Daily Archives: January 14, 2009

Interview at Calliope’s Coffee House

I was lucky enough to have a copy of C A Milson’s debut novel “The Chosen” wind up in my email inbox at the beginning of the new year. After my reading and reviewing of it, here’s the added bonus of an interview on his take on being a writer. This is a series of questions that Chris kindly agreed to answer via email. There are more questions I’d like to ask after reading his answers but I guess I can’t have everything

Where are you from originally? I am originally from Australia. I grew up in Kedron which is a suburb of Brisbane.

Give me a little background on your debut novel “The Chosen”. In 1989, I was living in Melbourne and the idea for the original story came from a hobbytex picture my mother had on her wall. The picture was of a yellow moon behind a rustic shack. I remember that I was sat at the table staring at the picture and got the whole idea for Shack of Evil from that picture. That first short story was a 9 page story based on the character Jamiesonn. Even though it was my first “real” story, I still thought that I could do better. What can I say? I’m a perfectionist! Shack of Evil had always been the basis for The Chosen. Now a lot had been cut out, and it took so many rewrites until I was satisfied with the finished product.

I know you’re writing another book, a sequel to “The Chosen” what’s in the pipeline after that? Once Bloodline of Darkness is complete, I will write the final book in the series, Prophecy’s End. After that, then I guess it’s back to my roots and rewrite the other 25 short stories. I have one project that I have on the back-burner, which is a sci-fi story, so I may try my hand at making a film.

Did you know you wanted to be a writer as a child or did it just sneak up on you as you got older? Well, writing has been in my family for generations. My grandmother was a gifted writer. She used to write jingles for tv and radio in Australia, many of which are still used today. So maybe a part of her influenced my writing, but then again… It wasn’t until I lived in a small town near Torquay that the real inspiration kicked off.

If you had to choose, which writers would you consider most significant to you? H.P.Lovecraft. The man was a genius.

Do you have to travel much, and how do you fit that in with your normal life as well as your writing schedule? I travel mostly for pleasure. Last year I was fortunate to travel some 70,000km. I went from New Zealand to Russia to China to New Zealand then to Australia then to Japan and back to Russia. (Whew!!) When on the road I always take the laptop with me to kill some time during the long hauls, but I do get ideas from places I have been. I try and maintain a balance in there somewhere to work and write and do everything else that is otherwise my hectic life.

Do you ever imagine something so “out there” that you leave yourself wondering “where did that come from!?” Sometimes I do. Sometimes I will be staring somewhere and an alternate version of reality will pop into my mind … and there I go again.. 🙂

Do you ever suffer from writer’s block? If so, what do you do about it? There are times when I have no idea where to take the plot, and that frustrates me, and that can last for days or weeks at a time. So I try and think of something else and wait for inspiration. But, in this latest book, Alex is in an elevator, and to take a spin on reality, I decided to make an alternate reality, where everything going on is an illusion…

Where do you hope to take your writing in the future? I hope to be writing for many years to come. After all, I am happiest when I write, so I intend to release many more novels in the future.

Is there anything else you would like to share with us about being an author? For those who have the dream of being a writer, I would say do not give up. If it is your passion, keep on going. It may sound cliched, but it is true. It took me a long time to get published, and once that happens, you will never look back. If you have the talent, use it. Wasted talent is a wasted life.


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