Monday, October 31, 2011

Interview with Corwin Ericson and Giveaway - October 31, 2011

Please welcome Corwin Ericson to The Qwillery as part of the 2011 Debut Author Challenge interviews.

TQ:  What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?

Corwin:  The simple fact that I write is quirk enough. Sitting tight and concentrating is difficult, but probably quite boring to observe. Lots of staring spells and bad posture. I’m not sure I understand the “joy of writing.” A good day of writing often leaves me feeling muddle-headed and intolerant.

TQ:  Who are some of your favorite writers? Who do you feel has influenced your writing?

Corwin:  If Swell were a stew, some of the significant ingredients might be Homer, Melville, Chandler, and Voltaire. I recently finished reading The Long Ships by Frans Bengsstom and loved it. I’m looking forward eagerly to reading A Cruel Bird Came to the Nest and Looked In, the new novel by Magnus Mills. The same goes for Nicholson Baker’s House of Holes. This summer I read and truly enjoyed a pair of short books about cranky elders on little Scandinavian islands: The Old Man and His Sons by Heðin Brú and The Summer Book by Tove Jansson.

TQ:  Are you a plotter or a pantser?

Corwin:  I almost always wear pants as I plot.

TQ:  Describe Swell in 140 characters or less.

Corwin:  This is like a Tweet, right? I used to think “blog” was the stupidest new word. Tweet is stupider. Swell is about a man, an island and a whale. It’s shorter than Moby-Dick.

TQ: What inspired you to write Swell?

Corwin:  I wanted to find out what lay beyond what I usually thought and wrote about. I was astonished to discover there was an end to my procrastination. I wish I had a handy answer--another writer or a book--but really it’s the sum of what was on my mind. Sometimes that seemed like quite a bit; other times, fog and darkness.

TQ: What sort of research did you do for Swell?

Corwin:  I read about Norse and American Indian mythology. Northeast island life. The Kalevala. The Arctic. Bears, lampreys, whales. I live in a small town on a small mountain in inland western Massachusetts, just like Herman Melville did while he was writing Moby-Dick. I figured if he could do that, I could too. Of course I conveniently did not remind myself that I had not ever been a whaler, nor had I jumped ship and lived on a South Pacific island. I did not research fishing or island life first-hand. I’d like to spend some more time on islands. I hope I never have to be a professional fisherman.

TQ: Who was the easiest character to write and why? Hardest and why?

Corwin:  I had some fun writing Mr. Lucy, a crotchety geezer, though I don’t know if it was necessarily easy. Writing the protagonist, Orange Whippey, was easily the hardest, since the novel is in first-person, and he did the most of the storytelling work.

TQ: Without giving anything away, what is/are your favorite scene(s) in Swell?

Corwin:  I suppose I have a fondness for scenes where men struggle to behave themselves in small spaces--like Ishmael and Queequeg, Daffy and Porky, Laurel and Hardy. I wrote a few scenes like those: in beds, saunas, and boats.

TQ: What's next?

Corwin:  I’ll be reading from Swell all over the place, where, during Q&As, I’ll be dodging this very question. I’d like to become healthy and wealthy and happy, but instead I’ll probably keep working on my next book. should be the source for updates and readings.

I’m also a contributing editor of Bateau Press: We’re reading submissions for the journal and for the next poetry chapbook now.

TQ: Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery.

Corwin:  You’re welcome.

About Swell

Dark Coast Press, October 25, 2011
Trade Paperback, 390 pages

Stranded on Wreck Rock, a bad day only gets worse when Orange is conscripted into service on board the Wendy's Mom.

After a drunken fall from the ruins of a navy ship and the ill-advised ingestion of a stimulating new drug, Orange is rescued by Angie Bombadier, a fetching and forthright fellow Islander.

But with the arrival of Snoori – a Finlindian whale herder on a quest to find the fabled hyperborea – and Waldena – a harpoon wielding Thor-cult prestess – the waters surrounding Bismuth get rough and Orange finds himself at the center of a search for a missing package.

Rumors swirl and dangers escalate, turning the serene isle upside-down. For things to be set right again, the package must be found and given to its rightful recipient.

