Ed: Hello there. As I hear writers are creative people, please answer each of the following bio questions twice. Once with the truth, and once with a lie. Name?
LBC: LB Clark, or Oddstocks McWeirdo El Tutti-Fruitti.
Ed: I think I’ve got some McWeirdos on the Irish side of the family, too, So where you from?
LBC: A small city in East Texas which my brother and I not-so-affectionately call Satan’s Left Armpit. Or Mars, New Mexico.
Ed: Day job?
LBC: Various and sundry freelance/contract gigs. Bicycle seat repairman.
Ed: Dream job?
LBC: Tour concierge (that’s a fancy-pants term for ‘gofer’) for a moderately successful rock band. Fluffer.
Ed: Now for the inevitable. Why do you write?
LBC: It’s a psychological imperative. If I go too long without writing, all the clutter in my brain starts to drive me nuts. Because I can not draw.
Ed: I think both those answers might be true for me.
Band – Elvis Monroe. No, Paperback Hero! No…oh, hell. Lots.
Game – Risk
Album – “Levolution” from Juke Kartel
Word – “evs”
Color – aqua
Animal – hammerhead shark
Piece of clothing – Red Chapter shirts
Movie – The Prestige
TV show – Sons of Anarchy
Drink – Iced green tea
Song – lots. Think I’ll go with my ‘theme song’ – “Disarray” by Lifehouse
Line from a song – let’s go with “the joke’s on you, you can’t give her back – but I bet right about now, you wish you could”…or, no, “If California slides into the ocean, like the mystics and statics say it will, I predict this motel will be standing until I pay my bill” (yes, I know that’s more than one line – sh’up). [Ed: I'll allow two, but only because one is Warren Zevon.]
Pizza topping – pesto
Crime – Speeding
Place – beside or on the ocean
Quote – “I always knew that I was a little bit different than everybody else. I didn’t know that little bit would be the greatest gift ever.”
Ed: Three random things about yourself, please.
LBC: 1.) I once drove from East Texas to Los Angeles for a concert. 2.) I’m addicted to Vegemite. 3.) I used to write gay male, erotic fanfiction.
What’s the biggest consideration when you are deciding what book to read?
LBC: Mood is the biggie when I’m trying to decide what to read. If I’m in the mood for fluff, I can’t ‘get into’ noir or epic fantasy. Sometimes that mood defines what I want to read as works by a certain author or in a specific genre.
Ed: Let’s say you are looking at the back of a book in a bookstore, reading on online blurb, or whatever (you don’t actually have to say it out loud). What sort of thing makes you say “yes,” what sort of things makes you say “pass?”
LBC: A brief description with normal names and a catchy storyline will make me want to read the book. Books with long descriptions or unnecessarily bizarre names will get put back immediately.
Ed: What genre do you enjoy most?
LBC: I don’t think I have one favorite genre. I love urban fantasy, but I also like historical romance quite a lot. I enjoy anything with a good story and well-crafted characters.
Ed: What genre would you read only if you lost a bet?
LBC: Not sure there is a genre I would avoid. Certain types of books, yes. I think there should be a separate genre for books writing by people who are famous for being famous (yes, I mean folks like Snooki). THOSE I wouldn’t even read on a bet – unless there was a lot of money involved.
Ed: Do you have a favorite author, and do you think they influence your own writing?
LBC: My favorite authors are Stephen King, Jo Rowling, and Jim Butcher. They definitely influence my writing, though I’m not sure whether it’s noticeable to anyone but me.
Ed: Do you have a favorite book, and how many times have you read it?
LBC: As with most ‘favorites’, I do not have just one. I’ve read “The Talisman” by Stephen King a half-dozen times or more. I’ve read the Harry Potter and Harry Dresden series about three times each, I think.
Ed: What’s the first book you remember buying with your own money?
LBC: I don’t remember. That’s been a day or two. I do remember ordering Stephen King’s “Eyes of the Dragon” through Scholastic Book Club, though.
Ed: Any books you have been told you should read, and know you probably never will?
LBC: My best friend often recommends novels that I know I won’t read. Beyond that, I can’t think of anything.
Ed: Ever lied about reading, or not reading, a book?
LBC: I’m sure I lied about reading a book in school at some point and fudged my way through whatever worksheets or whatnot came along with the assignment. Other than that, no.
Ed: Ever read a book you were sure you were going to like, and not liked it?
LBC: Yes. This has happened to me in a couple of different series. The first few books are really great, and then they aren’t.
Ed: Ever grudgingly read a book, and loved it?
Ed: What’s your favorite line from a book? (not your own)
LBC: Oh, dear. Favorites again. This is a good one – “And if you’re very, very lucky, there are a very few blazing hot little pains you feel when you realized that you are standing in a moment of utter perfection, an instant of triumph, or happiness, or mirth which at the same time cannot possibly last – and yet will remain with you for life.“ (Jim Butcher, White Night)
How, and when, do you tend to come up with titles?
LBC: So far, I’ve come up with my titles fairly early in the writing process. With my three published works, the titles all came from song titles. In two of those cases, the song fit the story very well. In the other case…well, I’m not sure I’m happy with that title.
Ed: How do your characters get their names?
