Sunday, 4 December 2016

Q&A with Paul Barrett, author of Malaise Falchion

Now available from Fiery Seas Publishing is the science fiction novel The Malaise Falchion, book one in the Spade Case Files by author Paul Barrett.

The author has taken a few minutes out of his busy schedule for a Q&A about his newest novel.

When did you become interested in storytelling?

I’ve been interested in storytelling since I was age 5, when I would help my dad in the kitchen and pretend we were on a TV show. My first short story I wrote at age 8, so I’ve been telling stories a long time.

What was your first book/story published?

My first novel was my only self-published novel. It’s called Godchild and is a coming-of-age story set in the South in the summer of 1969. It’s based on a screenplay that my partner wrote. My first traditionally published piece was the short story As You Sow, which was published in the anthology Sha’Daa: Last Call.

What inspired you to write The Malaise Falchion?

I’ve always enjoyed the noir stories of Raymond Chandler and Dashell Hammit, although in all honesty I know them more from the movies than the books. I thought it would be fun to take the hard-boiled noir stories and run them through a fantasy filter. Matt Forbeck did something similar with the Shotgun & Sorcery stories, which I highly recommend, although my take on it is far less serious than his.

What character in The Malaise Falchion is the most/least like you, and in what ways?

The characters in The Malaise Falchion are my fantasy versions of the archetypes used in noir storytelling: The Hardboiled Detective, The Faithful Sidekick, The Femme Fatale. As such, they bear little resemblance to me. The closest trait would be Spade’s sarcasm, which is certainly close to my own caustic wit.

What is your favorite part in The Malaise Falchion?

My favorite part of The Malaise Falchion is the Ziploon chase, which is some high adventure swashbuckling stuff that shows off our hero’s resourcefulness. It’s perhaps not quite as noir as it should be, but it’s my version of a car chase. It was a great deal of fun to write.

What was the hardest part to write?

Most storytelling relies on the unexpected and surprise twists, and the noir genre particularly lives and dies on it. Coming up with twists that would be unexpected and still make sense to the story proved to be a lot harder than I expected.

What would your ideal career be, if you couldn't be an author?

My ideal career was and is to be a film or television producer, which is a dream I’m still pursuing. Writing and producing can often go hand in hand. I’ve produced two low budget feature films and two documentaries, and I certainly have my eye on producing more.

Do you read reviews of your books? If so, do you pay any attention to them, or let them influence your writing?

I have read reviews of my stuff. I don’t take any of it to heart. I appreciate the people who like my stories and respect the opinions of those who don’t. I don’t let it influence my writing. I learned long ago you can’t please everybody. I write the stories I want to tell and let the chips fall where they may.

What well-known writers do you admire most?

I’m highly appreciative of Robin Hobb and Stephen King. Hobb’s ability to create three-dimensional characters and have you empathized with them as she puts them through hell is amazing. And King is a master storytelling no matter what genre he tackles.

Do you have any other books/stories in the works?

I am currently working on A Cry of Decay, which is the second book of The Necromancer Saga. I’m finishing the edits on Knight Errant, a space opera I co-wrote with my friend Steve Murphy. Steve and I are also working on a pilot screenplay for a TV series, which I don’t want to say much about yet, but which I hope to be able to say a lot about eventually.

About the Author: Paul has lived a varied life full of excitement and adventure. Not really, but it sounds good as an opening line. Paul’s multiple careers have included: rock and roll roadie, children’s theater stage manager, television camera operator, mortgage banker, and support specialist for Microsoft Excel.

This eclectic mix prepared him to go into his true love: motion picture production. He has produced two motion pictures and two documentaries: His film Night Feeders released on DVD in 2007, and Cold Storage was released by Lionsgate in 2010.

Amidst all this, Paul has worked on his writing, starting with his first short story, about Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars, at age 8. Paul has written and produced numerous commercial and industrial video scripts in his tenure with his forcreative agency, Indievision. He has two published short stories (As You Sow and Double Cross) and one self-published novel (Godchild). He lives with his filmmaker/graphic artist partner and their three cats.

You can follow the author on Facebook and Goodreads.

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