As part of the Possessing Freedom launch, Steve is holding a Fan Fiction Competition where you could win$2,000! To enter you need to have read the book, so we're giving away three copies over three interviews. There's this interview, an interview with Rhiannon Hart on Down Under Wonderings and an interview with Belinda Dorio here on October 27.
Sharon: How did the collection of stories come about? Possessing Freedom came about from the concept of getting a small team of writers to collaborate on an integrated collection of short stories. By an integrated collection I mean stories which share the same characters and story world.
As rewarding as the experience has been for Rhiannon Hart and me, who each have two stories in Possessing Freedom, this is more of a showcase for the writing of up-and-coming authors Belinda Dorio and Beau Hillier, who each have four stories in the book.
What was it like weaving a story with four different authors, and what was the process used for consistency?
The approach we went for was to make each of the twelve chapters a short story in its own right, so readers can treat the book as a novel length collection of twelve short stories that each make sense separately from one another rather than put all our eggs in one basket with a collaborative novel which depends on flawless integration, stylistic consistency and narrative flow between multiple authors – which would be very time intensive to pull off well.
So what attracted the team to a ghost story?
What were some of the steps the team took to ensure consistency in characters?
Who was your favourite character to write and why?
If you were a paranormal being, what would you want to be?
Hmm… There are advantages and disadvantages to consider. The history of storytelling is littered with examples of humans wanting to be supernatural beings and vice versa; such as tales of immortal beings giving up their immortality to live out a life with the mortal they love (as in the film City of Angels – or the German film Wings of Desire (aka Der Himmel Uber Berlin) on which it was based), humans trying to find a way around death (as in The Sixth Day or Frankenstein), humans trying to attain invisibility (as in The Invisible Man or Hollow Man), but there are often unforeseen problems.
During this process did you ever break out into the Ghostbusters song?
No – but if anyone out there hasn’t seen Ghostbusters 2, check it out.
I believe Maria V Snyder workshopped the opening story, what was that like?
Maria V Snyder was kind enough to meet with Beau Hillier, Belinda Dorio and me during her tour of Australia and New Zealand last year. She workshopped the first chapter (by Belinda) and offered some useful advice which Belinda incorporated into her rewrite.
What is the biggest learnings you've taken away from the process?
Rapid fire questions:
Latte or cappuccino? Cappucino – but I’m not too fussed either way.
Note pad and pen or computer? A mix of both.
Magic or fists? Fists. I usually tend to prefer realism over fantasy, which can include realistic aspects to fantasy fiction, such as realistic character motivations and behaviour in a fantasy context.
Blue or green? Either
Sixth Sense or Ghostbusters? Sixth Sense