Welcome back to Fiction Friday and another author interview. This week we have Craig Grossman. As always, the interviewee will do the talking. Take it away, Craig.
-What book and/or experience made you want to be a writer?
I’m not sure there is one book or experience that I would classify as the driving force behind my decision to become a writer. Rather, it was more of an ongoing process through college that began with adding creative twists to assigned papers and getting good feedback on those. At first, I wanted to write non-fiction, but when I took a fiction writing class, I was hooked. I then changed my major to creative writing and earned my BA. I then Attended Seton Hill’s Writing Popular Fiction program and earned an Master of Arts degree in the mystery genre. Then the program changed to A Master of Fine Arts, so I continued and earned that degree in the Horror genre. A Walk Through Hell, is my thesis novel for the Master of Arts in Mystery.
-What genre do you write?
My first novel, A Walk Through Hell, is a neo-noir suspense/thriller. Many people ask me just what neo-noir is, and I explain to them that unlike traditional noir where you have a protagonist who is on the “right” side of the law, neo-noir protagonists tend to be of the criminal element.
A Walk Through Hell, 2009
Perception, Eye Contact Literary Magazine, 2008
Duty, Backroads magazine, 2005
Snowfall, Backroads Magazine, 2005
Better Safe than Sorry, University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown (one act play performed)
Twelve Boys, Separation, Washington Square, Backroads Magazine, 2007
Gone, Terror, The Edge, Backroads Magazine, 2006
-Works in progress?
I currently am working on three projects that I had begun and put aside. I hope to have them ready to shop around in the next six-months to a year.
-For other aspiring writers, any tips?
Well, here’s my chance to give words of wisdom.
The first and foremost tip I can give to any aspiring writer is to write. Without words on the page—no matter how sloppy or poorly written—there is no chance for success.
Second, find a place, or time, to write that motivates you. Writing is hard work and trying to do it on a whim only exasperates the problems that come with it.
Third, Writer’s block is a myth. Sure there are times when you can’t get the words out for your current project, but that doesn’t mean that you have nothing to write. Even freewriting counts (this goes back to tip #1.
Fourth and final, revise, revise, and revise again. Don’t be afraid to cut blocks of text or to add what’s necessary to make your writing the best it can be.
-What’s your favorite book/genre to read?
I read almost anything that survives the first pages test. That being said my favorite genres are horror and mystery. I also like to read non-fiction.
-What’s your favorite thing you’ve ever written?
Hmm, it’s hard to place one complete work above the other, so I think I’ll focus on my favorite scenes. I wrote a scene where a guy who stole from a crime boss had his tongue cut out in a horrible torture scene that I later revised and used in my novel—A Walk Through Hell. I also wrote a scene where one of my protagonists meets up with the woman he has been fantasizing about, and they witness a murder of crows kill one of their own. Another scene I like is the dream sequence where my protagonist spirals into the eye of someone and hangs on to the edge for dear life and then falls into another world where souls are tended to in fields by large ant-men, sort of a surreal Alice through the rabbit hole.
Want more from Craig?
Check out Craig’s website here.
Want to read “A Walk Through Hell?”
Grab it on Amazon in trade paperback or for the Kindle.