Friday, December 10, 2010

Mark Asher Interview

1: What is the most productive time of the day for you to write?
When I'm in the mood to write. Morning or night, it doesn't really matter.

2: Do you start your projects writing with paper and pen or is it all on the computer?
Computer. I haven't written with pen and paper for a long, long time. I did try voice recognition software, but that didn't work so well and dictating is somehow really different from typing.

3: What do you draw inspiration from?
Other writers. I see something I appreciate and start to think how I can do something similar.

4: Do you set goals for yourself when you sit down to write such as word count?
Nope. Well, I do tell myself to get a lot done. Maybe that's a wish more than a goal.

5: Are you a published or a self published author and how do you come up with your cover art?
In terms of fiction, self-published. For other kinds of writing, I've been published by others. Cover art is not easy for me. I have ten thumbs when it comes to being graphically artistic. I've been scavenging public domain sources for material to use in covers.

6: What drives you to choose the career of being a writer?
I love the written word.

7: Do you own an ebook reading device?
I use the Kindle PC app currently. I hope to get a device soon, though -- either a Kindle or a Nook most likely. I'm leaning towards a Nook because of the ability to use it with library books.

8: Who are some of your favorite authors and What are you reading now?
Tim Powers, James Blaylock, and Neil Gaiman are three writers I love. Fritz Leiber's Fafhrd and Gray Mouser stories are some of my all-time favorite fantasy stories. I love contemporary poetry -- Albert Goldbarth and Billy Collins are a couple of favorites. A book I recently finished and absolutely loved is Carlos Ruiz Zaf√≥n's The Shadow of the Wind. It moved me to the point where for a couple of days I was walking around and dreaming about the book with a sense of reverence. If you are a lover of books, this is one to read because in part it's about being in love with books. 

9: What do you think of book trailers and do you have any plans to have any?
don't watch them and I have no plans of creating any. I will certainly change my mind if I become convinced they are effective marketing tools. That seems to be the most difficult thing for self-published writers to do -- marketing. (Actually, it's tough because we need to do it on the cheap.)I

10: How did you come up with the title of your latest book?
It makes me a bit uncomfortable calling the two things I've published books, because they are both really just short stories. I still equate a book with something 150 pages long, or longer. But Gary's First Time and Other Stories and No Kissing, No Touching are both titles of stories.

11: What are you working on now that you can talk about?
What I want to do is write quite a few erotic short stories and sell them individually for $0.99 and also group them together in collections to sell for $2.99. I can write a story in a day or two so I can write three or four stories a week.

I realized that there's something freeing about erotica for me -- I don't get caught up in plot as much. I can focus on interesting dialog and setting. This story I plan on finishing up tonight is about a pool hall bet between two men, one of whom has his girlfriend with him. Since it's erotica, you can probably figure what the winner is getting.

Now if this was a mystery I'd be struggling with plot. If it was horror, same issue. Since it's erotica, however, I know exactly where it's going. It's heading towards the bedroom.

I have some other things I've started, too. I have a vampire novel I started because there aren't enough of those. I have a fantasy novel, a sword and sorcery thing. I have a contemporary fantasy set in a small Missouri town. And I have a novel I have been collaborating on with a friend about a middle-aged man who pays for a Russian bride. I'd call it contemporary fiction. There's an excerpt from it in Gary's First Time.

I'm good at starting. Not so good at finishing. I have to learn to be a better finisher.

Thanks for the interview! 

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