Interviews with Auckland writers: Alexei

Tell us a little bit about yourself

Generally I dont like to talk about myself all that much! I have been a dweller of the Auckland suburbs my entire life. Writing, however, is something I havent been doing my entire life.

I think my first attempts at writing (outside of forced schoolwork) were fan fiction. One too many times I found myself thinking Ugh, really?! The writers are seriously going to take this season of the show in that direction? I have so many better ideas…’ And I decided that I would just rewrite an entire season of a show just for fun. From there, I noticed that my writing was improving and got a positive response. Due to my sudden surge of confidence in my writing I thought Id try and take a loose concept that had been floating around in my head and turn it into something completely my own – which lead to what I am currently writing.

What are you currently working on?

My current project is something I am always a little wary to speak of, because people’s reactions can bemixed! I have a hard time trying to pinpoint what genre it would fall under so I just try and take it for what it is.

My current endeavour is an attempt at what will hopefully turn out to be a novel. My story follows Veronica, a young woman who has been trained from childhood as an assassin. On this job, she is on her own without her mentor for the first time, turning hunters into hunted. Veronica starts to experience things she hasn’t before – like feeling emotions – and even makes a friend, leaving a trail of carnage in her wake.

Whats your writing process like?

My writing process is kind of like putting together a puzzle. I know what the outcome is supposed to look like, but all of my ideas are dumped out in a clutter that needs to be put together.

I jump around a lot, just writing whatever comes into my mind whether it be at the end of the story or the middle. I end up with a lot of documents with non-chronological chunks.

Im trying to be more organised in my approach, I have a notebook with some rough flowcharts of events, small character studies and lore for the world, that sort of thing.

What are your writing habits?

I mostly write from my bed night before I go to sleep. Probably not the most practical way of tackling it, but it seems to work! My ideas seem to flow best at night. The university library also is an oddly comforting place, everyone is so caught up in their own work that the entire floor is silent. I like that sort of atmosphere.

Generally I dont set goals for myself when I sit down to write, if I do its usually a case of getting a rough outline of an idea down or rounding the word count up to the closest hundred or thousand.

My biggest distraction is myself, either my mind will jump from one idea to another.

Why do you write?

I write as a way of getting all of the ideas out of my head in the best way I can. I love that I can create worlds and people from my bedroom with just a laptop and an overactive imagination.

Whats your biggest challenge with writing?

StartingFinishingIm really good at procrastination, even if its for something I enjoy. Im also still learning how to write fiction so getting constructive criticism is always a great way of noticing ways to improve my work.

What are your writing goals and aspirations?

Considering that my introduction to writing was a bit of a fluke, I dont have any big aspirations for writing. At the moment my goal is just to finish the current work I have started. For the future perhaps venturing into short stories, developing my poetry skills, or trying to flesh out another vague idea I have for a novel. Im kind of just rolling with the punches.

Which writers would you compare your work to?

I draw inspiration from Steven Kings abstract horror and the feel of realism I get from his characters, and badass characterisation and world building from Derek Landy.

2019-05-01T08:57:17+00:00