Billy Wong wrote the story “Paired Curse”, the one I read for our audio version. A young woman arrives at a frontier outpost looking for protection and training. Can Boers discover what she’s on the run from and turn her into a warrior? He was kind enough to answer a few questions for us.
What current/classic authors inspire you?
From the classics, the writers of the old epics like Homer and Virgil, Ariosto (Bradamante rules!) and whoever wrote Beowulf and Gilgamesh, and Robert E. Howard of course. For more modern fare, Ed Greenwood, Steven Pressfield, Donna Gillespie, Elizabeth Moon, David Drake, David Farland, and my all-time fave David Gemmell (RIP).
What was the inspiration for you story?
I had an idea for another story involving the main character (a bored veteran warrior sitting on his ass out in an uneventful border fort) that didn’t really go anywhere, but then I got this story idea for him which I think turned out pretty well.
What’s your writing schedule/process?
I’m pretty weird in that I usually get an idea for a really cool scene first, then think up a story around it. No particular schedule to it really; an image just pops up in my head and I start writing from there.
Is our magazine your first fiction sale? If so how did that feel? If not what other stories of yours have been published and where?
It’s not my first, I’ve been published in a bunch of other zines though every new sale is something to celebrate. Since I don’t want to waste way too much time bragging about my past sales, here’s a link to a list of all of them: http://absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=58445
How do you handle rejection?
If there are comments, I take what I can from them and make changes that I think will improve the story. If not, move on to the next market.
How are you finding paying markets?
What are your thoughts about how we’re approaching getting fiction out (e-pubs/mp3)?
These are growing ways to get content out to readers. While I’m not sure they’ll ever surpass printed books with regard to supplying long fiction, they might potentially become the new top way to distribute shorter works, as opposed to the declining print fiction magazine market.
Did you receive editorial feedback and how was that for you?
Actually, I don’t think I received editorial feedback about this story.
If you chose to subscribe to Flagship, what sorts of things would you like to see in future issues?
Stories with lots of action and tough-as-nails female leads (even though this story of mine features a male)!
Billy, thanks for your contribution and we look forward to seeing your name in print in the future!