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Christmas is almost over as the twelve dark days count down. Today, editor Dean M. Drinkel's author interviews continue with Tim Dry:
I first met Tim through our mutual friend, Barbie Wilde, I love Tim’s work and he’s appeared in several of my anthologies. For “12 Dark Days: One Hell Of A Christmas” (published by Alex Johnson’s Nocturnicorn Books), Tim was given Day Nine…I asked all the contributors a series of questions, here is what Tim had to say for himself:
Author Name: Tim Dry
Story Title: Nine Ladies Dancing
Q: What inspired you to write this particular story? Did you do any research? TD: Not research as such, I just rekindled memories from my past in the 1980s worlds of nightclubbing, disco, dance/mime and dodgy DJs and Agents etc. I added in an overwhelming need for revenge by those that been abused by so-called ‘Personalities’ in a position of Showbiz power back then.
Q: What is your ultimate Christmas experience?
TD: Spending it with an old Art School chum in Cannes in 2004. Driving along the Moyenne Corniche to Villefranche and having lunch there on the harbour front on Boxing Day and then driving up to Eze Village for a livener with the best view ever!
Q: What is the first book which made you cry?
TD: I tend to cry at movies rather than books to be honest. When I was a very young boy my Mum was reading to me an illustrated story in that year’s Noddy annual and there was one double, full colour page spread that showed Noddy all alone in a clearing in a dark and sinister wood at night. All the trees crowding in upon him had leering faces. That terrified me greatly and I burst into tears and never opened the annual again.
Q: What do you not like about Christmas?
TD: Ho ho! How long have you got? I’ll keep it short then. I don’t have any family left and I don’t have children so I’m free to disregard any seasonal duties whatsoever! I detest the rampant commercialism and the blatant lie that Christmas is still some kind of religious festival. I don’t believe in fairy tales and so therefore the whole of the fake festivities is just a means to fleece more money out of gullible people. Me cynical? Of course!
Q: Does a big ego help or hurt writers?
TD: I think that a big ego is not necessarily a bad thing if kept in check. People often confuse confidence with arrogance and most times that’s wrong. If you’ve written a tale that suddenly sells 150,000 copies you are naturally going to be pleased by that and feeling on top of it all. If you can maintain that creative energy that’s even better. If I should ever reach that moment I’ll let you know!
Q: Are you friends with other writers and do they help you become a better writer?
TD: My very best female friend is a very accomplished writer and her honest but heartfelt endorsements and critiques have helped me along and for that I’m very grateful. I am friends with other writers but that’s more of a social mutual admiration society.
Q: Do you want each story you write to stand on its own, or do you try to build a body of work with connections between each one?
TD: I’m not really organized enough to be that deliberately structured to be honest. There’s no Master Plan at work in my head but just a need to tell a tale from different perspectives. Each story that I’ve written (to me) does in some way bear a slight relation to those that came before and those that hopefully will follow. There are certain motifs that seem to recur in my writing, namely destruction, abandonment, abuse, retribution, sex, revenge and quite often a calling upon a darker and more ancient power to facilitate the culmination of desire. Humour too plays a large part in my writing, as indeed it does in my day to day life.
Q: If you could tell your younger writing self anything, what would it be?
TD: Just get on and do it. Stop procrastinating! Your imagination is wild and untamed and has to be used. You have to go with your own flow. It’s ok, no one’s going to judge you as a person by what you write. By the way - do your flies up!
Q: Describe your typical Christmas Day.
TD: Spending a few days with my best friends. Drinking wine, Martinis and Margaritas and eating delightfully spicy food whilst talking about all and sundry and watching our favourite movies and discovering new ones. It’s an absolutely untraditional few days and we’ve indulged ourselves this way for many years. No trees, no baubles, bangles and beads.
Q: As a writer, what would you choose as your emjoi / avatar / tv (or film character) / spirit animal?
TD: A powerful black and sexy female cat.
Q: Do you base your characters on real people and if so, have they noticed?
TD: Some of the characters in a few stories are in some way based upon people that I have met or known over the years. They’d never know it though. Sometimes I like to take someone and warp them into something larger than life or smaller than life depending upon their status in the story. Other times I just make them whole like Baron Frankenstein did from many disparate characteristics and meld physical extremes of style, incapacity, strength, language and attitude all together and here comes someone unlike anyone else. Stand back!
Q: How did you select the names for your characters?
TD: No formula, just words that sit well together in a suggestive kind of style.
Q: What do you think is literary success?
TD: Not just achieving a Top Ten best seller but more importantly having a sympathetic and encouraging Publisher who believes not only in your work but also in you as a person. An individual. A creative being who needs shielding from rejection and dismissal but is encouraged to continue to create the words that turn your head and heart to the page. Obviously the primary action is to deliver a work that captures and entices the reader’s imagination and engages with them emotionally, intellectually and sensually. If you can achieve that and you’re a personable human being safe in the knowledge that what you’ve created is actually good and readable you could achieve a level of success that elevates you to a place of comfort.
Q: What is the best way to market your books?
TD: If I could answer that you wouldn’t need to ask me!
Q: Favourite Christmas movie you could watch over and over again.
TD: Anything with snow or palm trees!
Q: What period of your life do you write about most often?
TD: Oh, tricky one! I do utilize elements of my childhood, my adolescent explorations, drugs that I took, books that I read, movies that I saw and people that I met. These days I find that I draw more and more upon the dreams that visit me on a nightly basis. They are so vivid, so bizarre, so improbable, so paranoid, so inexplicably ‘Odd’ that I have to use them in whatever way that I can. I don’t see my life as being a linear journey. No, it’s more like being a bewildered participant in a continuing surreal and indefinable spiral that goes around and around forever and one that defies previously held notions. Blimey! I need a lie down and a swift drinkette!
Q: Do you hide secrets in your stories that only those in the know will find?
TD: No. Sorry!
Q: Do you Google yourself? If so, did you find anything you weren’t expecting?
TD: Oh, I’m always Googling myself! It’s not that I find anything unexpected. Sometimes I’ll chance upon things that I’d swept under the carpet or forgotten about. On the whole everything is out there so no big revelations to be found!
Q: What was your favourite book / film as a child?
TD: Film? Ben-Hur. Book? Rupert Bear and Eagle annuals.
Q: What is your favourite ever thing about Christmas?
TD: December 27th!
To read Tim and all the other excellent tales in “12 Dark Days: One Hell Of A Christmas” – please follow the UK LINK here:
A writer - I think that says it all.