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Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Author Interview – Ian Truman @iantruman

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Do you have an organized process or tips for writing well? Do you have a writing schedule?

I don’t have a schedule but I give myself a minimum of 800 words a day. 800 is bare minimum. Sometimes I manage to squeeze in 1200 before the shift starts. If I’m really into it, it can be more. But 800’s a decent average.

That said, in order to get these shorter segments into a novel, I have to have a fairly precise outline. I do spend quite some time on the outline because it will define my work for the coming months.

First I have to have this story in my guts that I feel I need to tell. If it doesn’t hit me in the guts, I don’t bother with it. But then I have to figure out if that gut feeling can be translated into 90 000 words. So I sit down and see if I can make it work. I usually outline 70% of a complete novel. That gives me the wiggle room I need to put in scenes that will come to me as I write it.

Sometimes it’s so hard to keep at it – What keeps you going?

I usually have more than one project going on at any given time. It can be visual arts, drama, events, novels, movie scripts, etc… If I run out of inspiration for one project, I can keep working on another. There’s always a point where I sit down and get a lot done on one project, but then I need to let it sit there for two or three weeks before editing it. So I do something else during these two or three weeks. Over time, that’S how I get to keep releasing books or setting up events.

I guess what keeps me going is that I’ll only work on something if I feel it in my guts to start with. It’s very Bukowski, it’s very Nietzsche if you’re into philosophy, but that’s the only way I know how to work.

Have you met any people in the industry who have really helped you?

Not in the publishing industry. I’ve become friends with a few good Montreal artists, but if you know anyone in Toronto, New-York or London that could be interested in my shit, send them my way because I do not know anybody.

What do you hope people will take away from your writing? How will your words make them feel?

I really don’t hope for anything. I write because I feel it’s there. I know some people like the way I write and some people really, really hate it. Which means I’m doing something wrong. I guess that like most artists, I enjoy provoking a strong reaction to any audience (good or bad). As long as it feels pertinent to me, it’s valid.

What’s your favourite meal?

Go to Dear Garden (corner of René-Levesque and St-Laurent in Montreal- closed on Tuesdays.) No. 118: noodles with cooked vegetables (Ask “with tofu”)

Anything at ChuChai is also incredible but it’s so fucking expensive, so fucking expensive.

What color represents your personality the most?

I don’t really know. I guess I’d say gray. It sounds boring but gray is actually a lot of things. It’s the color of ashes but also of the concrete that supports our buildings and structures. It’s also shadows and subtlety, you know? It’s almost darkness but it’s also light… (I like dichotomies a lot.)

What movie do you love to watch?

I guess that it would be Whedon’s Serenity. It’s entertaining and smart. I like cinema in most of its forms and from places all around the world (especially Japan) and I have a decent collection in many genres and languages. But say it’s Saturday afternoon and I just feel like watching a movie for the fun of it…It would be Serenity.

How do you feel about social media websites such as Facebook and Twitter? Are they a good thing?

Not a big fan. I use Facebook every day but I try to keep my friends list to people I actually met or had a significant interaction with. I have a “page” set up but I don’t really use it and I should focus on that, I guess. I hate twitter. I gave it a shot a while back and one of my editors said I needed to get on twitter a lot more but I can’t do it. I mean, Facebook you can actually set up events, chat with teammates, use it to send files…you know, work. You can use it only for memes and pictures of cats, but it’s possible to use if for work which makes it valid to me. Twitter is probably the most useless thing ever invented if you ask me. It encourages compulsive behaviours that I find really strange.

Goodreads is cool if you’re into books and I also love WordPress. Of course it’s a blogging tool, but it’s very well built and there’s just enough interaction with readers to make it useful while keeping it minimal.

If you could do any job in the world what would you do?

Besides the artistic projects I work on, there’s this one thing that I’d really wish I could get into. Basically it would be setting up and running some sort of artists/youth center (a little bit like City Kids in NYC) but mine would be in Montreal, of course. There was this place called L’X room that I used to go to a lot when I was a kid, and it plays a significant role in A Teenage Suicide as well. That room has sadly been closed a few years ago and the Church of Scientology had since bought the building the room was in and aren’t doing anything with it as far as I know.

So if I had (enough) money, there are two buildings left for sale east of downtown that are located in the only place I feel my project could work. I’d set up an all ages music venue in the basement, an independent arts gallery at street level and some workshop rooms on the upper floors. I’d like to host a few social groups, creative companies I like or NGO’s that deal with drug prevention if there would be room on the third of fourth floor and I’d just run that place, I guess.

What are you most passionate about? What gets you fired up?

All things creative, from music to art to writing and film. I read a selection of newspapers/news websites every day to keep up with current events. Political science and philosophy are both very important to me. I think my favourite art form is “moving image” in all its formats.

A Teenage Suicide

Buy Now @ Amazon & Smashwords

Genre - Literary, Coming of Age

Rating – PG13

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