Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Jeremy Hicks: Cycling the Ages But Not Grinding it Out

Jeremy Hicks must be hiding a secret because he's always smiling like the cat that ate the proverbial canary. I mean, seriously, I've never seen the man ever frown. It just kind of makes a fellow nervous, you know...

But beneath that crazy smile is a writer whose work is pure and simple beauty (and also a field archeologist -- eat your heart out, Indiana Jones!). Right to the point would be one way of describing his work. Well, as for other ways, we'll just let him tell you himself.

Tell us a bit about your latest work.

My current project is a short horror submission for the Summer of Lovecraft anthology. This collection will feature Cthulhu Mythos-themed stories set in the 1960’s. Without giving away any spoilers, my particular tale will be a tale told about the Vietnam War but from a unique perspective.

What are the themes and subjects you tend to revisit in your work?

In this particular story, I’ll deal with karma, people reaping what they have sewn so to speak. As with most of my work, this tale will deal with darker themes, the more twisted side of humankind. It will also hint at the ancient majesty of the universe, the collective amnesia of the human race, and the fact that we known less than we think and assume so much from so little. Misunderstandings and mishaps that result from the passionate, often misguided beliefs people hold and the actions that they will take because of those beliefs are something else I delve into in a lot of stories.

What would be your dream project?

I started out writing screenplays and actually prefer that format to novels and short stories. So, I’d like to take on my dream assignment. I’d like to do the Star Trek universe justice by reworking the new Pop Trek alternate timeline. Or even write for the next Star Trek television series. I have a storyline that would work perfectly for either format; I’m just waiting for J.J. Abrams or Paramount to call me. Call me. This story will blow your minds.

If you have any former project to do over to make it better, which one would it be, and what would you do?

Honestly, I’m in the process of doing that now. We’re considering an edited and expanded version of our first novel. One that might feature a new cover by the same artist working on the cover for the sequel, Sands of Sorrow.

What inspires you to write?

Less and less these days. I’ve been in a funk since finishing our second novel. I’m not one of these people who can grind it out every day. At least, I’m not there yet. If I’m not feeling it, my writing turns out to be shit. Or at least I think it is shit. And according to Brief History of Time, imaginary shit might as well be real shit in the brain of the observer. So, it all turns to shit. Am I allowed to say shit? Guess we’ll find out.
What writers have influenced your style and technique?

That’s a good question. For better or worse, H.P. Lovecraft. Great storyteller but not the best writer. Other writers of horror and the macabre have too, such as Poe, Stephen King, and the Roberts Howard & Bloch. But I feel like my actual writing may be influenced too much by nineteenth century authors such as Dickens and Ambrose Bierce. I tend to write in long but lean sentences. And I don’t much give a damn if I have to use a three or even five syllable word. I try to be precise with my word choice and use of language, even if my reader might have to learn something in the process.

Where would you rank writing on the "Is it an art or it is a science continuum?" Why?

Writing and science both feature formulas and involve processes, but I don’t see writing as a science. Process and formula does not a science make, I guess you could say. Writing is an art form, one that can be structured and dissected but one that is also subjective. It cannot be quantified as it is judged largely on an emotional reaction to the content, often times without regard to the structure and form utilized by the writer.

Any other upcoming projects you would like to plug?

My first short story with Pro Se Press was released a couple of weeks ago as a part of their Digital Single Shot series. It’s called “The Savior of Istara” and ties into The Cycle of Ages Saga properties. This story tells the secret origins of Tameri, the daughter of one of the main characters introduced in our novel Finders Keepers. She’ll play a major role in the upcoming sequel, Sands of Sorrow. That novel is currently being edited by the folks over at Dark Oak Press and Media. You can find out more about our saga as well as its authors at www.cycleofagessaga.com.

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