Fiction sometimes comes from a single moment in time that sticks with us, is this the case when you sit down to write? Or do you plan each step? Is it formulaic for you?
For me short stories often begin with a mood or a moment, perhaps a favourite place or an incident I’ve witnessed. Often I’ll take some pics or record a few thoughts on my phone. Then I find I can unlock it later – sometimes months later – when I feel ready to write the story.
Do you have any previously published pieces you’re particularly proud of?
Here’s a couple:
During the editing process, do you find it difficult to adhere to a word limit? And if you do, how do you manage to keep it within the parameters?
My background is journalism and copywriting, so I’m used to writing to fit, cutting back etc. I try and get something down very fast, and then spend a lot of time tinkering with it. I struggle more with structure than editing – I reworked this one a lot based on feedback from a writer friend.
What inspired you to write this work?
A place in the woods near me that I visit often with my children. We discovered it by chance on a walk one day, and keep being drawn back.
Do you think Names of Nature is part of a larger work? It almost feels like this place could encompass more than one story.
I’m fascinated by cults, esoteric movements, new age culture etc (albeit as a curious observer) and have written lots of stories in this area, which I hope to turn into a collection. I don’t know what it is, I just seem to read and watch stuff about this all the time. The first novel I attempted was on a similar theme too, and I’m sure I’ll return to that one day.
You can read Dan Brotzel’s fiction piece, “The Names of Nature” in Issue Six of The Ginger Collect.