LBC: Various and sundry ways. Sometimes they tell me their names, and other times I go looking through baby name websites or use a random name generator.
Ed: If you could live in the world / with the people of one of your stories, which one would it be and why?
LBC: My novels are (so far) all set in the same world, with the same characters. So many locales to choose from, though! I think I’d have to choose chillin’ with Seth Webber in LA.
Ed: What do you think your books say about you?
LBC: That I think a lot about interpersonal relationships, and that I love music.
Ed: Is there anything you have written which you would now like to change or revise, wish you had written differently, etc.?
LBC: So far, I wouldn’t change anything in my published, original works.
Ed: Tell me about your favorite character.
LBC: I have a couple of favorites, but I think I have to go with Ashe. He’s an empath with pyro kinesis who lives in Key West and avoids the mainland as much as possible. He becomes a mentor and friend to the main characters.
Ed: Have your favorite character tell me about you.
Ashe: Well, now. That little girl is a feisty one. Trouble with a capital ‘T.’ Don’t get me wrong, she’s got a heart of gold. But that’s why’s she’s trouble, if you get my meaning.
Ed: Back to LB, What’s your favorite line which you have written?
LBC: “I’ll probably drunk-dial my boyfriend, get his voicemail, leave a message I’ll regret later, call my best friend, apologize profusely for interrupting her in the middle of doing god-knows-what to her boyfriend, get hit on by an old-drunk guy, and then go lock myself in my car and listen to my iPod until I feel like I can drive home.”
LBC: Pantser who plots a little bit now and then.
Ed: Best/Worst advice you ever got as a writer?
LBC: Best advice – Don’t write it right, just get it written. Worst – Don’t self-publish.
Ed: Best/Worst thing about being a writer?
LBC: Best – Creating characters and situations, sharing them, and hearing how they’ve made an impact on others. Worst – Marketing and promotion!
Ed: Why Indie?
LBC: Why not? I like maintaining creative control. And my series – being a strange combination of romance and urban fantasy – probably would not work for mainstream publishers.
Ed: Is being a writer what you expected? How so or how not?
LBC: I don’t know that I had any expectations, really. It’s a lot of work, and a lot of fun. I think the most unexpected thing is having actual fans.
Ed: Have you, or would you ever, collaborate on a story?
LBC: I’d love to collaborate on a story. A writer friend and I have tossed around ideas and even plotted some, but we haven’t managed to get anything worthwhile written yet.
Ed: If you were starting to write for the first time, what would you do different?
And I’m really not sure I’d do anything differently.
Ed: What is the most important thing you have learned about writing?
LBC: I have learned that a writer’s work is never done. There is always, always more editing to do.
Ed: What’s the moral of the story?
LBC: A bird in the hand is worth a peck of pickled peppers.
No, wait…that’s not it.
Ed: In closing, some REAL answers to HYPOTHETICAL questions.
Your computer is smoking, wheezing, and sparks are shooting out of the back. You can save one thing off the hard drive. What is it?
LBC: I keep things backed up, so I guess I’d grab the latest version of my WIP if I hadn’t had a chance to back it up yet.
Ed: Indeed, I’m a lways in favor of backing that thing up.
LBC: Sit on a balcony overlooking the ocean and write. Or catch up on sleep. One of the two.
Ed: Someone “in the business” suggests you change something you feel is a critical part of one of your books, and guarantees it will increase sales. What do you do?
LBC: If it’s critical, then it stays. I don’t write to sell, I write to tell a story. Changing an essential part of the book would be telling someone else’s story instead of my own. Not interested.
Ed: You are offered just enough money to live comfortably for the rest of your life, if you will just stop writing. What do you do?
LBC: That would depend on: a.) What is the offerer’s definition of ‘live comfortably,’ and b.) Whether I could write on the sly and not get caught.
Ed: What question do you wish I had asked?
LBC: “Why is abbreviated such a long word?”
Do check out LB’s work, linked right here with a handy-dandy Five Word Synopsis I ask all guests on TLT to write, because I know how much they hate doing it. – Ed
(Jukebox Heroes, Book 1)
“Cynic finds romance at sea.”
Call Out -
(Jukebox Heroes, Book 2)
“Co-ed and musicians fight terrorists.”
(Jukebox Heroes, Book 3)
“Is love all you need?”
Finally, LB Clark has taken part in a new collection for charity, but I will let her tell you about that for herself:
LCB: The new book is “Music Speaks,” a collection of music-themed short stories from several indie writers. The collection includes three short stories by yours truly set in the same ‘universe’ as my Jukebox Heroes series, with each story centered on a different main or supporting character from the series. The other writers’ stories run the gamut from romance to dystopian.
The entire book – from the stories to the editing to the formatting to the cover design – was put together on a volunteer basis. No one involved in the writing or publishing of the book will receive a single cent, because all proceeds are going to benefit an organization that is very dear to my heart – the MusiCares Foundation. MusiCares helps musicians in times of need, and this book is our way of helping to ensure that the artists who inspire, motivate, and comfort us in our times of need will be taken care of in their times of need. (www.grammy.org/musicares)
Music Speaks is available in various ebook formats from Amazon, BN, and Smashwords for $2.99. It’s also available in print from CreateSpace and Amazon as well.
Thank you, thank you, thank you!