Short, Sharp Interview: Jedidiah Ayres

PDB: Can you pitch  A  F*CKLOAD OF SHORTS  in 25 words or less?

Snubnose Press collected several of my short stories including three that were the source material for the films F*ckload of Scotch Tape and Viscosity.

 PDB: Which books, films or television shows have floated your boat recently?

I mostly read new books (because of the blog I write for Barnes & Noble) and Tom Piccirilli’s The Last Kind Words hit me harder than anything so far this year, but I did get a chance to catch up with James Lee Burke’s Lay Down My Sword & Shield and that was an ass-kicker.

Breaking Bad is hands-down my favorite thing on TV, though I really liked the first season of Boardwalk Empire and Archer is gleefully perverse – which I appreciate.

The Yellow Sea is probably the best movie I’ve seen this year, and The Skin I Live In just fucking rocked. I dug Rampart quite a bit, too.

 PDB: Is it possible for a writer to be an objective reader?

I don’t… care? If you don’t read anything you may still be a decent writer (I mean, Beethoven didn’t listen to music, did he?), but it’s not likely. And if your style or voice stops developing at some point, it’s probably the end of your relevance, though it doesn’t have to be other writers that are influencing you. Todd Snider’s got a great line that keeps coming up for me: “You’re either out of control or you’re stuck.”

PDB: Do you have any interest in writing for films, theatre or television?

Shit, yes. Novels and short stories allow the writer to be all-powerful, but there’s something exciting about collaborative efforts too. I’ve had one original screenplay produced and had a couple of my short stories adapted for film and in each case the adapting writers, actors and directors dug things out of my material that I never would have come up with. I love it when that happens -it’s a real kick in the grapes.

PDB: How much research goes into each book?

Of mine? Somewhere between zero and not much.

 PDB: How useful or important iare social media for you as a writer?

As a writer it’s nice to have access to the support and occasional kick in the ass that a community of like-minded folks can give you, but it’s a danger too – too many, too easily pleased people won’t help your writing improve.

PDB: What’s on the cards in 2012?

Scott Phillips and I are publishing a second volume of the Noir at the Bar anthology series, and I should have a novella out by year’s end.