A Fevers of the Mind Quick-9 Interview with Mark McConville

with Mark McConville:

Q1: When did you start writing and first influences?

Mark:

Q1: When did you start writing and first influences?
I started writing at the age of 14. Back then my writing was raw and had little structure, but in the middle of all that chaos there was a glint of light shimmering through. I was influenced by the works of Mick Wall when it came to music journalism. He’s such a great journalist and the way he writes about music is majestic. His style and knowledge are unparalleled and he has written many books on the world’s biggest bands. Also, Ben Myers is a standout influence not only for his fiction writing but for his music journalism. Nowadays he only writes fiction, which is fantastic, but as a music scribe he wrote books on Muse and Green Day, respectively. As for fiction, I adore the writing of Cormac McCarthy and Iain Banks. Their writing is metaphorical and rich. I aspire to be half as good as those authors.

Q2: Who are your biggest influences today?

Mark: My biggest influences today are the independent writers, the writers who dazzle under those well developed independent publications. These creatives are just as good or even better than the mainstream writers. I have written substantially for a publication called Bristol Noir, which is absolutely fundamental to my progression. It is overseen by the talented John Bowie, who in my mind, is one of the hardest working writers in the scene. His writing is rich, it is riveting; it has some much depth and the character development he instills in his work breaks boundaries. I am thankful for him to for publishing my flash fiction and short stories on Bristol Noir. A Fevers of the Mind Quick-9 Interview with John Bowie

Q3: Any pivotal moment when you knew you wanted to be a writer?

Mark: I knew I wanted to write when my parents sadly passed away when I was only 14. When they passed, I seemed to have developed this ability to write my pain. My writing is dark always, and it has developed over the years, but it all stems from heartbreak and sorrow. I didn’t have any writing ability before my parents died; it was probably hidden in me, lying dormant, but it had taken immense agony for it to show.

Q4: Who has helped you most with writing?

Mark: I owe so much to my high school teacher Gavin Cunningham and my college lecturer Linda Jackson for instilling belief in me. Those two incredible people taught me how to be a writer, how to believe in my own abilities.

Q5: Where did you grow up and how did that influence your writing & had any travels away from home influence your work?

Mark: I grew up in a small Scottish town called Carluke. I didn’t really influence my writing. It isn’t the most glamourous place on earth, but it’s home.

Q6: What do you consider your most meaningful work you’ve done creatively so far to you?

Mark: I have written many articles and reviews over the years for many reputable websites and print publications. I am proud of those pieces of writing. The most meaningful work would have to be my forthcoming poetry collection, Lyrics From The Chamber. That chapbook has my feelings laid bare. It will offer the reader a gateway into my world, a dark world, a world where pain and sorrow are bubbling. These poems all have their place, and they will shock.

Lyrics From The Chamber (First Cut) eBook : McConville, Mark, Douglas, Craig: Amazon.co.uk: Kindle Store

Lyrics From The Chamber (First Cut) eBook : McConville, Mark, Douglas, Craig: Amazon.co.uk: Kindle Store www.amazon.co.uk

Q7: Favorite activities to relax?

Mark: I love listening to music. It helps me in so many ways. I adore punk in all its unconventional glory. It also helps me relax and I love conveying through my reviews and articles its impact. Reading books is another way for me to relax and I love falling into different, breathing worlds, where it can go from being majestic to dark in seconds.

Q8: What is a favorite line/stanza from a poem/writing of yours or others?

Mark: There is one stanza that stands out for me. ‘’This House Is A Prison For Vital Organ’’ I am proud of that line and its included in Lyrics From The Chamber. Those are the lines I strive to produce, lines that provoke responses. For me, poetry must have an impact, and lines like that are pivotal.

Q9: Any recent or forthcoming projects you’d like to promote?

Mark: Some of my flash fiction and short stories will appear in a Bristol Noir anthology which is slated to be released soon. I am proud of this feat, and I am thankful to the brilliant John Bowie for including my work In ‘’Savage Minds And Raging Bulls’’ If you enjoy dark stories and compelling works of noir, then check it out when it drops.   *Also, see answer to Question 6*

A Fevers of the Mind Quick-9 Interview with B F Jones

with B F Jones

Q1: When did you start writing and first influences:

B F: When I was a teenager I wanted to be a playwright and theatre director and my dream was to direct Sartre’s No Exit as well as Waiting for Godot. I had a go at writing plays but didn’t follow through.
Fiction-wise my first influences were a mix of French and English classics and contemporary gothic, horror and realism. Villon, Beaudelaire, Maupassant, Du Maurier, T.S Elliot, Poe, Ellis, Bukowski to name a few.


