Q&A Interview with Richard Wall
Today I am delighted to welcome Richard Wall to take part in my Q&A interview. Richard is the author of Fat Man Blues and Hank Williams' Cadillac both are available Amazon.
Born in England in 1962, I grew up in a small market town in rural Herefordshire before joining the Royal Navy. After 22 years in the submarine service and having travelled extensively, I now live and write in rural Worcestershire.
My first short story, “Evel Knievel and The Fat Elvis Diner” (available on Kindle), was soon followed by “Five Pairs of Shorts” a collection of ten short stories, and another short story called ‘Hank Williams’ Cadillac’.
My stories reflect my life-long fascination with the dark underbelly of American culture; be it tales of the Wild West, or the simmering menace of the Deep South, or the poetry of Charles Bukowski, or the writing of Langston Hughes, or the music of Charley Patton, Son House, Johnny Cash, or Tom Waits.
A self-confessed Delta Blues music anorak, I embarked on a road trip from Memphis to New Orleans, where a bizarre encounter in Clarksdale, Mississippi inspired me to write my début novel, Fat Man Blues.
When did you know that you wanted to become a writer? and how did you go about it?
I have always enjoyed writing, but didn't begin to pursue it until I left the Royal Navy. I joined a local writers' group and took it from there.
Can you tell us what genre your books are and the audience you write for?
This is always a difficult question for me to answer. The best I can come up with is Gothic Americana...
What is your writing process? and how long does it take?
My writing process usually begins with an idea, or a phrase. Armed with only this I usually begin writing and see what happens. I learned long ago that I'm hopeless at planning a story from start to finish, I just can't do it. So, what happens on the page is what appeared in my head about two seconds previously.
As for how long it takes, that depends what I'm writing. I write in my spare time, a few hours a week. So a short story will take about a week. Whereas my novel, Fat Man Blues took three years.
Are your characters based on anyone you know or are they just fictional?
Mostly fictional, but with strands of roots in people I have encountered. My work is mostly driven by dialogue, so how a character speaks might be based on someone I know or have overheard.
Have you wrote about a personal experience in your novels?
Hell yeah! That's the best source of material! The opening chapter of Fat Man Blues is based on an actual encounter in a bar in Clarksdale, Mississippi.
What research do you do?
Depending on what I'm writing, my research is usually dates of events, or information about countries or regions. for my novel Fat Man Blues, my research was the countless books on blues history that I own and read incessantly.
Who would you like to co-write with and why?
Ran Walker (www.ranwalker.com) is a friend of mine and writing professor in Virginia, USA. I'm a big fan of his writing and would love to collaborate on a project with him. His approach to writing and his writing style is different to mine, and I think it's good to stretch yourself and step out of your comfort zone.
What's your favorite book?
Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry
What's your favorite food?
Anything that keeps me alive.
What's your favorite film?
This changes by the minute. But it would include O Brother Where Art Thou?, No Country For Old Men, The Blues Brothers.
What's your favorite song?
This too changes with the wind. I'll Be There by The Four Tops was the first song that I remember hearing as a child. Other than that, anything by Charley Patton or Howling Wolf.
How can readers find out more information about yourself and your books?
From my website www.richardwall.org
Thank you so much for taking part in my Q&A Richard