10 Questions with author David Perlmutter
David Perlmutter is a freelance writer based in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. The holder of an MA degree from the Universities of Manitoba and Winnipeg, and a lifelong animation fan, he has published short fiction in a variety of genres for various magazines and anthologies, as well as essays on his favorite topics for similar publishers. He is the author of the upcoming book America Toons In: A History of Television Animation (McFarland and Co.) and of the currently available The Singular Adventures Of Jefferson Ball (Chupa Cabra Press).
How long have you been writing and what got you started?
I have been writing since 2006, and publishing since 2009. This only covers professional work, since I have been working on and off on an amateur level since childhood. What got me started in it was because I wanted to write the kind of stories other people were not telling, and because I started to feel that this was the only real way I was capable of making a living at anything.
What is the best piece of advice you have for new writers?
Don’t give up, and remain committed to presenting a personal vision in your work.
What is the worst piece of advice you have for new writers?
Slavishly imitate other people.
What is your favorite type of fiction and who are your favorite authors?
My favourite kinds of writing are science fiction, fantasy and horror. The writers who have most influenced me are Jack London, Robert Bloch, Frederik Pohl, L. Sprague De Camp, G.K. Chesterton and Philip Jose Farmer.
What tips do you have for finding time to write?
You have to keep reminding yourself mentally that these things have to be done, especially if an actual or self-imposed deadline is looming. As a person with Asperger’s Syndrome, I have something of the mental discipline to do this, but not everyone has, and those who do not need to do this reminding.
Do you prefer to outline a story in advance or write on the fly? Why?
The former. I actually prefer to write most of my stories out in longhand before I go to the computer, to save time wasted in front of the screen working on them.
How do you deal with rejections?
I used to get very depressed about them because I took them very personally. Once I learned that I should not do this, and that editors always have very specific, non-personal reasons for turning down projects (although they don’t always explain them to writers), I became able to deal with them more stoically.
What are your writing goals for the next twelve months?
I have several novel/novella projects coming in the future that I hope to complete and sell. Recently, I completed work on my first non-fiction book, and will be launching it in my home town later this month. I am hoping to begin work on some new ones soon, especially if it does well.
For the next five years?
More of the above, but hopefully I won’t have to worry about selling them to others by then- they might be coming to me for stuff instead.
Is there anything you’d like to plug? A website, or a novel?
My aforementioned non-fiction book, America ‘Toons In: A History of Television Animation, is available online from McFarland and Co. I also have a short story collection, The Singular Adventures of Jefferson Ball, available from Chupa Cabra Press.