Douglas Kolacki began writing while stationed with the Navy in Naples, Italy. Since then he has placed stories in publications like Weird Tales, Dreams & Visions, Aurora Wolf and The Lorelei Signal. He how haunts Providence, Rhode Island.
1. How long have you been writing and what got you started?
I started when I was twelve, got sidetracked, finally got serious at age twenty-seven while stationed with the Navy in Naples, Italy. I took two college writing courses on the base, then began writing and submitting.
What got me started was reading H.G. Wells, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and Ray Bradbury. The Big Three.
2. Do you favor the traditional route or self-publishing?
Traditional for short stories, self-publishing for novels. I keep hearing bad things about going the traditional route.
3. Are you an outliner or discovery writer? Or somewhere in between?
I’ve always been a “pantser,” that is, one who flies by the seat of his pants as opposed to outlining it all beforehand. “Discovery writer” sounds better.
4. How do you deal with rejections?
The best way is to have several stories out at once, so that a single rejection doesn’t hit so hard.
5. Were you taught anything about creative writing in high school or college that just didn’t work for you?
I attended a conference with a pro who recommended outlining novels in advance before actually writing them, otherwise you end up with a mess. I agree with him, and I’d be better off if I could do it that way, but it’s just never worked. It’s like the story’s not fooled; it won’t come out unless I’m actually writing it.
6. In your opinion, how important is a writing degree or MFA when it comes to achieving success in writing fiction?
I was informed in one of my college classes, that William Faulkner once flunked a writing course. Then again, Stephen King went to college and taught high school English. It seems to vary from person to person.
7. What are your writing goals for the next twelve months?
Get my current novel critiqued, revised and self-published. And write more short stories. I devoted 2016 entirely to short yarns and it’s been a ball.
8. What are your writing goals for the next five years?
- Keep at it.
- Keep loving it.
9. What book(s) are you reading right now?
Maxwell Perkins, Editor of Genius by A. Scott Berg; Get In Trouble, a story collection by Kelly Link.
10. Is there anything you’d like to plug? Feel free to share a link.
I have a novel up on Amazon, about modern-day pirate fans in a seaside city that’s taken over by an oceangoing sorcerer. They have to rise to the buccaneering occasion to overthrow him, if he doesn’t catch them first. It’s called If All Else Fails, Attack.