Author Interview with Joseph Carrabis!
Hi, Joseph Carrabis, welcome to the Indie Publishing Group website! Introduce yourself to us. Tell everyone who you are, where you’re from, what you enjoy doing, your hobbies and interests.
Joseph Carrabis here. Currently in Nashua, NH.
I enjoy cooking for friends, playing music, walking my dog, playing with my cat, loving my wife, writing, flying kites, … pretty mundane, actually
Hobbies. Pretty much what I wrote above.
Interests. Anything and Everything.
When did you start writing and why?
I wrote little plays and such in grade school, also stories to be read in front of class.
Why? I talk about that in https://www.josephcarrabis.com/2018/04/18/my-sister-got-me-started/
My sister read James Blish’s Mission to the Heart Stars and was so enraptured by it that she shared the story with me one night after dinner. The story interested me, and what interested me more was the fact that a book could so captivate her, so engage her, so focus her that everything else fell away. She shared her love of that book with me and I’ve wanted to give people something to share ever since.
Which is your favorite book you have written and what gave you the idea for it?
Which is your favorite child? Each book is a favorite along different vectors. What gives me ideas for my stories? I explain in https://www.josephcarrabis.com/2018/02/07/joseph-carrabis-its-autobiography-i-swear/ that everything I write is autobiography, it gets sold as sf, fantasy, children’s’ stories, poetry, fiction, et cetera. I long ago gave up figuring out which markets I write for and stopped writing “to” an audience. Now I write what I write and cash checks no matter where they come from.
How did you come up with the title for your book?
The Augmented Man? I have no clue. I asked Susan (wife/partner/Princess) and we both think it was always called that. Neither of us can remember wondering, “What shall we call this?” Some titles I can clearly remember; a WIP, The Book of the Wounded Healers, the title came to me while attending a psychology convention. I had no idea what the book would be about – the story came about four years later – but I clearly remember the aHA! of getting that title. Another work in progress, Search, has always been called Search. Sometimes the story comes first and I wonder what it’ll be called, other times the title comes first and it just sits around waiting for a story to get behind it.
Who helped you with the cover? Or did you design it yourself? What was your inspiration for your cover design?
The Augmented Man cover is based on an idea I had when I was sending it out to publishers. I tested a prototype to get people’s reactions, wanting to know if reactions matched my expectations. Pretty much they did. The covers to Tales Told ‘Round Celestial Campfires and Empty Sky are thanks to John Scullin of Skolenimation. Personally, I think they’re brilliant. Both are completely in keeping with the themes of the those books.
What are some of the themes of your story?
My editor tells people that the two things you’ll find in any of my work are a deep understanding of human psychology, and love. I’m flattered and I’d agree.
What’s your process when you sit down and decide to start writing a book and do you have a system?
A system. Yes, I sit down and write. A process. I haven’t worked one out yet. I sit and write. Or talk into a recorder. Or type at a keyboard. It’s non-stop. Characters want to get their moment and I oblige them…or suffer at their hands. Or tentacles or claws. I tend to let things flow. I recently discovered that my writing bogs down when I put my ego above my characters’ egos. Significant, that. I’m learning to get out of the way of my creativity.
Who are some of your favorite characters and why?
In my own work? We’re back to deciding who’s your favorite child. In things I’ve read? Odysseus, Ransom, Chocky, Kinneson, Seaton, just about anything in mythologies and folklores, Iron John, Red Riding Hood (the original), …
Who are some of your favorite authors?
Oy. AJ Budrys, Katherine Mansfield, Lucien, most mythologists, most folklorists, Poe, Wells, Doc Smith (dated and sexist, still a fun read), Robeson (oy, sexist, and still a fun read), Fritz Leiber, Blish, Van Vogt, John Crowley, Umberto Eco, Wouk, Doyle, Christie (when she’s hot she’s hot, when she’s not she’s not), Hammett, Crichton (ditto that hot and not thing), Wyndham, … how long a list would you like?
Have you got anything you’re working on now?
ROFL! Oh, a few things…I’m rewriting Empty Sky because I’ve learned so much storycrafting since it was first published. That’s not counting the various short stories, poems, and other novels I’m working on.
If you could have any superpowers what would they be?
To be able to exist without a superpower.
If you could travel to any location in the world where would you go?
Probably the kitchen. It’s dinner time as I type this and I’m feeling a bit peckish.
Where do you hope to be in 5 years’ time?
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