Broken Pieces

Jack Canon's American Destiny

Author Interview – Matthew Yaeger

Thursday, August 1, 2013

What genre are you most comfortable writing? Horror, sci-fi, fantasy, kung-fu, a mix of all.

What inspired you to write your first book? The book I recently self published is a collection of short stories.  I was in a writing class in high school and my senior project was supposed to be collecting some short stories together, and when I turned thirty I thought I should really finish that project.  I hope it still counts even though I turned it in late.

Who or what influenced your writing once you began? Books mostly.  I’ve always been an avid reader and loved getting lost in a good book.  You know that feeling when a good story has you in its grip and when you set the book down it takes a moment to reorient yourself?  Or when your pulse picks up during an action scene, or when you read a sad scene and it wrenches at your gut even though it’s completely fictional?  That’s magic.  Who wouldn’t want to be able to learn to do that?

Who or what influenced your writing over the years? Books and movies mostly.  It would take too long to list all of the people that I consider inspirations, but as an example I admire Robert Rodriguez and Joe Lansdale both for their abilities in their mediums to go completely balls-out when telling a story, or how both Elmore Leonard and Tarantino can tell you more about a character through their dialog than through any overt action.

What made you want to be a writer? Like I said, it was this or X-Wing Pilot and they haven’t made those yet.

What do you consider the most challenging about writing a novel, or about writing in general? Finding the beginning.  The end is easy, it’s when the story is done being told.  But beginnings, man, those are a pain.  Do I start a bit before the story I want to tell to try and introduce the characters a bit more, do you just jump right into it feet first, it’s difficult.  Like getting a roll of scotch tape and trying to figure out where the edge it to peel it up.

Did writing this book teach you anything and what was it? The my biggest roadblock is just myself.  There are a couple of ideas that bounced around in my head and for a while I would stare at a page not because I didn’t want to write the idea down, it was because I’d worry about it too much.  Is this idea dumb, is it too weird, what would someone think reading it, maybe I should try it a different way, etc.  I had caught the story by the tail but I was the one getting in the way of actually writing it down.  I learned that I need to chill out sometimes and just let the story out.

Do you intend to make writing a career? Well sure, who doesn’t want to do something they love to do?  If that doesn’t happen I’m okay with that as well.  Writing not being a career takes some pressure off.  I can do it because I want to, not because my mortgage depends on it.

Have you developed a specific writing style? If clumsy counts as a style, sure.

What is your greatest strength as a writer? A friend said that he thought my writing was honest.  I liked that, so I’ll go with it.  The book I wrote has several horror short stories, and to me the horror of failure or the fear of abuse is just as powerful the terror of monsters in other stories.  I’d like to think that I’m honest to the story I’m telling as well as to the reader.

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Genre – Horror

Rating – PG13

More details about the author & the book

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