I mean The Next Big Thing. *insert harp music here* BLAARG HARP
Apparently I was tagged to do an interview thing and… then tagged to do another interview thing. I wanted to wait until I had more solid information on when Slubes could possibly come out, but because of my fear of commitment this probably won’t happen until I’d be able to have released it three days earlier. I can announce that I’ve formatted the file for the physical copy though, so things are progressing! I will once again remark that if there are still errors I will haaaate myself.
So, here’s a secret: I really like answering questions and doing stuff like this. It may go on a bit long. I was tagged by Landphil over here, and—wait. I need to tag people, don’t I? Uhh. Does that involve going out into the wild and tranquilizing something? Because I don’t even like going outside the front door. Do you know how much not-air-conditioning is out there??
Okay look I don’t even know anybody. I’m just gonna deal with this at the end because IT’S QUESTION TIME
1: What is the working title of your book?
That’s it? Surely I can say more on it than that! What’s the history of that title, you didn’t ask? I have no idea where the name Slubes came from; there may have been a different name originally, but very early on it became Slubes and just stuck. The name itself is the species of the protagonists: slubes are creatures distantly related to the banana slug, though that doesn’t mean they fit our culture’s stereotype of slugs. They’ve got slug acrobatics! Maybe.
I’ve considered in the past actually making the title more than just one word, that word being the species of the main characters, but I guess it’s somewhat fitting for the book. It says that this is about unique creatures, devised by the author, and that no humans were existing in the making of this novel. Maybe.
I’m gonna end every paragraph of this with “Maybe,” aren’t I? Well, maybe.
2: Where did the idea come from for the book?
I was eating a banana and—no, not really. The idea for the book really comes from the idea for the characters—the protagonists were devised before any idea of a plot came about, and the antagonists were developed alongside a very early version of the plot (with one exception, though he was still developed along with the plot). Maybe.
And all these ideas began as doodles. Look, I really like talking about the history of stuff. I’ve thought about how I’d go about making a series of posts about how this insanity started, so let’s just move on to talking about the book, eh?
3: What genre does your book come under?
What is a “genre”?? Okay seriously I’ve never been one to be able to specify genres very well. I can see why things are organized as such, but they often blend together for me. Luckily, I just get to say “fantasy with some science fiction” and don’t have to be any more specific than that. But I will!
The first genre I would put this under is fantasy. I’d say science fiction too, but I’m no scientist—I have the utmost respect for science, but if anything it’s science fantasy. I prefer not to be restricted in what goes on, so I will eschew science in my stories if I need to, though it would be neat to have everything explained in some way or another.
I mean, the story involves machines and advanced technology, so the question becomes, what is the difference between fantasy and science fiction? Does the latter need to adhere to current scientific theories and thought, or is it just a group of things that books have in common (such as robots, and, uh, robots again)? If the latter, this might be closer to science fiction.
I talk too much. Also, adventure fiction. Quite frankly, it seems to me the three genres I’ve listed are the ones that overlap with other genres most often.
4: Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
Because I’ve got no humans here, a movie version would most likely have to be animation of some sort, thus requiring voice actors. If it were made into a sort of movie, I’d imagine it more as like a television special akin to the ones made of some Discworld novels.
As for the actual voice actors, I don’t really watch enough stuff to really know, I don’t think. I probably have voices for characters in my novel when I read through it, but I wouldn’t be able to match it up to actual actors on a thought. Although, there is one character whom I’ve begun to read in Dan Castellaneta’s voice (Homer Simpson from The Simpsons and the Robot Devil from Futurama), but I don’t know if I’d want that to officially be the character’s voice. Oh, but there is one minor character who would totally have to be voiced by Matt Chapman, and I will say nothing on why.
5: What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
Can I cheat and make it a run-on sentence?
I know, that’s a terrible synopsis. Let me try again.
“Threat from above, threat from below, and we’re the only ones who knoOH CARP, OH CARP, SOMETHING’S ON MY BACK, GET IT OFF, GET IT, WHAT, WHAT IS, oh, it’s just a bug… right, all that, and with one nervous disposition…”
6: Is your book self-published, published by an independent publisher, or represented by an agency?
