The launch of Dublin’s Fierce City is getting closer. We’re back with another interview, this time with Axel J Sparrow!
1. What genre do you like to write in most?
Fantasy, usually concerning worlds other than our own. I do dabble in sci-fi from time to time, but high fantasy is where my heart is.
2. Which author or authors inspired you to write?
As a child, authors like Philip Pullman, Enid Blyton, Roald Dahl, Erin Hunter… I read a lot as a child. I always had a great love for Roald Dahl’s ability to make magic out of the mundane. And His Dark Materials remains one of my most profound inspirations to this day.
My teenage years were peppered with Neil Gaiman. As are my adult years. I wonder what my writing would have been like if I’d read Neverwhere sooner.
My adult inspiration comes from authors like V. E. Schwab, Roger Zelazny, Ursula K. LeGuin, Scott Lynch, Sarah Maria Griffin, and Dave Rudden. There’s a little bit of Terry Pratchett in there too, thanks to my partner.
3. Are you a planner or a pantser, and how does that work out for you?
I used to be a pantser but I’m now pretty firmly in the planner camp. It feels really good to have a folder full of worldbuilding notes and scene lists. I’m able to hammer out a first draft quite quickly when I have dots to connect. But my pantsing roots often start to show in between those dots!
4. What are you working on now?
I’m about two thirds of the way through the first draft of a novel about an alchemist who has a year to buy his mother’s alchemy parlour from her. That sounds kinda boring, but there’s dragons and the fantasy mafia and quite a bit of gender-bending involved. I started it a couple of years ago and got about 40k words in, then left it in a drawer to ferment for a while. Now I think it’s ready to be finished.
5. What’s your one piece of advice for new writers?
Don’t strive for perfection with your first draft. Just get it written. Even the greatest of books had shite first drafts.
Axel J. Sparrow was born and raised in Dublin. He owes his love of sci-fi and fantasy to his father, who immersed him in library visits and Star Trek: The Next Generation from a very young age. When he’s not spinning stories and scribbling them down, Axel enjoys going for long walks in his local park, and taking naps with his cat Artemis. Follow him on Twitter @ArcherofAnarchy
About Dublin’s Fierce City
In Dublin’s Fierce City, nine writers from the group present seventeen tales of magic and wonder.
Explore a city of fairies and ghosts, where one is as bad as the other. Avoid the curses of witches, and escape the wrath of angels and demons. Survive alien invasions and all out war, and come out the other side seeing the whole world differently.