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There's an ongoing blog hop highlighting speculative fiction writers and their processes. I've jotted a little getting-to-know-you interview below,
What are you working on?
Several things. At the moment, I'm prepping the second book in my space opera trilogy, the second book in my urban fantasy series, and a biopunk dystopian collaboration with Michelle Browne, as well as participating in a short story anthology due in the fall, and various other bits and sundries. I have approximately ten novels in varying stages of revision, and every spare minute not drafting a new project goes to rereading and tweaking those. So the next few years will give readers a lot of fun new stuff, but right now it's all a blur. The moment I finish a draft of one thing, I pick up another draft of something else.
How does your work differ from others in its genre?
Mostly due to my personality, I'd say.
I write across so many genres, that it's hard to pick out one idea or theme that always stands out in each work. I like quirky, minimalist fiction that has the sort of punchy humor and sensuality you might see on TV. I'm a sucker for off-color banter and surreality, and most of my work reflects that very particular tone. I write like I talk- with, at best, a very thin filter. I'm very heavily influenced by writers such as Hunter S. Thompson, Chuck Palahnuik, Garth Ennis, and Warren Ellis, who weren't afraid to let their own particular brands of crazy filter through their work; true impartiality is a dream, so the themes and ideas in my work very closely reflect how I see the world or my life at any particular time. I love entertaining people, but I love relating to people more.
Why do you write what you do?
That depends on the project. There have been some projects that I felt compelled to write, because I felt I had a framework to provide some general insight on something that bothered me. There's others that I wrote because it seemed like a fun story, or because I pitched the idea to my wife/plot-doctor/ballbuster, and she said "I'd read that." I'm a huge sucker for schlocky film and surreal visuals, so a lot of times, it can be something as simple as "Werewolves..... IN SPACE!" that captures my imagination. Perhaps the best answer would be that I'm afflicted with literary ADHD. Although most of my work loosely qualifies as "speculative fiction," I tend to have a more difficult time focusing on the usual writers' trajectory, of exploring one setting or idea through a series, through its completion, before picking up another. I like my series ideas, but at the same time, it's hard not to resent the characters I've already spent time with for pulling me away from the characters I could be flirting with.
How does your writing process work?
At this point, I've been steadily writing for more than a decade, so I'm not especially finicky about where/when/how, although I prefer to not have other people present, and I keep other distractions like music and TV to a minimum.
I have far more ideas than I can use, and I keep a little gladiator pit of fragments jostling for attention at any given time. When I think that a plucky little fighter is beefy enough for a go at the big time, I fill in the plot, outline it further, and then begin writing. I'm lucky to be a fast writer, and the generic "write a novel in a month" November challenge for me has been gradually been becoming tougher and tougher. Last year I wrote two novels in approximately 5-6 weeks. They're in varying stages of revision now; I usually like to sit on projects a while between drafts, to be sure that I am approaching them with as much clarity as I can.
On the note of that November thing, I do it as a public spectacle every year, and those who are inclined can tag along this year to see daily updates as I complete Next of Kin, a cyberpunk dystopia. I generally post a chapter a day, so posts may run after the end of the month if the book has more than 30 chapters. It's a fun little way of flaunting my process, and giving readers a taste of what'll be coming to their kindles soon. Both of last year's projects are in revision, though the first draft for one of them, Twist, is still elsewhere on the blog.
Next week visit Marilyn Peake's Blog to get a look at her writing. Marilyn Peake is the author of both novels and short stories. Her publications have received excellent reviews. Marilyn’s one of the contributing authors in
BOOK: THE SEQUEL, published by The Perseus Books Group, with one of her entries included in serialization at THE DAILY BEAST. In addition, Marilyn has served as Editor of a number of anthologies. Her short stories have been published in seven anthologies and on the literary blog, GLASS CASES. Awards: Silver Award, two Honorable Mentions and eight Finalist placements in the ForeWord Magazine Book of the Year Awards, two Winner and two Finalist placements in the EPPIE Awards, Winner of the Dream Realm Awards, and eight Top Ten Finisher Awards in the Preditors and Editors Readers Poll.
Marilyn Peake’s website: http://www.marilynpeake.com
Thanks for dropping by, and stay tuned for news regarding Sins Of The Past (The Sontem Trilogy 2), and Kindred Spirits (The Gambit 2).