First, news. Tomorrow’s the new submission period! We’ll have cover art tomorrow as well, and you’ll be able to buy Issue 10 then as well. 3 dollars, fools!
Anyway, here’s Cory, writer of Issue 9’s “Tricks on Eleven.”
How would you describe your work in 25 words or less?
White trash goes Hollywood, finds it “homey”.
Tell me more about your story “Tricks on Eleven.”
I was asked to write a sonnet in the first Creative Writing course I ever took. Just hearing the word sonnet makes me want to bang my head against something, so I decided to have some fun with it—make it at least somewhat interesting. The result was something I’d titled “It’s a Long, Straight, and Dusty Road Out There”. It was crap, and probably not even technically a true sonnet, but I liked it. It was about a boy who’d decided to prostitute himself out in his small prairie town, choosing the gravel main drag as his working grounds. He took to drinking yellow Listerine and throwing Yo-Yo to pass the time—because that’s what prostitutes do? He never ended up making a sale because no one in town actually knew why he was standing on the side of the highway.
I remember having one of my buddies read it and tell me that I’d have to lose the ridiculousness/ humor if I wanted to go anywhere with writing, and I believed him. Over time, however, I’ve come to realize that taking myself too seriously, or, at least removing satire from my work, results in contrived garbage that in no way do I feel connected to, or feel represents me. So I decided to take the premise of the “sonnet” and play with it in a short story. I had a lot of fun with it, and “having fun with it” is my new criterion for any story I choose to wrestle with.
Who or what inspires you to write?
People. We’re such a fascinating batch of losers, and I really enjoy any rare moment in which we catch a glimpse of decency trying to escape from within us.
What do you consider to be your greatest influences?
Is it okay for me to say, “Writers who write for readers, and not simply for other writers”?
Do you have a website or a blog for your writing?
Any advice for fellow writers?
If you want to be cool and do what everyone else is doing, write something dark; if you want to be original, write something else.
What are you currently working on?
I’m playing around with the rough draft of a novel, but am focusing most of my time and energy on my wife and two little boys, and the intense training involved in becoming a high-school English teacher in British Columbia.
Where can we read your work next?
Not that anyone would want to, but if they did: nowhere. Writing’s on somewhat of a hiatus at the moment.
Anything else you’d like to add?
New Bop Dead City’s looking sharp.