Monday, January 30, 2017

Interview with Jon Griffin, author of Black Space and Cloudbreak

Today, the Speculative Fiction Showcase is pleased to interview Jon Griffin, author of Black Space, Cloudbreak and other SFF stories.

You say you like to write in many genres. What attracts you to Speculative Fiction?

I have been a reader of sci-fi and fantasy since I first learned to read. I’ve read all the classics, and though I have less time to read as I get older, I still prefer reading spec-fiction. I write in other genres because I have ideas that don’t always play out in a spec-fiction way. Believe it or not, my main source of income is romantic suspense. You won’t find that though since I write under a couple of different pen names.

Has travelling and living in many different places affected your writing and if so, how?

I think travelling and living both in the US and abroad allows me to put unique locations or customs into my writing. It also allows me to use people I’ve met in interesting ways.

Tell us a little about Cloudbreak, your most recent short.

Cloudbreak started as an idea I had while I was in Medellin Colombia. It was raining for a few days straight and coming from the desert of Las Vegas, seemed like it would never stop. I mentioned the storyline to a writer friend of mine, Lou J. Berger, and we decided to go with it.
The premise is Three children are stranded on a planet light-years from earth and they are running out of food. They only know the rain. 10,000 days of it and someone has to leave the pod or they all die.
It’s a short story.

Are you more of a horror writer or does SF predominate?

Almost all my new projects are spec-fiction. I have one big thriller that I may finish someday, but my next book is spec-fiction.
Do you prefer to write stand-alone novels?

In my romance writing, I tend to write cliff-hangers, but in sci-fi, I only write stand-alone, at least so far. Most of my stuff is shorts or novellas, so there is no real need to serialize them.

What are you working on at the moment?

The book is tentatively titled, Parallel Universe. It’s about two FBI agents assigned to strange cases and they discover parallel universes intruding into their own.

Do you belong to a writing group locally, or do you prefer to work alone?

I don’t belong to any writing groups. I guess I’m just used to working by myself. That said, I am a member of several private Facebook groups, so I’m not really alone.

Where do you see SF going in the years to come?

I wish I knew. I think that stories are becoming shorter for sure, and as technology changes, the implications of that will be reflected. I think the classic themes will always be around, but just like all arts, genres get blended and themes are being combined.

Androids and AI: are they a dystopian or a utopian future?

I think they are dystopian. It’s probably the influence of earlier writers I’ve read that most technology ends up bad. It’s a lot harder to write about utopian futures anyway.

Would you rather see your stories on the big screen or the little screen?

Everyone dreams of a blockbuster at the theaters, but with technology changing so rapidly, there isn’t much difference anymore. I love the little screen because I can watch at home, relaxed and usually can pause. The big screen does have a certain atmosphere, but if I bring my kids, it’s an expensive outing.

Are you hooked on any of the shows on the sci-fi channel? If so, which one(s)?

I hate to admit it but I don’t watch a lot of television. There are a couple of shows I have put on the DVR, but I never seem to find time to watch them. The Expanse looks good, and 12 Monkeys.

What films are you watching now?

I binge watch usually, but I just got done watching The Man in the High Castle. I’m still debating with my friends if there will be a season 3. My answer is no, but I hope I’m wrong.

Are you--or have you ever been--a gamer?

I’m not. My kids are, but I really haven’t kept up with gaming. Growing up I played a lot of Dungeons and Dragons, but, and I’m aging myself here, the original Atari came out when I was in high school, and there were no real personal computers that did much. I did play a lot of pinball at the local arcade though!

Do you cook? What is your best/favorite/most popular recipe?

I love to cook and prefer simple, hearty dishes. I can make some pretty complex dishes if I have to. I am around the cooking classes when I teach at UNLV in the hotel college, so I have a pro kitchen at my disposal and sometimes cook for my beers classes.

Would you prefer an independent bookshop, or a big chain?

I’m divided on this. Big chains offer one thing most indies don’t, selection. Indies offer something most chains don’t, curation and to some degree specialization.

Do you have your own office, study or writing space, or can you write in a cafe or the library?

I converted my third car garage into an office. Other than the main garage door which I left functional, it looks like an office. Wood floors, painted walls, insulation and heating and air conditioning.

Who do you consider are your major influences in writing?

I would have to say certainly the classic writers. Asimov, Bradbury, Heinlein, Clarke. Then of course, the epic fantasy I still reread on occasion, Tolkien, Herbert, and a cult favorite, Donaldson. I’m sure there are more, but I’ve read so many books now that I sometimes forget who wrote what and even confuse the storylines.

If you could have any director to shoot the film of your book(s), who would you choose?

Probably Peter Jackson. I love his style. Or I may go off the deep end and have Quentin Tarantino do a number on one J

How would you define Speculative Fiction?

I have a hard time with that. I think there isn’t any difference between spec-fiction and science fiction. If I had to define it though, I would probably say that spec-fiction includes science fiction, and includes other, non-science related memes. Maybe adding fantasy elements, and more suspension of belief.

About Jon Griffin

Born in Los Angeles Jon Griffin has lived in many places and many countries. He enjoys writing books in many genres and especially loves hanging out with his family and traveling the globe to visit old friends and make new ones. Besides writing, he's an adjunct professor at UNLV and teaches the world about beer.

Website | Amazon Author Page

No comments:

Post a Comment