Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Author Interview Series: Writers’ Quirks Featuring DJ Edwardson

Today on Writers' Quirks I'm interviewing author DJ Edwardson.

Thanks for joining us, DJ. Tell us about your latest project.
I’m currently working on finishing off my science fiction trilogy, The Chronotrace Sequence. Book 3 is entitled The Ascent of the Nebula. The story’s main character had his memory erased by a group of scientists in book 1, so there is a lot to reveal on this final book. It’s fun to finally get to pull back the curtain on all of these secrets I’ve been having to keep quiet about in the first two books.

Very interesting. Now for some quirky questions…
Have you ever fallen in love with one of your characters? 
Wow, I’ve never had that one before. You weren’t kidding when you said quirky questions. This reminds me of a quote I read
once which said, “I’m having very non-fictional feelings about fictional characters.” I would probably have to say that no, I haven’t fallen in love with any character from any book, mine or others. Feelings of kinship, admiration, and respect I’ve had in spades, but love? That just seems a bit too strong a word for me.

What is the best place for dreaming up your storylines? 
I do a lot of my thinking in the car or when I’m running or out for a walk, basically when things are quiet and I’m not tied up and busy with other things.

What is your favorite snack while writing? 
I don’t snack a whole lot when I write, actually. I might nosh on a granola bar when my stomach grumbles, but I do drink lots of water, though. That’s the WD40 which keeps my brain pistons firing.

WD40! I love how guys answer these questions! How do you feel about pen names? 
I considered it, briefly, but I never really saw the need for me personally. What can I say? I’m rather attached to the one my parents gave me.

What is the most not-true-to-self writing or marketing idea you’ve considered (or done!)? 
Um, when it comes to marketing, how about everything! I just want to sit in a hole and write, so basically anything else beyond that doesn’t come natural. I was not even on social media before starting my writing career and I don’t know if I will ever really catch on to what in the world I am supposed to be doing on it!

How are your books different than the millions of other books?
Oh, are there really that many?  

So they say. 
I think I’ve only read a thousand and change (if that!). But, honestly when I was shopping around for an agent for my first book and looking at the kind of books they were pushing to print, I was shocked. I didn’t like any of it. I wanted nobility and virtue, and high adventure, and what I saw was mostly wantonness, vulgarity, and moral confusion. The literary landscape is an existential and spiritual mess as far as I’m concerned.

I think I have a “Dead Poet’s” bias, maybe. All the books I like are old ones, written like fifty years ago or more. And I am a firm believer in writing what you want to read, not what you think will sell, so that is the kind of book I’m setting out to write. I have felt like a “stranger in a strange land” at times, a bit of a dinosaur. What does Paul say, “a man born out of due time”? Yeah, that would be me. I’m sure I’m not the only writer like that, but I would say we are definitely an endangered species.

Another distinctive of my writing is that I like to call the genre I write in “imaginative” fiction. I don’t think it fits neatly into scifi or fantasy and I’m not overly fond of the term “speculative”. My stories cross from fantasy into futuristic with a healthy dose of the supernatural usually lurking around the corner. What “imaginative” fiction means to me is making stories which are consistent within their own world, but that don’t have a whole lot to do necessarily with life as we know it. I find that very freeing and I believe that when a book takes us out of our routine, out of the every day, we can sometimes see courage, honor, sacrifice, and truth in a more distilled form which ordinary life may blind us to. That, to me, is the value of writing on a canvas as big as the imagination and hopefully one of the ways my writing is unique.

Okay, now I have to read your books! What one question has no one asked you about your book/character/writing life that you wish they would? Hmm, I wish someone would ask me about how they could sign up to be a beta reader for my next novel! Seriously, I have had such a hard time with that.

So, how can people sign up to be a beta reader for your next novel? 
Ah ha! Glad you asked. Just send an email to dj [at] djedwardson [dot] com or message me on Facebook. I would love to get your feedback on my work.

Where would you like people to connect with you online? 
Mywebsite is the best place. Just leave a comment on one of my posts. I’m also on twitter @djewdwardson.

Thank you for joining us, DJ!

DJ's book Into the Vase, book one in The Chronotrace Sequence, is available now.

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