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Danny Rhodes Interview

Posted on 29 June 2007. © Copyright 2004-2024 WriteWords
A longer version of this interview is available to WriteWords Full and Community Members.
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Writewords talks to debut author Danny Rhodes

Tell us something about your background.

Iíve had one novel published (Asboville Ė Maia Press Ė selected as a Waterstones Paperback of the Year 2006) and somewhere in the region of twenty short stories in a variety of small press magazines.

I run creative writing workshops in support of the novel in schools and Universities across the UK. I enjoy them from an educational perspective and it helps me reach new audiences but it involves a lot of travelling, by train (which I love) and car (which I hate).

How did you start writing?

Iíve been writing since I was a teenager and kept diaries when I was at school so I think itís always been in me to want to express myself with words. I submitted a few stories (always rejected) when I was at University and wrote for the University newspaper and then a few novels (always rejected) in the years that followed but it was all very sporadic.

Who are your favourite writers and why?

These have changed over the years and continue to change. Iím a fan of American fiction, largely because I find that many American writers employ a spare style that suits me as a reader. Iím a fan of both Ďliteraryí fiction (whatever that is) and good old fashioned story-telling so my tastes range from Hemingway and William Maxwell to Stephen King and Richard Matheson. Iíve always been a fan of well told supernatural/horror stories and love writing them. I try to avoid reading too much fiction when Iím working on a project as I find my writing mirroring the style of the author Iím reading. Not a good thing when youíre trying to retain your own writing voice.

How did you get your first agent/ commission?

My first success was getting on the shortlist of a BBC Get Writing Competition. Unfortunately the BBC closed that website down but it got me started. My first publication was in Openwide Magazine, a lit magazine I still submit to from time to time. I struggled to get an agent until I found a publisher for Asboville and then an agent approached me! Iím now represented by ICM.

What's the worst thing about writing?

The only thing that frustrates me about writing is not being able to afford to do it full time, but Iím working on that!

And the best?

When the words come so fast that you canít keep up with them. I love the rush I get when an idea takes off and begins to breathe all by itself.

Tell us what kind of responses you get from audiences\ readers.

Iíve had the pleasure of receiving some really supportive messages from readers of Asboville and Iím grateful for each and every one. I donít like to be influenced too much by others when it comes to my writing. I think new writers should always be wary of other opinions. If you give a person the opportunity to criticise something, they usually will. The danger is that in trying to please everyone you end up pleasing nobody at all, including yourself. Whatís the point in that?

A longer version of this interview is available to WriteWords Full and Community Members.
Click here to learn more about becoming a member.

Comments by other Members

Shika at 09:55 on 30 June 2007  Report this post
Hi, I don't usually comment on interviews but this one is interesting and informative,generous and unassuming. I wish you all the best with Asboville.S

dannyrhodes at 17:40 on 30 June 2007  Report this post
Thanks Shika. I hope it was encouraging too...

Murphy at 18:42 on 30 June 2007  Report this post
Thatnks for giving up the time to come and talk to us and good luck with the next book.

Shika at 07:53 on 01 July 2007  Report this post
It certainly was. S

dannyrhodes at 21:00 on 01 July 2007  Report this post
Yes, it's ironic really. You dream of something for years, work like a dog to achieve it and then immediately after comes the pressure of doing it again...only this time it has to be even better.

little monkey at 09:37 on 04 July 2007  Report this post
Just wanted to say i really enjoyed this interview and what an inspitayion! Thanks really, sometimes you need someone to tell you to stop being cynical.

The book sounds fascinating too, off to order a copy!

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