The first thing I ever read of Kaaron Warren’s was The Grinding House and I was struck by the raw power of her prose. The woman knows how to write a good scare. The next thing that found me was Dead Sea Fruit, reprinted in one of the Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror anthologies, which was one of the most confounding-of-expectation stories I’ve read. It’s also, coincidentally, the title of her collection of short stories coming out via Ticonderoga Publications this year. She’s won the Australian Shadows Award, been short-listed for the Aurealis Award for Best Horror Novel, and sold a jaw-dropping 70+ stories. She has stories out in eight different anthologies this yeae, including Ellen Datlow’s Haunted Legends, Eneit’s Baggage and Twelfth Planet Press’s Sprawl. She is also an author with Angry Robot, who’ve produce Slights and Walking the Tree (http://angryrobotbooks.com/our-authors/kaaronwarren/).
If she wasn’t so damned talented you’d slap her. Oh, did I say that out loud? Nah, she’s awesome and she’s talented and she’s very nice indeed. And a little bit scary. Here, she answers my questions -and I’m very happy to be sharing a book launch with her at AussieCon 4 :-).
1. A story can always be improved by the addition of …
A character’s backstory. Also the words ‘the lace of rot’.
2. How many rejection slips did you get before your first sale?
I started sending stories out in about 1988, and didn’t make a sale until 1993 (god, those numbers look alien! Was that a hundred years ago?). I reckon I sent out ten stories a year at least, so probably 50 rejections.
3. Of all your stories, which is your favourite?
OI Lei, as they say in Fiji to express disconcertment! How does one choose? I really like the one I’m working on now, called The History Thief. I like Gaze Dogs of Nine Waterfall, because it landed on the page exactly how I wanted it to land. I like the Glass Woman because I captured the sense of confinement I wanted to capture. That one was inspired by the biography “Monster in My Bedroom” by Janine Hoskings, about Jo Ann Dolan, a quadriplegic.
4. If I wasn’t a writer, I would be …
I always wanted to be a murder detective.
5. Donuts (or doughnuts) or danishes?
Strangely enough, I can say no to both. Cake and Icecream, too. My diet plan is that if I don’t really love it, I don’t eat it. I eat a lotta lollies, though. And the chocolate ganache I made to ice a cake is slowly being eaten by the spoonful.
For more Kaaronesque goodness, go here http://kaaronwarren.wordpress.com/.