CHARLES TOWNE [charlestowne]
What did you first read? How did you begin to write? Who were the first to read what you wrote?
Jack London, The Iliad, The Bible, Steps to Christ, The Great Controversy, James Oliver Curwood, Euland, Blake, Brian Jacques, The classics
What is your favorite genre? Can you provide a link to a site where we can read some of your work or learn something about it?
Broad spectrum, Nature, History, WWW.CHAZ-WRITERSHEART.BLOGSPOT.COM and, www.heartofthecaregiver.blogspot.com
What is your creative process like? What happens before sitting down to write?
AT ALL HOURS I GET AN IDEA AND JUST HAVE TO WRITE IT DOWN. AS THE YEARS GO BY AND I NEAR THE END OF LIFE, (IN TWENTY OR THIRTY YEARS) IT IS DEMANDED OF ME THAT I WRITE WITH A GREATER URGENCY.
What type of reading inspires you to write?
iT DEPENDS UPON WHAT I AM WRITING. AS I LABOR ON MY CIVIL WAR NOVEL I READ HISTORY PERTAINING TO THE ERA, ETC.
What do you think are the basic ingredients of a story?
A GOOD BEGINNING, A GRIPPING MUDDLE, A SATISFYING END
What voice do you find most to your liking: first person or third person?
A COMBINATION OF THE TWO
What well known writers do you admire most?
Doctorow, Foster, Jacques, London, Seton, Michner, King, Blake, etc, etc, etc.
What is required for a character to be believable? How do you create yours?
I study the character, I get into his or her head and try to see what he is thinking, I become my character, good, bad or ugly, that is the way I approach each character.
Are you equally good at telling stories orally?
Usually but there are those times. Not all writers are story tellers and not all story tellers are writers. That is not saying they could not be one and the same it is just an observation. I love to tell a good story, to follow the story telling tradition
Deep down inside, who do you write for?
Myself! If is dreck I know it, likewise, if it is good I know that also, and in the end my readers will know it.
Is writing a form of personal therapy? Are internal conflicts a creative force?
ABSOLUTELY. WITHOUT CONFLICT WRITERS WON'T WRITE! I have learned so much about myself and life in general from being my wife's caregiver. Caregiving is the most difficult "thing" I have ever done. Would I give it up? No, because I know I am the better man for it. Likewise, as I write about nature I write from experience as a naturalist and a wildlife photographer specializing in bears. I learned as a zoo director, as a stone mason, as a father and a husband. I have learned from the death of my first wife and divorce. I have learned and will continue to learn even as I am taking my last breath.
Does reader feed-back help you?
RARELY, MOST CRITICS ARE ASSES BUT NOT ALL ASSES ARE CRITICS. I HAVE A SELECT GROUP OF FRIENDS THAT I CAN RELY ON TO BE BRUTALLY HONEST WITH ME. THEY ARE THE KICK IN THE BEHIND THAT I SOMETIMES NEED FOR ME TO SEE THE TRUTH, ABOUT MY WRITINGS AND ABOUT MY SELF. THE KEY TO THAT IS THEY ARE MY "FRIENDS."
Do you participate in competitions? Have you received any awards?
Do you share rough drafts of your writings with someone whose opinion you trust?
Do you believe you have already found "your voice" or is that something one is always searching for?
IT CHANGES. I HAVE FOUND MY VOICE FOR NOW, BUT?
What discipline do you impose on yourself regarding schedules, goals, etc.?
I WRITE. SOMETIMES IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT. USUALLY 6 TO 8 HOUR A DAY, I WRITE. EVEN WHEN I DON'T FEEL LIKE IT, I WRITE.
What do you surround yourself with in your work area in order to help your concentrate?
I LOVE TO HAVE MY BOOKS NEAR ME. TO ME THE IDEAL PLACE WOULD BE ABOUT FIFTY FEET IN THE AIR, MY DESK JUST FLOATING THERE NEXT TO A WILD RIVER, AND TREES, LOTS OF TREES.
MY MUSE SITS ON THE CORNER OF MY DESK, (HE IS A LONG NECKED, MULTICOLORED CRANE) AND WHEN I WRITE SOMETHING THAT HE DOESN'T LIKE, YOU GUESSED IT, HE POOPS ON IT! THE ULTIMATE CRITIC.
IT WAS SAID OF LOUIS LAMOUR THAT HE COULD SIT DOWN IN THE MIDDLE OF TIMES SQUARE AND WRITE A NOVEL, I WOULD LIKE THE SAME TO BE SAID OF ME
Do you write on a computer? Do you print frequently? Do you correct on paper? What is your process?
I ALWAYS CARRY A NOTEBOOK, IT IS AN EXTENSION OF MY SELF. I AM COMPUTER ILLITERATE BUT DO MY FINISH WORK AND RESEARCH ON MY NEANDERTHAL BEAST
What sites do you frequent on-line to share experiences or information?
What has been your experience with publishers?
I HAVE A HELL OF A COLLECTION OF REJECTION SLIPS. MANY WITH HAND WRITTEN NOTES. DEAR LORD, HOW I VALUE THOSE HAND WRITTEN NOTES!
What are you working on now?
AN ANTHROPOMORPHIC SERIES OF CHILDRENS BOOKS AND A CIVIL WAR NOVEL. I AM IN COLABERATION WITH A SCREENWRITER ON THE CIVIL WAR NOVEL.
What do you recommend I do with all those things I wrote years ago but have never been able to bring myself to show anyone?
THOSE ARE MY ARCHIVES. A LOT OF IT IS GOOD, SOME DRECK, ALL PRICELESS. YEARS AGO I HAD SEVERAL BOXES OF NOTES STOLEN FROM ME. WHY? I CAN'T IMAGINE. AT THE TIME I THOUGHT IT WAS THE GREATEST OF TRAGEDIES BUT IN REALITY IT WAS GOOD. (PLEASE, DON'T TELL ANYONE BUT I WOULD STILL LIKE TO TURN THE THIEF INTO A SOPRANO!)
APOPKA - U.S.A.