Author Interview with Daniel Kemp
Author Interview with Daniel Kemp
Hi Danny. Thanks for taking time to visit my blog. You’re a new author to Creativia, so I’m gonna to be nosey.
Who is — Daniel Kemp? What inspired you to start writing?
I had a car accident in 2006, not my fault, that put me out of effective work for four years, that’s when I started. I wrote a story, sent a synopsis with the first three chapters to about one hundred literary agents, sat back and waited for the phone to ring. It didn’t, until— one did ring. He sent those chapters off to the top fifteen agencies in the world, but, surprisingly, (English humor) nobody wanted it. He said write another one. I did!
That book; The Desolate Garden, was picked up by a film producer and off I went on a rocket to the second star to the right and back again. I was invited everywhere, including ‘live’ television and book signings all over the country. Distribution finally killed the dream of seeing— Based on a Book By Daniel Kemp as a credit on the big screen. No matter, it had been great for the five years it lasted.
What is your favorite book you have written and why?
This does change depending on all manner of things. Personally, I think it takes something different in the mindset to write a compelling short story rather than a well researched 100,000-word novel. Both require the person who reads it to connect with the characters and the story, but the novella has to do this in an idiosyncratic way. The essence of the novella comes from the dialogue or the mannerisms of the characters. I have written two novellas. One titled A Shudder From Heaven, the other Why? Both of these come into that category of a favorite.
What are the best and the worst aspects of writing?
As to there being bad aspects, I think that depends on what one expects from writing. For me there is none. I write because I love it, enjoy it, and wouldn’t know what to do if I couldn’t. But if recognition from a wider audience than the one being reached is an aspiration then bad reviews become important, as do sales figures and marketing techniques.
Everyone who writes wants to be read. That’s the idea when one selects a blank sheet of paper. I can remember how I felt when I first saw a book of mine being selected from a shelf in one of Waterstones bookshops. Fantastic feeling and somewhat bizarre to think my work was going to achieve that status of being read. The same experience is felt when someone on a social channel declares they have one on order or have bought a book. I have in the past sent signed copies to different parts of the world, that’s an even better feeling. So after praising so many self-centered reasons to write, I think it would be callous to say there were bad aspects.
How do you balance marketing one book and writing the next?
I don’t; I hate marketing. I find Twitter to be tedious and time-consuming. I take breaks from it for months to write. So I’m not the one to ask as really I guess I’m useless at that part of a writer’s life.
Are you an Indie Author or are you part of a publishing house?
I did self-publish, but now Creativia publishes my work.
What do you enjoy most about being an author?
Living in the world I create by being all the characters in the story.
Do you read books in the genres you write?
I have recently finished John Le Carré’s latest, A Legacy of Spies. I have read most of his work.
When you are not writing, what do you do to recharge?
This is a tough one as I’m always either writing or thinking about what to write. I have at the moment written four main novels, two novellas, one collection of three short stories and three children’s stories. I don’t intend to do any more children’s books, but I am writing something at the moment and would like to do at least one more main novel.
Besides being an author, do you have a second job?
No, I’m retired from paid work.
What makes you laugh?
Silly things! People who can laugh at themselves, have fun and enjoy life. I laugh at myself quite a bit. I dislike those who continually moan.
What (not who) would you like to take to a lonely island?
Barbed wire to stop anyone else landing!
Who would you like to invite for dinner?
A great cook.
It’s time to meet one of your characters. Which book is your character from?
The Story That Had No Beginning
Who are you?
I, and my dead twin brother are the main characters in the story that Daniel Kemp is telling.
What is your name?
Originally my name was Alice Collins, but I changed that to Alicia Collins when I ran away.
Are you a fictional or historical character?
I’m not sure if I should be offended by this question. I exist in the life inside this story, and it’s a current account, so I’m certainly not historical, neither will I get hysterical about answering it. However, it seems superfluous as the story is both fictional and historical with me being the only truth in the whole composition. I can’t quite work out if I’m a nice person or a bad one, as this DK has not finished with me yet.
What should we know about you?
I was born an hour or so before my brother in Alice Street near Tower Bridge in London. I was named Alice after the street, and my brother was named Tom as our Mum was ill all the time; Tom and Dick being cockney rhyming slang for Sick. You see our Mum and Dad had no imagination. Both our parents died when we were eight. I’ll skip the bits that Daniel Kemp makes up about me until he has me meeting Mary O’Donnell, a hedge fund manager and obscenely rich. That’s when things get going!
Tell us about your story: When and where is your tale set?
The opening chapter is set at a dinner party held at my partner’s house, overlooking the Thames in Chelsea. There are four of us at the table. I ask if lying is endemic in the world today. There is a motive behind my question, of course, and it’s really not that nice, but if I were to tell you, Daniel, my hero as a writer (I had to say that) would probably kill me off on the next page. So, I’m sorry, you’ll have to read it to know.
Anyway, I’m a world-famous photographer, my partner is a Queen’s Councillor, a barrister by any other name, Susan, who is with her partner, Marcus, is a newspaper editor and Marcus owns a string of nightclubs. He is a crook who wears a smirk most of the time. Susan used to live with his father. His father had an affair with Susan’s husband. Talk about confusing, or what! This author has a very strange mind.
Just to add to the perplexity of it all; Mary had a thing with Marcus which Susan knew about, but Mary’s dead, so that doesn’t matter, well, it does to Mary, but no one else apart from me, as she was a good friend who left all her money, along with the house here in the City of London and another house on the coast of Ireland, to me. I never have to take a photograph again, but I don’t know if I do, as Daniel is busy reading all his other books for a Miika Hannila, a publisher, and is not writing about me!
Although, as I’ve said this chap Kemp is writing the tale it’s my dead brother who is telling it. Yes, I realize that sounds a bit odd, but he, Tom that is, has this ability to read my mind and the situations I was enveloped in. I never met my brother after we went our different way, but I was told he’d changed his name after serving several terms in prison for violent crimes. All three of the dinner guest have met him. None of them knew who he was.
What is your personal goal? I mean, what do you ultimately want?
Hmm, good question! I want to hold on to the position I have in life. That’s my most important wish. It would kill me to go back to the way of life my parents lived. I’m respected and admired for my art. I’m drawing and painting again. Something I trained for and have a talent for. If the truth was to emerge about what I’ve done, I doubt if I could hold my head up in public ever again.
What is standing in your way? What conflict(s) do you face?
How do I get a copy of your book? Is it available now or when can we expect to see it released?
It is not available yet. Mr Kemp is too interested in his other work. But I’ll keep nagging away at him from the file that sits in the center of his computer screen.
Thank you so much, Daniel and Alicia, for being in the limelight. How can readers connect with you?
Amazon Author Page: This is still under construction…