Yeti hugs, Paul xx
Wednesday, March 25, 2015
Here we have a recent interview between myself and Beargrrria’s top magazine for chat; THE GROWL GAZETTE. They know me over there due to my dubious connection with a certain Beargrrrian superstar named Charlie Grrr. This is the eighth time that they have interviewed me since 2011! They really MUST be short of people to speak to. This time I’m talking mainly about what the next few months hold in store and about my forthcoming collection – A YETI WAY OF THINKING and the 10th anniversary reissues of my collections, MUGSHOTS and POETIQUETTE. So, here’s what they asked and what I said in reply – straight from the yeti’s mouth, as it were!!!
Q. Welcome Mr Yeti!
A. Hello… It’s fantabulous to be back!
Q. First of all would you tell us what have you been working on recently?
A. As usual there are a number of projects… I’m very busy with my scripted series – finishing off the BEAST OF FRIEND quartet and moving on to various stand-alone spinoffs. There are two Mouse projects that I’m focussed on and also three books of poetry, two reissues and one new collection, A YETI WAY OF THINKING, which has been awaiting publication for a some time; ready except for the formatting and proofreading…
Q. Tell us more about the scripts…
A. Well, I’ve recently published the third season of my BEAST OF FRIENDS series with the fourth and final season due out in the summer. There is also a movie script-book of the BEAST OF FRIENDS still to come – called YETI DON’T FALL BACKWARDS, but that won’t be out until after season four; probably later this year. The movie is actually set towards the end of season two as a sort of missing adventure and is set in Venice, where I also wrote a number of the scenes during my birthday holiday there in November 2014. I’ve also got two spin-off series that I’ve been working on since last year: HOT STUFF!! and KENSINGTON GORE. I’m already working on the later stages of their second seasons and moving on to their third seasons, whilst proofing the season one script books. HOT STUFF!! is set in a library and KENSINGTON GORE is set in a particularly creepy area of London near The Royal Albert Hall. I don’t want to say too much more about these two yet as I risk giving away some twists about the fourth season of BEAST OF FRIENDS which won’t be published for another month or three. Needless to say I’ve been very much enjoying writing the script-books and they have become my primary writing projects over the last eighteen months.
Q. How long does each script-book take to write?
A. That really seems to depend on my own enthusiasm and what other projects that I might be working on at the same time. The first two seasons of BEAST took quite a while to complete – whereas I’ve managed to complete four or five different seasons of script-book in draft form in the last 12 months; but it’s the rewriting, formatting and proofing that takes the real time. I may be rather prolific but I want everything to look and sound as right as is possible before I publish them.
Q. Can you tell us about some of the characters involved in the script series – which are your favourites to write for?
A. It’s been quite interesting actually; the more I’ve written for some of the characters the more I’ve enjoyed writing them – and some of them started off in quite minor roles. As you'd expect the scripts are full of werewolves and witches and whatever – but don’t worry, they’re just like us but with the odd special power on occasionally. They still have to work and pay bills and battle unsociable and evil vampires (who aren’t afraid of the sun really and often do have reflections after all!)
I also enjoyed writing lines for two of my favourite older characters – Charlie Grrr and Simon Yeti who often pop up in Mouse of Commons novels… They’re just so terribly selfish which makes them a delight to write for because they function on a completely different ethical plain from most people; they’re not even deliberately nasty even if their decisions result in something nasty occurring. In a way, it’s just a sort of terrible innocence… I’m writing about them in two different projects – one is the latest Mouse Of Commons novel where they are arguing over who should get to use a time machine and in the BEAST OF FRIENDS movie script Charlie’s latest project is the reason that the main cast arrive in Venice. Simon and Charlie are pretty dreadful in this script – but there is one scene where they are found in a lead-lined room being quite nice; apparently being stubborn is just an act which they have to live up to. In a lead-lined room where nobody can see them they are able to be calm, reasonable and kind – but only for the time that they are in the room! It’s daft stuff and probably my favourite way to spend a spare hour! Sometimes I make myself giggle because I'm getting to write such nonsense... What an egotist, right!? I’m nearly as bad as Charlie and Simon…
Two of the characters that I’ve enjoyed writing for recently are actually relatively non-hairy – one of them is called Ashley and the other, Felix… Ashley is the mother of one of the characters from BEAST and she also appears in KENSINGTON GORE and HOT STUFF!! She started out being an overly demanding mother – showed a quite immoral side, but then has tried to make amends. She’s still not somebody who you should really trust – and you certainly need to be wary of her motives; which is why writing her is such fun. As for Felix, he was the handyman in season one of HOT STUFF!! and if anything I was guilty of under-writing him in the first drafts - in fact I completely forgot about him about half way through that season. I was only as I began to write season two that his role truly clicked for me and I was lucky enough to be able to go back and tweak the first season draft as it wasn't yet published. In season two Felix comes out of his shell and you realise that previously he was just existing, not living; in a different way to Ashley he has been an enjoyable character to write for.
