Now in it’s fourth year, the Jozi Flash anthology of flash fiction and short stories is bigger and better than ever.
Jozi Flash 2018: Colours of the City is due for release in September! Pop in every Wednesday from now until then to meet the authors involved in the project!
Week 6: Carin Marais
Joining Jozi Flash for the fourth time, we get to know a bit more about the incredible Carin Marais:
1. So, tell us about yourself but in old school Twitter 140 character format.
Fantasy, speculative fiction, and copy writer. Translator. Knitter, crocheter, and embroiderer. Loves cats, budgies, and dead languages.
2. We always hear about why you started writing but now, what keeps you writing?
Writing definitely keeps me sane. It’s not only a creative outlet, it’s a way to work through problems or issues I have. I’m starting to look more into writing creative nonfiction essays as well as writing fiction. Of course, that’s a learning curve on its own!
3. What would you say is your writing quirk?
I will sit and crochet or knit in front of the computer while plotting what happens next in the story. That’s about as close to a quirk as I can think.
4. What genre would you say is your worst, and why?
Contemporary fiction, although I do read it. I never seem to be able to just write straightforward everyday stories. Something otherworldly always seems to make its way into the story, even if it’s just to form a magical realism story and not, say, epic fantasy. My “contemporary fiction” is more in the vein of If You Could See Me Now by Cecelia Ahern.
5. What’s one thing you love about writing?
Getting lost in your own private movie or own world that seems as real as the “primary world” we live in. That you can see the story play out in your head like a movie — a movie that no one else has ever seen, mind you — and you just get to describe it for other people to experience. I mean, sometimes you get lost for hours and can’t even remember typing all the things you typed, yet you can remember living through it, watching it play out in front of you. And so many times you look at something you wrote and just go where did that come from? I think I’m addicted to the magic of it all.
6. If you were a character in your favourite genre, who would you be and why?
Hmmm… That will have to be the fantasy genre and I think I’d want to be Luthien from Tolkien’s works. She must be one of the most bad-ass female characters ever without even trying to or losing her femininity and suddenly becoming A Warrior Who Has No Time For Womanly Things. Mind you, Eowyn is another favourite. I feel like going in-depth into why I like Luthien so much I’d just give a bunch of spoilers, but let’s just say she sings for Morgoth. Morgoth. So often women are written either as damsels or warriors or simply cardboard cutouts. Or (pet peeve) you write about women and then you’re instantly writing “chicklit”. Okay, rant over.
7. Was writing something you saw yourself doing as a child?
It wasn’t really. I went through different stages of jobs I wanted to do “one day” — I remember from about six years old it was a paleontologist (because dinosaurs!) and then it morphed into archaeologist and then went to more creative jobs. When I really started writing in grade 9 or 10 I knew that that was what I wanted to do. I even work-shadowed as a botanist for a bit for school. It was fascinating, but not what I wanted to do every day. Of course, as a writer I can be all of the above and more!
8. If you could rewrite any book, what would it be and why?
Oh goodness, I honestly don’t know. Probably my first book. It sucked so bad. It will never see the light of day.
9. Being published is a major step forward so what will you do, now?
Keep writing! I have so many stories I still want to tell!
10. If you had to ask the person closest to you, what kind of author do they think you are?
A weird one. Who likes going off on tangents.
Follow Carin on social media. She regularly shares short stories or pieces of her longer works, and they’re definitely worth following her for!