May 18-30 2015
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Scott D. Southard is the author of A Jane Austen Daydream, Maximilian Standforth and the Case of the Dangerous Dare, My Problem With Doors, Megan, 3 Days in Rome and Me Stuff in addition to his latest release, Permanent Spring Showers. His eclectic writing has also found its way into radio, as Scott was the creator of the radio comedy series The Dante Experience. The production was honored with the Golden Headset Award for Best MultiCast Audio and the Silver Ogle Award for Best Fantasy Audio Production. Scott received his Master’s in writing from the University of Southern California. Scott can be found on the internet via his writing blog “The Musings & Artful Blunders of Scott D. Southard” where he writes on topics ranging from writing, art, books, TV, writing, parenting, life, movies, and writing. He even shares original fiction on the site. His blog can be found at http://sdsouthard.com. Scott is also the fiction book reviewer for WKAR’s daily radio show Current State.
What do you write?
My big thing is writing books that surprise me.
I’ve always enjoyed a new twist or something that is unexpected. It is usually that hook that gets me when an idea hits. So if someone was to grab one of my books that is something I can promise. Something truly new.
For example, my new novel Permanent Spring Showers could almost be considered humorously an anti-romance, filled bad relationship decisions. The story actually begins with an affair. Professor Rebecca Stanley-Wilson’s husband has just admitted to having an affair… and to make it worse it was with one of her college students.
Blame it on a desire for revenge (or way too much alcohol), she then has had one of her own. Unfortunately for her, her affair was with one of the great upcoming painters of his generation. That evening of passion will inspire a groundbreaking work of art. Showers is the story of all of the unique characters associated with that painting.
What genre do you favor?
If I had to find a genre for my writing overall, it would be literary fiction. Permanent Spring Showers is very literary fiction.
The funny thing is when I do write in a genre, per se, it is almost to see what new ground I can break within it. For example, my last novel A Jane Austen Daydream could be considered historical romance or regency, but it would not explain the post-modern twist in it. I’m really proud of that novel. Definitely for Austen fans but also those looking for something different.
When did you realize you wanted to be a writer?
I’ve always had a passion for writing and books. It’s just been a thing for me. I wrote my first book as a teenager and have been fighting the good fight for my stories ever since. Now I am definitely not a teenager, but I am still writing and dreaming. Heck, I do the book reviews for my local NPR station. Books are just part of my DNA.
What do you think is the best way to publish these days?
Self-publishing may be the way of the future, but I still think the market is too congested to easily find a market that way (unless you are super lucky). Usually, I tell the writers I work with to think of it as a last resort, try some other safer routes first. The dream approach is still agents and bigger publishers, and I don’t think that is going to change in the next decade.
Personally, I have had a lot of luck with independent publishers. There is a lot of passion there and I think it is because each publisher is putting their own money behind your project. It’s that personal touch. If a writer can’t find that dream agent or publisher, I would recommend talking to indie presses before self-publishing. There is still a possibility for success via that route.
What are your favorite genres to read? Why?
One of the big pieces of advice I give to writers I work with is to read everything, no matter the genre, no matter the author. You never know what will inspire you.
Being a book reviewer, I read a little of everything each month. For example, I’m reading the new book by Lori Nelson Spielman called Sweet Forgiveness. It’s really good and it could be considered women’s fiction. I just completed reading a great collection of short stories by Monica McFawn (Bright Shards of Someplace Else). That would be considered literary fiction. And in my spare time over the last three months I’ve been devouring Neil Gaiman’s classic Sandman series.
So, yeah, I read everything.
Do your characters talk to you?
Good, It’s not just me that has that problem! LOL.
Totally, I hear them in my head when I do dialogue. Part of the reason for me is I have a background in radio. I created a radio comedy series a long time ago called The Dante Experience. I think being able to hear voices was necessary for that, and it just hasn’t stopped.
I’m sure I’m not crazy…. At least I like to believe that.
How do you approach starting a new book?
I wish this was an easy question to answer. If it was, I could plan my books accordingly. But the fact is each book is different. Some ideas come to me in a dream, some as an afterthought. My last book idea came to me simply when I was on a walk. From there they grow. Some take years until they are ready, others are almost immediate.
What is your writing process?
