WWK Blogger Paula Gail Benson has two short stories running in Kings River Life Magazine this weekend, "Pelican Spring" and "The Mama Factor." Both are Mother's Day short stories. You can read them by going to: http://kingsriverlife.com/category/kings-river-reviewers/terrific-tales/
Linda Rodriguez is a finalist in two categories for the International Latino Book Awards (given out at BEA the end of May)--one for Every Last Secret and one for editing Woven Voices: 3 Generations of Puertorriquena Poets Look at Their American Lives (with Gloria Vando, Anika Paris, and Anita Velez-Mitchell). Congratulations, Linda!
The second SinC Guppy anthology, Fish Nets, has been released by Wildside Press. WWK authors, Gloria Alden, Warren Bull, Kara Cerise and E. B. Davis have short stories in this volume, which can be bought at Wildside Press, the usual retailers and will be available at the Malice Domestic Conference. Look for "the story behind the stories" on May 1 here!
Upcoming Salad Bowl Saturdays include authors Sasscer Hill on 5/18 and Carolyn Mulford on 5/25. If you are interested in being a guest blogger, send a message to Jim Jackson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Wednesday, December 15, 2010
An Interview with Kate Thornton
EBD: Your short story anthology Inhuman Condition is an apt title. You show humanity through inhumane situations, settings and through technology. To a reader, your shorts are like a slider coming over home plate to a batter: the reader doesn’t anticipate the angle. How do you decide on the slant?
KT: Usually, I get the slant first, after playing "what if" with a situation I find intriguing. Then the story sort of wraps itself around the slant, which to me is the point of the story.
EBD: I can’t help but feel that your military background has factor in your choice of subjects. Where do you get your ideas?
KT: I get them from everywhere, really. I save clippings from newspapers, magazines and the web and I keep an idea file on my desktop. But mostly I listen in on peoples' conversations, and old Army habit. I don't always hear things correctly. Or maybe I do.
EBD: There is an amalgam of genres in your stories, mystery coming out of the barrel, a little sci fi here, a bit of paranormal there…and sometimes the timing of your stories, the future, allows you to comment about our current society. How do you choose? Is this intentional, by design, or do you think of the story first and the reflections just come?
KT: I write mostly for magazines in print and on the web – many of them are specifically mystery-oriented or definitely science fiction, so I must be aware of the genre when I am writing for a particular magazine or anthology. But given that, I am then free to write about the things I find interesting and if a story I was writing for a mystery venue turns into a speculative fiction piece with little mystery but lots of speculation, then it gets polished that way and sent to the science fiction venues. I guess I think of the story first, then think about where it would fit, and then write it. It doesn't always fit where I thought it would.
EBD: Cosmic justice and injustice seem to be prevalent themes, from sixteen-year-old girls already doomed to overheard words that can evoke disaster. Is that a theme you see in the world?
KT: Yes. And I really like both the idea of cosmic justice and the idea that I personally can mete it out through writing.
KT: Well, thank you. Everything I write is fiction, but I try to make my characters as real as possible. I am pleased when that happens.
EBD: Some of your protagonists aren’t easy to like. Some are bad guys. Is that perspective one you purposely get across to readers?
KT: Yes. So many of the people we know – the protagonists in our lives – are not very nice.
EBD: In one of my favorites, “Key Witness” a two-year-old captures the bad guys. In another, “Two Mules for Sister Sarita” the protagonist has a most unlikely profession. Can the normal be found using extremes?
KT: Well, they are all part of the normal human tide that makes up our experience of life – in that way they're normal. But we all have different ideas of what "normal" means, and only by experiencing the extremes can our own versions of normal be put into perspective.
EBD: Are you happy with your publisher, Denouement Press?
KT: Haha! Trick question! I gotta say yes - after all, they did publish me! Not that I would turn down a meeting with Simon & Schuster or Knopf…but there is a lot to be said for the personal attention a small press can give an author. I am very happy with the book and with Denouement Press.
For an excellent review of Inhuman Condition, one I totally agree with, go to: Jackie Houchin's website. November 12, 2010 review.