Interview with the Editor

As I have mentioned a few times before, my blogs have been edited by James Singer. He is absolutely amazing, and I can’t thank him enough for his help. He truly goes above and beyond to make my work shine as bright as possible. So instead of just giving him a quick thank you in my blogs, I want to make this week all about him because he deserves it. He also writes and there will be a link to his work in question 3. So please enjoy learning a little bit about the person who helps make this blog so great.

What do you do for a living? How long? Is that what you wanted to do?

I’m currently working as a transcriptionist, typically doing TV shows. Long story short, I type the dialogue that ends up as subtitles on the screen. I’ve been doing it for about four years now, and it’s not what I wanted to do, but it’s a job.

Where do you want to take your writing/editing career?

I would like to get to the point where my writing and editing could be a career. At the moment, I’m still working on improving my skills in both, as I’m sure I always will be, but I’m hoping to apply and get accepted to an MFA program in the next year or two.

Do you write any original stories? What style do you write in? Website/link?

I do. Most of them are pretty short, less than 1,000 words, but a couple are longer, and there’s one story I’ve been working on occasionally that’s around 13,000 words. I’m a little stuck on it, but hopefully it’ll be presentable soon. I don’t know if I have a certain style yet, I’m still trying to experiment, but my stories do tend to be on the darker side. Most of my stories can be found at jamessingeriii.com, a website I recently made.

What inspired you to start writing?

I’ve wanted to write off and on throughout my life. The first things I remember wanting to be when I was little was a wizard (unrealistic), an archer (slightly more realistic but not practical), and a writer (slightly more practical). When I was 9, I wrote 30 pages to my first ‘book,’ “The Battles of Darkness,” a story about animals with superpowers. I never did finish it. In middle school, I wrote some stories in my weekly English class assignments, and then there was another break until high school, when I wrote two or three stories that in hindsight were absolutely terrible. For some reason at the time I thought they were good. In college, I took a couple fiction writing workshops and really enjoyed them, but I never went further with it because I thought I had to focus on my major. That major didn’t work out, mainly because I don’t actually like it, and so I’ve come back around to writing, hopefully for good this time.

Who do you look up to as a writer?

I really enjoy the styles of a couple writers and would be happy to one day be able to write like any of them. Terry Pratchett’s humor and characterization is great, and his ability to comment on society while still providing the reader with an entertaining story is impressive. Stephen King has a mastery over horror and atmosphere, and he’s also prolific, which is something I would like to be able to one day emulate. Aaron Thier’s prose is satirical and humorous, dark and existential, and generally deals with social issues. The language of H. P. Lovecraft, while incredibly dense at times, can be beautiful and atmospheric, and his stories deal with the weird and unknown and unknowable. He also created his own mythos, which is cool. “The Last Unicorn” by Peter S. Beagle is beautifully written, and every word matters, and there’s so many puns and foreshadowing and everything else, and it’s just a very well-crafted book.

Outside of your job and writing, what is your favorite hobby?

I read, program, and play video games. What I’ve been reading lately is some stories by Russian authors and also Irish fairy tales. Programming, I just learned CSS and PHP and refreshed myself on JavaScript in order to work on my website, and I’ve been playing a bit of the newest expansion of World of Warcraft in some of the rest of my free time.

Where are you from?

For the majority of growing up, I lived in Florida around the Tampa area, but for a couple years I lived in Maryland near DC. I enjoyed the snow quite a bit. Now though I live in Gainesville, Florida.

Where did you go to college? Major?

I went to the University of Florida and majored in mathematics.

How has your fiancé influenced your writing?

She encourages me to write happier things and add some humor, which I think is a good thing, otherwise my stories would all be depressing. She is an artist, and she’s helped me a lot with the layout of the website and encourages me to add description and imagery to my stories. She also introduced me to some of her favorite writers such as Terry Pratchett and Peter S. Beagle, who have since become some of my favorites as well.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

No idea, really. Hopefully by then I’ll have an MFA in creative writing and be working on a novel or collection of short stories while working as an editor to help others do so as well.

 

Thanks for reading everyone. I hope you all check out his work, It’s very good. I’d love to start doing some more interviews as well, so keep your eyes peeled.

Hasta La Pasta,

Zach

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