Key for me is music. I have a background in playing jazz and my writing almost demands the right sound behind it. For example, Permanent Spring Showers was all about Fiona Apple. Her last CD really spoke to the work for me.
Once I find the right music, usually everything else falls into place. Usually, I am very scattered in my writing, but Permanent Spring Showers was different. It is the only book I have ever written that was in chronological order. Mainly, this is because was I gave myself a challenge to create this new book via my writing blog (“The Musings & Artful Blunders of Scott D. Southard at sdsouthard.com). I guess I wanted to see if I could do what Charles Dickens used to do with his work. It was a fun challenge, but I would never do it again. Yet, I think the final book really rocks. I can’t wait to hear what people think of it.
What was your best date ever?
One of my first dates with my wife was to Disneyland. This may sound silly to some, but I have always loved the sheer creativity around that park. Consider, there were no other theme parks like it when Disney came up with the concept. We forget how imaginative the enterprise was (and how lucky he was that it was successful). I am always in awe of new ideas like that. I mean, seriously, how often does someone find a new way to tell a story? But he did it.
If you could have a superpower what would it be? Why?
My son is obsessed with superheroes, and he probably could answer this in a second. For me it is a little difficult. I can always see the bad side that could come with each. I think immortality, and maybe the power to grant it in others. There we go! I want to decide who lives and who dies! LOL.
Beer or wine?
Actually, my think is cocktails. Have you heard of Tequila Mockingbird. It is a cocktail recipe book by Tim Federle. It is brilliant. It is filled with recipes inspired by classic works of literature. My wife and I have been experimenting with it for a while now. My current favorite in the book is Romeo & Julep. Highly recommend it.
I have a lot of authors I am a fan of. Kurt Vonnegut always jumps to mind quickly, as well as Ray Bradbury. Yet, Mark Twain is so amazing; we forget how creative he was. The man could write anything. George Elliott inspired aspects of Permanent Spring Showers. And, of course, I wrote a book starring Jane Austen, so I have to include her.
Seriously, I could go on and on and on…
Permanent Spring Showers
by Scott D. Southard
Professor Rebecca Stanley-Wilson is having a very bad season. The ramifications of one torrid evening with one of the great upcoming painters of his generation, will not only be felt across her life but over the entire art world. Sexy, funny, and very surprising, Permanent Spring Showers is the tale of one very memorable springtime and how it impacts a group of unique artists and dreamers. From the the hopeful Olympian with the failing marriage to the writer who is creating a new literary movement (through outright manipulation) to the romantic wondering what he did wrong to drive away the love of his life, each tale walks the line between reality and fantasy. And waiting at the end of the line is a very important painting… and possibly the revolver used in the Lincoln Assassination.
Yes, for the first time Marty was embarrassed that she was his sibling; a weird change he had to take note of. “But we all agreed with the story, Mary. You were the only one, the only one. The Benedict Arnold.”
Mary shrugged her shoulders, not hurt at all by the pronouncement. “You know I was right to do it.”
“No, you weren’t right.” Marty quickly walked over to stand in front of her, the size of Gordon almost blocking Marty’s view now of the cottage. “We all agreed. You nodded your head too.”
“It was a fake nod,” she said defiantly, as they began to once again argue like children.
“You can’t fake a nod.”
“I did.” Mary said, letting go of Gordon and walking towards Marty, not giving an inch.
“Look, I can do it now.” She nodded. “And here’s another.” She did it again. “I could go all day.”
“How can any of our friends trust you, trust me anymore?”
“Because of my nod?”
“Your nod of lies, yes. I’m guilty by association with your nod.”
She pointed at herself. “I own my nod.”
“If that was only true. Your nod affects all of us. It is the plague of nods.”
“Marty,” a voice said simply to their left, interrupting their argument. They both turned together, perfectly in unison to face Jenn. She did not look at all happy to be seeing them, and in her black with the rain and the clouds of smoke in the distance, she almost looked like a specter of death.
Scott D. Southard will be awarding a $10 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour, and a signed copy of his previous title: A Jane Austen Daydream (US ONLY) to a randomly drawn host.
Scott encourages his readers to follow the tour and comment; the more they comment, the better their chances of winning. The tour dates can be found here: http://goddessfishpromotions.blogspot.com/2015/04/vbt-permanent-spring-showers-by-scott-d.html