Why is writing important to you and why do you think it's an important medium for the world?
Someone once said literature is news that stays news. I use the term broadly; I hardly compare myself to Shakespeare. But we fiction writers make up stories to convey larger truths about the human condition. Want a window into someone’s soul? Find out what stories they tell, and what stories they enjoy.

What are your tried and tested remedies to cure writer's block?
Any day when I’m not at my day job as an airline pilot, I tell myself I have to write at least a thousand words. Even on a bad day, you can force yourself to write that much. On a good day, you might get a lot more. But that way, you keep the progress going and keep writer's block at bay. And you'll probably find that what you write on the days when words come painfully is just as good as what you write on days when they come easily.

What is your favorite time to write?
First thing in the morning. Strong coffee at the crack of dawn.

What's the best piece of writing advice you've ever received and would like to impart to other writers?
There’s nothing mystical about writing. It’s a learned skill, like casting a fly rod or playing a guitar. If you practice enough, you’ll get good at it.

What excites you most about being a writer in today's age?
I've turned recently to writing historical fiction. My newest book is a World War II novel titled Silver Wings, Iron Cross. And I'm interested in how the past can inform the present. We humans make the same mistakes. We’re subject to the same passions and prejudices. We keep relearning the same lessons. As Faulkner said, the past is not even past.

Tom Young's Silver Wings, Iron Cross is out now with Kensington Books.