Tell me a little about your history with Nano:
I’ve done NaNoWriMo since 2006 or so and I’ve “won” it six times, though some of these wins only occurred by the skin of my teeth, by typing slightly related gibberish (character bios, set descriptions, rules for the world) in the last few days before December 1st hit. Some of my better experiences with NaNoWriMo occurred in Panera Breads, hyped on diet soda, doing write-offs with other WriMos while barely speaking. I still have a pink seal eraser I won for writing 6,000 words of Artificial Gods in one sitting. Mr. Sealkins believes in me.
What are you writing about this year?
I’m starting the sixth book in the Night’s Dream series, tentatively called Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow. Shane Valentine, avatar of thought and bookish college student, is pulled out of time by a man raised by fairies. She must decide how to fight a danger she had thought gone forever and deal with all she has missed.
Who’s the best character in your Nano novel?
I am very interested to see how the feral fairy man turns out, though I have an abiding love for Shane. I have put her in excruciating situations and she persists in finding hope. I think I need to give the poor woman a well-deserved vacation after this book.
What advice would you give to all your fellow Wrimos?
The advice I wish I had followed sooner in my career is to finish what I have started before going back to tweak, “perfect,” and edit. It is much easier to fix a hundred thousand words of mush than ten thousand solid words of the book you still have kicking around in your head.
Sneaky Ninja question! What’s your favorite thing to do on a Saturday night?
I am deeply fond of getting together with a few friends and watching some of the worst movies that have ever been made. If someone cannot laugh through Sleepaway Camp, The Room, and Tip Toes back-to-back, we are going to have a tough time bonding.
About the series:
The Night’s Dream series takes place in the realms most familiar: your college, the diner down the street, even the sky outside your backyard. They are books that dwell in the shadows you think you see out of the corner of your eye, our world and yet not the one we would want to admit. In a twisted version of the Hudson Valley, one occupied by vampire maternity nurses and self-interested angels, by displaced spirits wearing the masks of aliens, by possessed pumpkins and tree sprites who teach botany to ungrateful undergrads, the characters deal with the strangest circumstance of all: trying to figure out what it means to lead a normal life when you are the only one who sees how bizarre the world truly is.
The published novels at We Shadows, Danse Macabre, and Artificial Gods, with Flies to Wanton Boys to follow in 2014. They are available online and in bookstores from Double Dragon Publishing.