Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Ralph's Rants Interviews Bobby Nash!

Bobby Nash Interview

Hello and welcome to another edition of Ralph’s Rants does interviews. This weeks victim, err guest is Author and TV actor Bobby Nash! Welcome Bobby, how are you?

BN: I’m good, Ralph. Thanks for having me. It’s an honor to be here. Can you untie me now?

Let’s get right to it, Bobby. When did you first start to realize you wanted to write? How old were you?

BN: Oh, man. I don’t recall an exact age, but I was pretty young. I started out wanting to draw comic books and started writing so I would have something to draw. Then other artists started asking me to write for them, and so on. One day, after a little advice from a friend, I realized that I was a much better writer than I was an artist. I decided to focus on the writing and here we are.

What was your first published piece? And by published I mean either web based or print?

BN: When I started writing there was no such thing as web based. Wow. Just admitting that made me feel old. Ha! Ha! I had several pieces published in local and school-related projects in those early days. I also worked on the high school newspapers and yearbook, which I guess counts. After that I worked on fanzines and independent comic books, some of which are all but impossible to find these days. I guess that’s the long way of saying that I really don’t remember which story was published first.

While most new pulp writers tend to write either stories set in the pulp era (30’s or 40’s) or the far flung per-historic past, you tend to write a lot in the here and now with books like “Evil Ways” or “Deadly Games”. And yes, I do realize you write Sci-fi as well. You’ll remember how much I liked “Samaritan”? So my question really is do you consider yourself a pulp writer or a writer? And is there a difference?

BN: I refer to myself as a writer, mainly because I don’t simply write in one genre or format. I love writing pulpy stories because they are a lot of fun, but I also enjoy telling modern day thrillers and other genres as well. I like to play the literary field, as it were. I have been called a pulp writer and a New Pulp writer before and I am proud of that. I do have trouble referring to myself as an author though, but I’m working on that. For now, I usually introduce myself as a writer.

Who, if any, of your characters do you most identify with? Which one is closest to Bobby Nash?

BN: Harold Palmer from Evil Ways is probably the character most analogous to me. When I started writing Evil ways I was taking an evening creative writing class at the University of Georgia. I read the scene where the brothers are talking in the diner after having not seen one another for a few years. One of the comments I received from multiple people was that the characters of Harold and Franklin Palmer didn’t “sound” like brothers. When I was doing my second draft I tried to imagine how my brother and I interact and talk with one another so I gave Franklin his mannerisms and Harold got mine. It helped me find a voice for those characters that really helped me define them. Harold Palmer may not look like me, but he does think and speak like I do.

Who is your favorite character that you enjoy going back to again and again?

BN: This question has a different answer depending on the day of the week. I know it’s kind of cliché to say, but my characters are like my children. It’s hard to have a favorite. That being said, I’ve revisited Lance Star: Sky Ranger, Doc Dresden, and Domino Lady several times and am working on Harold Palmer’s next thriller now.

Now here’s a tough one, who is the favorite character you had to kill off that perhaps you wished you didn’t?

BN: I wrote a graphic novel called Yin Yang for Arcana a few years back. There is a character in the book who was created with the sole purpose of being murdered by the villain. His name was Major Magnificent and I knew he was going to die the moment I created him. Unfortunately, I really got to like the character while writing him. It was work-for-hire so I don’t own the character so nothing ever came from it, but he became very special to me. It made writing his funeral scene better, I think.

You have sequels to several of your books coming out in 2013, care to share which ones and what the new books are called?

BN: Yes. 2013 is the year of the sequel for me. I’m currently working on FBI Special Agent Harold Palmer’s next thriller, Evil Intent. I’m also working on the long-delayed Lance Star: Sky Ranger novel called “Cold Snap!”, a follow up to Deadly Games! called Deadly Hearts!, and I’m revisiting Domino Lady as she meets up with a fairly well-known character. Should be fun. Plus, I have a few other projects in there too I can’t talk about yet. Keep watching my website, for more details when I can spill them.