Self-publishing through Createspace. That’s the plan, anyhowzit! If some anysize-name publisher shows up and wants to publish my book with an excellent deal, I’ll ask if they’re tryin’ ta’ scam me. An’ th’n r’move m’re let’ers fr’m m’ s’n’nc’s.
7: How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
Luckily I actually have a document where I type down the dates of notable happenings regarding my writing. It took me 167 days to finish the first draft—but that was in spurts, between which I was writing other stories that I refuse to talk about at this time *smile*.
8: What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
First, I need to read more. Well, everyone does, but me especially. I’ve been rectifying that lately though, but first I just have to get through the classics. Anyway, of what I’ve read, I would actually put it somewhere between Terry Pratchett’s Discworld and The Hobbit by Johnald Royal Token. I mean J.R.R. Tolkien. Yes, I just made fun of Tolkien’s name. Also I checked Wikipedia to make sure I spelled it right, and the photo of him in military uniform at age 24 reminds me of Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart from Doctor Who.
ANYWAY, I’d have to say I have a bit of the adventuring, history-filled world like of The Hobbit with the just plain silliness like of the Discworld novels.
9: Who or what inspired you to write this book?
Video games were the start of it, quite honestly. Like I said, I like talking about this stuff, so sometime I may go into more detail than anyone would care about, but basically back in the days of just becoming a teenager, I thought making a video game would be the coolest thing ever. Random doodles led to the creation of the Slubes characters—as I’ve mentioned—but I didn’t really get the notion of writing novels until I was internet (Verbs as nouns? HA! Nouns as adjectives!) and did online role plays with some people who became friends. We’re still friends (most of us), and the role plays became bigger and more complex and spawned stories that we wrote and finally I realized just making your own universe with characters and the stories that come with them was what I was really interested in.
So, video games? Sure. Friends? Definitely!
10: What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
Well, it’s humorous. If you look around at some of the stuff I post online, you’ll notice I write a lot of silly stuff. I’m a humor writer, and with my writing, there’s never a dull moment. Well, except for that 355-page monologue about why recyclables are people too, but I cut that out, and, also, it never existed in the first place.
It’s comedy, first and foremost, inspired by postmodernism and just a general knack for silliness. And yet, this is just the first of the long, complex series of stories that encompass the Cloudy Cuckoo Cosmos. Is that a good name? I considered just Cuckoo Cosmos, but the Cloud is very important!!
Anyway, if you enjoy fun or think enjoyment is fun or funjoyment is brought to you by the letter E, that’s what Slubes and CCC is all about. Even when tensions grow high and danger is all about, you can bet the pressure (on the reader, at least) will be relieved with something funny, or vaguely funny-like, or funjoymented, whether it’s oddball personalities, physical comedy, or just plain absurdities.
On a side note, this novel will also have an appendix of characters and other such things—not a reason to get this book specifically, but if you’ve ever read a novel, had a character reappear whom you can’t remember, looked them up, and then accidentally spoiled yourself for events later on, you’ll join me in trying to make this at least a semi-staple, so that people can simply check the back of the book to remind themselves of characters and such that have already appeared. (No idea if this could work on e-readers and stuff, though; I’ve never used them before, and from what Phil has said it may not work out.)
Anyway, I think I went into sales pitch mode there. ICH WERDE SEHEN DICH ETWAS ETWAS BLAH BLAH DEUTSCH LIEBSTER AWARD NEXT TIME??
11. Oh, right…
Tagging someone. I know like nobody. I’m not that outgoing, even on the internet. Man, where did this thing even start, anyway? I’m gonna look that up. Clearly I should tag the person who started this so it can come full circle. I mean, how do any of these things start? Random people just start a thing and it goes off.
Anyhowzit, let’s just do this: if you’re reading this at the end here, that probably means you read the whole thing. If you want to be tagged with this blaarg harp thingy, post a comment saying such on this post and I will look at your blog to see if I think you deserve a tag. If you do, I will edit this post as such and let you know; otherwise, I… will probably feel bad about saying no and say yes anyway. Win-draw!