As part of the first ComedyBookWeek, I have been able to get my blog’s first Author interview. And it is the author of the book which I read first for the #ComedyBookWeek event.
You can read my review of the book, The Bumpkinton Tales: Volume One written by Matthew Drzymala. I am so excited and happy to be part of the event as well as bring forth an interview of the author, Matthew Drzymala.
About the author:
Name: Matthew Drzymala
Born: December 22, 1981
Influences: Terry Pratchett, Jo Nesbo, David Nicholls, JK Rowling, Steig Larrson
He attended creative writing courses in 2012 and 2013 and was nominated for a National Adult Learner Award in 2014.
Matthew Drzymala was born in Manchester, UK until 2012 when he moved to Liverpool.
Matthew is the author of the series known as The Bumpkinton Tales, a set of stories set in the slightly quirky village of Bumpkinton. Available in paperback and on Kindle.
Matthew has also released a short story called Brainstorm, set in New York. This is a darker story but is packed full of personal experiences.
Outside of writing he likes to watch football as well as watching films and TV.
He lives in a flat with a balcony overlooking a river where he can sit and write while drinking tea and eating scones.
As the other things about him can be read on his website, I have kept most of my questions related to book I reviewed, The Bumpkinton Tales.
1. When did Matthew the writer/author start his journey?
Matthew: I must admit I didn’t write much after leaving school in 1998, other than a little bit of fan fiction for the British comedy show, Red Dwarf. The first real time I started to write as an adult was for NaNoWriMo in 2011. I wrote during my breaks at work and typed up what I’ve written in the day when I got home.
I even took a day off work to get ahead of my word count. I can admit that now I no longer work there! Haha!!
In 2012-13 I took a creative writing course and it’s gone on from there really. I released my first stories at Christmas in 2013 (Last Christmas and Bittersweet) and then, as they say, is history.
2. Did you have any place in mind when you created Bumpkinton Tales?
Matthew: I have to admit I didn’t. The story came about at the very end of my writing course. I’d written some dark stuff and for the last piece of work I needed something light and fluffy and that’s where it came from. I’m not sure the village was even called Bumpkinton in the first draft, but it evolved into it.
As for an actually, real place, no, none of it is based on anywhere real whatsoever.
3. The story moves through the past, present, basically the lives of many characters. Which characters story was easy to write? Which one was difficult to write?
Matthew: I have so many different stories untold it’s hard to say. Each story is different and the only full story is Venetia Ashurst’s in Bittersweet. I like keeping some things secret. Albert’s past is hinted at in Albert’s Christmas but not fully explained.
That is something that will be revealed, but not for some time yet. The story I wrote at college answers a lot of questions but I’ve never released it, most of all about Albert. It’s a story I love but it’s one that I think would be fitting further down the line.
I love all the characters and some who have only appeared as cameos or have one line here and there will get their own stories too, it’s just a matter of finding the right story.
The novel I’m writing is mostly about another outsider, but it also includes Amelia again and Whitworth as major parts, but once that’s completed I’d love to do a story with a character we’ve never met before or one who’s only had a bit part.
So I can only say Venetia in answer to your question because I don’t personally feel the rest of the characters have yet had a complete story. There’s still so much to tell with a few of them.
4. Which character is your favourite? Why?
Matthew: Father Whitworth O’Grady because he’s just so easy to write. Some characters I need to think about, I need to think of their motivation etc but with Whitworth, he’s a priest. He wants to do good, but he also gets easily frustrated, so it’s fun to see how I can raise him up and then what I can go to really pull him around emotionally.
He’s a fun character to write and a character that really runs every emotion possible. Plus writing about a priest is funny because when they do something or think something they shouldn’t, it becomes funnier than just a normal character doing it. I never tire of writing him. I’m not sure I’ll ever write one I like more.
5. Which character do you feel is like you/inspired from your own personality?
Matthew: I have to admit Father O’Grady. Every time he mentions food, it’s what I like. So, whenever he’s having breakfasts, lunch or a snack, he’s usually eating something I really like.
He also thinks random things internally all the time, random bits of rubbish, which is what I tend to do a lot plus he gets frustrated quickly, a trait he knows he shouldn’t have and I’m the same. I try not to get easily frustrated, but I always do. Haha!
6. Which genre do you prefer to read?
Matthew: Thrillers, mainly. I’ll read most things but I do like thrillers, which is odd considering I write humour, but I do love Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series.
7. Which book do you wish you had written?
Matthew: The Green Mile, by Stephen King. Great film, great book. All round greatness.
8. Which author do you think is underrated? Who is overrated?
Matthew: Hmm, I’m not sure. I don’t really read masses of books when I’m writing so I don’t get through many books. I love Jo Nesbo, I don’t know if he’s under rated or not. Over rated, I wouldn’t like to say as being a writer is hard work and if you’ve written a book that’s hit the big time, then good luck to them.
Lots of people say the 50 Shades of Grey books are rubbish and that the author is a bad writer, but fair play, she’s selling millions and has a film series.
9. Have you met any writer/author?
Matthew: I met Frank Cottrell Boyce earlier this year. A really lovely man and a great author and screen writer.
10. Your advice for authors.
Matthew: Write, write and write some more. You’ll have bumpy times ahead and you’ll make mistakes but if you keep at it you’ll learn from them. If you want to write, you will and it’s one of the most rewarding things you can do.
Writing is hard, but the finished article is yours and you’ll love it.
That’s about it! 🙂
Thank you for taking out time and coming forth for the interview Matthew. Enjoyed it completely!! It’s a pleasure to have ‘connected’ to you via the #ComedyBookWeek. Best wishes for the future. Hope to keep reading and reviewing your work.
Thank you everyone for coming along and reading this interview. I am quite nervous about your reactions/comments/suggestions on this.
Lots of love and best wishes!