October 3, 2014

Post #3818 – 20141003

Dear Mr. Pinkwater,

I am sorry it has taken me a while to send the interview questions and I hope you are still interested in answering them. Hopefully with the help of the interview I will get an A on my literature assignment. I know there are a lot of questions so its fine if you don’t respond to them all. I read the Worms of Kukumlima for this assignment, so some of the questions regard the book and others are more about the writing process. Here are the questions!

1. What inspired you to write about giant worms from space?
2. When you first meet the worms, they seem friendly enough, but as you get to know them further they are self interested and obviously the antagonists of the book. Why did you make the worms evil and not just some pink, squishy, benevolent friends?
3. Why are, for the most part, all of the adults in your books so eccentric? Did you know lots of eccentric characters in your life?
4. Why did you start writing stories?
5. Why is science fiction the genre you mostly write in?
6. What do you think are the lessons in the journey in %u201CWorms of Kukumlima%u201D? The characters spend a lot of time seeking, without fully knowing their destination.
7. Why are many of your books about traveling to new and exciting places? How did you decide on Africa for this particular adventure? Have you ever been to Africa?
8. Your books have an artsy, cosmic, Buddhist hippie vibe. Your characters get lost and can%u2019t find their destination until they admit to themselves that they are lost. Why did you write about this concept?
9. Why did you write this book? For the money, or because you had a divine and inspiring message you wanted to share with the world, or was it something else?
10. How often do you write? What is your writing process? Do you find it easy to come up with ideas for your stories or does it take a while to do so? What motivates you to write?
11. Do you have a favorite time of day to write and what do you use to write (pen/paper, typewriter, computer, telepathy)?

Thank you very much for agreeing to do this. I hope your week has been going well. And as per our arrangement, you may post this on the DP forum if you would like.



Daniel replies:

  1. No one else had written about them--I don't know why. Common as they are, (worms), I thought there would be a lot of interest.

  2. Worms are evil! They entertain evil thoughts. I don't know what experience you've had, or whether worms you've known were benevolent friends. The ones around here are real stinkers.

  3. Oh yes! Starting with my very own family, especially my father, who was not exactly evil, but otherwise in many ways like a worm.

  4. First because I liked reading. Second because when I like a thing I enjoy thinking about it and trying to figure out how it is done. Third because in fifth grade I won a short story contest, and got a prize--so I knew from a early age you can get rewards for writing stuff. Later, when I was grown up, and it was time to find some kind of work with which to earn a living, I didn't want to...work. So I became a writer.

  5. Is science fiction the genre I mostly write in? I wouldn't know. I don't believe in genres. What is a genre anyway?

  6. If there are lessons in that book it is news to me. I don't know where the idea that there are lessons in works of fiction got started. Me, I always liked to read for pleasure and entertainment, and I do not require any reader of mine to learn anything.

  7. I have been to Africa...twice. And I had many adventures. My real-life experiences were more exciting than anything in the book...but I couldn't have written about those...no one would have been able to believe it.

  8. Because that is how real life actually works. Keep living, you will find that you agree with me.

  9. For money, such as it was, and because we like to do things we do well.

  10. Sometimes I write every day, and sometimes I don't write at all. I find it perfectly easy to come up with ideas, because I had a perfect education for a writer. Also because ideas are all over the place, and all you have to do is fool with them and tweak them into whatever kind of story you want to make. I am often motivated by need to pay for groceries, etc.

  11. Telepathy first, computer next. Very often I wake up knowing exactly what I want to write, possibly having dreamed it, (but not remembering a dream as such) and hurry to the keyboard and write stuff that more or less surprises me as I see it appearing on the screen.

Very nice questions. I hope you get an A+. Also possibly at least one of the readers of the forum will benefit in some way from reading this interview.