Saturday, March 18, 2006

About The Author

Hi there, Robert G. Male here, maybe it is ego talking but I thought it might be interesting for you my faithful audience to read some Questions and Answers about me. I have thought up all of the questions that I would be interested in if I was to interview a writer or author. Hopefully this will be entertaining if not actually enlightening. I tried to ask the questions that other interviews do as well as a couple of things I wish they would ask. I thought this might be a nice change of pace. Enjoy.

Q: What are your beginnings.

A: I was raised in a small town in Southern Ontario. The town has four churches, a gas station, a bank, a park, a restaurant and a cemetery on the outskirts. There is not much else there, a couple of stores including a convenience store that isn't open very late at night.

Q: Do you belong to one of the churches?

A: Yes.

Q: How did you get started on writing?

A: It was relatively late in public school when I took a particular interest in the creative writing courses we received. There was actually one defining moment where I was trying to write a story and things just clicked together after I burst the dam of writer's block. School wanted you to write a particular kind of story for the most part. They were not the kind of stories I was interested in. I did not read much in those days and when I did it was science fact stuff like dinosaurs and outer space. As for TV I watched as much science fiction and horror as I could get. So I was really waiting, it seems, for an opportunity to write about something I thought was interesting. For this story that just clicked, I was finally given the opportunity. I received a really high mark on the story too.

Q: How would you describe yourself to someone?

A: I tell people that I am a writer and I am working in the field of web design until I become an author. I am also a Webmaster with a stable of sites both on and outside of my own domain name, R.M.T.P. Co. As my faithful audience knows I run a site with reviews of books, movies, CDs and anything else I can think of at Bob's Reviews. I also run a site dedicated to a role-playing game that I am running, and a couple of fan-sites, and I of course started this blog.

Q: Why are you interested in and talk a lot about role-playing games?

A: Role-playing games are all about telling a story. A group of people, friends usually, get together and weave a story using rules from a book which generally also includes details of a setting. When done online, either through email, or in chats, or on a message service such as a list or bulletin board system (BBS), it becomes even more like writing. I enjoy it because most often I am the one organising everything. This means I handle descriptions of the setting, create all of the characters that the players are not using as their playing piece in the game, come up with the plots, and other such things. I approach it as I do any other story, and I write it all up like I would anything else I write. Role-playing games take some of the burden off of me as a writer because the other players create and tell their parts of the story through their characters. Quite often the players give me inspiration for what to do next in the story.

Q: Do you consider yourself outspoken?

A: Sometimes yes. I tend to be a very reactionary person in a group or a crowd. I sit and I listen to what is going on and if it is something of interest to me then I speak up. Otherwise I have the tendency to keep to myself.

Q: How do you write?

A: I think about things constantly. There is no peace inside my own head when I am awake unless I give it something to do like watching something or listening to music. E ven then it can still be kind of noisy. Just like when in a group or a crowd I react to the things I think of and inevitably I come up with ideas for stories. Often I will come up with an idea and I immediately visualise a scene. I visualise these scenes in a way that is sort of between seeing it like a piece of movie in my head and seeing it as words on a page.

Q: What do you fear?

A: I don't really fear anything except, as I've said elsewhere, myself. My own mind frightens me sometimes. It makes connections and out pops a story idea. I guess I kind of fear that it will go too far someday. If it's really a fear, and I do not think that it is yet, then you could say that I would be afraid of going insane someday and seeing things that are not there, things like from my stories. My first serial story, “The Lizard of Hallucination”, sprang from that possibility of fear. On a basic level most horror, at least the supernatural stories, are all about seeing things that should not be real but are real. Since we are talking about the real world here in this Q&A, the next best thing, as it were, is seeing these things due to insanity.

Q: Here is the question everyone asks and most authors and creative people hate to answer. Where do you get your ideas?

A: Hopefully no writing or authoring group comes along and slaps me down for this. I get my ideas from my within my mind. As I've said I'm constantly thinking about things and sooner or later a bunch of ideas get together and form the seed of a story. Sometimes the seed is a setting which makes me ask questions and from there a story is born. Other times I come up with a character that I would like to write about. I write stories that I would like to read myself. I keep dumping ideas into my head on a regular basis. I watch a fair bit of TV shows, movies, anime. I read about different things like new science breakthroughs, how things are made and how they work, how people react to different things, all manner of stuff. Then all of this information bumps around in my head makes a kind of stew and then good things come to the surface every so often. They come often enough that I'm busy with enough writing projects to fill my time.

Q: Is the interview over already?

A: I'm afraid so. I'm working on story about a Ouija board session, the fit is about to really hit the shan.

© 2002 Robert G. Male (updated 2006)

Mood: energetic.
Music: Locomotive by Guns 'n' Roses and Too Late for Love by Def Leppard.

Guns 'N' Roses: Use Your Illusion II
Buy these at Amazon.ca
Click Images to Buy
Def Leppard: Pyromania

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