enjoys the performance of teaching (I teach economics) and learning from my students, having a laugh with my work colleagues, and so on outside of my home. But, I think, I am the most at peace and comfortable when at home with my family, or reading a book, or working on writing a book.
QUESTION #8: How would you describe yourself as a writer?
In terms of how I am as a writer, I am very much an obsessive perfectionist. It took me about eight years to finish my first science fiction novel, and about the same amount of time to finish my most recently published travel memoir/travelogue. I do not write full-time thus that was a reason for the length of time to finish each book, but an additional part of it is my obsession in producing a book that is as close as possible to being flawless, which requires lots or writing and re-writing, reading and rereading, and editing.
I often go over drafts many, many times aiming to perfect what I have written. At times it is paralyzing as I may get stuck on a passage, striving to produce the best version, which prevents me from moving on to developing other aspects of the story. This said, do I achieve perfection? No, but it is that ideal that I strive for with what I produce as a writer.
QUESTION #9: What are your books about?
I have two published books: Dark Legacy: Book I – Trinity (science fiction, fantasy), and Travels in the Land of Hunger (travel memoir). I think the synopsis of the books best explain what they are about. Below is the synopsis for my science fiction and fantasy novel.
The End of the Kai of the Dark Legacy Cycle details the violent end of the Kai Order – an ancient, spiritual guild of warrior guardians and priestesses who have sworn their lives to protect the Oracle Queen of Atlantis – at the hands of Maniok, the being referred to as the “Great Evil” in the age-old Song of the Oracle King.
It is a chronicle of Arkan, the last Kai guardian, and his desperate attempt to save the life of his priestess who carries his unborn son, and his escape from Atlantis.
Book I – Trinity is the story of Kieko, a lonely Lemurian boy of mixed blood who seeks to know more about his absent father’s mysterious Atlantean past. Constantly bullied by Aiko, he eventually takes refuge with the village priest in the Kadek Temple where he studies medicinal and culinary arts, calligraphy, and ultimately, the art of Ki sword. Under the tutelage of the priest he comes to know the grim truth about his father, and is prepared to face the horrific assault of the armies of the Atlantean Empire upon his humble world.
And here is the synopsis for my travel memoir.
In the spring of 2004 – after living in Tokyo, Japan for over three years pursuing a career as a freelance musician – science fiction and fantasy author Domenico Italo Composto-Hart set off on a half-year backpacking journey through the lands of East and Southeast Asia, Siberia, Central Russia, the Baltic states, the Nordic countries, and Eastern and Western Europe.
Traveling by foot, bus, train, and boat – and seeing the world through the analytical lens of anthropology, archaeology, and economics – Domenico documents, researches, and deciphers the developing nations he encounters as they rise through the turbulence of unregulated Western capitalism and globalization.
Travels in the Land of Hunger is the author’s reflective account of the dark, long-lasting impact of Western colonialism and imperialism, the Vietnam War, the Khmer Rouge regime, the 1997 Asian financial crisis, and the sex tourism and sex trafficking industries in Southeast and East Asia. It is also a narrative of finding exotic beauty, inspiration, inner strength, and unexpected love.
QUESTION #10: What genre do you prefer to write in?
I typically write within the genre of science fiction and fantasy, which also includes short stories that I have written in the genre of steampunk and dystopian. In addition, I published my first nonfiction travel memoir – most of what I read is nonfiction so it was a challenge, but academically satisfying, to write a nonfiction book.
QUETION #11: What genre do you dislike?
There is no genre that I do not like so to speak, but, for now, I am unlikely to write in a genre other than science fiction, fantasy, and nonfiction. In the future I may pursue a couple of stories I have in mind in the genre of adventure romance.
QUESTION #12: Which of your characters is your favorite and why?
That is a difficult question to answer as I do not think I have one particular character that is my favorite as I like some aspect of all the characters in my stories and books. I say this because each of my characters represent different aspects of my past experiences, and people who I have come across. I guess to honor these meaningful experiences in my life I develop characters that sort of reflect these experiences both good and bad.
For example, the protagonist Kieko, from my book Dark Legacy: Trinity, reflects many personal experiences and frustrations during my adolescent years. So, in some way, the book is autobiographical. But in addition to that many, many of the characters that Kieko interacts with represent the qualities of so many people that had a significant impact on me in my youth. Kieko’s mentor Shinsei represents not one teacher I had, but several teachers, role models, etc., who really helped me along during my personal journey when I was young.
QUESTION #13: How do you handle writer’s block?
I can say that I have not experienced writer’s block. I have a lot of stories in my head that I am eager to write, but I lack the time being a full-time teacher while raising my two incredible boys with my amazing wife. When I have the pockets of time to write, I charge through in writing, redrafting, editing all the scenes and stories that have been swirling in my head.
QUESTION #14: Is there a message that you want to convey through your book(s)?
Yes. I think every writer has a theme, a value, a message that they are hoping to spread through their stories. Dark Legacy: Trinity represents my search in adolescence to understand what it meant to be a good human being, to have integrity, and to do what is right while dealing with the challenges of life. Challenges such as bullying, feeling different, dealing with personal anger and teenaged angst while wanting to change the world and ensure justice, but feeling unable to do so at times.
My travel memoir (Travels in the Land of Hunger) comments heavily on the injustices I discovered during my backpacking journey in Southeast and East Asia. I was horrified by how evil human beings can be to each other. As the book synopsis states, I discuss “the dark, long-lasting impact of Western colonialism and imperialism, the Vietnam War, the Khmer Rouge regime, the 1997 Asian financial crisis, and the sex tourism and sex trafficking industries in Southeast and East Asia.”
I cannot accept any form of labor exploitation so the book really tries to highlight the dangers of a world economy so dependent on excessive consumption and exploitative production. This is a theme that will be developed more in the second book of Dark Legacy as well.
QUESTION #15: What inspired you to write?
My imagination. I loved a lot of adventurous, epic films and books while I was growing up. Films such as the original Star Wars trilogy, Mad Max, The Last of the Mohicans, Blade Runner, etc. Books such as The Dark Tower series by Stephen King, The Lord of the Rings, The Lord of the Flies, and anything my Mark Helprin. In addition, the lyrics and stories told through the songs of the progressive rock band Rush also influenced me.
These were films, books, and songs that really stuck with me as I grew up – and they still stick with me now. Those films really inspired a lot of stories in my head. As those stories began to build in my imagination I began to write as I felt that I had to get this imaginative world out onto paper.
A. How do you see yourself as a writer in 10 years?
I hope to have more time to write over the next few years, so ideally, I would like to have at least another two to four books finished within the next 10 years.
That was another great and encouraging interview. i have learnt so much, hope you have learnt something as well.
ALSO READ: A Review Of One Of His Amazing Books.
I am a fifteen year old book addict and writing enthusiast from Ghana in West Africa. I love potato chips and jelly, pizza too but not so much. If you want to know more about me, you can follow me on other social media platforms. Don’t forget to subscribe to the newsletter!!!!