Snorri is well-heeled and fiercely indomitable, yet drawn to Orange's own personal brand of complacency and coerces him into joining ranks. Korean smugglers also enlist Orange's help with their search (among other things). At the same time Waldena pursues the package for her own reasons. Perilous yet lithe, her frequent interrogations leave Orange terrified but oddly excited... that is until he learns that his life might actually be in danger.

A vast North Atlantic is teeming with mythical whales and epic tales. Cruising the open water, Orange drinks gallons of coffee and beer, barbeques squid, and even stumbles into a sweltering sauna with the alluring Bombardier sisters. Aboard the Honeypaws, he is set on course to encounter an ancient council that is helping secretly create the WhaleNet, a cell phone network made of migrating whales. The council's possible ulterior motvies could hold the surprising and bizarre resolution to Orange's journey.

Drawing from the various satiric traditions of Neil Gaiman, Thomas Pynchon, and Christopher Moore, Swell is full of legend and lore, big fish stories, and unforgettable humor.

About Corwin

Corwin Ericson's novel Swell is published by Dark Coast Press (Seattle, WA). He lives in western Massachusetts and works as a professor, writer, and editor.

Corwin's Links

Swell the Novel (website)

Swell by Corwin Ericson (Facebook)

The Giveaway


What:  One commenter will win a copy of Swell from Dark Coast Press (US Mailing Addresses Only).

How:  Leave a comment answering the following question:

What is your favorite kind of whale?

Please remember - if you don't answer the question your entry will not be counted.

You may receive additional entries by:

1)  Being a Follower of The Qwillery.

2)  Mentioning the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter. Even if you mention the giveaway on both, you will get only one additional entry. You get only one additional entry even if you mention the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter multiple times.

3)  Mentioning the giveaway on your on blog or website. It must be your own blog or website; not a website that belongs to someone else or a site where giveaways, contests, etc. are posted.

There are a total of 4 entries you may receive: Comment (1 entry), Follower (+1 entry), Facebook and/or Twitter (+ 1 entry), and personal blog/website mention (+1 entry). This is subject to change again in the future for future giveaways.

Please leave links for Facebook, Twitter, or blog/website mentions. In addition please leave a way to contact you.

Who and When: The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a US mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59pm US Eastern Time on Monday, November 7, 2011. Void where prohibited by law. You must be 18 years old or older to enter.

*Giveaway rules are subject to change.*

The View From Monday - October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!! Sadly, there is no Halloween celebration here. Our area, indeed the entire state, was hit hard by Winter Storm Alfred (named for Alfred Hitchcock). My town is 100% without power, and it's dangerous to Trick or Treat in snow, with no power, and with trees down all over the place. Maybe we'll get a Halloween do over sometime in November.

This week at The Qwillery:

Monday - Interview with Corwin Ericson, debut author of Swell.

Tuesday - Interview with Rochelle Staab, debut author of Who do, Voodoo? (A Mind for Murder Mystery 1).

Wednesday - Interview with Anita Clenney, Embrace the Highland Warrior (Highland Warriors 2).

Thursday - Natalie J. Damschroder, Under the Moon (Goddesses Rising 1).

Friday - Hannah Jayne, Under Attack (Underworld Detection Agency 2).

This week's releases are below. A book shopping list in PDF format may be found by clicking here. Click "File" on the left and then "Print (PDF)."

