Books, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Interviews, My Thoughts, Nonfiction, Works Published

Interview With Ian Kelly


Goodmorning and welcome to my biweekly interview series. Today I have the honor of sharing with you the writing and blog of Ian Kelly. He’s a talented guy who has recently published a book of short stories. You can find Ian’s blog here: Ian Kelly Writing.


interview-ian
Credit: Ian Kelly

 

1. Hi Ian, Please Tell Us About Yourself?

Hi. My name is Iain Kelly and I’m from Glasgow in ScotlandI have lived here all my life and it’s where I write my blog from. My blog is called: Iain Kelly Writing.

Telling about yourself is always the most difficult question to answer, so I’ll keep it simple! I work as an editor of television programs for BBC Scotland. I’m married with two-year-old twins who take up most of my time. After work and family if I have any time left I like to write.


2. When Did You Begin Writing and Blogging?

I first started my blog six years ago and spent a year doing film and book reviews. I neglected it for a couple of years and then took a fiction writing course online. When I had finished that I had a few short pieces that I liked and decided to share them on my blog. From there I have kept writing new short stories and flash fiction.


“After work and family if I have any time left I like to write.” – Ian Kelly


3. What Does Writing Mean To You? Why Do You Write?

When I was much younger I wrote stories. I have always enjoyed coming up with characters, letting my imagination wander with them and see what stories resulted. I used to play football (soccer) and would write stories about fictional football teams and players. As often happens, life gets in the way of dreams. 

I went to university and studied English Literature, Film, and Television. My career took me down the path of television. Eventually, I’ve found the writing bug again. Writing is a chance to escape everyday life and I love being able to imagine the lives of many different people in places around the world. I enjoy thinking of the stories that could happen there.


4. Where Do You Find Your Inspiration and Motivation to Write?

I tend to write fiction based on real life, or perhaps a fictional future world rooted in reality. I don’t tend to write fantasy or science-fiction specifically. My inspiration comes from the world around us. It could be something happening in the news, events, politics, but also from looking at everyday people, the struggles and/or laughter they share with each other. My motivation may come from wanting to try and comment on events that are occuring. Writing is a way to turn frustration into something creative or to attempt to cope with a situation in life.


“Writing is a chance to escape everyday life and I love being able to imagine the lives of many different people in places around the world. I enjoy thinking of the stories that could happen there.” – Ian Kelly


5. Is There a Time of Day You Prefer to Write?

My time available to write depends on my work schedule and my children. When the kids have gone to bed in the evening I try to fit some time writing in. Or if the twins go for a nap during the day sometimes I have a chance to write. The main thing is that I have to find the opportunities to write when I can!


6. What Are Your Most Current Writing/Blogging Projects? Any Hopeful Projects for the Future?

At the moment I am working on my first novel-length story. I would say I’m about a quarter of the way through the first draft. I have the characters and the main story figured out, so the next couple of months will be dedicated to getting my head down and finishing the story.

After the first draft is finished I will re-write and edit. I’m aiming to have a finished novel by the end of the year and then decide what I want to do with it –- if it’s worth sending to a publishing company or self-publishing the novel.

Alongside that, I will continue writing short pieces for my blog. It helps to take a break from a long novel and focus the mind on something different every so often, before going back to the main project.


“At the moment I am working on my first novel length story. I would say I’m about a quarter of the way through the first draft. I have the characters and the main story figured out, so the next couple of months will be dedicated to getting my head down and finishing the story.” – Ian Kelly


7. Can You Tell Us About Your Recently Published Book? 

At the start of this year, I self-published a collection of my short stories from my blog in a book called Collected Sketches. I decided to do this at the end of 2016. I realized I had a lot of stories, some with similar themes and dealing with similar issues, that I thought were quite good and worth collecting together as a compendium.

The other benefit of publishing theses stories was that it gave me a chance to try self-publishing out for myself which I hadn’t done or considered doing before. I’m pleased with how my book turned out. It’s available to a global audience through on Amazon: HERE, which is an amazing thing to happen to my writing. You can find out about Collected Sketches by Ian Kelly on my blog or through Kindle on  Amazon.com


interview-ian-collected-sketches
Credit: Amazon.com – ‘Collected Sketches’ by Ian Kelly

Buy it HERE

 


8. Can You Briefly Describe Your Writing Process that You Went Through To Publish? 

I used Createspace online to self-publish. After looking around at a few online resources I went for this one mainly because it was free to do, and also it allowed me to do everything myself. Other sites offered help in editing and formatting and design, but at a cost.

