My next author is another uk based one and you may well recognise the name as I reviewed one of his books a few months back. Here’s his interview.
I am currently working on an ongoing series of short stories called the G.C.P.U. (which stands for Global Crime Prevention Unit). The plan is to release each issue fortnightly and for the length of each issue to be between five to seven thousand words. So far I have released the first three parts of the first story arc, which is called The Kindle Murders. Eventually, I will bundle each story arc into novellas and give the reader two ways of following the series.
I came up with the idea because I think an aspect of the indie publishing revolution that has been overlooked is form. Writers now enjoy a freedom that they have never been afforded in human history. Whether you want to write an 8,000 line epic poem or a short story about the debt ceiling in America, there is now a medium for you to release your work, you are no longer confined to the economies of printed books. And as the e-book audience continues expanding exponentially, many writers will find a market for their work.
So the G.C.P.U. is an attempt at experimenting with form, adapting some of the practices normally associated with comic books and television shows. So far, the feedback has been positive and I am really enjoying working on the project.
You mention being able to experiment because of the Indie publishing revolution, how do you feel about the changes to publishing and ebooks in general?
I think the changes we have seen in the past few years liberate writers from the gruelling submission process and those dreaded slush piles.
Most importantly, it grants the writer complete freedom in terms of both subject matter and the form their work takes.
However, there is a fear that over the next few years there is going to be a flood of self-published work and it may put off readers from going down the indie route. However, as long as we ensure our work is well-edited, I think that this fear will prove unfounded.
When and why did you start writing?
I began writing when I was fifteen – back then I wanted to be the next great songwriter. I still have the album of lyrics I wrote that particular summer. They are pretty atrocious – hopefully they will never see the light of day!
What lead you on from song writing to story writing?
My primary interest was storytelling and there were limitations to what I could achieve within a pop song. I also did not read as much as I do now and at that point music was a far bigger influence than literature was. I also found that I was a lot better at writing than I was at songwriting, not that that would be difficult given how bad the songwriting was!
What’s your favourite genre to write and what’s your favourite genre to read?
In terms of writing, I am torn between literary fiction and sci-fi. I would argue that the best of both genres fulfill a similar function, but the former delves into the past (and on occasion, the present) while the latter casts light on what our futures could be.
In terms of reading I mostly read literary fiction, but at present I am reading a lot of non-fiction to help me research a few projects I am working on.
What inspires you?
Many, many things. This was a problem for the longest time, but I had a breakthrough with my novel 2032. The novel functioned as a black hole that allowed me to absorb a kaleidoscope of influences; from great writers to football commentators, from inaugural speeches to cooking recipes.
I’m not sure I will ever have that much freedom in a project again, hence the reason I am working on quite a few projects simultaneously.
Working on more than one thing at once can be difficult for some people, how do you juggle them all?
Apart from with 2032, which contains a wide variety of styles and themes, I find that I end up feeling guilty if I am only working on either a science fiction or a literary work. But when I work on them simultaneously my writing is both stronger and more prolific.
What are you planning on doing next/What else are you up to?
Here is a little list of my current projects:
1. I am working on a series of flash fiction collections about each of the seven deadly sins and the seven virtues. There will be seven flash fiction stories in each collection, with the subject matter varying significantly between each flash fiction story. I recently released the first collection Lust and will soon be releasing Pride.
2. I have been working on a big science fiction/fantasy project for the best part of ten years. Earlier this year I finally started writing it and am now 18,000 words into the first draft of the first book. I hope the have the first book out by November.
3. Finally, I am working on a literary fiction project that is partly an offshoot from the final chapter of my novel 2032. It will concern a wealthy American family and will be set in the first decade of the 21st Century.