November 1, 2011

Brass Man (ri)
Neal Asher SF - Agent Cormac 3
Body Thief
C.J. Barry PNR - Body 2
Stone Spring
Stephen Baxter SF / AH - Northland 1
The Sea Thy Mistress (h2mm)
Elizabeth Bear F - Edda of Burdens 3
Heart of Steel
Meljean Brook SPR - Iron Seas 2
Temptation at Twilight
Jo Carlisle PER - Lords of Pleasure 1
The Accidental Werewolf (tp2mm)
Dakota Cassidy PNR - Accidental 1
Embrace the Highland Warrior
Anita Clenney PNR - Highland Warriors 2
Larry Correia UF - Grimnoir Chronicles 2
Under the Moon
Natalie J. Damschroder PNR - Goddesses Rising 1
Heart of Darkness
Lauren Dane PNR - Bound By Magick 1
A Fighting Chance
William C. Dietz SF - Legion of the Damned 9
Birds of Prey (ri)
David Drake SF
Dark Sins and Desert Sands
Stephanie Draven PNR - Mythica 5
Darkest at Dawn
Christine Feehan PNR - Dark Omnibus
Genie Knows Best
Judi Fennell PNR - Genie 2
Courting Darkness
Yasmine Galenorn UF - Sisters of the Moon 10
Courts of the Fey
Martin H. Greenberg (ed)
Russell Davis (ed)
F / SF - Anthology
The Neon Court (h2mm)
Kate Griffin UF - Matthew Swift 3
The Doomsday Vault
Steven Harper UF/SP - Clockwork Empire 1
A Rattling of Bones
C. J. Henderson H
The Wild Ways
Tanya Huff UF - Enchantment Emporium 2
The Lovecraft Library Volume 1: Horror Out of Arkham
Menton Matthews III (ed) H - Anthology
Under Attack
Hannah Jayne UF - Underworld Detection Agency Chronicles 2
Fire Works in the Hamptons
Celia Jerome UF - Willow Tate 3
The Storm That Is Sterling
Lisa Renee Jones PNR - Zodius 2
The Mammoth Book of Best New Horror 22
Stephen Jones (ed) H - Anthology
North of Need
Laura Kaye PNR - Hearts of the Anemoi 1
The Guardian
Sherrilyn Kenyon PNR - Dark-Hunter 21
Kafkaesque: Stories Inspired by Franz Kafka
John Kessel (ed)
James Patrick Kelly (ed)
SF - Anthology
Avenger's Angel
Heather Killough-Walden PNR - Lost Angels 1
Midnight (ri)
Dean Koontz H
Mutants and Mystics: Science Fiction, Superhero Comics, and the Paranormal
Jeffrey J. Kripal
Tied With a Bow
Lora Leigh
Virginia Contra
Eileen Wilks
Kimberly Frost
PNR - Anthology
Graham Masterton H
Jack McDevitt SF - Alex Benedict 6
The Ninth Circle
R. M. Meluch SF - U.S.S. Merrimack 5
The Hunter
Theresa Meyers PNR - Legend Chronicles 1
Magic on the Line
Devon Monk UF - Allie Beckstrom 7
Drink Deep
Chloe Neill UF - Chicagoland Vampires 5
Moonsinger's Quest
Andre Norton SF - Moonsinger Omnibus
Catastrophone Orchestra
Catastrophone Orchestra SP - Anthology
I, Robot: To Protect
Mickey Zucker Reichert SF - I, Robot 1
Kiss of Snow (h2mm)
Nalini Singh PNR- Psy-Changeling 10
Who Do, Voodoo? (d)
Rochelle Staab PM - A Mind for Murder Mystery 1
Angel Condemned
Mary Stanton PM - A Beaufort & Company Mystery
Atlantis and Other Places
Harry Turtledove Short Story Collection
Lynn Viehl PNR - Kyndred 4
Not Your Ordinary Faerie Tale
Christine Warren PNR - Others12
The Strangers on Montagu Street
Karen White PNR - Tradd Street 3
Wolf Among the Stars
Steve White SF
Death Magic
Eileen Wilks UF - World of the Lupi 8

November 3, 2011

Gambling with Galaxies
Paul Wesson SF

November 5, 2011

Unnatural Selection (ri)
Tim Lebbon SF - Hellboy

d - Debut
h2mm - Hardcover to Mass Market Paperback
h2tp - Hardcover to Trade Paperback
tp2mm - Trade Paperback to Mass Market Paperback
ri - Reissue

AH - Alternative History
EF - Epic Fantasy
F - Fantasy
FM - Fantasy Mystery
H - Horror
HM - Historical Mystery
PER - Paranormal Erotic Romance
PM - Paranormal Mystery
PNR - Paranormal Romance
PP - Paranormal Parody
PT - Paranormal Thriller
SF - Science Fiction
SFM - Science Fiction Mystery
SFT - Science Fiction Thriller
SM - Supernatural Mystery
SP - Steampunk
SPR - Steampunk Romance
TT - Time Travel
UF - Urban Fantasy