If you’re confident to do these things yourself then Createspace is excellent. With the novel I am currently writing, I plan to try the traditional route of sending it to agents and publishers. But it is good to know that if all else fails I can self-publish and still have my novel out there into the world. Here is the link to Createspace HERE.


9. What Is Your Writing Process Like?

I think I’m still figuring my writing process out as I go through this novel. Most writers advise that the best thing to do is write the first draft as it comes to you. Whatever happens, keep writing! So I’m following that advice.

I already know there is a lot of it I will return to and completely rewrite but this way allows the story, plot, and characters to spill out and take form, freely. I will go back and finesse that raw material. I enjoy the editing part of writing probably more than the initial writing. Doing flash fiction short stories is great practice for that.


“I already know there is a lot of it I will return to and completely rewrite but this way allows the story, plot, and characters to spill out and take form freely. I will go back and finesse that raw material. I enjoy the editing part of writing probably more than the initial writing.” – Ian Kelly


10. Do You Have Certain Genres You Prefer to Write or To Read Books In?

I tend to stick to everyday drama or real world stories. But I also love to read and write spy stories, war fiction, and crime fiction. I might occasionally try other things too.

I spend a lot of time reading. Favorite authors would be John Le Carre, Martin Cruz Smith, Agatha Christie, James Ellroy, Ian McEwan, William Boyd, Ian Fleming, and Terry Pratchett –- to name a few. I also like to try and go back and read the classics every so often such as Tolstoy, Dostoevsky, and I love Alexandre Dumas and The Three Musketeer novels. I think that comes from my days as a student of English Literature. 


11. Do You Have Any Advice For Other Writers? Do You Have Any Favorite Blogs You Like To Follow?

Just keep writing and getting your work out there into the world for people to read. Ninty-Nine Percent of people will be kind to you and give constructive criticism and feedback. If you love doing it, keep doing it. And read lots too.

 I follow loads of great fiction writers out there so rather than trying to pick from them I will pick three alternatives:

  • One for writing prompts is a relatively new flash fiction challenge called ‘What Pegman Saw’ which uses Google Maps as a prompt each week to give a location to inspire stories. It’s a great idea and means I learn a lot about various places around the world, as well as writing stories.
  • I don’t really do film reviews anymore, but one of the best blogs that I follow for all things film-related, including reviews is The Snooty Ushers at which one of my friends from University days contributes to. Great reviews and doesn’t take itself too seriously.
  • Finally, Joanne Kelly Art and Design. I am biased but my wife Joanne has her own blog. She is a graphic designer and artist and has started creating works both by hand and on computer software. Some great stuff, so I hope people will check it out.

14. Can You Please Share With Us A Few Links From Your Blog? 

Flash Fiction, I have always liked this one, to sum up being a writer:

 

“The Writer’s Spiral”

By Ian Kelly

***

interview-ian-joy-pixley
Credit: Joy Pixley

***

Mark met Bob from Accounting at the bottom of the stairs.

‘Another Monday morning,’ said Bob, as they began the trudge up to the office. Mark grunted in reply. Bob began every Monday with the same conversation.

‘Don’t you ever feel like we’re hamsters in a wheel, going round and round and getting nowhere?’ Bob continued. ‘There must be something more exciting in life than this.’

As Mark prepared to answer, the lights went out. Out of the window, they saw bright orange beams cut through the air. Aircraft buzzed around them, firing at one another. Buildings exploded as aircraft and missiles crashed into them. The sky darkened as a large spaceship loomed over the city. Mark ducked as a piece of debris crashed through the glass next to them. It caught Bob and sent him plummeting to the ground below.

***

The writer paused and read back what he had just typed. It all spiraled out of control too quickly. He sighed and pressed Ctrl+A and Delete. The cursor on the blank screen blinked at him. He started again.

***

Mark arrived at work at the same time as Bob from Accounting…


Here Are Some Of Ian’s Longer Pieces he wrote and favorited:


Thank you so much, Ian, for wanting to be interviewed I enjoyed your answers and you seem to have a solid idea of what you’re doing as a writer and how to achieve your set goals. Best of luck with the novel and future endeavours. 

If you would like to be interviewed please reach out to me on my contact page. I would love to tell your story as a writer or if you blog for a cause, I can also interview on that as well. See you in two weeks!


©Mandibelle16. (2017) All Rights Reserved.

