Tell us all a little about Squids In
Squids In is a feel good, adult oriented story about a stoner called Toby and this octopus which gets stolen from a military animal testing lab by activists and dumped into Toby’s pool. It turns out that the octopus is a demon at playing video-games and so Toby creates an online account for the creature to play on and they take part in an assortment of player versus player death matches for cash prizes, with Toby amassing quite a fortune and becoming an online gaming celebrity. This all comes back to bite him however when Hendrix (the octopus) gets stolen from him AND the military animal testing lab pull him in for intense interrogation over the animal lab break in. The last portion of the book revolves around Toby’s search to get Hendrix back. It’s very much written in a “Pineapple Express” style so if you like that kind of thing, this is definitely the book for you.
Where did you get the idea for the book? Real life experiences (LOL)?
My seven month old son was given a “Hank” cuddly orange octopus, one of the sea creatures that appears in the upcoming Disney film “Finding Dory”. When the topic for the Nerdist June writing competition was announced on Inkshares as being video-game related, I just sat on my sofa looking around for inspiration and Hank caught my eye. It was as simple as that.Why did you decide to use Inkshares – a crowdfunded publishing site?
I was first brought to Inkshares via an article that appeared on the Geek and Sundry website, when they announced they were running a competition for hard sci-fi novels. Now, I don’t write hard sci-fi and rarely read anything that fits in that genre but I followed the link anyway and discovered this wonderful community of writers who were helping each other to achieve their goals, offered support and motivation. I think that was something I needed in order to get on and write and probably the reason I stuck around. There are some truly great people on Inkshares.
Why do you write?
I write purely as a form of distraction. My work and home life are very hectic and stressful. As a creative person, I am constantly in need of things that fire up that side of my brain and keep me balanced and sane, otherwise who knows what sort of person I will become. I would love to become a full time writer, but my writing skills need to develop in order for this to happen. The more I write, the better I write. It really is as simple as that.
What are your plans for the future with your writing?
My ultimate short-term goal is to finish in the top 3 in the Nerdist video-game contest with Squids In, which would guarantee publication. If the book does not finish that high, I’m not sure if I really want to limp on to Quill. That’s something I need to figure out in a few weeks’ time depending on how things go. I would love to publish the book properly however just so that everyone gets a chance to enjoy some of the artwork my illustrator Eugene Karasz from DeviantArt has done for it.
Why should readers help support your book?
My story is pretty different to everything else in the Nerdist video-game competition and because of this, Squids In is kind of the underdog of the top ten (along with the excellent Mothering: The Game by Regina McMenomy.) The other entries at the sharp end are there for a multitude of reasons of course, they are great ideas and books (shout out to “Destiny Imperfect” by Peter Ryan) but I like a good injection of comedy in the things I read and Squids In has ink loads of that.