Welcome to Freelance and Fiction, Conchie! Could you tell us a little bit about your novel?
“Undrawn” tells the fictional story of an artist, Kyle Reed, who is called out of a self-inflicted familial exile when he’s told his father is dying. It’s a journey into what made him the man he is in the present, and the choices he can still make to paint a different canvas for the rest of his life. “Undrawn” is about self-forgiveness, about the love that surrounds us and which we often fail to recognize. Ultimately, it’s a story about the elaborate brushstrokes that make up family ties and intimate relationships.
What led you to write this novel?
I grew up surrounded by art and I’ve collected artwork for over 25 years. In my dealings with artists both as a collector and a student of Liberal Arts, I couldn’t help but fall in awe and fascination with the intricacies of the lives and personalities of many painters and sculptors I met. I felt I had to tell the story of an artist, of the layers of thought, concept and vision that fill the minds of artists, the impact of their lives on their art and viceversa. Kyle became more complex as I wrote and revised the novel, during the span of over 10 years, and I feel very happy with the literary painting I drew. I can’t paint at all, so this is my small contribution to the arts. J
What is special about literary fiction?
I’ve always been drawn to writing that tells a story in a highly artistic way. I can enjoy light fare and pop lit as well, but I’m more compelled to fall in love with and remember stories and characters with layers and complexity.
What authors inspire you?
I fell in love with John Irving when I was 16; someone gave me a copy of “The Hotel New Hampshire”. His characters continue to be quirky, unforgettable and profoundly heartbreaking, such as his Owen Meany in “A Prayer for Owen Meany”, which continues to be my favorite novel. I have a tremendous amount of respect, love and admiration for John Irving’s mind.
What is the best advice you can give to other writers?
Do not give up. If you can’t get into the top 6 publishing houses, don’t despair. Technology and amazing resources (like self-publishing portals) give us tools, access and resources we couldn’t have dreamed of 10 years ago. Write your fingers off, make sure you write your best book possible, and then shout it out to the world. Readers will come, but your first task as a writer is simply to put it down. You owe it to your characters and their stories; you simply cannot deny them birth!
Thank you for a fantastic interview, and best of luck with your book!
Undrawn can be found at Barnes & Noble, Smashwords, and Amazon in both print and electronic form.
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