Following up on the book feature of E.C. Jarvis’ debut Steampunk novel The Machine (see below) I also had the opportunity to interview E.C., which was quite a pleasure. I also found it highly interesting we both have a completely boring, mundane and uncreative job in our respective background.
But now, without further ado, here is the interview:
Please give us a quick introduction about yourself
I am a grumpy old man trapped in an English woman’s body. I dislike most things, driving, other people driving, queues in shops, other people in queues in shops… you know what? I could be here all day doing a list, let’s just say the list of things that don’t make me angry on a frequent basis is very short and mostly includes my husband and four year old daughter, and our hilariously stupid cat.
As George Bush Jr once said, “I have opinions, strong opinions – but – I don’t always agree with them.” I’m not a fan of the man but this quote is so profoundly wonderful in a way I’m sure he has no concept of.
Where can we find you on the web?
From what I gathered, The Machine is your first foray into steampunk, is that correct? (if not, what was it?)
Yes it is. I saw a prompt for a short story on a writing website that required the story to be steampunk. I had no idea what it was or what I was getting myself into, but after some research I found myself hooked.
What other genres have you covered with your works?
Let’s say most of my writing is fantasy. So within that you have sci-fi, steampunk (obviously), epic fantasy, and erotica, all of which I have written/am writing.
What got you interested in steampunk?
A fantasy world with airships, machines, and an impeccable dress code? What’s not to love? I know that a lot of steampunk stories are written as an alternative history, but I feel the genre has so much more scope. It’s a very divisive genre in some places, there seems to be some contention as to what is, and what isn’t steampunk, but I ignored the fussy people and just wrote the story as it felt right. I don’t see the point in worrying yourself so much over matching someone else’s definition of the aesthetic. If you try and enclose a genre into a tight box then you block out a world of possibility and who wants to do that?
Is there something you find particularly appealing in the genre?
I like that it has a great fan-base. The cosplayers, the readers and writers, it’s all there, a plethora of inspiration and complete commitment to the style. Whomever calls steampunk lovers by any derisive name, I shall happily punch in the cog pocket, there is nothing wrong with having passion for a subject and steampunk people are nothing if not passionate.
You are in accountancy as your day job, are you planning on getting rid of that dayjob for good one day? I know, this is a nosy question, but we are sort of in the same boat. I used to be a bank clerk…
Totally. It pays the bills, but it’s only fulfilling in that I have an odd affinity for excel spreadsheets (I’m the goddess of excel), aside from that I have no love for the job. If I could spend all day every day writing, living inside my own head and tapping out those weird imaginings onto the page AND have that pay the bills, I’d be one very happy lady. It’s that or turn to drink and live in a box etching wobbly musings on the walls of my box house in crayon.
How prolific are you as a writer?
Getting to be. It’s tough when you work full time, have a family and life just gets in the way. I have written two full novels (and two half novels) this year, so I think that’s pretty good going. Like anything, the more you do it the easier it gets, it’s becoming a habit.
Where do you get your inspirations from?
I have a small imaginary friend called Dranos who whispers in my ear at 8.23 am every day… Or, you know, the usual, movies, books, life. I daydream a lot and I also practice lucid dreaming so stuff just pops into my head, floating around, usually when I’m nowhere near a computer or writing apparatus. – my muse probably thinks it’s hysterical to taunt me so.
Are there any other settings/genres you wish to explore in the future and are there any other novels, short stories or just fragments of ideas you are working on at the moment?
I have an erotica novel lined up after book three of this series is done, then I’m onto sci-fi. Also there’s a YA fantasy rattling around in the back of my brain somewhere.
What are your plans concerning future projects
Write. Publish. Sell. Success. Repeat.
Thank you, E.C, it has been a pleasure. I hope you will rather sooner than later be able to get out of accountancy altogether and be a full-time writer.