Jan Edwards interviewed

“I never identify my messages. If people get them then good, if no then I’ve not done my job. One of my pet peeves in fiction is agenda-driven polemicals of the kind that whack you over the head again and again until you want to scream ‘Okay. I get it! Stop it already!’ The message should never be the book.”

The Alchemy Press’s Jan Edwards is interviewed here. Jan’s latest collection, Leinster Gardens and Other Subtleties is due next month.

 

 

Mike Chinn interviewed

Mike Chinn 2005a

“I try to make the characters and their landscapes as realistic as possible. At some point they’re going to step off a very high ledge and fall into something pretty weird and horrible. Grounding them from the start helps the readers suspend their disbelief, as well as (hopefully) creating a rapport – if not sympathy – with the characters.”

Alchemy editor and contributor Mike Chinn faces a number of questions — read his replies here.

Mike’s new collection Give Me These Moments Back is published in March.

 

 

Adrian Cole interviewed

The Alchemy Press’s Adrian Cole is a born and bred Devonian, living on the North Devon coast with his wife, Jude. Adrian’s first works began to appear in magazines in the mid-1970s. Most were centred around his eternal warrior, The Voidal. In recent years he has taken up the role of Nick Nightmare, a gumshoe PI, in the style of Philip Marlow, but who battles against Dagon, Cthulhu and all their evil minions! Fiction very much in the pulp tradition and told with great style and humour.

The Nick Nightmare stories have been collected in Nick Nightmare Investigatespublished by The Alchemy Press.

You can read the interview on the Jan Edwards website. It’s worth it!

 

 

Allen Ashley interviewed

Allen Ashley

“Somme-Nambula” by Allen Ashley appears in Kneeling in the Silver Light. Here, Allen answers a few questions.

The Great War started a hundred years ago. What is the link between your story in Silver Light and that war?

My story is mostly set in the First World War trenches and, particularly, in No Man’s Land. I studiously researched the story – more on that later.

What concerns did you have when it came to writing your story, how you planned to cover the subject matter? Were you worried that the anthology might have become too much like a regular “horror” book?

My concern was to have a believable underpinning layer of the horror of combat and thus ground the story in historical realism. It’s the First World War, millions died and suffered horribly and there’s no escaping or disguising that fact. However, one must also make an imaginative leap – and I believe that my story does that – otherwise one is simply regurgitating Wilfred Owen, Robert Graves, et al.

As for the anthology becoming too much of a regular horror book, that’s really the editor’s and the publisher’s concern in this instance, not a worry for an individual contributing author. I have been to a few events this year marking the commemoration of the outbreak of World War One and, simply and selfishly, it was my wish and intention to place my story in this Great War themed anthology as my own statement regarding the conflict.

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David Jon Fuller interviewed

David Jon Fuller

” The Wolves of Vimy” features in Kneeling in the Silver Light. Here, the author, David Jon Fuller, writes about his story.

The Great War started a hundred years ago. What is the link between your story in Silver Light and that war?

My story is set during the Battle of Vimy Ridge in 1917. That was the first time all divisions of the Canadian Expeditionary Force fought together as single force. It’s a battle that has taken on more significance for Canada as a nation, which prior to the First World War had no major standing army, because it represented a victory for the country as a whole, than it did strategically for the Allies in the war.

It was still an example of a new approach to trench warfare, though, with the combination of extensive preliminary bombardment and a coordinated rolling barrage — and as it turned out, at Vimy the German forces could not make use of their new doctrine of “defence in depth.” Both contributed to the battle’s outcome.

The question of when the final assault on the German lines would begin is central to the short story I wrote.

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Paul Woodward interviewed

paul woodward

Paul Woodward’s story  “A Very Strange Tunnelling Company” appears in the pages of Kneeling in the Silver Light, edited by Dean M Drinkel.

The Great War started a hundred years ago. What is the link between your story in Silver Light and that war?

I saw a documentary on the TV about the tunnellers who laid mines underneath the enemy trenches. And I then thought it would be an unusual angle for a story. I went on to read a couple of books about the tunnelling war to get the right spelling and background detail. Hence “A Very Strange Tunnelling Company”.

What concerns did you have when it came to writing your story, how you planned to cover the subject matter? Were you worried that the anthology might have become too much like a regular “horror” book?

Initially I thought there was enough, indeed too much real horror in the war itself. And actually I still think that. To counter balance this I wanted to write something that could not conceivably be real. I also wanted to lighten the tone with a gender confusion sub-plot which is one of the oldest jokes around. There was never much chance of me contributing a “regular” horror story.

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Mike Chinn interviewed

mike chinn

Besides editing for The Alchemy Press, Mike Chinn has penned a story for Kneeling in the Silver Light:

The Great War started a hundred years ago; what is the link between your story in Silver Light and that war?

“Where the Long White Roadway Lies” is very much set during the Great War, although I was careful not to say exactly when. I didn’t want to tie it down to any familiar battles or arenas of that particular conflict – though it’s clearly somewhere among the trenches and desolation of Belgium and northern France. I wanted a sense of timelessness that fitted the mood of the story.

What concerns did you have when it came to writing your story, how you planned to cover the subject matter? Were you worried that the anthology might have become too much like a regular “horror” book?

My main concern, believe it or not, was that I didn’t stray too far into Oh What a Lovely War territory. The point of view character occasionally slips into snatches of song contemporary for the period (the story title is a line from “Roses of Picardy”), but I hope I managed to use them in a different way to the play/film. And I certainly didn’t want to reheat anything like the old jingoistic Noble Tommy vs Evil Hun tosh that we’ve all been guilty of reading at some point in our lives.

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