Yes, you read that right – 5 Free Copies (Ebooks) are up for grabs. All you have to do to enter is leave a comment to Kody on his interview and he’ll pick 5 winners at random.
*Please note, leaving an email address where he can contact you will expedite the delivery of prizes. Contest ends April 6, 2011 – 11:59pm Eastern.*
Hi Kody! Thanks so much for taking the time out of your busy writing schedule to be here with us.
Why don’t you start by telling us a little bit about yourself? How longhave you been writing?
My name’s Kody Boye. I was born in Southeastern Idaho and moved to Texas in May of 2010.I’ve been writing since I was around seven years old, after a teacher assigned an object-specific creative writing assignment.
What was your first published story?
My first published story, [A] Prom Queen’s Revenge, was published in the Yellow Mama Webzine in May 2007.
How long did it take you to become a published author?
From the time I seriously began to try and become published until the time my first short story was accepted, it took around six months. The internet is a great tool and I consider myself lucky in that regard. Some people go years, even their whole lives without being published sometimes.
How many books have you written thus far?
Far too many to count. Currently, I have a short story collection Amorous Things out through a small press, as well as a novella entitled The Diary of Dakota Hammellwhich I just released independently via Smashwords, Kindle and Createspace. I’malso in the process of working toward putting out two dark fantasy novels andmy zombie novel is set to be rereleased here soon.
Do you write full time? If not, how many hours per day do you try todedicate to writing?
Currently,I do write full time, though that is only because I currently do not have a jobor attend school.
Do you find that you revise/editas you’re writing, or do you tend to write straight through, then do revisions?
I try to write straightthrough, then revise afterward, though sometimes I’ll find myself fixing littlethings here and there if I catch them while I’m writing.
How long does it take for you tocomplete a book you would allow someone to read?
It all depends. Ifinished a 140,000 word dark fantasy novel in one month, though that is withoutrevisions and editing done from a professional. That amount of progress,however, is due to the fact that I do little but write during the day andnothing else.
Do you outline before you begina story, or do you tend to write in a more freestyle fashion?
Stephen King once said that stories should beginas seeds and grow as trees without the help of fertilizer (i.e, an outline.) Inmy current novel I’m writing, I have to do a bit of outlining if only to makethe world and the revolution that takes place within it make sense, but I usuallydon’t outline. Sometimes I will if I get stuck, but my outlines rarely everwork because the story ends up branching off in another direction.
How much of yourself, your ownlife experiences, and the people you know manifest themselves into your characters?
I try not to let myself manifest into my work. Thesame goes with my friends. The characters in my head are usually their ownentities, but a good amount of them often share my own views or opinions oncertain things.
If you could choose, which of your stories would you say is yourfavorite?
That’s hard to say. Ireally like the novel I’m writing now (Utopia,about a city that lives beneath a floating entity they call God,) and Ilove my short story that’s set to appear in a GLBT-only author anthologyentitled And His Name was Peter,about a man afflicted with Peter Pan Syndrome, but I can’t really name anyspecific one.
Kody, do you ever experiencewriter’s block? If so, do you have any exercises you use too get beyond it?
When I get writer’s block,I carry a tablet around and let my mind wander. First lines usually strike mein the oddest of places.
When someone reads one of yourbooks for the first time, what do you hope they feel, experience, or gain fromit?
I hope, for the mostpart, that people will enjoy my work and will take whatever it is they believethe story encompasses in good light. I try to impart lessons and/or ideas intomy stories, which, in the end, I hope people find, even if they are subtle orhard to notice.
Will you share three thingsyou’ve learned about the business of writing since your first publication?
1. Writing is hard,hard work.
2. Don’t takeeverything too personally. It isn’t worth it.
3. Don’t ever letanyone say you can’t make it.
Do the titles of your stories generally come to you as you’re writing,or do you have titles in mind before you’ve written the first words?
Most ofthe time, the titles come to me fairly quickly. However, some stories stump meand I eventually have to refer to them as ‘untitled’ until something pops intomy head.
What is the question you’re most frequently asked by your fans?
If myname really is Kody Boye. Yes, it is. It isn’t a pseudonym. My driver’s licenseproves that.
What is your most memorable fan experience?
I love itwhen people from other countries contact me. I’ve currently have fans fromAustralia, the Middle East, Mexico, Africa and so many other places who contactme to say they love my work. When someone from other countries get in contactwith you, it just goes to show you how far your influence has spread.
Will you share with us alittle bit about any projects you’re currently working on?
I’m currently working on a science-fiction epic underthe title of Utopia, which tells thestory of a city’s rise and collapse beneath a floating deity they believe isGod.
What was the best piece ofadvice you’ve ever received with respect to the art of writing? Did it causeyou to change the way you write?
Never let negative reviews bother you. It changes theway I write because it allows me to write whatever I want.
When it comes to promoting your work, what lengthshave you gone to in order to increase awareness of your writing?
I spent $200 dollars to promote my short story collection.
How do you keep your “creative spark” alive? Wheredo you find the motivation to keep writing?
I write because, as many people say, the voices in my head keep talking.Also—it’s the one thing that allows me true happiness in this world in mycurrent stage of life.
The e-reader is changing the way people access andenjoy books. What pros and/or cons do you see surrounding the business ofe-publishing? Do you believe the day will come when digital books willeliminate print books, entirely?
I don’t believe eBookswill kill paperbacks or hardcovers. The medium is too old for it to completely die. Also—I see little cons in eFormats because technology is advancing so farand becoming so accessible to everyone. There’s no con in that.
When you have the time to read,what sorts of books are you likely to pick up? Who are your favorite authors?
