Friday, October 22, 2010

CV Interviews Himself

Since I'm not famous yet, and no one in their right mind wants to interview me, and I really want to answer random questions, I will interview myself.

So you want to be a writer?
I feel that's not so much of a question as it is a sentence fragment that can be asked with a question-y trail at the end.  Yes, I would like to make fake people die, and do awesome shit and engage in dick sucking for a living.

When did you start to write?
A lot of writers will tell you stories about how they were always penning their crap.  Not me!  English was always my worst subject in school right up until ninth grade.  Then I had a teacher named Mrs. Alexander, and I got good grades.  Like really good grades.  I had a 98 average in English that year, so they put me in honors (where I started getting better grades than the kids who were supposed to be good at English).  So basically at the beginning of tenth grade, on the way to visit friends in Buffalo, no less, I decided, hey, I should write shit!  Although now that I think about it, I used to write about football at a much earlier age.

Just like that?
Well, I was always creative and I'd make a ton of weird shit up when I was a kid.  I'd look out a window or something and see different things than anyone else did.  I remember riding the school bus as a kid, and seeing all the drainage ditches and stuff and pretending I was riding a bike next to the bus and hitting them as ramps, pulling off all these sweet flips and stuff.  Aw fuck, I still do that. 

So what did you start writing?
The first thing I ever wrote was a poem about September 11th which was really kind of mediocre.  Then I got the third poem I wrote published locally in a magazine/pamphlet.

Were you good?
I was pretty awful.  No one writes poetry at the age of fifteen and is good more than once every ten poems (which is about where I was).  Now I think my poetry is much better, but I'll probably look back in another eight years thinking nine out of every ten poems suck.

Just poetry then?
It started that way, then I was joking around with my friend Billings about practical jokes in an office building and Cube Wars was born.  It was the first prose I had ever written that even approached decent, although editing it for the past month I find myself wondering if I was even fluent in English back then.

So whats the poetry-prose breakdown?
Initially it was 90% poetry with the occasional short story.  Mostly because I was lazy in a way and liked being able to finish things in one sitting.  The reason I wrote so few short stories is that so few ended up being any good.  The ideas were decent, my writing just wasn't there yet.  Then in 2009, I picked three pages worth of a story I'd started in college, and the writing was actually pretty good.  I decided to do something more with it, and ideas came.  Lo and behold my first real novel was written.  I started keeping better track of my ideas as I got them, and I think I have several that would, will, or already have made great stories.  (Yeah I fucked up my tenses there).  Right now it's the opposite, probably 90% novels, 8% blogging, 2% short stories/poetry.

So where do you get your ideas from?
Uh anything.  There are so many ways to start a novel.  I might think of a concept and go with it.  (Arnett Tanner Wants to Die).  I might have nothing more than a title or a character (Skankarella).  I might just have a feeling or a particular scene that I like (The Chosen).

So do you outline everything before you write, or do you just kind of wing it?
I wing it with the best of them.  The stories I mention above had about 10% of them figured out when I started writing them.  Usually I just putter around for about a hundred pages and then things fall into place.  Oh this happens, and this, and this because of that, and this dude goes here and yay ending!  The Chosen was really interesting because I had an ending in mind, and when I got there I was like, this is it?  This is really abrupt.  And I realized that it was very linear and kind of bare plot-wise, and one character was just kind of there and didn't really do anything.  So I thought well, what if he's the bad guy, and my bad guys so far are just small potatoes, and it went from there.

Take us through a typical day?
Again, not really a question.  Alright, I usually wake up around 2 or 3 PM after 7-8 hours of sleep.  Actually I usually get up around noon because I have my "hey normal people were awake four hours ago!" alarm set for every week day, but I always turn it off.  At least then it gives me time to take a piss and fire up my computer for when I actually want to get up.


When I finally do get out of bed, I take the dog out, get the mail and check Facebook, the Junkie, and the e-mail.  If there's nothing pressing I open whatever project I have for the day.  Usually I'm working on it between 3 and 5 PM.  I then go through the day working on that project on and off until 3 or 4 AM, taking maybe an hour or two in between to play video games.  At 4 I usually save what I'm doing and watch DVDs until 6 and go to sleep.

When are you getting something published?
It looks like the first thing is going to be Cube Wars, which I will self publish through lulu.com around November 18th because that's the day I randomly drew out of my ass.  The Chosen, while receiving a second look from one agent has been rejected 19 times.  Arnett Tanner Wants to Die has been rejected 7 or 8 times, but that's pretty much par for the course for aspiring writers.

Lastly, what projects do you have coming up?
In rough order in which they will be tackled:
  • The editing and publication of Cube Wars
  • Proposal for "Taro Says: The Life and Times of Sabres Fans," a compilation of stories told by Sabres fans about their favorite experiences.  This will sell like fucking crazy in Buffalo and might result in me murdering an agent if no one bites on it.  (Kidding!  I'll just self-publish through lulu, sell 200,000 copies and have every agent begging me to let them fuck me on royalties.)
  • Kissing Ellen King - The story of a forbidden relationship between an older man and a young woman.  Partially autobiographical.
  • Gotharella - A modern take on the Cinderella Story with meaning beyond "pretty blonde girls marry Princes."
  • Succubus Story - As my notes for this one say, "Succubi are like sex Vampires.  They feed on the energy of their victims by boinking them...sweetest mythological creature ever!"
  • The Vengeance Stories - Another thing that will likely be self published, though I don't know how willing I'll be to attach my name to this.  They're a collection of erotica stories that feature such fun-timey themes as BDSM, Rope Bondage, partially consensual sex (um...yeah), pain, torture, orgasm control, exhibition...and so much more!

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