Interview #68, with writer and Kindle All-Stars contributor, Douglas Edward Glassford!
Describe yourself in 5 words:
Husband, father, grandfather, son, brother.
Share a short excerpt and blurb of your work (10-100 words):
Oh My Darling of the Deep Blue Sea:
It is time, but could this really be happening?
He sensed a figure in the mist, just beyond recognition; a shape mostly, accompanied by the sweetest singing voice. She sang to him in words he did not recognize; yet did not fear. They whirled and swirled within him as warm and welcome to his heart as his heavy woolen snorkel and bottle of Scotch Whiskey were to his chilled body.
Share an excerpt of your favorite author’s work (10-100 words):
Bernard J. Schaffer – GUNS OF SENECA 6 – Opening paragraph of Chapter 2:
He hadn’t practiced medicine since acquiring a nasty ailment that ended his career in Seneca 6 forever. His wracking cough had a way of erupting out whenever he leaned over a patient’s mouth. Blood mixed with saliva, horked into the unsuspecting face of a man saying “Ah” or a woman asking him to inspect a suspicious lump, had a way of determining the finality of their patronage. Even Doctor Royce Halladay’s most loyal patients found other doctors. Ones who didn’t fold up like a chair and clutch their stomachs like their guts were about to uncoil.
Comment on the writing versus publication process, in your experience:
Since I am a newbie, a neophyte to commercial publishing, the story that is in this wonderful anthology of cryptozoology (rhyming unintended), is my first. Bernard Schaffer and Laurie Laliberte who are in charge of the Kindle All-Star projects are handling the business end. For now, I am just along for the ride seeking to promote CARNIVAL OF CRYPTIDS as I can… as I am doing now, by your grace, on your website.
The writing process itself is not that complex for me. Perhaps it is because most of my writing is non-fiction, and the fiction I do write tends to be short. I can just sit down with a blank page before me and… just start writing. It does not matter what I write at first. It only matters what I write by intent and purpose. I know that your good friend Matt Posner and the other brilliant authors in our anthology have all written novels or full-length books. So, their process might be very much different than mine. I have thought about writing novels, or screenplays — I see my stories in the cinema of my mind.
Always good to keep in mind intent and purpose ;) What is your definition of “good writing”?
Good writing to me is clean, uncomplicated, and honest. From the opening hook through the course of the piece, story, poem, essay, or book, there must be a flow feeds, teases out, my empathetic interest, forming an immediate identification bond between me, as the reader, and with either the narrative message, characters, or situations. I have to believe it is possible, even if it is not probable. Use of inappropriate wording, such as obscure colloquialisms, jargon, or overuse of vulgarity or unnecessary profanity tends to make me think of the author instead of what the author has written. Within character, most everything is allowable. But, like the overuse of adjectives or adverbs, lazy writing as this practice is often called, the opacity of the author increases while the transparency that suspends disbelief and makes the story real fades. If I have to jump in and out of a work, specifically fiction, that I am reading for entertainment to look up a word or jarred out of the illusion of the story-world for any reason, I will most likely stop reading.
Please share your #1 tip for writers:
Do what you love and allow fame and fortune to follow. Don’t worry about what is popular, focus your energy and time on writing a good story. A story you would want to read. Because if you are not excited about your story or book, no one else will be either. Who you are will flow onto the page as if the ink was tinged in your blood. What is popular now may not be by the time you get your book to the publisher. Remember, everything you do is like signing your name to it. So, write like you want… it is your passion for your story that will carry you through the toughest of writing times.
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DOUG’S BIO (in his own words): “I am a writer who favors short stories… they make me feel taller, with a particular fondness for flash fiction because it suits my ADD functionality… I am blessed that I never get bored, but I do get impatient. When I am not spending time with my beloved wife, family, and friends, you will find me reading, writing, proof-reading & editing, tinkering, or teaching kids how to find their innate genius through drawing and storytelling.”