20 Questions with D.W. Metz

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My latest victim for the 20 questions onslaught is D.W. Metz! I found The Typist - one of Metz' stories - on Channillo. I've written about it in a blog post which you can read here. I found the answers D.W. Metz had to my questions were a great read, as well as insightful. Enjoy and go show him some love!

1. How long have you been writing for?

Writing, as well as reading, were two of my earliest escapes. I first started writing in elementary school when I was in the 3rd or 4th grade, mostly poetry. I didn’t start writing fiction until much later. 1993 was my first published piece attached to an ISBN number - for whatever that’s worth. To be honest I’ve had a number of gaps in my writing pursuits, and yet - I know better than my own hand that I’m a writer.  It always draws me back.

2. What - if anything - would cause you to stop writing?

I’ve actually been on a hiatus from writing for about a year now. Writing always served me in a cathartic capacity if you will;  a means of therapy to get me through difficult times. I’m pleased to say that as of recent I’m in a happier place than I’ve been in for most of my life – so there’s been less of a need for ‘therapy.’  That said, I have a few story ideas I’m kicking around, but when they’re ready - they’ll happen.

3. What do you like to do when you aren't writing?

Food, family, forensics. Food and family… the more the merrier right? Mostly. During the daylight hours, and often not, I work doing digital forensics and investigative work. Please don’t ask me for tech support because I’d gladly help but really it’s 3am and even vampires need to sleep.

When weather permits I like to spend as much time outdoors as possible. I like visiting historical sites, especially those associated with a macabre history.

4. Where do you want your writing to take you?

When working on an idea for a novel I plotted out the characters path in Google Maps.  I wound up visiting one of them out of curiosity and it wound up being a place that really spoke to me.  There’s a lot of interesting places to “be” along that route. I suppose a more concise answer to where I want it to take me would be to say, “Where I’ve never been.”

5. What do you want your reader to be feeling when they read your stories?

As most of my stories lean towards horror and suspense that’s what I want to inspire – a fear of the unknown. Along with that it’s important that the reader feels a connection to the character(s). If they can’t relate to the characters they have no stake in the character’s fate.

6. Where does your inspiration come from?

As a reformed film student, I think a lot of my inspirations have a visual element to them. Whether it’s the sordid history behind a typewriter’s rust, or the three church towers conspicuously guarding  the lake… I see the story and then want to tell it.

7. Are you a Plotter, Pantser, or a bit of both?

Overall, I’d say a pantser. Sometimes I have an idea where I’d like to see the story end, but I prefer to get into the characters and let them guide me.  That being said I don’t really like either of the buckets. Organization does have it’s benefits (my desk a prime example), but sometimes you just have to write like you’re on fire.

8. Do you have a writing schedule? If so what does it look like?

When I’m writing, I usually do most of my writing at night.

9. What does your family think of your writing? Do they support it?

“He was always a little misunderstood” they would say to the local news media.

10. How do you overcome writer’s block?

Reading.  And wine. When the time is right the words will come. Forcing it has never worked for me.

11. What writing tips have been the most helpful to you as a writer?

I’ve found On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King to be one of the best writing books I’ve ever read. It’s one of the few books that I’ve read more than once. I highly recommend it.

12. Does writing energize or exhaust you?

When I’m in the flow, writing is a very manic experience.  However, being god can be exhausting.

13. What do you think makes a good story?

(see #5)

14. What was the best money you ever spent as a writer?

When I was a teenager I purchased a 1928 Remington typewriter for $20 from a thrift shop. That typewriter would later become the inspiration for my story “The Typist.”

 15. Do you enjoy shorter stories to longer ones?

I enjoy both equally. I find shorter stories to be less forgiving of bad writing.

16. Do you read much? What do you enjoy reading?

Reading has always been one of my favorite pastimes. I’ve usually got a few titles in my “currently reading” list at the same time. I also split between analog ;) reading when home and audio books for longer drives where I don’t need GPS.

17. Who are some of your favorite authors that have influenced in your work?

My favorites include Edgar Allan Poe, H.P. Lovecraft, Stephen King, Joe Hill, Arthur Conan Doyle and Jack Kerouac.

18. How would you describe your writing style?

Poetic fiction with a dash of madness.

19. Is there anything you want to improve on?  

Being a better human being, father, lover, citizen of the planet. Other than that, not much.

20. If you could tell your younger writing self anything, what would it be?

Run.

And finally, where can we find you? (Social media’s website etc.)

Links to Social Profiles: https://about.me/dwmetz

Blog: https://unknownpoetry.wordpress.com

And last but not least my retirement fund otherwise known as my Amazon author page: http://author.to/dwmetz