Author Interview of Sorin Suciu (The Scriptlings)

Author Interview of Sorin Suciu (The Scriptlings)

0-1Amber: Tell me a little bit about yourself and your book.

Sorin: I am a programmer, gamer, writer and husband, in no particular order. The book is called The Scriptlings and it is a tongue-in-cheek contemporary fantasy aimed at geeks and mortals alike.

Amber: What got you into writing and how long have you been doing it? When did you know that you wanted to publish?

Sorin: My first serious piece of writing, and by serious I mean something other than random poetry and skits, was an online project which I worked on together with my cousin. It started off as a Harry Potter parody, but it soon gained a life of its own. The concept was simple, yet quite avant-garde for the time (over ten years ago): the chapters were written alternatively by each author and published online, with no communication occurring between us.

A bit like improv comedy, I guess, but on the Internet. We ended up writing three such novels, achieving a decent level of popularity. Alas, I believe the website and its content are lost. It was written in Romanian, anyway.


Amber: What are some of your favorite writers and books?

Sorin: Terry Pratchett, Douglas Adams, Christopher Moore, Neil Gaiman, Jonathan Stroud, Philip Pullman, Tom Holt, Robert Asprin, P.G. Wodehouse, Robert Rankin, Tom Sharpe, Piers Anthony, George R.R. Martin, and many, many others.


Amber: What inspires you?

Sorin: I like to find inspiration in the most banal events, especially if there is an absurd quality to them. Indeed, next to puns, absurdity to the point of non sequitur is my main style of humor.


Amber: Tell us about The Scriptlings. What inspired it?

Sorin: I often describe The Scriptlings as the unlikely, yet strangely charismatic lovechild you would expect if Magic and Science were to have one too many drinks during a stand-up comedy show in Vegas. I don’t do this just because it sounds catchy, but rather because it captures a bit of its eclectic wild spirit.

I believe the main idea behind the story – that of Syntax being the language of both computers and magic – was inspired by Richard Dawkins and his “The machine code of the genes is uncannily computer-like.” (River Out of Eden, 1995).

Sure enough, the way genes trigger various actions is hard to distinguish from object-oriented programming. The very fact that we have discovered this similarity after actually inventing the first programming language is remarkable.


Amber: What made you get into humor writing? What is your favorite part about writing humorous material?

Sorin:  Certainly, Terry Pratchett and Douglas Adams were huge influences to me as a writer, and as a person. I did, however, write humor before discovering them. Being the joker in my class obviously helped, and from then on, it essentially became a self-sustaining mechanism.

The thing I love most about humor is its catalytic nature. Add it to anything and it will definitely cause a reaction. There is this subtle alchemy that humor is capable of, and that is the ability to turn an idea on itself and make people look at it in a new way.


Amber: I notice you had your cover art ready upon acceptance with AEC Stellar Publishing. Were you originally going to self-publish The Scriptlings? What made you go with AEC Stellar Publishing?

Sorin: Self-publishing did cross my mind, but that’s not the reason behind getting the cover art ready so fast. I knew exactly what I wanted the cover to be, so when I found the right artist (Travis Anderson, a fellow Vancouverite), we had that instant connection and he just worked his magic in no time at all.


Amber: What future works do you have in store for readers?

Sorin: I started blogging, which is an interesting experience to say the least. Other than that, I’m gathering material for a sequel to The Scriptlings, called The Masters, and for a standalone novel, tentatively titled Son of Neither.


Contemporary Fantasy and Updates

Contemporary Fantasy and Updates

So things have been going slow on the When Stars Die end because my contract manager is having some major tech issues and pretty much only has her smart phone to rely on. And as we know, smart phones aren’t always smart. But I spoke with Raymond Vogel, founder of AEC, and we’re hoping for a September release and I should be getting back to When Stars Die some time next week after he’s looked through it. (And I also can’t wait to see what my contract manager has done.) It’s coming at a great time too because I should be finished with my contemporary fantasy this week. Then I can let it cook next week while working on When Stars Die, then I’ll probably be able to get back to work on it the week after with line edits.

The mental illness questionnaire I posted on here and Tumblr has yielded some positive results, and I cannot wait to get to line edits. I also have three potential titles for the novel: From Children’s Hour, When Heaven Was Blue, and Good and Ill. More titles might be surfacing as I do the line edits and read more poetry by some of Gene’s favorite authors.

I also had three different people help me with the blurb, which is no longer two sentences. I am horrible with blurbs. If it weren’t for Nazarea Andrews, I wouldn’t even have the blurb for When Stars Die. So here’s the new summary for my contemporary fantasy:

Life is difficult enough for fifteen-year-old Gene White when sudden, disturbing hallucinations of a man in a gold suit threaten to drive him mad. The trauma drives him to suicide, but an equally mysterious puppeteer intervenes and saves him.

The news he brings is hardly reassuring.

The puppeteer offers him protection from the man in the gold suit, who is very real and even more dangerous. Gene is wary but finds himself desperate for any assistance he can get as his tormentor relentlessly attacks his already-battered mind, sending him into a continuously downward spiral of hopelessness.

I want to thank Mariah Wilson, Jake Bonsignore, and Kieran M. for helping me with the blurb.