CZP asked Imaginarium authors a few questions. See how they handle being on the spot, and how they handle The Hulk invading their stories! Between now and January 4th, 2013, CZP is running this special feature, and today’s author is Ian Rogers, who appeared in Imaginarium 2012: The Best of Canadian Speculative Fiction with the story “The Candle”.
I’ve been writing all my life, but I started writing seriously when I was around 18 years old or so. The first major story I remember working on was a Lovecraft pastiche called "Black Iron Shadows." It was published in a small-press magazine called imelod.
What is the best advice you have ever been given from a publisher/fellow author/opinionated reader?
The best thing I was ever told is that all writing advice is relative. Different things work for different people. But it always pays to listen. Also: if you don’t have time to read, then you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write. That last one is from Stephen King’s On Writing, and for me it’s one of the best pieces of writing advice ever.
What is it about speculative fiction that appeals to you, as a reader and/or an author?
The thing that appeals to me about speculative fiction as both an author and a reader is the boundless opportunity of it all. With other genres you usually know what you’re going to get, but spec fic by its very nature is completely unpredictable. Sure, there are some well-known and well-loved tropes, but the potential for a completely unknown concept or idea is right there waiting to be read — or written.
What do you do when you’re not writing?
I’m a photographer and an artist, although I don’t have much time for either with the time I spend focusing on my writing. I try to get out every fall to take pictures, because those are my favourite kind to take, and I usually complete one or two art projects every year. It’s nice to have other outlets.
Is there a book that you think would change the world (for better or worse) if every person was to read it?
Hard to say. People are different. It’s one of the things we supposedly pride ourselves on. The idea of one book speaking to everyone, and with the power to change the world, is an enticing one. But I can’t think of a specific book that would do that. Maybe that’s your answer right there.
The Hulk is now a character in your Imaginarium story: how would it change?
Well, my story is about a candle. I’m not sure if the Hulk would blow it out. He’d probably just smash it. But I guess that would do the job, too.
Ian Rogers is a writer, artist, and photographer. His short fiction has appeared in several publications, including Cemetery Dance,Supernatural Tales, and Shadows & Tall Trees. He is the author of the Felix Renn series of supernatural-noirs ("superNOIRturals"), including "Temporary Monsters," "The Ash Angels," and "Black-Eyed Kids" from Burning Effigy Press. Ian lives with his wife in Peterborough, Ontario.