Today's guest is Jared Gullage. He'll tell you about himself.
I was born and raised in Opelika, Alabama. Though at first a slow learner in reading and writing, once I began to do so, I grew to love it. My father always told me that to be a great writer, a person must learn to form pictures with words. Since my brother was the better cartoonist and visual artist, I worked at creating stories. Role-playing and an excellent education in English throughout high school honed my skills further. Attending Auburn University, I majored in English. Throughout my life, creative writing and anything that makes it better, easier, or more worthy, has been that which appeals to me most. Often, to understand this world, I have taken my knowledge to imaginary ones to toy with. I have jokingly told my students that "writing is my default setting" and what I would do if I had to decide on one thing to do forever. Writing is much less a thing I do, but a place and time, a brief leap from the boundaries of the mundane.
Q) What inspired you to write this story?
This story, The Dust Finders, was honestly one part writing exercise and one part bet with myself. I played around with a game a friend told me about which we called "Thirteen Different Ways to Think of Garbage Disposal Repairs," where you pick a subject and think of 13 different story plots that have to do with the subject. The subject of this story was...well...I'm going to say it was nomads (though it wasn't. Can't tell you for spoilers). The bet with myself was that I could write a complete story in Stream of Consciousness narration, which I had not really done too much of before. It's interesting to me how this character ends up being rather like the character from Flowers for Algernon, and yet becomes an elder in his tribe as well, and a father. What mostly guided the story, and helped write it, however -- the main theme, that is -- was asking the question about what is the purpose of bad things that happen to us? The narrator of the story encounters some very troubling moments in life and he cannot wrap his mind around them, or understand just why they happened. He is trying to understand a complicated world around him with only very simple faculties. I am not sure he finds any universal answers, but he seems to find answers for himself, and perhaps that is truly all he needs.
Q) How long did it take you to write?
Unlike Drinna, this story took only a couple weeks to get it perfected to the level I wanted it to be (truthfully, I am never really finished with a story, but have to let them out after a while). It is much shorter than Drinna and written in a much looser, more nebulous style, so it took a great deal less time to write. The stuff I left out, the details and background, was done so deliberately in large part because of the deteriorated mindset of the main narrator. Therefore, the language used in it is sort of half poetry and half...delusion, confusion, whatever you want to call it. It makes it easier to write, but maybe a little more difficult to read.
Q) What is your favorite thing about writing?
I like creating worlds and the people in it. I like being able to imagine and create imagery, and paint pictures with words. I enjoy also being able to explore the hidden depths of my mind and work out answers to questions I have in my mind through creating this world to myself.
Q) What is your least favorite thing about writing?
Always, always, always: PROMOTING. Please buy my books, but not because I am pimping them out hard, but because you really want to read fantasy like no other fantasy. I consider myself to be original, as much as possible, and I am proud of the novels and novellas I produce, but I HATE ADVERTISING. I really wish I could get an agent, because I am no good at promoting myself.
Q) If you could be any famous person for one day, who would you be and why?
Right now, I would love to be in George R.R. Martin's spot, only because his books have lit up and are really being read right now. I'd like to "catch on" myself and enjoy that spotlight, mostly because I would love to be able to do nothing but write for my career, instead of keeping a day job. And wow, to have a television show of that quality dedicated to my works...man, that might be fun. I would love to see a movie made of Drinna (producers and directors out there, I believe it would do quite a bit better than Eragon; I'm not derivative of Tolkien, and Drinna's got a really good story).
Q) What is the oldest thing in your fridge and how old is it?
Hmmm, I think it used to be one thing and now it is something else. I'm not sure of what it is, anymore. It's in the back in a jar, safely contained, so that some teenager some day in the future can open it and release the zombie plague. But, soon, I expect for Zool to be there, waiting on the keymaster for Gozer. When that happens, well, I guess we better call Bill Murray.
Q) What can readers expect from you in the future?
More work from Trithofar. I'm currently working on a novel that's reached that crucial 50,000 word point so far, and is going quite well. It's called, tentatively, The Wizard's Nest, and you can imagine what it may be about. I'm well pleased with it and hope to be finished with the draft of it by the time this is posted. I am going to try and be traditionally published again soon, if I can be, or at least professionally published. If I cannot, then I'll have to self-publish it, but that was a lot more work and money than it has been gain with The Dust Finders so far.