Tuesday, May 5, 2015

{Author Interview}: Giovanni Valentino

I'm pleased to welcome my close friend and CP, Giovanni Valentino to the blog today. He just released his 3rd Alternate Hilarities anthology, HYSTERICAL REALMS. 

Not all epic adventures are fun. Imagine walking all the way to Mount Gloom with a wizard that needs to stop all the time to tinkle, a dwarf who continually asks "Are we there yet?" and a perpetually lost elf that will not stop and ask for directions.
       Here is a collection of humorous tales of adventure like dwarf private investigators, mean spirited unicorns, randy genies and girlfriend stealing centaurs.
       So if you think you have what it takes to brave the misty mountains and howling canyons, grab your magic sword, sacred shield and your copy of “Dungeoneering for Dummies”.

Enter the Hysterical Realms if you dare!

One Ring of Cheese to Bind Us All!

But, before he shares any more information about this book, I put him in the hot seat :)

1.     How did you come up with the idea for Hysterical Realms?
a.      I wanted to tighten down the genre for this anthology. Speculative fiction can cover a lot. So I made this one exclusively fantasy. I got the subtitle as a play on the term Mystical Realms which I’ve seen bantered about a lot in the fantasy genre.  

2.     This isn't the first anthology you and Strange Musings Press has released. What unique challenges did you have with this specific collection, if any? 
a.      The biggest challenge for me is coordinating with 30+ authors. Getting contracts signed, bios provided, edits returned, it’s all a lot of work. I think I’ve had to drop one author in every anthology because I couldn’t get in touch with them during one of these stages.

3.     Your story, Mystical Redemption, is included. Can you tell us a bit about it? 
a.      Mystical Redemption is a ridiculous look at the clash between the magic and mundane worlds. A down on his luck wizard reaches out to normal folks to supplement the business to his “real” magic shop. He learns a valuable lesson, spells and coupons do not mix.

4.     What's up next for you and Strange Musings Press?
a.      The next Alternate Hilarities will be a science fiction theme edition called Weirder Science. So, if anyone has a funny robot or time travel story, send it in.

5.     I know you're a fan of humorous stories, particularly within the science fiction and fantasy genres. Who are some of your favorite authors?
a.      For the humorous end of things, Douglas AdamsTerry PratchettRobert AsprinCraig Shaw Gardner 

6.     If you could bring any characters to life from your favorite TV show, who would it be and why?
a.      Doctor Sheldon Cooper. Mainly because I want someone more annoying than me to hang around with to make me look better.

7.     What's your best piece of advice for authors who are hoping to have a story included in one of your anthologies?
a.      Besides write a good story, I’d have to say make the story funny all the way through. If you go a page or two without a joke, maybe that part isn’t really necessary.

8.     When you're not writing or compiling anthologies, what do you do with your time?
a.      I watch a lot of movies and TV. I have Hulu Plus, Amazon Prime, Netflix and HBOgo. I also enjoy running but that’s part of my writing process. It gets the blood pumping and you have a lot of time to think. I am training right now for a half marathon in the fall. I ran it two years ago and finished. This year, I want to get a better time. I was literally the third to last person to cross the finished line.

9.     Pepsi or Coke? 
a.      Pepsi, especially Diet Cherry Pepsi.

10.  Anything else you'd like to share with us?
a.      In the immortal words of “Weird Al” Yankovic, “I HATE SAUERKRAUT!”

HYSTERICAL REALMS is available in both print and ebook on AMAZON

Giovanni Francesco Valentino has struggled at the art of writing for five decades against many demons like self-doubt, chronic depression, OCD and severe dyslexia. He has written a few memoir pieces about his life struggles going undiagnosed for more than half his life. He hopes one day to be a famous published science fiction and fantasy author. 

He is a member of the CNY Writers Haven, a critique and writer support group. He is the editor of the humorous anthology, Alternate Hilarities, along with a Senior Editor at Anaiah Press. 

You can find more of Giovanni on his websiteGoodreads, Facebook, and Twitter