I wrote my first piece of flash fiction in 2013 and then wrote a bit on-off until 2017 when I did a short creative writing course. After that I started submitting more work out and writing more regularly.
I didn’t get into poetry writing (apart from that one poem about a feather in 6th grade) until late 2020.

Q2: Who are your biggest influences today?

B F: I’d say most of those cited above are still valid along with some new classic and modern discoveries (Sarah Kane, Emily Dickinson, Manchette among others) and the work from writers and poets from the indie writing community that I have huge admiration for. I would struggle just picking one of them out of the lot though!

Q3: Where did you grow up and how did that influence your writing? Have any travels away from home influence your work?

B F: I grew up half in France and half abroad, I spent a few years in Russia as a kid and developed a taste for Russian literature as a result, in particular Bulgakov and Chekhov.
Moving a lot as a kid turned me into an anxious adult and I’m definitely using quite a bit of that in my writing!

Q4: What do you consider the most meaningful work you’ve done creatively so far?

B F: I don’t think it’s any piece of work in particular, much more the ability to write and edit confidently and to no take rejections too personally.

Q5: Any pivotal moment when you knew you wanted to be a writer?

B F: I was always keen on writing, writing-related assignments at school were the only thing I got good grades at – but didn’t think I could do it until I discovered flash fiction.

Q6: Favorite activities to relax?

B F: Running/hiking, cooking, family time, reading, listening to music.

Q7: Any recent or forthcoming projects you’d like to promote?

B F: Yes 2 collections published by Alien Buddha, my debut poetry chapbook, The Only Sounds Left, that was released last month and a Flash Fiction collection, Artifice, out on 9 July. 

https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/aw/d/B096TTR7BG/ref=ox_sc_act_image_1?smid=A3P5ROKL5A1OLE&psc=1

Q8: What is a favorite line/stanza from a poem of yours or others?

B F: Oh that’s a tricky one. There’s a couple of things I like more than the rest but no specific line in particular…

Q9: Who has helped you most with writing?

B F: I’m very lucky to have a great group of writers that I talk to regularly and that are super supportive. To name a few: Stephen J. Golds, James Lilley, HLR, Scott Cumming, J. Travis Grundon, Max Thrax, John Bowie.

Links:

https://punknoirmagazine.com/2021/05/06/iv-poems-by-b-f-jones/

https://www.bristolnoir.co.uk/tag/bf-jones/

https://idleink.org/2020/03/01/flowers-by-b-f-jones/

https://www.deadfernpress.com/b-f-jones

https://rejection-letters.com/2021/06/17/revenge-is-best-served-with-coffee-b-f-jones/

A Fevers of the Mind Quick-9 Interview with Stephen J. Golds

photo from Punknoir Magazine

with Stephen J. Golds

Q1: When did you start writing and first influences?

Stephen: I had always been writing to some extent while I was younger, but recently started writing again seriously November 2019 to help me deal with mental problems I was having at the time. My first influences were Charles Bukowski, Knut Hamsun, John Fante, Sarah Kane. From a young age, I liked reading about people on the fringes of society, outsiders, outcasts. Still do.

Q2: Who are your biggest influences today?

Stephen: My major influences have pretty much remained the same. However nowadays I tend to look to my peers on the indie scene. Seeing the stellar work, they are putting out there really lights a fire under my ass to try and be better. Write better. Edit my work and strive for higher grounds.

Q3: Where did you grow up and how did that influence your writing? Have any travels away from home influence your work?

Stephen: I grew up in the North of London but moved to Asia when I hit adulthood. I travelled around a bit and then landed in Japan. London is an amazing city and will always have a place in my heart but my heart loves Okinawa now and I find a lot of inspiration in the ocean, the light, and the different landscapes they have out here. The cocktail of beaches, hills, jungles, harbours, and inner-city areas. Love the people and the culture.

Q4: What do you consider the most meaningful work you’ve done creatively so far?

Stephen: I would say it is Always the Dead – a noir novel about the 1949 disappearance of a young starlet named Jean Spangler. Its probably the one book that I feel defines my prose writing the most.

Q5: Any pivotal moment when you knew you wanted to be a writer?

Stephen: At sixteen realizing that I couldn’t sing or play a guitar so had to give up the idea of being the next Kurt Cobain.

Q6: Favorite activities to relax?

