And the winner is…

November 19, 2010 marked the first Literary Honors Award Gala.  Greta Layne, Dominique Trixx, and myself read the 5 finalists’ submissions and then announced the winner.  We were very proud to award Patty Templeton of Chicago, author of “The Two Annies of Windale Road”.  Her story is tragically sweet and charming.  We were lucky to have her in the audience to award her $500 in cash and a really lovely plaque (thanks to Franky Vivid).  After the gala, I really wanted to know more about her.  Below is an interview I did with our first winner, Patty Templeton.

ml’: How long have you been writing?

PT: I was one of those nerdy girls in seventh grade that had a notebook full of bad poetry about everything from god to blowjobs. I didn’t actually start writing fiction until college. I thought to myself, “You will never ever get a job with a poetry degree.” In infinite wisdom, I got a Fiction Writing degree instead.

ml’: What authors inspire you?

PT: Aww heck, this list could go on for six days and a step after. Stephen King, Shirley Jackson, Dan Mannix, Alexander Dumas, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Emma Bull, Patrick Rothfuss, Joe Hill, Studs Terkel, Mort Castle, Lester Bangs, C.S.E. Cooney, Charles Portis, Edgar Lee Masters, Carl Sandburg, Pope Brock, Dan Simmons, John Steinbeck, Glen David Gold and Dashiell Hammett…that there’s a start.

ml’: What are your favorite books?

PT: Here’s my relatively stable top five:

The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexander Dumas
We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson
The Stand by Stephen King
Step Right Up by Dan Mannix
The Wild Party by J.M. March

ml’: What are you reading right now?

PT: Black Gate Magazine Issue #12
Little Big Man by Thomas Berger
Welcome to the Departure Lounge by Meg Federico

ml’: Do you read naked?

PT: Nah, I read before bed and usually have on some tattered, striped pajama pants that make me look like a pirate. Though I am willing to experiment…

ml’:  What has winning the first Naked Girls Reading Literary Honors Award done for you?

PT: Besides being an encouraging boot in the ass to keep writing, the prize money from the Naked Girls Reading Literary Honors Award is going to be used to fund my trip to World Fantasy Con in 2011. By hook or by crook, I am hoping to come away from that writing convention with an agent or a book deal.

ml’: What was your inspiration for the Two Annies of Windale Road?

PT: About ten years ago, I read Milton Rokeach’s psychological case study, The Three Christs of Ypsilanti. Rokeach brought together three paranoid schizophrenics who all thought that they were Jesus Christ so that he could examine the nature of delusions and human identity. It was not necessarily the most ethical of psychological experiments, but it was interesting. I started “The Two Annies of Windale Road” only knowing I wanted two women to share the same delusion. After I figured out the ladies were Annie Oakley, the ladies took it from there.

ml’: You mentioned being in Japan at the award show. What were you doing there and how did you end up in Chicago?

PT: In 2008 I went to Japan to get the hell out of Chicago for a while. I’ve lived in and around Chicago all my life. I wanted to do something big and ridiculous. I went to Osaka and even got a job as an English teacher for kindergartners…unfortunately I couldn’t start work until my visa came through – which it never did. I ended up having a chunk of time to explore Osaka and write. I started “The Two Annies of Windale Road” while there. I came back to Chicago and was outta work for about four more months, which led to even more writing. So my epic fail at making a life in Osaka ended up being the shove that led me to becoming a better writer.

ml’: What is your dream as a writer?

PT: To write full time. I don’t have to be famous. I don’t have to be J.K. Rowling rich. I would settle on being able to pay my half of the rent with my writing. That’d be a goddamned gorgeous life.

ml’: Do you have any advice for writers?

PT: Read in every genre, in fiction and nonfiction.
Write even more than you read.
Have at least one writer friend that you trade work with who will take a crowbar to your TV or knees if you don’t keep your keyboard clicking or pen dripping.

Turns out that Ms. Templeton is just as charming as her story.  Keep up with her at http://pattytempleton.livejournal.com/.

 

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~ by michellelamour on November 23, 2010.

2 Responses to “And the winner is…”

  1. My favorite books of inspiration were Arabian Nights, Moby Dick and many of the Dragonlance novels…. and to add to the list. The ones i just published myself.

  2. Great interview! Patty rocks like Kryptonite!

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