What is your favorite era to write in? The past? Current time? Or the future?

BN: That’s another one where the answer probably changes from day to day. I love working in the present, but I’ve spent a lot of time writing characters in the 30’s and 40’s and I find myself enjoying the challenges of each. If a detective learns there’s going to be an assassination attempt on the other side of the city and he’s 60 miles away, the obstacles that could prevent the detective from stopping the villain are different in 1930 as they would be in 2013. Not being able to communicate is less feasible today. The future is fun to visit every now and then as well, but I always come back to the present.

You’ve done a lot of collaborations in the form of anthologies before, for the various new pulp labels, do you have any more coming up soon?

BN: I do. Anthologies are fun. Not only does it allow you to play with characters or genres you might not get to regularly, you get to meet and have your work featured alongside some fantastic creators. I’ve been very blessed to work on some really great anthologies. With my focus on novels this year, I’m writing fewer stories for anthologies than normal, although there are some previously written that have not come out yet. Some I can’t talk about yet, but I’m working on a Rick Ruby pulp P.I. story for The Ruby Files Vol. 2 and a few others, a couple of which are based on Old Time Radio shows. Also, IDW’s third Zombies vs. Robots prose book is coming soon, which features one of my stories.

Only last week you had an “extra” role in the new Kevin Bacon show “The Following” How was that experience?

BN: That was a blast. I love doing the extra gigs. I recently started a new day job to help pay those pesky bills so my days as an extra are done for awhile. The Following was a fun three days for me. I was there for all of the parts set in the command center and the storming of a suspect’s house. It was a great time. I met some great people on the cast, crew, and in extras holding while we waited to do our thing. I also met a real life FBI agent who I was able to speak with as part of researching Evil Intent, which was very cool.

Is this the first time you’ve had an extra’s spot on a TV program?

BN: No. I’ve been in a few things, mostly in the “don’t blink or you’ll miss me” or “there’s my elbow” category. I was in several football game scenes for Necessary Roughness, Hall Pass, Detroit 187, The Three Stooges (haven’t seen this one yet), Wanderlust, Level Up, a couple of pilots that didn’t get picked up, a couple commercials, and The Following. I enjoy watching the process. It’s a lot of fun, but very long days.

Did you get to meet Kevin Bacon and James Purefoy (Who by the way played ‘Solomon Kane’ in the adaptation of Robert E. Howards Puritan hero in a movie of the same name. Though you probably knew that already.)

BN: I met Kevin Bacon briefly. We were watching the scene right before the girl with the icepick does her thing. They were reshooting the scene before Kevin goes out and he came over and stood beside me and we exchanged pleasantries. I didn’t meet James Purefoy, but I did sit at the next table over from him and Natalie Zea at lunch one day. As extras, we’re told not to bother the actors, which I respect since they’re there working. I’ve found that it’s a far friendlier atmosphere on a TV set where the actors aren’t shuffled off to trailers after the director calls cut.

So what does 2013 hold for Bobby Nash? How many books are you scheduled to publish this year?

BN: A lot. I hope. I have several projects in the works at all times and my schedule is always in flux as rush gigs and unexpected opportunities pop up. As I mentioned earlier, I started a new day job so that will also impact my writing time because there’s now 60 - 70 hours a week I’m not around my computer to work. Of course, I wrote a good bit of my stories that way so it’s doable.

Any other TV gigs coming up we should be on the lookout for?

BN: There’s still more Necessary Roughness where I’m in the stands. I saw myself several times in last week’s episode, but all from the neck down because of the way the shot was cropped. I knew it was me. Ha! Ha! If there’s a good shot of me worthy of a screen capture, I’ll share it at, Facebook, Twitter, Google+, you name it.

Bobby, thanks for taking the time to do this it was a real pleasure talking to you and you were a real sport playing along with the interview process. Thanks a lot Bobby!

BN: It was my pleasure, Ralph. This was fun.

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