"Shift!" is basically about technology vs. religion. Will technology ever advance to such a point where the belief in a religion is obsolete? In other words, will science ever answer all the questions man has been asking God and what will happen when this occurs? So, yeah, I've always had a philosophical mindset, and I've always had a burning in the corner of my mind to flesh out this idea into something that gets people thinking inwardly, or, in this case, upwardly.
When did you first start writing?
As early as I can remember, I wanted to write fiction. I can't nail it down any closer than that. How does one pinpoint "always?"
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Really, it's the creative process. That organic need to spin a story any way I feel fit. [laughs]. It's interesting, though, because despite that mindset of my being in control, the story begins to write itself after a time and somewhere between the tenth and twentieth page, I go from the driver to the backseat driver. Like I'm shouting out directions that my story will occasionally comply with, but it's got its own agenda. I like that. The story begins to WANT to be told. And I'm merely the tool the universe uses to present it.
Who are your favorite authors?
God, there's so many. So many that have influenced the writer I have become. I suppose early on I remember reading and loving Douglas Adams. And I guess that's where the idea of the need for humor and irony in a story originated from for me. Vonnegut, Tom Robbins, David Foster Wallace, even Robert Jordan. Joseph Heller. I really can't say that there hasn't been one author I've read that I didn't at least gain something from after reading their work. And I read a lot.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Drinking. [laughing] I tell people that I'm the most boring person they'll ever meet. And I mean it. I am pretty introspective, I like being alone. I don't need constant stimulation. I'm not particularly loquacious. If I'm not writing, im spending time thinking about writing. It's a problem. My head is totally in the clouds.
What do you read for pleasure?
Science fiction, literature, fantasy, humor, mystery, satire. There isn't a genre I don't like. I don't often read romance or westerns, but the writing and characterization are important, not the genre, because every story is about people, and how they react to certain situations. The better an author can pull off the writing and characterization, the better the story. This is true across any genre.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I own an Apple iPad, but let's face it, I will read anything from a billboard to skywriting if it can keep my interest.
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