Current Events, Event, Flash Fiction, Flash Fiction for the Aspiring Writer, Italian Sonnet - Iambic Pentameter - Octave (abbaabba) - Sestet (cdcdcd), My Thoughts, Poetry, Writing, Writing Challenges

Flash Fiction for the Aspiring Writer: Poem – Italian Sonnet “The Rooster’s Year” #amwriting #poetry #flashfiction #BellLetsTalk


Thanks to Priceless Joy for hosting FFftAW.

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Credit: SingleDust

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Lunar New Year, this January coming, 

Falls on the twenty-eighth; each year changing. 

Two-days short each month, calendar arranged, 

Every now and then, extra month added some —

Years; sweeping out the bad luck, bring income —

Of good luck for the Rooster’s year; detained

With bad luck being born in Rooster’s year same. 

Chinese all celebrate — dragons welcome. 

Say Rooster’s confident, hardworking, honest

People’s person; then, firecrackers light —

Sky with brilliant red, ends old year; promises, 

Year of luck, decorated scarlet; fond —

Kids gifted with cash; all enjoy the night, 

Dragons, food, and firecrackers delight

—–

See: “When Is Chinese New Year 2017? How to Celebrate and What the Year of the Rooster will Mean” by Mickey Smith 

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©Mandibelle16. (2017) All Rights Reserved. 

Free Verse, My Thoughts, Nonfiction, Pinterest, Poetry, Quotes, Relationship, Religion/Morality, Short Stories And Serial Stories, Travel

Poem: Free Verse – “Words After Turning Thirty-One” #amwriting #poetry 


http://www.pinterest.com

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What do we become as women at thirty-one?

Are we put out to pasture? 
Or are we doing the kicking to the curb? 

Are we like the woman of the 1960’s? 

Childless, no husband, so no value? 

Are we no longer desired? 

Are we spinsters, old-maids, bachelorettes for life? 

Or are do we fit my Uncles words:

“The most beautiful women are in their thirties.” 

Is it just the beginning, or is it the end? 

A last stretch of youth?

Or maybe, a reach for adulthood? 

Where some intelligence kicks in, 

And you’re tired of the lies, 

Meaningful nights; mornings depressed. 

So, you’ll wait for the right kind of guy, 

With the right kind of flaws;

Or maybe you live your own charmed life? 

Happy to be single, confident, relaxed.

Is it coming out of bubble gum and pink clouds? 

Finally not a girl;

But a woman who can impact change? 

Is it refinement and elegance? 

A striving for grace and eloquence? 

Is it realizing there is no Prince Charming? 

No white horse or Disney fairytale? 

Building your own life,

Do you forge it the best you can? 

Is it becoming aware even greater, 

Your teachers in childhood are growing older;

Your most lives won’t be around forever, 

So, you gather their wisdom while you can;

Spend time with them now.

Time steals loved ones; be they young or old.

Is thirty-one when you realize,

You are not impervious to dying at anytime in life? 

Severe fatigue, cancer, lupus, Thyroid troubles, 

Depression, anxiety, car accidents, the flu, MS;

Disease in some form, affects us all, 

Bodies which don’t bounce back as easily;

Requiring movement to maintain fitness,
And junk food, oh you’ll pay for it later! 

Sharing a bottle of vodka, tequila, or wine;

Drinking almost all of it, 

Can this be done anymore, and survived? 

Two glasses of wine or two beers, 

Every once in a while seems alright, 

Or face the two-day hangover regrettfully.

The biggest thing about being thirty-one, 

I’ll never get back years in my twenties, 

Lost in fatigue and mental illness, affects of meds;

They’re fond memories of genuine friends;

Futures, I see possibilities of having.

But someone wise once wrote, at the ages if 15 to 32:

Don’t worry about marriage, kids, or being grown-up;

Just enjoy and learn, explore the world. 

The wanderlust calls to me endlessly, 

A mysterious adventure waiting;

Such planning, such difficulties, such hardship; 

For a fantastic trip; I could barely walk all day, 

Or afford it; but wouldn’t it be worth it? 

To have thousands of foot prints,

To cover my pages, and see it’s okay – life goes how it does.

Thirty-one it’s only begun; an age of aspirations, 

Hopefully, inspirations to write more of;

As numerous as my days in all my years allotted. 

Passion and a life to live, anyway I know how.

Grace of God abounding; encircling profoundly, 

His child, he won’t let stumble long.

He guards with angels, and —

His forever promise of light in the dark; 

As wise JK Rowling wrote through Dumbledore:

“Happiness can be found even in the darkest of times; 

If only one will Remember, to turn on the light.” 
——

©Mandibelle16. (2016) All Rights Reserved