Monday, March 14, 2016
Ralph's Rants interviews Author David Noe
David Noe interview
Hello, David and welcome to Ralph’s Rants, how are you tonight?
I’m doing great, Ralph. Thanks for having me on. I’m just having a glass of iced tea. Please excuse the occasional SFX. *SSsssssp! I appreciate you pronouncing my last name correctly. Most people say, No, but as you so astutely enunciated, it’s actually, No’-ee.
Tell us a little bit about yourself, David. Where are you from?
I’m from a little town called, Gower, Missouri. It’s right between Kansas City and Saint Joseph. I live out on a gravel road, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. Well, when I say I live on a gravel road, you have to understand that I actually live in a house that is located NEAR a gravel road. Otherwise that would be silly.
Are you a full time writer or do you work a day job as well as write?
Yes. The answer to that would be yes, Ralph. I write all the time, even when I’m not actually writing. My brain just won’t stop, even when everybody around me asks really nicely. Unfortunately, that doesn’t pay the bills, now does it? Thinking never made anybody any money. Quite the opposite, really. I run a mobile home park and manage a water district and own an apartment building and do maintenance at a convalescent center and help on a farm. I also edit and publish a monthly magazine that’s been running for over twenty years. Did I mention I also have a wife and kids? And on Tuesday…
Who have you, or will you publish with? Or are you self-publishing?
Aside from the magazine, I have had several books published. I’m currently working with Amazing Things Press on a number of projects. I also have a few comic book scripts coming out for Charlton Neo and Empire Comic Lab, Pix-C and a short story for Airship27 Publications.
David, what genre(s) do you write in?
Ah, the genres! I love the genres. I’m actually trying to write in several genres. It really flexes the old creative muscles. *SSsssp! I’ve written short stories, poems (I’m the official poet laureate of Gower), thrillers, speculative fiction, comic book scripts, humor, non fiction (how-to), western, noir, pulp and drips and drabs of others.
How many books or stories do you have out there right now?
Currently, I have a story in Charlton Arrow #3, and hopefully another story coming up in #5. Mort Todd and I are reviving a little known silver age hero called, The Shape. I have a wonderful series of books started with Amazing Things Press called, The Trade of the Tricks. The first installment, The Tricks’ Brand, is out now on Amazon. All my books are still available on Amazon. I have a poetry collection called, Scanner Code and a book about how to be a landlord and run a small rental business entitled, Living In Someone Else’s House. It also has crazy true stories about my encounters over the years. I have two other books available that were published years ago. One is a mature readers thriller called, The Notions of Minsa Van Whey. The other is a short story collection called, Odds and Ends (But Mostly Odds).
What book is your most recent release?
The Trade of the Tricks, the Tricks’ Brand is my most current book, but I’m only weeks away from two or three simultaneous releases.
What is it about?
The Tricks’ Brand is YA speculative fiction based in a world that used to have super powers. One day 50 years ago, in the midst of a giant battle between all the good guys and all the bad guys, almost everybody just… vanished. Not only that, but now there can be no more powers anywhere. There is still the memory of the powers, though, and good guys still dress up to fight bad guys even without the powers. The good guys soon learned that they need help, an edge, a TRICK to help them set traps or escape or to bring them a sandwich if they’re hungry. Now there is a prophecy that the powers will all return on the fiftieth anniversary and it will destroy the world. That day is coming up real soon.
It’s also a comedy!
What can you tell us about the main protagonist?
The main character is a fifteen year old boy named Brand. His grandfather was a sidekick in the big battle fifty years ago, but for some reason didn’t vanish with the others. Brand is a part time Trick (every other weekend and two weeks in the summer). He is starting to notice odd things happening. He’s having weird dreams. His grandpa is acting strange. His world seems to be unravelling. Mostly, though, he’s worried about his first date ever with the sidekick known as the Dartette.
Who is this book aimed at?
I classified it as a young adult novel, but I gotta say, a lot of older adults like it too. It could also be considered New Adult. It’s speculative fiction, kind of a blend of sci-fi and contemporary fantasy. I was fortunate to get an introduction written by Daredevil (and Spookman and Knightingales and Next Man and many others) scribe, Roger McKenzie. I got some illustrations by Sandy Carruthers, Daerick Gross Sr., Kevin S. Halter, Dana Black and Truman Vasko. These guys will blow your mind!
How long did it take you to write it?
Oh, the actual writing time for the first draft was only about six weeks. It’s based on a world I already invented in other books, and of course the rewrites and edits took a while. I wrote it for 2013 NaNoWriMo.
What kind of research, if any, did you have to do for it?
In a way, I’ve been researching it since 1979. That’s when I first bought a copy of Fantastic Four and Amazing Spider-Man. I’ve been a panelologist ever since. The many iterations of comic book worlds have fascinated me for decades. I also enjoy the rich history and artistry that goes along with it.
