Hello, my name is Chaunce Stanton. I am an independent author of alternate history, magical realism, and dark humor. I believe that right now is the best time in history to be a reader and a writer.
I am not a dreamer, as my brain wakes me up when the little men inside my head throw ideas about which I need to wake up for and respond...
Can you describe to readers how you dream, and then, when having recognised the value of a dream, work out how you synthesize it and embellish it in written form?
Both dreams shared the fact that I wasn't an "actor" in either one. These were dreams of evocative scenes as opposed to complete story lines. They also left me with very strong impressions. When I awoke, I knew there was more to be fleshed out. For Luano, the dream included the boy who became Luano. I knew the tiger-riding aspect was fantastical, but I didn't pursue a reality where little boys in desert towns ride tigers. Isn't it more likely a little boy would imagine riding a tiger wearing a cape? That was the genesis for Luano's story. He imagines riding the tiger to search for his mother who, in the story, left him when he was still a baby.
Q4 - I can see the importance and relevance of bringing Houdini and Conan Doyle to the Blank Slate...and using Perjos to develop the main 'battle' between trickery and illusion and 'real magic'. If you were to be able to physically sit down with any one of the main characters, which would it be, and what would be your objective?
Q5 - Clearly humour is important to you. It is apparent in virtually every form of communication that you publish, from the light hearted banter with Buzz and Doc Hurley, through to the Dark Humour of your 'Collective'... What does humour mean to you, and what is its place in your life. How does that affect the way you write - your books and your blog, etc?
I learned the importance of laughter from my parents, both of whom have wonderful senses of humor. My dad and I would watch Monty Python's Flying Circus, The Carol Burnett Show, and Newhart. From the silly to the sublime, we enjoyed a spectrum of comedy. Mind you; this was back when our little farming community relied on antenna service from television stations in the Twin Cities. The fading of the signal strength during thunderstorms may account for some of my warped humor.
Humor became an important form of communication for my family -- my mom might say "to a fault." I remember one April Fool's Day when I may have been ten or eleven. Mother put on her bedroom slippers and found a raw egg broken in them. When she came bursting into my bedroom to complain, a Tupperware container of water fell on her head from its perch atop the door. She eventually found it funny.
Many of the stories our family told involved some form of punch line. Learning the set-up, development, and pay-off of even the most simple joke stood me in good stead for fleshing out longer story forms. Of course, presentation counts for something, too. Even the best joke can fall flat when delivered like an engineer reporting on street flooding.
Well, actually, that's funny in its own way, too, and I should know. I've worked with hundreds of engineers and architects. That's a future book all its own.
I still use humor, but I'm approaching it like a chef would approach a seasoning. Just a little, balanced by other seasonings.
They also should expect some genre-busting mind expansion on a variety of subjects. The next novel is about a local book club, and it will feature a more lighthearted style and contemporary setting. I will consider a vacation of sorts from the powerful Perjos magician character I've been living with for two years.
The first two books I hope carry some weight with readers. The themes of perception and illusion, for instance in The Blank Slate Boarding House for Creatives, are very important at all times, but even more so in an age where we are slipping rapidly away from true independence to the ultimate dependence.
That's a serious job. My goal is to do that job well over the next few years and just see where it leads. If I don't try my best right now, it will not get any easier later, and along the way I am having a blast! Meeting you, for example, is a happy and unexpected result of going outside of my comfort zone to develop an "authorial" online presence.
I couldn’t see the blighters’ flight
Fog was in, obscured by gloom
Truncheon gripped tightly in the night
Shaking handles along my beat
Just a constable third class
Drunks and ladies of the night
Laugh at me when they pass
There’s no stopping off for a wet
At the Golden Lion or Nags Head
Donning tall hat and dense serge cape
Smith’s stick going ‘tank tank tank’
“Straight to your beat at Regulation pace!”
Sergeant Wright said, “Boys, I’ll be Brief”
Keep an eye on those on relief
The vagrants, rogues, and the thieves
And take no tea from the licensees
The Borough Boys down Carley Street
Beddows said to do my best
Three cells to fill with loads of tosh
“Sort ‘em all out at the inquest!”
Dollymops and bunters in the alley
Lamps lit dimly by the gas
Hobnails sparking ‘clack clack clack’
“This dirty bugger t’aint no lass!”
I asked Beddows how to collect a snitch
“Treat ‘em hard, but treat ‘em fair”
No tellin’ which way or if they’ll switch
For an odd coin here or a blind eye there
Might toss an odd coin down the line
Open a bottle of stout or two
A new chimney boy missing every week
Must be stuck up the chimney flue
Find some scraps of coal and cinder
Beddows lit his pipe made out of clay
Frost crunch-crunching beneath our feet
“Son, you’ll make a good Copper one day!”