Excerpts from an Interview with Myself

Okay, exciting, I know. Transcript/rip-off of my interview with Whohub.com (from sometime last spring). I was discussing my writing process with someone today, and it made me want to blog about it (naturally). Then I remembered this interview, so I thought I would share this instead. I wrote all the answers, so I feel no guilt in repeating them here.

What did you first read? How did you begin to write? Who were the first to read what you wrote?
I first read the back of milk cartons. But I mostly just looked at the pictures. It made the story easier to understand. Even at such a young age, I got it. The cows like eating daisies, they smile, while blinking their pop art eyelashes. They are happy to have their teats violated for me. I think from here I moved on to picture books, but those memories are all a little hazy. Must have been all the Children’s Tylenol I was jacked up on.

I began to write in kindergarten. I had just learned a new skillset: the proper etiquette for eating paste. I was a sick kid (all the paste, of course) and spent about three weeks in hospital, during which I completed my opus. It was magnificent; something about a dinosaur. It glittered. I made a cover out of cardboard, which my mother had to sew together as the doctors had banned all paste. Continue reading “Excerpts from an Interview with Myself”

We Want the Airwaves, Baby

What comes first, the writing or the apathy? Last Sunday I was interviewed on the Storytelling Show on Vancouver Co-Op Radio (CFRO 102.7 FM) by Taryn Hubbard, my partner in crime for the epically infamous artlit zine, Hacksaw. I managed to escape the hour-long interview without sounding like anything you’d buy at Home Hardware (read: “a tool”). Taryn asked some pretty hefty questions, to which I even suprised myself on the answers. Without restating the obvious, The Storytelling Show is about telling stories – Oops, that was a bit obvious, eh? – only the women who usually go on the show are dealing with the written word. Taryn wanted to explore the medium of film as an avenue for telling a story, and thus, there I was. In fact, here’s a picture of me there to prove it. It’s not a very flattering picture, is it? I look pudgy, but in a waxen way: like if it was a hot day and you touched me, you’d leave fingerprints on my skin; if you poked me harder, your finger would leave a little concave impression, like when you poke a cake in the oven that’s not quite ready.

Anyway, Taryn asked me an interesting question, one that I never fully considered before: When I’m writing, what comes first, the images in my head or the words on the page? I had to think about this. In a knee-jerk reaction I almost said the images, but I guess that’s what happens when I write for film. The medium is visual so that is how I think about it. (Perhaps that is part of what draws to me to film and theatre?) However, in blogs and things like this, I’m obsessed with words. I harbour secret ambitions to be able to string together a sentence with the superhuman abilities of Douglas Coupland or Charlie Brooker. I told Taryn – and it rings true – that when the images come first, whatever I’m writing ends up a script; when it’s the words, it ends up prose. I’m currently working on one epic story, and my writing process for this labour of like has been the rarest of rare. It breaks my previous patterns. You see, there were no images, no witty aphorisms that sparked my creative purge. It was a premise. A simple concept slowly expanded into the creation of an entire fictional world and fully formed characters. The plot came next. While it’s leaning towards script, I still don’t feel that instinctive grab in the gut telling me it’s a movie. I thus feel this ambivalence that it might just end up a novel? Sometimes I appreciate the lack of method in my madness, other times I just get mad.

You can hear the radio interview here, just find Aug. 30 at 21:15ish to 22:10ish.