Sunday, February 17, 2013

Time Gentleman

The Next Big Thing was the title of a chain of blog posts in which I was tagged a little while ago, which amounted to a self-interview on the topic of my current main writing project (Evil UnLtd Vol 3, folks!). Alas, we missed out on that occasion the opportunity to tag a certain writer, gentleman and scholar of our acquaintance.

The good news is that the gentleman in question, by the miracle of internet technology and some complex temporal science, can now be brought to you direct.

So without further ado, ladies and gentle-Morlocks, I give you not the Next Big Thing but the Previous-Next-Big-Thing, Craig P Kelly, man of many talents and author of Time Gentlemen, which I read and enjoyed not so very long ago.

What's the elevator pitch for Time Gentlemen?
Good question! To answer that I'll have to quickly check what an elevator pitch actually is. Just give me a second to google it...
Oh, I see. Let me think about that and I'll get back to you, okay?
What genre does your book fall under?
Humorous fiction. It's actually a science fiction adventure, but really I'm just trying to write something funny and the subject matter isn't all that important. I wonder if I'll sell more copies if I label it as erotica?
Where did the idea come from for the book?
I don't really know. I guess someone decided that it would be a good idea to bind sheets of paper in such a way so as the individual sheets wouldn't fly away, but I've not really looked into the history.
How long did it take from inspiration striking to completion?
Ten years, although I had middle 8 years off for good behaviour.
With all the time shenanigans going on, did you find it easy to keep track of all the temporal threads or did you have to resort to a flowchart?
I started with a hand drawn flowchart. To be honest the flowchart criss-crossed so much that it got a little bit messy, so I used a spreadsheet to try and help me nail things down. Actually, the chapter headings themselves helped me a lot, as I used these as a device to help me (and the reader!) follow the chronological thread. I was quite tempted to put all the chapters in reverse order just to see if anyone noticed. Maybe I could do that when I release the 'director's cut' or something.
What other books would you compare this to, if any?
My influences are Douglas Adams, Robert Rankin, Terry Pratchett and, of course Simon A Forward (you might not have heard of him). But I find it hard to directly compare my work with any of the above greats (or Simon A Forward) as I'm far too modest. So I'll say Tom Holt.
What actors, if any, would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie adaptation?
Jack - David Threlfall off of Shameless crossed with Johnny Vegas.
Joe - Hugo Weaving (halfway between Elrond and Agent Smith, with the brains of neither).
Alyssa - Karen Gillan, maybe with a bit of Tilda Swinton in her (not literally).
The Instructor - Robbie the Robot (with a cloak and after he'd lost a bit of weight).
Drager - me with hair.
Have you called Time on your titular Gentlemen or can we expect more from them?
No way! I'm well under way with a sequel and with a good wind behind me I'll finish this summer. The story starts with our time travelling anti-heroes stealing a historical artifact for an archaeologist who has decided to cut some corners. But can Jack and Joe travel through history without causing an almighty cock-up in the space-time continuum? Do they even know what a continuum is? The archaeologist thinks not, and decides to cut out the middle men (that's Jack and Joe in case you weren't paying attention). Meanwhile former friends become enemies, and enemies become friends. Or have they? The story features a stolen time machine or two, a famous sword, zombies-that-shouldn't-be, a nuclear meltdown, a mighty battle in an inappropriate location and at least one old man. The working title is "Swordplay" or "My Other Clock Is Also A Time Machine", I can't settle on which (so will probably pick neither).
Anything else you'd like to mention about the book might pique the reader's interest?
Yes. It's only £1.99. It has jokes in it (not real ones). I guarantee you will laugh out loud at some point if you read this book (although some laughs may be delayed and you might not realise what you are actually laughing at. I get that a lot, ask my lawyers).
Oh, wait, you wanted an elevator pitch. Here goes! Time Gentlemen is story about what happens when two clueless deadbeats accidentally stumble on a time machine and decide to steal it. They travel as far into the future as is possible and inadvertently free the enslaved remains of the human race from a crazed robotic overlord. They top this off by finding a missing cat, losing a missing cat and then stealing a missing cat. And, even better, the story finishes with a- oh wait, this is my floor. See you!

Thank you, Mr Kelly.

And by Next Big Thing I didn't mean to imply he was a Thing or indeed Big in anything other than a complimentary way. But I recommend you check out his book and you can discover more of his writings and other pursuits he, er, pursues, whether in or outside of elevators, on his site.


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