Friday, April 1, 2011

Fresh Voice Debora Silkotch!

Welcome to the latest edition of Fresh Voices. We are delighted to share with you the voice of Debora Silkotch!

What is your ultimate writing goal?
I'd love to write and illustrate a series of children's books for the 9 to 12 age group, but the novel I'm currently working on is adult sci-fi. The fun thing about writing is that you can never really predict where it's going to take you.

Why do you write?
I'm not sure writers necessarily have a choice about that. We write because we're writers; take away our computers and typewriters and we'll scribble out our stories in pencil on the back of the electric bill envelope. It's a compulsion, it's how the voices in our heads find an acceptable outlet.

Have you worked to achieve your voice or is it just a natural style for you?
My early writing style was as awkward and self-consciously overwrought as my teenage and young adult self. Lots of creative writing exercises helped me polish my skills in a supportive, low-pressure atmosphere. Play-by-email RPG's were my drug of choice for many years, and later blogging helped me practice the art of telling very short stories in an engaging "voice."

Who are your favorite authors and why do you like them?
George R R Martin. He's a master storyteller, but I think his greatest gift is creating characters so real and painfully human that it's easy to forget they're fictional.

J R R Tolkein. Epic tales of glory aside, I love his pro-green-sustainability, anti-industrialist-greed philosophies.

I loved Stephen R Donaldson's earliest works, up to and including the Gap Cycle. Not a big fan of his later stuff, it feels like somewhere along the way he forgot how to tell a story.

Neil Gaiman. I only recently discovered his books and I need to read more of, all I can get my hands on! Great stuff!

What most attracts you to the life of a writer?
Being paid to do what I would do anyway for the sheer pleasure of it? There's no downside here!

If you couldn't be a writer but knew you were guaranteed success at a different career, what would you choose?
My other passion is homesteading. I grow most of my own food, and I'm constantly finding new ways to remove more of the negative aspects of modern civilization from my life. I'd love to be completely self-sufficient, or as close as possible. I don't feel deprived of anything; this simple lifestyle is incredibly liberating!

If you had to describe your writing in one word, what would that word be?

What's the best writing advice you've ever gotten?
"If you're getting bored writing it, people will get bored reading it." Also, "Begin as close to the end as possible."

Debora lives on a small work-in-progress homestead in Southern California with her two children, two horses, two dogs and many cats. She writes a weekly column, Tuesday Talesfor the Ideology of Madness website, in which she serializes the adventures of her favorite World of Darkness RPG character. She also has a personal blog,"I'm Probably Overthinking This," and a mild Twitter addiction (@Dsilkotch). In her spare time she continues to make preparations for the Zombie Apocalypse.

1 comment:

  1. Oh, I like "Begin as close to the end as possible." Good reminder not to wallow in backstory. :)