shipp-presentacion

Versión en español

About the author:

Jeremy C. Shipp is an American writer of Bizarro Fiction. He has written Vacation, Sheep and Wolves,Vinny the Bugman, Of Rain and Fire, Beyond the Wall.

More about Jeremy C. Shipp…

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Dr Tripas: What would be the most important qualities of a Bizarro author?

Jeremy C. Shipp: Every Bizarro author is a unique and mutated snowflake.  But we all share a common love for the bizarre.  We read, watch, write, and breathe the weird, the surreal, the absurd.  My favorite Bizarro authors use the unreal to comment on the real, in a manner that’s both thought-provoking and extraordinarily entertaining.

DT: Bearing in mind that many Bizarro writers consider themselves minimalists, what’s the importance of the reader in the construction of these stories?

JS: As a minimalist writer, I tend to obsess over every sentence, every word in a story.  This is because every detail is an important piece of the overall reality of the character.  And so, I depend on my readers to form their own understanding of the realities I create by taking these details and making connections.  I don’t explain myself, because I put everything out there that needs to be out there.

DT: What do you think the Bizarro genre gives to literature?

JS: There have always been writers who write weird tales, but the mainstream literary world tends to be very vanilla.  Therefore, the Bizarro genre is an opportunity for the stranger stories of the world to shine.  And literature needs alternative fiction the way society needs alternative viewpoints.

DT: Do you think Bizarro could be a long-lasting genre? Don’t you thing it could be like with other subgenres such as Cyberpunk, and just fade away?

JS: I hope the term “Bizarro” sticks around for as long as humans exist on this planet.  But label or no label, there will always be Bizarro fiction.  Most (if not all) Bizarro author write the way they do because of who they are, and not because they’re trying to conform to certain genre conventions.  We are unconventional by nature and nurture.

DT: Do you think the Bizarro label could end up being a constriction to some authors that want to do something besides Bizarro at some point of their careers?

JS: I’m a Bizarro author.  But I’m also a writer of horror, fantasy, science fiction, magic realism, etc.  And I get published in a myriad of publications.  The Bizarro genre has only opened up opportunities for me, and has helped me connect with readers who appreciate my writing.

DT: What Latin-American authors do you know?  Have you ever heard of people such as Pablo Palacio or Virgilio Piñera, labeled as Escritores Raros (weird writers)?

JS: I know authors such as Gabriel García Márquez, Laura Esquivel, Paulo Coelho—but I’m not familiar with the work of Pablo Palacio or Virgilio Piñera.  I’ll definitely change that fact as soon as possible.

DT: What does the C stand for?

JS: It stands for one of the following:

-Cookie Monster

-Cyborg

-Captain Planet

-Coconut Monkey

-Catbus

-Christopher

DT: Apart from movies, comics, music and pop art in general, what are your traditional literary influences?

JS: In my youth, I read a lot of HG Wells, Ray Bradbury, Alexandre Dumas.  These days, I’m often inspired by the works of Arundhati Roy, Louis Lowry, Kurt Vonnegut, Brett Eason Ellis, Amy Hempel, George Orwell, Haruki Murakami, Chuck Palahniuk, Francesca Lia Block, Roald Dahl, and many others.

DT: In your interview with Caleb J. Ross you said that your basic political point of view is that almost every aspect of civilization causes you horror, and it is certainly possible to recognize this in your books. But, what role does reality play in your work?

JS: The horrors of civilized social systems often inspire the horrors that take place in my stories.  And so, my tales are funhouse mirror reflections of our reality.  In other words, the world bleeds into my stories, and my stories bleed into the world.

DT: How does success participate in the creative process of a young writer such as yourself, being compared to people like Kurt Vonnegut and Chuck Palahniuk?

JS: I’m shocked and honored when people compare me to authors I respect, or when authors I respect speak highly of my work.  Thankfully, success never inflates my ego beyond repair, because I don’t write for praise or notoriety.  Even if I was stuck on a planet filled with Vaudevillian slugs who hated my writing, I’d still write, because I live to write, and I write to live.

DT: Any advise to other young writers wanting to get out there (us)?

JS:

-Write as much as you can

-Write from your heart, your mind, your spirit, your gut, your spleen.

-Submit your work to magazines, anthologies, publishers, etc.

-Don’t worry about the rejections.

-Go to ralan.com, duotrope.com and other such sites to find submission guidelines, and follow those guidelines.

-Collect yard gnomes (this one is optional).

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