Interview With Author T.M Cicinski
Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
I am a 36 year old, British-born novelist and short story writer, currently resident in Granada, Spain. From Whence The River's Run is my fifth published work. My other works include another novel, a novella, and two collections of short stories. Over the course of this year, several other works will be added to this list.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
The name of my latest work is "From Whence The Rivers Run." It was inspired by a story I heard long ago about a man who set out to kill the crocodile that had killed his wife. I forget how that story ended, whether it were in success or tragedy, however, it made me think a good deal about the relationship between humanity and nature, and the process of grief, and the result of this pondering was the novel.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
I am not sure if it is unusual or not, but one of my habits is to write in bars. When I am working on something, in the evenings I often take my notes to one of two or three bars, settle down at a table, and work away with a beer and plate of tapas at my elbow. It is not important to me whether the bar is full or empty. As soon as I am settled to work, no amount of noise or activity around me disturbs me. But I like the feeling of life going on around me. Writing can be a lonely path to walk, yet working in a public place, in proximity to others, that loneliness slips away. The bars I chose have changed over the years, but my most enduring favourites for working are "El Rincón de Lorca" and "Bar Poë", both in Granada.
What authors, or books have influenced you?
To list all of the authors and books that have influenced me would be an impossible task. At different times, different authors and books have been more or less important. However, the most enduring influences I would say have been Hemingway, Camus, Proust, Saint-Exupéry, Tolstoy, and Jack London. Each in their own way achieved what I consider to be perfection in one or more of their works.
What are you working on now?
At the moment, I am working on another literary fiction novel and a collection of stories. Alongside this there is a mountain of projects stacked beside my desk, which I must get round to completing and editing sooner or later.
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
I am inexpert in all such things. However, if I learn, I will let you know.
Do you have any advice for new authors?
You must write for you, for your pleasure, for your own development. Do not write because you want to be published, to be famous, or to be rich. If you do, the chances are that you will spend less time being happy than you will being unhappy. If you write only for yourself, for the joy of the process of writing, and the satisfaction of finishing a work to the standard you hoped for, writing will never be anything other than something that enriches your life.
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
"It would be a terrible thing for the end of the world to come and for you to be in credit."
What are you reading now?
I am always reading more than one book at the same time, so that no matter what my mood, I have something that suits it. At the moment I am reading "Siddhartha" by Hermann Hesse, and "Bonjour Tristesse" by Françoise Sagan, both of which I would heartily recommend.
What’s next for you as a writer?
To continue writing everyday, and, hopefully, to continuing growing and improving as a writer.
If you were going to be stranded on a desert island and allowed to take 3 or 4 books with you what books would you bring?
I would take Proust's "In Search of Lost Time," Tolstoy's "War And Peace", and, for something a little lighter but by no means less enjoyable, De Bernières' "Captain Corelli's Mandolin".
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