There's an ongoing networked blog interview called The Next Big Thing, and each day, it gets harder and harder to find other authors to tag.
Bob Lock, who talked about his latest project They Made Monsters, was kind enough to let me in on the fray. So, here goes...
1. What is the title of your book?
2. Where did the idea come from for the book?
The book is made up of poem sequences. I don't know or can't remember where exactly I got the idea, but writing a series of poems conforming to a theme or containing a recurring character is pretty much an ongoing phenomenon .
The first part, the Conrad poems (the early versions appeared here), were my love token to the bold and dissident FRANK poems by CA Conrad.
The second section was inspired by H.R. Giger's art. Next section is all about Edwin Muir's "The Horses." I am completely obsessed with that Muir masterpiece so it spurred a lot of sci-fi apocalyptic poems. I was a teenager when I first encountered it in a Norton volume, and it made quite an impression.
The "Vengeful Villagers" and "Body Horror" series of poems consisted of pulpish pieces that sensationalize and sometimes gross out. Their motif was to not have any redeeming values beyond their campy imaginings.
My final act was the sixteen Strangers poems. Bruce Boston, one of my favorite authors of all time, wrote a suite of "people" poems where he talked about whimsical what-ifs like what if there were "mole people" or "bird people." Boston finally collected those fine "people" poems in Anthropomorphisms. I'm sure that's probably where I got the idea for the Strangers.
3. What genre does your book fall under?
4. What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?
I don't know anyone who is sinister enough to portray recurring characters in poetry except for Javier Bardem. His Anton Chigurh is the ultimate movie villain. I had two nightmares featuring his character in No Country for Old Men. If he were the one hunting me, I would have dropped down dead simply by anticipating his approach. So, yes, there's only one actor in the world who could do Grim Series.
Javier Bardem as Conrad whose insides were "all yellow inside. That wrong shade of yellow—the color of the gods."
Javier Bardem as the Invisible who was "cutting away the eyelids of our dead..."
Javier Bardem as any of the sixteen Strangers:
From "The Sixth Stranger"
He held his worshippers’ heads down the shallow water
That's his insidious Anton Chigurh right there in that quote!
And this one from "The Seventh Stranger" is vintage Chigurh:
But the seventh stranger came,
Nobody messes with Javier Bardem and gets away with it. Nobody.
5. What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
This sentence from "The Ninth Stranger" is the book's summary:
She opened her mouth, and the unborn
6. Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
It was published by Popcorn Press.
7. How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?
The poems in the book were written in spurts over a period of not less than three years. That may constitute the first draft.
8. What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
Hmm... I don't know.
9. Who or what inspired you to write this book?
(my answers to question 2)
10. What else about the book might pique the reader's interest?
Black objects, when seen up close, are spookier than you think.
I tagged these five authors to post on December 12, 2012.
The Drone Outside
Meditations of a Beast
Age of Blight
A Roomful of Machines
We Bury the Landscape