Friday, 4 October 2013

FUNKY FRIDAY - with author Neal Doran

It's that time again - FUNKY FRIDAY  and your chance to meet author Neil Doran.

Your writing seems to involve a lot of humour - do you find this easy and do you like to read books that make you laugh?

I love to read books that make me laugh, although I'm not  much of a lol-er, so it's usually a smirk and the occasional 'ha!' if something is really funny. There's a Canadian short story writer called Stuart McLean who writes about about family life who I think is very funny. Marian Keyes is the stand-out funniest chick-lit writer I've read, although I also liked Mhairi Macfarlane's 'You Had Me At Hello', which was properly funny. And Richard Asplin can turn out an excellent comic thriller if you like a few more twists and turns with your laugh.

I'm someone who has a tendency to communicate everything through references to comedy of some sort. I think it's probably easier for me to do than it is for the people around me who have to listen. I'm also a slow writer, so it can take ages to get a few hundred words on a page, and if I don't think they're funny or entertaining in some way as I go along it makes for very painful hours at the keyboard.

What's the worst thing about writing for you?

As I mentioned, I'm pretty slow at getting words on the page. I think it's one of the contradictions of fiction writing that it tends to involve asking a daydreamer to focus on a specific task, so the days when I just don't get the things I want to get done done are pretty horrible. But the thing is, the worst day writing is still better than a day not writing at all. There's a real feeling on non-writing days that there's something else I'm supposed to be doing that I just can't shift. Which is a shame, because they happen quite a lot ...

As one writer to another, I totally get what you're saying!  OK, Dream time.  Ultimate dinner party? You can have anyone dead or alive there - who would you have and why?

Tricky question. I think I'd veer towards living guests as it would be creepy to have dead people around to dinner. Although on the plus side they would eat and drink less.

Of the living I think I would pick Clive James, because he has stories about everything and everyone, and can make you feel clever because you like watching American TV shows.  Caitlin Moran could give Clive a run for his money, I reckon. Then Larry David. He'd be funny too, but would then probably end up offending everyone and cause a huge row and everybody would leave by a decent hour so I could go to bed after finishing the wine.

How do you deal with the dreaded bad review - are you a sulker of a shrugger?

I'm just getting into the time when I might get reviews, but I'm confident I'll be a shrugger.

That is if by shrugger you mean someone who'll be sitting in the corner with their shoulders convulsing uncontrollably as their body is wracked by sobbing.

Once more, I'm with you on that one!  So, if you were offered a squillion pounds to never write again, would you take it?

My writing's so bad someone's prepared to offer how much to stop? That's passion ... I think instinctively I'd say take the money.

But then I'd hire minions to whom I could dictate all my ideas, and get them to get on with the actual typing and those kind of details. And if anyone said that was cheating they could take their chances and sue me. Do you have any idea how powerful the lawyers' squillionaires can hire are?

Woah!  Clever answer!  Try this one then!  You've been invited in the Big Brother house - do you accept?

There are many reasons to say no to that. The main one though, is that I've never been a fan of getting changed in public changing rooms at swimming pools or wherever. The idea you'd be living in a house where the entire nation (well people who watch Channel 5) would be able to see your ablutions at any time around the clock is just too hideous. I'd spend the entire time hidden under layers of towels.

Planner or Winger?

Night or Morning?

Doer or procrastinator?

Writing/first draft or editing?
First draft.

Tea or coffee?
Tea. Tea, tea, tea, tea, tea. Tea.

Thanks so much for joining me, Neal.  It 's been fun and I wish you well with your writing.

You can follow Neal on Twitter @nealdoran

'Dan Taylor Is Giving Up On Women' is available to buy at Amazon and all major e-retailers.


Looking for a short informative book on CRPS? (Chronic Regional Pain Syndrome) Please support new writer Laura Smith and buy here.  AND my lovely son designed the book cover for her!

Fancy a book about a pole dancer?  Look no further, future FUNKY FRIDAY author Francis Potts and co writer Kitty Bittersplit have just released 'Life After Pole Dancing'

Searching for new chicklit?  Suzy Turner brings us 'Forever Fredless' - check it out now, I know I'm going to.

Next week I'll be welcoming Natalie McCormack from The Book Geek Wears Pajamas - it will be fun, I promise.

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