Wednesday, 15 July 2009

A very familiar looking meme

A Writers Meme

You know, this seems faintly familiar. I may have done it before. I'm still doing it again now.

What was the last thing you wrote?
A poem parodying the traditional postal service motto (not sleet, nor rain, nor...) in a comic fantasy style. Because I can. Prosewise, a scene for the alternate version of the sequel, because I still can't make up my mind which version of it works better.

Was it any good?
The scene had some good jokes, and did a nice job of establishing a secondary character's motivation. The poem was suitably silly.

Write poetry?
You aren't paying attention, are you?

Angsty poetry?
No, I thought not. Honestly, I start doing a perfectly good meme, and it keeps asking me pointless questions I've told it the answer to.

I did, however, make fun of writing angsty poetry in the scene I wrote, if that helps.

Favorite genre of writing?
Fantasy, probably. I keep telling myself I'll read proper stuff, and end up re-reading Anansi Boys instead. Or Small Gods, which is what I'm reading now.

Most fun character you ever wrote?
There are so many. There's Brian Northington, hero of a series of short stories starting with 'receipt for a dragon' and general reptile fancier. There's Grave, who hijacked the comic fantasy novel. And then, of course, there's Bob the vampire. You know, the beautiful thing here is that, when people say things like 'Surely you aren't serious' I can answer 'no, hardly ever'.

Most annoying character you ever wrote?
There's a part of me that thinks that the hero of my urban fantasy series doesn't entirely want to be, if that helps.

Best plot you ever wrote?
Of the published things, there's a lot to be said for my short story 'Fishing for Worlds'. Simple, odd, but far better than I could have hoped. Even so, I have higher hopes for the comic fantasy novel. The plot feels like utter, utter chaos, but it all fits, and it all moves things, not on exactly, but at least an onward sort of sideways.

Coolest plot twist you ever wrote?
Plot twist? I'm not always that good at them. I keep getting the feeling that I haven't foreshadowed them properly. There's a nice one in my unpublished short story 'Unreal Ale', but that doesn't help you much, does it?

How often do you get writer’s block?
Not often. It helps to classify the writing as procrastination from the PhD, I suspect.

How do you fix it?
I don't. I write as and when I want, which just happens to be all the time.

Write fan fiction?
The concept of intellectual copyright has just passed some people by completely, hasn't it? On the other hand, quite a lot of my work makes fun of some not too hard to identify stuff.

Do you type or write by hand?
Is this written with a quill pen? Also, and rather more importantly, is my handwriting even close to legible?

Do you save everything you write?
Right up until the point where I'm feeling down enough to go 'It's rubbish, it's all rubbish!' and start hitting the delete key. And yes, I'm serious.

Do you ever go back to an idea long after you abandoned it?
Well, the comic fantasy novel started life as a fairly serious urban fantasy affair, before I realised that the only reason I was writing UF was because everyone else was. Since it wasn't working anyway, I shelved it, then rewrote it completely with rather more in the way of funny bits.

What’s your favorite thing you have ever written?
Well, I'm going to say the comic fantasy novel, arent I? Oh, you want something that you can read? Look at the next question then. And also go back and read 'Fishing for Worlds' if you haven't yet.

What’s everyone else’s favorite thing you’ve written?
A Madder Scientist. One of my friends even used the phrase 'Evil Genius' about me afterwards. Though I'm a little worried about the first half of that.

Do you show people your work?
Absolutely. It's not like other people have anything better to do than read random stuff I've written.

Did you ever write a novel?
Once again with the meme not paying attention. The full list goes like this: Searching is published by Double Dragon Publishing. Witch Hunt is submitted to them at the moment. Court of Dreams, my funny fantasy novel that's better than both of them, is complete. The sequel to it either has a complete draft or isn't finished, depending on the version. Two others that will never see the light of day are sitting on my computer.

Have you ever written fantasy, sci-fi, or horror?
Have I ever written anything else?

Ever written romance or teen angsty drama?
No. See, a short answer. A brief, to the point, excess word free... oh, bugger.

How many writing projects are you working on right now?
Officially, none. I have a PhD to finish. Unofficially... well, it's not like I can do anything else until I get hold of my supervisor, and I suspect he may be on holiday.

Do you want to write for a living?
You mean to say that you can make a living doing this? Who'd have thought it? Though failing J.K.Rowling levels of success in the near future, I think I'd quite like to go into publishing, if anyone's offering.

Have you ever won an award for writing?
I took second place in a villanelle contest once. Does that count? Perhaps I should have used the entry I rejected, here

Ever written something in script or play format?
No, and I doubt I ever will. Though there is a part of me that watches Eastenders occasionally and thinks 'Honestly, even I could do better than that'. By never doing it, I will hopefully never find out just how horribly wrong I am.

What character you've written most resembles yourself?
Anyone who suggests Grave is going to be in trouble. And curiously not the hero of Court of Dreams either. Possibly his geeky best friend Andy, up to a very limited point.

Where do you get the ideas for your characters?
Because I'm very focussed on the big idea, I'll often think 'what does this really need to work?' to get the germ of a character. The trick, of course, is to get from a mere function to a full character without losing that usefulness.

Do you ever write based on dreams?
I'll say the comic fantasy title again. Court of Dreams.

Do you favor happy endings, sad endings or cliff hangers?
Cliff hanging is for the middle, not the end. I'm a sucker for happy(ish) endings.

Have you ever written based on an artwork you’ve seen?
No. I wouldn't know where to start.

Are you concerned with spelling and grammar as you write?
Yes, and the more of my writing I see, the more concerned I get.

Ever written anything entirely in chatspeak (How r u)?

Are people surprised and confused when they find out you write well?
I think there are several schools of thought here. One seems to have got it into its head that this sort of thing is easy, so no. One is pleasantly surprised not to have to fake polite interest. One can't be bothered.

Actually, that's not true. My friends have been more supportive than I could have hoped. And they gave me a wonderful line about zombie sofas.

Quote something you’ve written. The first thing to pop in your mind.

More the first thing to fall under my cut and paste, really:

The thing’s muscles bunched, getting ready to pounce. Its claws extended, its mouth opened hungrily. Without even thinking about it, Thomas waved a hand at the Eater. There was a loud pop as the space where the beast had been came to be occupied by a perfectly normal sized hamster. It paused for a moment, before running over and trying to nibble on his shoe.

There. That was a lot of questions, wasn't it?


Heather said...

Ah. Now that is something I'd like to read and wish I could write!

stu said...

Is that the comic fantasy novel, or one of the other things? If it's the former, I'm hoping that the agents it's out to agree with you on that.