Someone Else’s Writing: James Ward Kirk

James Ward Kirk: “Sometimes I wonder if I’m expressing my unconscious into my fiction.”

Hi James! Tells us – what makes you different to other writers?

I also work as a publisher and editor. I think the insights I get from other writers and their work makes me a better writer. I’ve made a lot of friends through my editing and publishing work. One of the best ways, I think, to improve one’s writing is to hang out with other writers. I do live with severe depression—I’m fairly certain this affects me as a writer.

Why do you think we’d enjoy reading your work?

After completing my Master’s Degree and seeing my sons off into the world, I went back to school for a year and studied abnormal and humanistic psychology. Depression and my studies regarding human behavior and personality work together weaving a voice for my work that I think is unique.

Where do you get the ideas for your stories? Is there something – or someone – that acts as your inspiration?

I don’t remember my dreams. Sometimes I wonder if I’m expressing my unconscious into my fiction. I am a huge fan of Poe, and especially his stories “The Purloined Letter,” “William Wilson,” and “The Fall of the House of Usher.” In “The Purloined Letter” one learns how important the number two is, and the duality of human nature. The other two stories express what happens when that duality is fractured.

James is the editor of a number of anthologies including the Indiana Science Fiction series.

How would you describe your ‘typical’ writing session? Do you have any particular habits? Do you prefer to hand-write or type?

I write as soon as I wake up. I stumble (literally–I’m heavily medicated in order to sleep) and pour some coffee. I fire up my computer and go to work

Are there any other writers who you really admire? What was the last thing you read and would you recommend it?

I really enjoy John Connolly. He has a finger on the pulse of the dichotomy of existence. There are several Indiana horror writers I admire. There are too many to list here, but Paula D. Ashe and Murphy Edwards come to mind first. Paula D. Ashe’s story “The Mother of all Monsters” sticks in my mind. You can find it in Indiana Horror 2012.

Indiana Horror, edited by James Wark Kirk, is available to purchase at Amazon.com.

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