I like reading horrorfiction, for the most part, but I also love good dark fantasy (though I’mrefraining from reading any until I finish my dark fantasy saga as to notunintentionally leach ideas away from it.) My favorite authors include StephenKing, Poppy Z. Brite, Tristan Egolf, David Wroblewski and Jennifer Haigh.
If you weren’t a writer, whatwould you be?
I have noidea. I’d likely be some kind of artist, given my inclination toward the creativeside.
Do you design the covers of your books, or do you work with a graphicartist?
Isometimes create mockups from stock art to help the artist, but I generallyhave real cover artists create the covers for my books.
Aside from writing, what else doyou enjoy doing? Do you have any hobbies?
I love photography, playing video games, reading, but in the end writingis my true hobby.
If you were to offer any one bitof advice to a writer just starting out, what would it be?
I would say not to lookat reviews of your work unless you directly request them. People can be viciousand for that reason, low self-esteem can ultimately lead to depressingthoughts. If you do want to look at reviews, know that it is just an opinionand it should not reflect on the way you yourself feel about your work.
Now that we’ve gotten the seriousquestions out of the way, Kody, how about some just for fun:
What’s your favorite food?
I love cheeseburgers. It’s all I eat most of the time.
What’s your favorite movie?
Black Swan. Though not out on DVD yet, I’ve seen it about two or threetimes and love it even more each time I watch it.
Who are your favorite male and female actors?
My favorite male actor would have to be Jake Gylenhaal. As for women, Iloved Natalie Portman in Black Swan,though I’m likely biased due to how amazing the movie was.
Who’s on your iPod/MP3 player?
Bjork, Madonna, Lady GaGa, Alanis Morissette, Nicki Minaj, MarilynManson, David Bowie. I need to get some Goldfrapp on there. I normally listen tomusic while I write. Marilyn Manson is the soundtrack to my most current album.
If you could travel through time, what timeperiod(s) would you most like to visit? Why?
I would love to visit Gevaudan, France to see if the fabled beast reallydid exist or not.
If you could sit down to dinner with any oneperson, either from the present or the past, who would that be? Why?
I would love to sit down with Tristan Egolf. As the author of one of myfavorite books (Kornwolf,) I wouldlove to get to know him more. Sadly, he committed suicide in the early 2000s,leaving behind the one book of his I’ve read at this point.
How would you describe your sense of humor? Who and what makes youlaugh?
KathyGriffin, Margaret Cho and Loni Love make me laugh. I like absurdist andgraphic, lewd humor, but that’s probably due in part to my fascination withseeing just how far you can push people for a response.
If we were to look under your bed, what might we find there?
I sleepon an air mattress, so you’d likely find nothing more than dust bunnies.
Kody, will you please tell us where we can find you on the Internet?
KodyBoye.comis where you can find me. You can also find me on Facebook and Twitter, as wellas MySpace (though it’s a bit of a dead commodity if you ask me.)
Thanks so much for sharing a bit of yourself withus. Now, would you consider sharing an excerpt(s) from one or more of yourstories?
This will be a firstfor your site, as I’ve shared very little about this novel and have beenagainst doing so. However, for this interview, I’d like to share the beginningscene of my novel Utopia, about acity that lives beneath a floating entity they call God. Please note that thisis an unedited version of the story.
An excerpt from Utopia by Kody Boye
Toanyone looking in the sky at this awkward hour of the afternoon, they wouldhave seen nothing out of the ordinary, save for the God floating in the sky andthe tendrils that dangled beneath Her head. It appeared to be hair, like whipsstriking the greatest of mules or the most troublesome of ground, but it wasnothing of the sort. They flapped about the air as though a mind of their own,hitting nothing and everything all at once, and in this beautiful, gracefulmoment, a person would be able to see the peak of a cycle that began assomething and ended as nothing.
Asthe day began to fade to night, signaling not only the beginning of thegrandest lightshow that could possibly be seen, but the start of a newcommunion, a person would first have seen the tendrils lose their light, assuch was designated at such late hours of the afternoon, then as the air filledwith what appeared to be miniature explosions. From these explosions in red,yellow and shades of gold, dust the color of fresh peach would fall to the airand shower upon not only the citizens, but the ground a blessing that had cometo be known as the great God’s Night—something that, while common, gave anyonelooking upon it hope. Soon after this, however, one’s eyes would eventually bedrawn to the distant walls, where light fixtures began to flicker on and rotateto face the glowing center of the God, and if they already did not have enoughto be distracted about, their eyes would then fall to the city, where lightfixtures arranged along roads and the tops of building would burst intosplendid life. Flowers, these things seemed to be, though flowers no longerexisted, and each and every one of them flickered open to give light to thecity’s dark sky.
Whenthe golden light flowing into the tendrils would stop moving, a newer, darkersource began to take its place.
Snakingfrom the depths of the deity’s center like liquid inside a long, complicatedseries of tubes, light the color of frosty crystal pushed itself against thewalls of the tendrils and pulsated to life. It began as a lifeless nothing,pregnant with infant and bloated with fat, then it slowly began to pulse, firstas a baby, then as an adult. Soon after, however, the tendrils began toflicker.
Anyonelooking upon this sight would have seen nothing in the brief fraction of amoment when what was known as day transitioned to night.
Whatlittle darkness that shadowed the city was lost within the next moment.
Thetendrils burst into light.
Frostblue lit the sky.
However,as impressive as this display was, no one and no thing wandering not only thestreets, but living inside the houses stopped to notice, as this was nothinguncommon and practically namesake in the city of Utopia, where dreams ran freeand where people lived of their own accord. They did not work, as machines didall their labor, and they did not starve, as God offered them all their food.
Toanyone looking upon this great, marvelous place, they would have seen nothingbut greatness, peace in an otherwise empty world.
Outside,darkness reigned supreme.
Barelyanyone stopped to notice.