1. What is the [working] title of your book?
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4. What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?
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5. What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
I have had several while working through the first draft and what I call the interdraft, the thinking about and planning for the next draft. My current one-sentence synopsis is, A guilt-ridden young woman must become a story-healer to stop a crazed AGI, a would-be immortal dictator, and belligerent trans-dimensional aliens from destroying every universe. I'm happy with this synopsis, especially as it is exactly 25 words, which many writing textbooks and teachers recommend as the maximum for defining one's project in a single sentence. Of course, the synopsis is bound to change as I redraft the novel and refine characters, plot and setting.
6. Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
I'm only at the start of my second draft, so what happens about publication is still a long way off. My preference is for the traditional publishing route, but in these uncertain industry times, I'm not sure I know which avenue will offer the book's best chance, not only for publication acceptance, but for distribution, marketing, advances, royalties, etc. I am hoping things will be clearer when I finish the novel, the deadline for which is the middle of next year.
7. How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?
Several years ago I participated in The Year of the Science Fiction Novel workshop at the Victorian Writers Centre, which is now Writers Victoria. Lucy Sussex convened the bi-monthly sessions in which we workshopped extracts from our projects, discussed writing techniques and approaches, and heard talks by industry professionals. I handwrote the first draft early in the year, over several months, and edited extracts for the workshopping. Subsequent to the course, I transcribed the whole draft and have been doing the interdraft work while submitting other extracts to my writing group for further feedback (Hi, Torcans). I've taken a lot of time to get to the second draft stage, mainly because I was finishing other projects, but I intend to devote myself to this book for the next few months.
8. What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
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9. Who or what inspired you to write this book?
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10. What else about the book might pique the reader's interest?
An immature AGI that has split into two, one part wanting to destroy humanity, one part wanting to help humanity, and both crazed in different ways. A young, scarred woman needing to confront her part in the deaths of her mother, her grandmother and her brother. A young man awakened from cryo-sleep and forced to pilot a hijacked colony spaceship. A gonzo reporter hoping for the story of his career. Nano-enhanced warriors. Aliens who have bonded with the planet they crash-landed on centuries before. A portal between two universes that are each aspects of a single meta-universe, which itself is one of an infinite number of similar structures. As universes collide and destroy each other, the space fleets and the psychic emanations of humanity and the race of trans-dimensional aliens battle it out, while a reluctant female Nexer strives to understand and heal what underlies all the conflict.
One of the benefits I found in doing this interview is that in answering some of the questions I had to examine deeply the genesis and intent of the story. I discovered more about my reasons and inspirations for the novel and gained some insights into the dynamics of the story. So, thanks, Talie, for tagging me and helping me refine some of my ideas.
Now for the next stage of the chain interview process. I approached a number of writer friends and acquaintances but, given we're in the middle of the silly season, some of them haven't got back to me as yet and a couple of them who did were unable to participate for one reason or another. For the moment, then, the only writer I am tagging is E. Markham. If at a later date any of the other writers agree to being tagged, I'll let you all know.
May you have a safe, relaxing and wondrous festive season and I wish you success in all your ventures during 2013.
Happy reading and writing.