Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Too Big For My Boots

My thanks are due to Dan Howarth, who has nominated me as a 'Next Big Thing' on his blog - an act both extremely generous and wildly optimistic... This nomination means I have to answer some questions and then I get to nominate some fellow writers as up and coming hotshots too, and they have to answer the same questions and then get to nominate in their turn.

Oh, and as well as checking out Dan's personal site you should also bookmark This Is Horror (he writes for it) a site I genuinely check every few days for it's excellent reviews and articles about all aspects of horror.

Anyway, the questions:

What’s the working title of your next book?

It's working title is Short Story Collection #3. Snappy, huh?


Where did the idea for the book come from?

It's a collection of four stories which all take their cue from fairy tales in one way or another, although they are set in the modern world and are pretty damn dark and adult, with elements of black comedy. Three of them are about wishes - how we want to change our lives is pretty revealing about the lives we actually live, I think. The final one is about attempting to predict the future, which really is just another form of wishing it will turn out as we want it to, at least in this story.


What genre does the book fall under?

Is dark-contemporary-fairy-tale-inspired-horror a genre? If not, why bloody not?


What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?

I would have to be an old-fashioned portmanteau horror film. For the first story Kelly MacDonald; for the second, William H. Macy circa Fargo; for the third, I dunno, Maggie Gyllenhaal? The person playing the lead in the fourth story would need to be the same as the first as the two stories mirror each other, so Kelly MacDonald again.


Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

I'm not sure if it will be self-published or not at this stage; although I've self-published a few things now, I am hoping to get the book before this one (Short Story Collection #2) published by a small press, if any are interested - watch this space.

This project is smaller though, just four stories (unless it grows) so self-publishing might make more sense as it won't be the length of a 'proper' book.


How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

Hard to say - the first story was written years ago when I was at university, and I recently came across it again and decided to redo it. That didn't take long but I was really just getting rid of some of my hideously pretentious prose (ah, to be a student again!) and updating some details that had dated in the years since I originally wrote it.

The other three have been written since then; I'd say the first drafts of all of them took maybe six weeks in total.


What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

Um, I don't know - I say this out of ignorance not arrogance. I'm sure many writers have used fairy tales as inspiration for darker, modern day stories, and done it a whole lot better than me.


Who or what inspired you to write this book?

The individual stories have influences ranging from Neil Gaiman; a specific line from Middlemarch; internet shopping; Stanley Donwood; the lyrics to the Nirvana song Very Ape, and how much I hate Heat magazine.

The actual idea of writing a collection of stories based on fairy tales and wishes came from Iain Rowan, who was kind enough to read the first one and suggested I do more.


What else about this book might pique people’s interest?

Well the first lines are these: Once upon a time we lived happily ever after. Or so we are told.

Piqued?

And finally, a reminder…

Okay, I'm not sure how many people I am allowed to pick to answer these questions next, but I am going to arbitrarily nominate five writers, all of whom I think you should be reading and showering with money and/or Galaxy Minstrels:

Iain Rowan
Alan Ryker
S.P. Miskowski
Robert Dunbar

... and I was going to pick Cate Gardner but someone has beaten me to it!

2 comments:

MRCosby said...

Good luck with publishing your collections. I can't wait to read them.

Alan Ryker said...

Thanks for the nomination.

And that is a gripping title!