Archive for the ‘Interview’ Category

Chance Encounter at WVUM

Friday, October 17th, 2014

On October 6, I had the pleasure of joining hosts Natasha and Hunter on the Chance Encounter show on WVUM, the radio station of the University of Miami. We talked about a lot of stuff: my writing, what I’m reading, microfiction, NaNoWriMo, and the speculative fiction community.

First, a link to the show for your listening enjoyment:

The show’s regular spot is from 9-10pm on Mondays. Tune in!

I also wanted to share links to a lot of the stuff I talked about, and some of the things I read. I’m still trying to sell “The Virtue of Shellfishness,” so that isn’t available online yet. But the other two pieces I read were “Requiescat,” originally published in Sliver of Stone, and “Racism Lite,” published in scissors & spackle.

In no particular order, here is a list of links to cool things I mentioned. More will be added by request, or as I find things I missed:

Summer Sessions: Sloane Leong Interview

Thursday, August 19th, 2010

As I mentioned yesterday, Magen Toole over at Eonism has put together an interview series called Summer Sessions, in which writers and artists were paired off to interview each other. Here is my interview of Sloane Leong.

* * * * *

When and why did you begin writing?

I live in a very nomadic, rootless family; we move several times every year (yes, it’s a little de trop). We can only stay in the same place for a handful of months before we feel ensnared by the monotony of our surroundings. It’s both sweet and bitter from some angles. I went to a different school for each grade and was forced to be the Semper New Kid. It wasn’t always unpleasant but when making friends I only had time enough to scratch the surface of them. The plus side was that I experienced a lot of different neighborhoods and people, different social classes and backgrounds. I was born into a family where variety, change and things new were craved after.

I started to write as hobby when I was in the fifth grade. For our class vocabulary assignments you had to use the whole vocabulary list in a story. I’d do this every week and by the end of third grade I had written hundreds of pages of different short stories about little kid things; monsters, adventures and wandering girls and boys. It’s interesting to think about that now because my favorite way to write is cut-up, freeform techniques.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?

Labeling is sometimes a useless business. I always considered myself an ‘artist’ first and foremost because my art got most of the attention. All of my art, of course, had to do with various stories but I never cared to share them; it seemed the drawings were more important. I never really thought about labeling myself until other people began giving me a label. ‘Oh, you’re an artist?’ ‘Uh, sure.’ No one has really acknowledged my writing until I started making comics. As my love for the comic medium grew I decided it was time to become a better writer; I didn’t want my art to overpower the story or vice versa. When I really started to dedicate myself and share my stories then people started asking ‘Oh, you’re writer, too?’ Which I shrug and say, ‘Trying to be.’

Do you have a specific writing style?

I try not to dwell on my ‘style’. I think everyone has a specific and unique writing style by default. Style comes from the world stylus, meaning pen. It’s a connector between point A and point B. Between mind and paper. I don’t think it should be doted on as it will always be their, controlled or uncontrolled. (I have this ongoing struggle with people that think their style is too similar to someone else and grieve over it instead of just accepting it and worrying about the part that matters, point A: their mind and whats in it. Often they try to mimic someone elses way of doing things which leaves the source of their style still empty.*)

I will say that I try to emulate writers’ attitudes; the way they describe things, tell stories and ideas that are specific and esoteric to themselves. When I write I try to just let it flow and not let my ego get in the way of my hands. ‘Oh wait, that doesn’t sound good, you should edit that! No one will understand that, you should change it!’ I try to ignore that nagging voice and let my mind speak.

(*I’m prone to tangents, very very sorry.)

Is there a message in your work that you want readers to grasp?

Not particularly. I don’t go into my writing with a message; I go into my writing with an experience, whether it’s real or not. I like to let the reader pull his own ideas from my work. I feel it leaves a little mystery and lets their mind work around the story, trying to figure it out themselves. My favorite is when they get their minds’ into the little cracks and nuances of the story and find something I didn’t even know was there.

What are your current projects?

Right now I am working on the stories for three long-form graphic novels. One is called Vis: it’s a self-published webcomic about the wanderings of a girl without a solid identity and a rich but distant, blurry life. For her, there is no terminology for time except the ‘present’. She had been given many names and walks through foreign worlds, looking for a home she left behind. The beginning of the webcomic is here (it’s going to be revamped next month):

The two other graphic novels are being written: one is called Comet Scabs which will be a three volume story about a group of disconnected children in a simple coastal town when something strikes and turns their minds inside out. The other is called Maschinell, which is a joint project between Nen ( and I. It’s a multi-faceted story set in a futuristic post-apocalyptic world and delves into the physical and psychological connections between nature, man, machine.

Can you share a little of your current work with us?

You can find all my artwork and comics here: and my writing here: Here is an excerpt from a short story I wrote called ‘Sabbulonarium’.

He walked the landfill streets with a half-limp and a petrified spine. Soggy newspapers and cigarette butts kicked across the sidewalks like skittish waste moths. Hubcaps and cans shone with malicious sharpness, mirroring the haematoma lights that bit and snarled at the black-orange sky. Rats skittered through the junk body like electric pulses through a nervous system. The scrap mass breathed and creaked its ribcage as wind forced a breath down through its cells.  Black tar ran through wrinkled, ripped skin. Saccadic paranoia knotted like unrolled yarn in the back of his head. Sewer mouth let out a groan as he climbed up gently sloping heaps of debris.

What influences or motivates your use of shocking and sometimes grotesque images and characters?

I have an intense love for astronomy, psychology and medical phenomenons. I’m always reading textbooks and essays on the subjects and most of my work tries to explore these various subjects. It’s all part of the underlying philosophy in most of writing. I’ve learned that I don’t have the conventional notions of what’s pretty or comfortable. I like when things are covered in dirt, scarred, missing limbs; I don’t think they are grotesque at all, just average. Normal. I like to show the beauty in damage. I like to make the ugly things into an uneasy fortissimo.

Do you typically start a story from an idea for a character, a plot, or a strong central image?

Usually my stories start from dreams. My dreams are terribly vivid and often include all of the above. I’m a wake initiated lucid dreamer and I make a point of it to go to sleep and wake up with a story. It always happens, whether I want it to or not. There’s not always a plot but there is definitely a scene happens which is rich enough that I can build a story around it easily. When I don’t find my stories in my sleep, people and things going on around me is enough to get me going. I’m inspired by the average and the normal and try to see something unique and odd in the everyday things.

For more on Sloane Leong, visit her at Sloane is Amok.