Interview with Science Fiction Writer Derrick Boden

I’d like to welcome Derrick Boden to Infinite Pathways today to chat about his short story “Blood on the Horizon” in the anthology UNBOUND I: Lost Friends, and other authorly interests. Thanks for coming!

Thanks for having me.

Can you describe for us the moment that launched you on your writing journey?

 I wrote my first science fiction novel when I was in fourth grade. It was more pictures than words, and only about twenty pages long, but I’m still convinced that if I can find the damn thing it’ll be an instant bestseller.

How has your ‘day job’ influenced your writing?  What are the main influences to your writing?

I’ve had quite a few “day jobs,” ranging from Tokyo-based English teacher to loathed telemarketer, although software development has taken up most of my time.  I’ve always been a “computer guy,” so it’s no surprise that many of my stories involve artificial intelligence and the like.  As far as influences go, I look for inspiration everywhere: social interactions, news stories, history, science briefs, dreams – you name it.

What were the most challenging aspects of bringing your story to life?

My biggest challenge is knowing when to stop tinkering with a story.  Revisions could literally take a lifetime, if not kept on a leash.

Who is your favourite character?  Can you describe an interesting moment in the development of this character?

My favourite character in this story is probably Cody.  Although Janet undergoes the most significant change, Cody represents a reserved, mysterious intellect that can never be fully understood by humans.  Some of his most interesting moments come while he’s still in captivity, since it’s not entirely clear just how much of his situation he understands.

What was the most difficult scene for you to write?  Try to describe your efforts without revealing too much or ‘spoiling’ the moment for future readers.

I’d have to say the final scene.  Although probably the shortest, it contains the bulk of the emotional impact.  I wanted to make sure and leave the reader with something to think about after they put the book down.

What insight can you give regarding the publishing industry and the route you chose for publication (traditional publishing vs. self-publishing).

I’ve had fairly limited experience with the publishing industry, this being only my eighth contribution in anthologies, magazines, and eBooks.  So far my experience has been generally positive. Rejections are a fact of life, both unfortunate and necessary.

What have you found to be the most challenging aspect of publicizing yourself and your work?

Easily the most challenging aspect of publicizing my work is overcoming modesty.  I often fear that talking about my own accomplishments will make me come off as a braggart.

What drew you to this genre? What are your favourite scenes to write?

I’ve been reading science fiction since I was very young, thanks primarily to my father.  I find science fiction the perfect venue to explore society’s current challenges against the backdrop of the future.  My favourite scenes are those wrought with conflict, both internal and external.  I’m also fond of describing rich, lived-in settings.

What projects are you currently working on and can you reveal or give any juicy hints?

I’m currently writing my first full-length novel, a story that explores a variety of post-human conditions in a hostile alien planet.  I’m very excited about it.

Where can readers find more of your work?

All of my work is available at derrickboden.com.  You can also follow me on Twitter at @derrickboden.

It’s been a pleasure chatting with you today. Thank you again for stopping by and sharing your experiences and stories with us.

Thank you very much.

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Derrick BodenDerrick Boden is a recovering software developer that has taken up story writing to kick the habit.  He’s recently made New Orleans his home, although he’s lived on four continents and is an avid traveler and adventurer.

Derrick is a sucker for the simple things in life: food, drink, and good company.  To him, science fiction is the perfect avenue for exploring our era’s dynamic issues, against the backdrop of the future.

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