Stephen: Boxing, skateboarding, surfing, reading, and hanging out with my two beautiful daughters.

Q7: Any recent or forthcoming projects you’d like to promote?

Stephen: I have a 100-page collection of previously uncollected poetry coming out with Alien Buddha Press on the 3rd of July titled Cut-throat and Tongue-tied – Bullet Riddled and Gun Shy. And I have a new noir novel about corruption, a missing child and OCD – just out with Red Dog Press titled I’ll Pray When I’m Dying.

Q8: What is a favorite line/stanza from a poem/writing of yours or others?

Stephen: Favorite line is probably from Always the Dead, when discussing life, “It’s all just a circle of bullshit and blood.”

Q9: Who has helped you most with writing?

Stephen: It’s a long list of great people I met on twitter. People like Rob Parker, S. E. Moorhead, Alec Cizak, B. F. Jones and Gabriel Hart to name just a few.

Links:

2 poems by Stephen J. Golds “Boat Trip in VietNam” “Bus Stop Man”

https://www.amazon.com/Books-Stephen-J-Golds/s?rh=n%3A283155%2Cp_27%3AStephen+J.+Golds

https://www.bristolnoir.co.uk/interview-stephen-j-golds/

https://www.bristolnoir.co.uk/review-always-the-dead-by-stephen-j-golds/

https://punknoirmagazine.com/2021/04/15/3-poems-from-stephen-j-golds/

https://punknoirmagazine.com/2021/06/17/your-call-is-important-to-us-by-stephen-j-golds/

A Fevers of the Mind Quick-9 Interview with John Bowie

with John Bowie:

Q1: When did you start writing and first influences?

John: As long as I can remember, I’ve written. I spent a lot of time as a child hiding in a giant second-hand bookshop in a disused train station. First influence to take seriously was Bukowski. The truth and words filled with heart and soul were hard to ignore. Also, the attitude of just getting on and doing it. Like taking a breath. An automated reflex and a gift. And damn the world if it loves or hates it—it’s for the writer.

Q2: Who are your biggest influences today?

John: Many new and established authors. I’ve made a lot of connections through my e-zine: Bristol Noir. All the writers who submit are very inspiring creative characters and their words match that.

Q3: Where did you grow up and how did that influence your writing/art? Have any travels away from home influence your work/describe?

John: I was born in Northumberland. An area rich with stories and a history including Vikings, Romans, wars and battles. The scenery is epic too. I studied in Manchester in the 90s, so the bands, music and clubs were a massive influence. I was there when the IRA bomb went off too and saw the aftermath. And, I’ve done lot of travelling around Malaysia, Borneo, Hong Kong and Australia. I’m using these memories, particularly of some of the remote islands, in the current book I’m working on, Viking (due out with Red Dog Press).

Q4: What do you consider your most meaningful work you’ve done creatively so far?

John: I’ve found that my poetry is. As well as being succinct emotional snapshots it’s also an exercise in crafting short prose, even tighter than flash fiction. Each one in my latest collection, Dead Birds & Sinking Ships, is like cutting me open and seeing what’s inside. My work in progress, Walking Towards The Noise, is the same and very cathartic to write.

Q5: Any pivotal moment when you knew you wanted to be a writer/artist?

John: I’ve always done it so there was no turning point as such. My credibility and confidence came with other writers and indie publishers reading, getting it and asking for it. Same with the artwork and cover illustrations.

Q6: Favorite activities to relax?

John: I’m a David Lynch fan and have recently discovered and started Transcendental Meditation techniques after hearing him talk about it. His weather forecasts on YouTube are very soothing too. I’d highly recommend Nick Cave’s The Red Hand Files as well.

Q7: Any recent or forthcoming projects you’d like to promote?

John: Please check out my latest crime noir thriller Division (Red Dog Press) and my poetry collection Dead Birds & Sinking Ships (Close to the Bone) both of which came out this month. My artwork is also on Redbubble – tagged The Aloof.

Q8: What is a favorite line from a poem/song of yours, or favorite piece of art or photograph?

John:

Jenny Saville, Propped, 1992

Q9: Who has helped you most with writing?

John: My wife. I can’t say enough. We’re co-joined and growing together. Writing is such a huge part of my world and she has been very knowledgeable and supportive through it all.

Links:

https://www.bristolnoir.co.uk/about/john-bowie-author-biography/

https://punknoirmagazine.com/2021/05/04/4-poems-by-john-bowie-johnbowie/

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