It's not just a name, it's an institution. Actually, it's just a newsletter.

The Next Big Thing

This post is Writers' Union short story award winner, Amy Stuart's, fault. Which is a cowardly way of saying thank you, Amy Stuart,  once again. In this case for including me on this chain mail type thing. ("A literary game that is spreading around the internet," as Julie McArthur so eloquently put it.) The game is to title your post The Next Big Thing, answer ten questions about your work-in-progress and promote some writer friends along the way.


1. What is the working title of your book?

"2012 Novel" is the f0lder's name, for what that's worth.

2. Where did the idea for the book come from?

My life, my past, my experiences, my writing experiences, my reading, my imagination, my memory, my fear, my heart, my libido, women, my mother, Freud (joke), my father, my friends and enemies, that asshole on the subway (you know the one), my wife, my life and of course the movies, oh how I love the movies.

3. What genre does it fall under?

General fiction. It involves love, but I'm not promising a happy ending. I can promise that there won't be a woman astride a horse on the cover.

4. Which actors would you choose to play the characters in a movie version?

Oh I couldn't answer that. But I can say that Mia Wasikowska in the first season of In Treatment, Daniel Day Lewis as Lincoln and Vanessa Redgrave on stage in New York in 2003 as Mary Tyrone in Eugene O'Neil's Long Day's Journey Into Night have all blown my mind.

5. What is the one-sentence synopsis of the book?

It involves love, but I'm not promising a happy ending; Japan will turn up at some point as a character.

6. Will the book be self-published or represented by an agency?

I don't know. One can hope, but I have yet to pound the pavement.

7. How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

I'm not finished yet and it's hard to pinpoint when I started. The first version of this first draft (pathetic, I know) was started in January of 2012. But let's just say that there is a "2011 Novel" folder and one for 2010, and that quite a few scenes in all three versions/folders come from a completed first draft of a novel I finished before 2010.

In other words, I started it quite some time ago.

8. What other books would you compare yours to?

Let's just say I'm working to make sure it's not some piss poor version of The Catcher in the Rye, The Sun Also Rises, East of Eden and the majority of what Haruki Murakami has written excluding 1Q84. Also, the books I love most, like Cormac McCarthy's Suttree most recently, I'm incapable of emulating.

9. Who or what inspired you to write this book?

Angst, discipline and Ai. I shouldn't be too cool to include passion in my answer as well.

10. What else about your book might pique a reader’s interest?

Being so superstitious as to not want to give an answer is probably a good answer even if it sounds calculated.


Now, go read:

Jessamyn Hope 

Wendy Litner

Matt Beam


 You on twitter?