Did your main character have to run any type of gauntlet in the story? What did you put him/her through?
There’s an aspect of coming of age in this story, as well as acceptance of responsibility and discovery. Basically, Brand’s world starts unravelling all at once, and he has to figure out why and survive at the same time. Friends, family, enemies all change roles. Even reality and ethics and laws of nature have to be questioned. Yeah, he gets roughed up a little too. Fortunately, he’s not alone. The female lead is with him… if she can be trusted.
What other books do you have coming up this year?
I am SO glad you asked that question, Ralph! *SSsssp! I have a short story collection called, Kin and a nearly uncategorizable humor book called, Voices In My Pen. Also, I have a book that is a flip book. It’s a western on one side, then you flip the book over and it’s a noir detective novel that ties into the western, and there’s also a comic book in the middle! I’ll be doing a poetry reading at the Albrecht Kemper Museum of Art in Kansas City on May 19th, so I hope to have my new poetry collection, New Things Among The Old out by then, too.
I also have a couple of comic book stories (and maybe a few more) coming up later this year, including an incredible new rendition of ZaZa the Mystic with the amazing Bob Wiacek for Pix-C.
When will they be released?
The short story collections will be out in mere weeks! The western/noir will hopefully be out by summer. I’m not sure about the comic stories. I expect the Charlton Arrow #5 will be in just a couple of months. The Pix-C series is still in its early stages. I’d love to come back and talk about that when it is closer to publication!
What are they about?
Oh, man, they are so cool! Kin is a group of short stories about different aspects of family. There are funny and sad and poignant stories from many different points of view. I’m super psyched about Voices In My Pen. Imagine Mad Magazine in book form. Artist, Kevin S. Halter does a perfect Don Martin impression with the cover and interior illustrations. He’s incredible. It’s absolutely wack-a-doodle, Ralph! I had SO much fun writing this book that I could go on and on about it for at least half a sentence more. The western is called, Alabaster Kid, Beneath the Veil. It’s about a bounty hunter who also has a form of albanism that makes him burn easily in the sun. He has to wrap himself in rags to protect himself… and to hide himself. He has other deformities that make him look rather demonic, but his senses are heightened. On the flip side, the noir detective is, Slipknot and the Golden Claw. Slipknot is a violent, somewhat unhinged detective who wears a noose instead of a necktie. When he puts on his domino mask he becomes Slipknot, and that isn’t always a good thing. In the middle of the stories is a Tricks comic book in the old west. It leads directly into a new Tricks book that I hope to have out next year. The covers and the comic art are all done by the incredible, Daerick Gross Sr. (Knightingales). To say he is a talented artist would be… well, it would be absolutely correct, Ralph. The poetry book will be poems that each tell a story and invent fantastic tales.
The Shape comic is very special. We got permission from the owner of the character to revive a funny hero created by Grass Green in the late sixties. The Shape is like a cross between Plastic Man and the Impossible Man. Mort Todd’s art is perfect for the type of story this is. It’s light hearted and funny. In tone it’s similar to the story I’m doing for Empire Comics Lab, Barry Baxion, Man of ACTION! I’m not sure when that will be out. ZaZa is a Charlton Comics character from the fifties that Bob and I are reviving in a grand universe spanning adventure!
What is your favorite type of story to tell?
Obviously it is heavy handed big picture period dramas, Ralph. I think the Brother’s Karamazov is just too light hearted, and War and Peace could have been drawn out a little more. *SSsssp!
Okay, maybe lighter fare and humor is more my go to area. I admire the works of Douglas Adams and Jasper Fforde, but also that of Roger McKenzie, Alan Moore and Neil Gaiman (and many others). Give me an interesting character and I’ll be content to watch him or her eat a sandwich or drink some tea. There are times when the story takes second place to the telling of the story. Actually, that may be more often than not. Perhaps that is why my genres are all over the place. It’s not the story so much as the telling of the story that interests me. Am I repeating myself? Am I repeating myself? *SSSssspp! AH!
David, Thank you for agreeing to be interviewed. Feel free to leave whatever links you may have to your website or direct links to your books. Thanks for joining us here on Ralph’s Rants and best of luck with all your endeavors.
Thank you for having me on your rant, Ralph. Let’s do this again sometime. Maybe I could do some tricks. Do you sing? We could do a duet. I can’t dance. Don’t even ask me.
Here is my author’s page on facebook!
Here is my page for my magazine (TYPO Magazine!)
Here is my Amazon author’s page. You can get all my books from here!
Here is my website
As always all of my own books are available at http://RLAngeloJr.com or http://tinyurl.com/ralphsamazon2