So I had the amazing opportunity to spotlight the creative genius Author Francis Powell. However, before I introduce to you Powell's latest work take a look at a few questions I asked him.
-I have always done many creative things, paint, make music, do concerts. Painting makes me go crazy (paint gets everywhere, I am in a mad trance when I paint ). Maybe with writing I can condense my thoughts...express things that are deep within me, in a calmer manner. I can be witty and play games with the reader...I can create characters and bizarre story-lines. I really enjoy writing short stories and sometimes the stories are drifting around in my head while I am traveling, or doing something mundane I am trying to work out how they are going to progress, how they are going to end. This enriches my life.
Why did you become an author?
-I became a dedicated “short story writer”, after I saw an advertisement in a magazine, which was looking for short stories. It took a while but I finally connected with the originator of this magazine, Alan Clark, who like me is from the UK. The name of the magazine was “Rat Mort” (dead rat). I was encouraged to write more stories similar to the one I submitted and over the passing of time I began to develop a style. The fact that I aimed to produce “stories with an unexpected twist” is a result of reading a book of short stories by Roald Dahl called “Kiss Kiss” which I read as a child, but obviously a book that resonated long after in my mind.
What makes you different from the rest?
What makes you different from the rest?
-I would like to think my wit. The fact that I can write stories set in different places and at different times, with a range of different characters. I would like to think my sentences are always sharp and poignant. Hopefully when readers read one of my stories, they are gripped by it and want to find out how they will end.
What better way to put all my angst into short stories. Born in a commuter belt city called Reading and like many a middle or upper class child of such times I was shunted off to an all-male boarding school aged eight, away from my parents for periods of up to twelve weeks at a time.
In such an institutions, where I was to rest until my seventeenth year, there was no getting away from the cruel jibes hurled at me from taunting tormentors. My refuge was the arts room, where I started to find some kind of redemption from the stark Dickensian surroundings, whose aim was nurture the army officers, businessmen, and gentry that dominate the class ridden world I was born into.
The seeds were sown, I was an outsider. Happier times were to follow, I went to art school, where I attempted to exorcise my time spent at school.
At eighteen I turned my back on a parentally enforced weekly visit to church and my head was filled with a range of nonconformist ideas. While at my first Art college through a friend I met a writer called Rupert Thomson, who was at the time in the process of writing his first book “Dreams of leaving”. He was a bit older than myself, me being fresh out of school, but his personality and wit resonated and despite losing contact with him, I always read his latest published books with not only great expectation and unabashed admiration, but also a fascination for a person I had really looked up to, his sentences always tight, shooting arrows that always hit the mark.
My yearning to be creative stayed strong and diversified, from my twenties through to my thirties and forties I made electronic music, doing concerts, in front ecstasy infused crowds, at a point I was making videos and short films. When the age of the internet arrived I was really able translate my creative endeavors into something really tangible.
To earn a living I have worked as a teacher. I moved to Austria where upon I thought I would try writing. It is sure that my writing at that time was rough and rugged and without direction. I dived into a story about immortality, the story remains vegetating on some dusty floppy disk. Then tried short stories for children with illustrations to go with them. It wasn’t until I was in my mid-forties that my writing took shape.
I was at this point living in Paris, France. I spotted an advert for short stories. The magazine happened to be called Rat Mort (dead rat) I sent off a short story, in the hope it would match the seemingly dark world the magazine seemed to embroiled in. I got no answer. Not put off I sent two more stories.
Finally, I got an answer. It seemed the magazine editor was a busy man, a man prone to traveling. It seemed my first story really hit the right note with him. His name was Alan Clark. He had a flat in the Montmartre area of Paris, where he seemed known to all, especially those who frequented his favorite drinking haunts. He offered me many words of encouragement. I was writing stories that were coming into my head at regular intervals, as if a monster had suddenly awakened. I was writing them on scraps of paper, less I would forget them, while I traveled on the Paris metro, going about my teaching work with staid business types. I had found a format for writing that worked, as well as a hunger to write about the demons of my past that still haunted me.
Moving closer to present times, the desire to put together an anthology seemed to resonate in my mind. The Flight of Destiny evolved slowly. Many trans-Atlantic exchanges between myself and two editors seemingly far away.
This evolution took my writing to a new level and the stories more depth and resonance.
Flight of Destiny Summary:
Flight of destiny Is a collection of short stories about misfortune. They are characterized by unexpected final twists, that come at the end of each tale. They are dark and surreal tales, set around the world, at different time periods. They show a world in which anything can happen. It is hard to determine reality and what is going on a disturbed mind. People's conceptions about morality are turned upside down. A good person can be transformed by an unexpected event into a bad person and then back again to their former state. The high and mighty often deliver flawed arguments, those considered wicked make good representations of themselves. Revenge is often a subject explored.
Link to Purchase: Flight of Destiny