It’s a pleasure to welcome Leif G.S. Notae to the blog today. I first met Leif on Twitter, and we’ve since joined circles on Google+ and exchanged a host of e-mails. He’s a terrific source of ideas and isn’t afraid to express his opinion, two things that make him stand out in the writing crowd. In fact, I believe that I first really noticed Leif when he called me out on a tweet that wasn’t intended to sound suggestive…but he read it that way.
He hasn’t been able to get rid of me since!
In all seriousness, I greatly respect Leif’s creativity and dedication to the art of writing. No one I’ve met has a more diligent approach to his craft. On top of that, he frequently makes me laugh, and that’s just priceless. I hope you enjoy learning a bit more about the man behind the curtain. Take it away, Leif!
*blink* Bio? Bio, bio, bio… *digs*
Leif G.S. Notae is a hobby writer of flash fiction, short stories, microfiction and dark poetry. He also writes serial flash fiction on his website, www.leifgsnotae.com where he fleshes out the world for his manuscripts. He was published in Six Minute Magazine under his real name, Digital Dragon Magazine under his pen name, as well as local magazines and newspapers in the Santa Cruz area. He maintains daily entries in his blog while working with green technology in the county.
Now tell us something about you that your bio doesn’t include. Feel free to make us laugh!
I have a bio…? (looks up) Oh yeah. Let’s see, I am a very sarcastic and witty person. People enjoy conversations with me. Well, most of the time, anyway. You’ll find me more in a pub than being a socialite, but I also adapt to other people well and listen to what they have to say. I suppose that is what makes me great with my characters.
Tell us about some of the unique elements in your writing (either published or in-process). What inspires you to use those elements?
If I told you it was the little voices in my head, you’d let me get a five minute head start from the padded wagon, right? Actually, I go with the intuitive flashes and sparks in my mind; I explore them without fear or guilt, and if they don’t pan out, it was a learning experience from the start.
You have a number of wonderful flash pieces. What are some of the challenges and highlights of writing flash fiction?
Thank you very much for the kind words, it means the world to hear people say that. Writing flash fiction is a challenge in only one way: to overcome the fear that my readers won’t understand what I am trying to say in the piece. That is the bane of every writer. I say I have the most faith in my readers to interpret a scene how they see fit, and let them visualize something I might not see. So I spare the in-depth probing and analysis, letting my flashes tell a story people can (hopefully) relate to.
Who is (or has been) your favorite character to write and why?
This is a cheap answer, but they all have been. They are mile markers in my writing, and they are all like my children. However, if you are going to force me, I’d say number one is Bluefeather. He was a character I intended to have as a comedic prop. He ended up being the crux of the (now poorly written) The Wicked Cat series. Besides, where else are you going to read about a lewd cursed pirate captain in bird form who likes to sleep in women’s knickers? Nowhere, I tell you!
The next would be Craig T. Amott, only because I had some fun writing science fiction again.
When you have time to read, who are some of the authors whose books you have to have on-hand?
No one from my genre; I’m one of those weird people who feels like I am letting another influence my voice or work. The books I must have on hand at all times are:
The Art of War – Sun Tzu
The Book of Five Rings – Miyamoto Musashi
Thick Face/Black Heart – Chin Ning Chu
Myths of the Norsemen – H.A. Gruerber
Know the Name, Know the Person – Lynn Werth
They help me stay focused on my task, understand what might be preventing me from doing better, and determine that people are who they are for a reason.
Tell us about a book, poem, or other written work that resonated with you (either recently or prior to your writing career).
Plot vs. Character by Jeff Gerke. I have a great time generating characters, but a horrible time devising the story. This book is a great tool to have. However, there were some character mental health breakdowns that allowed me to see the subtle quirks so many people I speak to everyday show. So, it is a two-fold book for me, which is always great!
What are you reading right now?
The above, and then it is off to Hit Lit, which is a formulaic breakdown of the greatest best sellers of the 20th century and what themes and trends they have in common. I’ve heard some great things about it, but I wanted to finish this character book first.
What’s the best compliment you’ve ever received regarding your writing?
My editors (I use Scribendi, they are great people) telling me that I have well written pieces, my humor shows in the work, and they only modified what didn’t make sense (as well as pointing out I still have plenty of grammar items to work on in some instances). When I get a glowing review from someone who does this for a living, it makes me know I am on the right path.
Is there anything you’d like to say to your readers?
Thank you so much. Your support means everything; your fandom to particular characters means the world to me. I’ve had deep conversations with people about the cast and crew from The Wicked Cat, I’ve had people sit down and ask me about the cast of The Devil’s Spine mini-series. Heck, even old pieces from my previous blog come up now and then from long time followers. Suffice it to say, I couldn’t do any of this without you and you mean everything to me.
Where can we stalk find you?
Blog – http://www.leifgsnotae.com
Facebook – Leif G.S. Notae
Twitter – Vignirsson
Real Life – Sitting behind a pint
Anything else you’d like to share (hint, hint)?
So, for a treat, I decided I am going to share this exclusive flash fiction piece with you. Since I’ve caught Raine’s attention with some pieces for feedback, I wanted to bring these four characters together in a scene where they’d be natural. I’ve edited this to the best of my ability, but there might still be flaws; fair warning.
A little background:
Helion – Half-demon female
Otto – Mysterious male with dark powers
Tedy – Human male with a “fetish” for the undead
Lynx – Recently turned vampire female coping with change
And now, I present:
Lynx blew strands of dyed black hair from her face. She turned to look at Helion dispatching the last shadow demon from the room. She shifted her attention to the pulsing black bubble in the center of the room. She ran toward the sphere, her long legs trembling with every step. She pushed her way through the darkness and tackled the person standing in the bubble. They both tumbled out through the other side, her arms wrapped around the surprised Tedy.
She pinned him to the floor, and kissed him on the forehead and cheeks repeatedly. Tedy sputtered under the attention, moving his head in an attempt to avoid the affection. “Hel, get your friend off me!”
“Why would I?” Helion giggled. “It looks like she is happy where she is.”
“Don’t you ever do that again Tedy.” Lynx said in between kisses. “You know we agreed not to summon the shadows with your magic.”
“I don’t answer to you, human. I only answer to Lord Otto.” Tedy replied.
The bubble dissolved, revealing a haggard Otto. Helion raced to his side and wrapped her arm around his waist. He nodded his thanks before he caught Lynx lavishing Tedy. “I’ll allow you to answer to her.”
“Damn it, you aren’t helping.”
Leif, that was extraordinary! I love these characters and can’t wait to read more. Thanks again for taking the time to let me grill you and for sharing this wonderful piece. For now, I’m off to stalk friend you on Facebook!
What did you think of “Unwanted Affections,” dear readers? Please show some comment love!