Q. You’ve not published a Mouse Of Commons book in a while... Can you tell us about the ones that you’re working on?
A. Most certainly. One of them is a book of three short stories written by hand almost ten years ago – one set in Venice, one in London and one in Amsterdam. The book’s title is THREE TAILS ARE BETTER THAN ONE and I’ve typed up about half of it from notes so far – of the two this is probably the book that will be ready first as the actual hard work of writing the stories is complete. The second book is called THE SPLINTERS OF TIME and it’s the sequel to the last Mouse novel, GLADSTONE MCWHISKERS AND THE COUNTER-CLOCKWISE CONUNDRUM – it’s over half-way written, but it may still be some time before it’s completed. As it happens a number of characters from the Mouse stories have crossed series and have been appearing in some of my recent scripts – among them are Charlie Grrr, Simon Yeti, Tula Swiss and Fatima the Fantabulous.
Q. What about the poetry re-issue projects? Where have you reached with that?
A. I’m doing very well – POETIQUETTE is due to be published in May and that is the last of my original eight of my books that I wanted to republish on www.lulu.com separately. It’s nice to know that this project is now complete… The next step is to decide whether the 9th and 10th books need a little make-over. POEMS TO MAKE BEARS GROWL and RHYMES BEARS STEAL PIES FOR were the first two books that I wrote specifically to go onto Lulu.com – although they are not quite the same in design as the volumes that followed them. I’m going to have a think – and could still do some kind of 10th anniversary editions for those volumes in 2016 and 2017.
Q. Are you still working on new poetry? When will A YETI WAY OF THINKING be ready?
A. I hadn’t really completed a poem in some time – but did do one for Valentine’s Day this year when I wrote a piece called LOVERS DON’T LIVE LONGER to post up on my blog in time for February 14th. I’ve written quite a few Valentine’s poems over the years and liked the idea of doing a new one this year – as I’ve not done so for some time. It probably won’t be appearing in A YETI WAY OF THINKING – but for now is on my blog at www.shyyeti.com and is included at the back of the 10th anniversary edition of POETIQUETTE and in YETI DON'T FALL BACKWARD; the Beast Of Friends Movie Script-book. As for A YETI WAY OF THINKING, it is almost done – but the formatting is taking time as, until recently, it was on a computer of mine that I can only use at limited times. I've reduced it in size slightly and have been writing brief commentaries for each piece - so hopefully it'll be finished by the summer. As for writing new poems I won't be rushing to put together another collection for a while - but I have plenty of ideas to work on in my own time. I'd also like to write pieces for my blog, inspired by trips away and particular high-days and holidays. In addition to that I’m considering expanding my SHY YETI GOES WILD mini-compilation from a few years ago.
Q. Will there be any poetry shows in 2015? What about Shy Yeti videos?
A. I really hope so… The Poetry Café only books three months ahead now so I am waiting until I have exact dates for the releases of POETIQUETTE and A YETI WAY OF THINKING before approaching them for dates, as I may only do two shows this year; but we'll see. As far as Shy Yeti videos are concerned I still have a lot of footage filmed – but not the technology or patience to put it together at the moment. Maybe when I have slightly more time…
Q. Have any of your recent writings been inspired by your travels? Are you going away anywhere this year which you hope will inspire you?
A. The travel writing doesn’t always work as well as it could – because the stories that I write are much more focussed on dialogue and plot than on setting. Even in KENSINGTON GORE which does use the area around The Royal Albert Hall or the BEAST movie which is set in Venice – it wouldn’t take a great deal to adapt the story to any other major city. The Venice script only had a few short scenes actually written there with the majority of the piece written in London. I guess it doesn’t matter in a way, it’s fun to have a story set somewhere new – even if the story isn’t overly dependent on that setting.
As far as trips away are concerned there is certainly the potential that I could set a script overseas – or write a short story or poem inspired by my travels. So far in 2015 I have trips to Lisbon, Belfast and the Lake District planned – with a week in Berlin already taken in March. The Berlin trip was great fun, although my health was slightly hampered at the time. I did, however, write a short story whilst I was out there that I posted on my blog along with some of my holiday snaps and may well do something similar next time I'm away.
Q. That's good news. Thank you for answering our questions, Mr Yeti.
A. That's okay.
So, there you have it! I'm not sure what my next post will be about - but I hope I'll be back with something soon!
Yeti hugs, Paul xx
Yeti hugs, Paul xx
This post and all content is Copyright Paul Chandler 2015.