Last week, I saw an author interview over at the Guardian Book Blog with this list of questions, and I thought it would be fun to play along. You know, get to know an Indie writer. I am looking for interview subjects, so if you would like to play along too, send your answers to podpeep at gmail dot com with the subject: Guardian Questionnaire. Please include a short bio and a pic. You may use a book cover instead of a head-shot if you prefer.
Cheryl Anne Gardner is a writer of dark, often disturbing literary novellas. She is an advocate for independent film, music, and books, and when at all possible prefers to read and review out-of-the-mainstream indie published works, foreign translations, and a bit of philosophy. Her love of literature began at an early age with Bram Stoker's Dracula. Captivated by the Gothic and Dark Romantic stylings of Poe, Lovecraft, Kafka, and de Sade, her passion for the macabre manifests itself throughout her own work to this day. She lives with her husband and ferrets on the east coast USA, is an enthusiastic gardener, and her weekly blog column titled "Thoughts on The Craft" can be found at The Pod People Indie Book Review and Commentary site: PodPeep.Blogspot
When were you happiest?
Were? That’s kind of defeatist, isn’t it? I am always happy, because I try to find a little something every day that makes me smile. If I can smile, then I can be happy. I usually have no trouble in the smiling or the happiness department.
What is your greatest fear?
That I will have missed something to smile about.
Which living person do you most admire, and why?
I try not to idolize people: it’s bad for my own ego, but when it comes to admiring qualities, I find anyone who deviates from the norm, thinks independently, is focused on their artistic vision, and is rarely led astray to be most admirable. People who don’t just accept the status quo but live to challenge it. Not break the rules necessarily, just challenge the logic behind them, and then if necessary, break them.
What was your most embarrassing moment?
When I discovered that I had used the word “wenches” instead of “winches” in my Novella The Splendor of Antiquity after it had gone to print. The vision of 14th century buxom women of ill-repute, nipples pointing skyward, lugging modern day camera and lighting equipment up a mountainside was quite hilarious. What was less hilarious was having to stop the presses so I could make the correction. POD is awesome.
Property aside, what's the most expensive thing you've bought?
A very pricey series of tattoos and the piece isn’t finished yet.
What is your most treasured possession?
My father’s book collection. After he passed, I managed to rescue what I could from a very damp and musty garage. I donated some to the local library and kept as many of the classics as I had space for. If it wasn’t for his appreciation of the written word, I would have never set any to paper.
What would your super power be?
To be multi-orgasmic no matter how shite the other person is in bed. Translation: Self-satisfied
Who would play you in the film of your life?
If it’s comedy then Meg Ryan; if it’s serious then Cate Blanchett
What is your most unappealing habit?
Used to be smoking, or so I always told myself, but in reality, I have an annoying habit of wanting to know it all and then subsequently foisting it on everyone else.
What is your favourite word?
At the moment: Man-rod, but for a while it was: Lick. Translation: Man-rod, Lick it. Hey if Kirstie Alley can have a motto, so can I.
Is it better to give or to receive?
Give. Isn’t that what makes an artist happy in the first place? Creativity is a form of giving; otherwise, we wouldn’t show our art to anyone.
What is your guiltiest pleasure?
Porn, liquor, and dark chocolate ... not necessarily in that order.
What do you owe your parents?
I would rather not go there.
What or who is the greatest love of your life?
All the creatures great and small know who they are, but my muse is my greatest love and also my greatest nemesis.
What does love feel like?
What is the worst job you've done?
Waiting on Elitist assholes.
If you could edit your past, what would you change?
I wouldn’t have let life stop me from living my art.
How do you relax?
See Guilty Pleasure; then afterwards, to read for about 4 hours undisturbed. It would have been smoke, but I am trying to quit.
How often do you have sex?
At least once per story, and I keep the lights dimmed so I don't frighten people.
What do you consider your greatest achievement?
The fact that I am able to like my work enough to stop revising it.
What keeps you awake at night?
The skunks having sex under my bedroom window.
What song would you like played at your funeral?
I don’t believe in funerals, but it really wouldn’t be my decision, and because of that, everyone should have to stay and listen to my entire music collection, even the Barry Manilow.
How would you like to be remembered?
As a seriously flawed yet accepting person: trustworthy and loyal to a fault. Or the ferret lady ... I am good with that too.
What is the most important lesson life has taught you?
That a person is defined by what they do and what they don’t do, and there is always time to make amends for the stupid shit.
Where would you most like to be right now?
Retired and living in Wales with nothing to do but write, garden, and tickle ferrets.
Tell us a joke.
Writing is the joke. It amazes me that anyone, including myself, manages to write anything remotely comprehensible with the way we are constantly butchering the language.
Tell us a secret.
There are no secrets in Fiction.
The Art this week is Bunny Dressing by Michael Sowa from the Book Esterhazy: The Rabbit Prince