Monday, February 26, 2007

How Do You Do That Thing You Do? Neil “Rat” Ayres Holds Forth

(Note—There is now a permanent link to the index to this series of posts over in the sidebar: WRITERS DESCRIBE THEIR STORYBUILDING PROCESS .)

Well, the identity of “Rat” of Pootle-and-Rat fame has been revealed, and by someone he probably thought he could trust (Pootle, aka Aliya Whiteley). And she sold him out cheap, too (all I had to do was ask).

It turns out Rat is Neil Ayres, whose novel Nicolo’s Gifts has garnered enough enthusiastic reviews here and there on the web that now I have to read it.

(And before I can do that, I have to wait while Amazon UK wraps it in waterproof packaging and then ties it to the tail of a manatee—or some other slow-moving sea creature—and points it in the general direction of California via the Panama Canal. At least that’s my current theory of their delivery methodology to the US. My alternative theory is that all books are held up by US Homeland Security until someone can verify that they are in fact books, something only a handful of people in the Bush Administration are capable of doing with any certainty, and their lips get really tired from all that reading. Sorry. It’s a sore point with me right now.)

In any case, Mr.Ayres has posted his varied approaches to writing, and I suggest you take a look. Like most realistic depictions of the process, it’s pretty damned funny.

Neil, nice to make your acquaintance.


Neil said...

Hi, David, and thanks for the mention.

Thanks for the NG order--but please I ask you to take off your editing head as you tread--it was written before I could, erm, write. At least properly.

In relation, there was an interesting article in the Independent arts bit today (pegged to the Deep Purple live album thing) about artists disclaiming their juvenilia. I do cringe a little when I think of people reading that book. But rest assured, I'm happy that the story, if you can ignore the wonky grammar and odd lapses into purple prose, stands up pretty strong.

David Isaak said...

Hi, Neil. I expect to enjoy it thoroughly.

As to my editing head, you have to go out of your way to annoy me once I've settled in to read. (Though there are some folks who've managed. Dan Brown case in point.) Just remember to be equally charitable when my book comes out early next fall...