Interview: Josh Hewitt of World's End

Hi there lovelies!

Today I'm interviewing the awesome and amazing Josh Hewitt, creator and organizer of #WorldsEnd series of short stories that have gone up on his blog (here) for the past month or so. It's been an incredible thing to be a part of for me and I'm excited to talk to Josh about it! SO! JOSHIEEEEEEEE! My first GUY interview! I'm so excited. Are you excited?

JH: Like Amanda Bynes in a liquor store!

DC: You are far too inappropriate for this blog. I should've given a disclaimer. Oh, I also want to introduce the LOVELY Karen Gillan who will be joining us today. Karen, Josh. Josh, Karen.

KG: Hiya Joshie. 
DC: Ooookaaaaay, this should be interesting. So first off I just want to tell everyone how awesome Josh is for putting together WORLD'S END in the first place. All of the stories have been brilliant, and it was YOUR brain that came up with it. I'll bet you're proud. Now, on to the questions. Firstly, how long have you been writing, and what made you start?

JH: I wrote my first short story in 9th grade.  It was a spy story and it wasn't much good.  And I wrote it because I wanted to be James Bond.  But I was about as cool as Gold Bond.

KG: Hmmm. Not a very flattering remark there Joshie-boy.
DC: I agree with Karen, Josh. You've gotta stop belittling yourself. You're a great writer. (Though I'm sure you're much better now that you were in ninth grade at any rate.)Now, tell us a little bit about WORLD'S END and how the idea came about?

JH: Basically, there was a conversation on Twitter about post-apocalyptic literature.  And I started to ask questions, because I had never wrote a post-apocalyptic story before.  I'd seen Mad Max and the sequels a million times, but never written one.  And my question was "Has there ever been a Pre-Apocalyptic story before?"  The more I thought about it, the more obsessed with it I became.  I started to think about a world that was living while knowing the end would come.  What would life be like for them?

KG: Oh my... Josh, that's brilliant.
JH: Then I happened across the movie "Melancholia" which is about a planet striking the Earth.  And suddenly, things clicked.  I had my world, I knew what was going to happen.  But I'm not the writer for that story.  It was too big.  So I decided to invite some awesomely talented writers (like YOU) to participate.

DC: Aww, shucks.

JH: *laughs* I gave them all the same pitch--tomorrow we find out a ginormous planet "Ragnarok" is headed towards the Earth.  it'll take 20 years to arrive.  All stories are set 18 years after the announcement, 2 years before the end of it all.  One rule--they couldn't save the Earth.  And they took it to amazing places.

KG: I'll bet they did...
DC: Stop it Karen. Josh, what's been the most difficult thing about WORLD'S END from your vantage point?  

JH: Trying to not do too much.  I've seen, through all the stories, amazing ideas.  And, while writing my story, part of me wanted to include ALL THE IDEAS.  However, it would make it too much.  The key to writing it was balance.

As far as compiling and editing, it was placing the stories where they would have the most impact.  I divided them into three parts--Part One was made up of stories that gave an overview of life in that kind of world.  Part Two was more off-the-wall takes.  Part Three is more intimate stories that focus on couples or families.

DC: You have a wife and kids, yes? What do they think of your writing?

KG: Oh yes, what does your wife think of all this?
JH: My wife is incredibly supportive of my writing.  My kids aren't allowed to read it because I don't want therapist bills in twenty years.  I usually write after they go to bed.  Because, if not, my 4 year old is in my lap and it's very hard to not drop a couple of F bombs when she's around... Just kidding, it's not hard at all.

DC: What are you working on outside of WORLD'S END? Anything exciting?

JH: I just finished the first draft of my novel, so I'll be working on revisions.  It's called "Lessons In Life And Love" and it's about three guys in different stages of their lives and the search for happiness in the world.  And love.  And sex.  And more abject depravity.  Also, it's split between all three POV's.  So, it's very boring.

KG: Ooh, sounds like a good one.
DC: It sounds intriguing! You've mentioned the choosing of writers for World's End multiple times, so why did you pick the writers you did for Worlds End?

JH: Mostly, I read some of their work.  Like R. Scott Whitley, Suzanne Gale, Carey Torgenson, Julie Hutchings...I fell in love with their writing through some of the stuff they had shared.  So I asked, and I was thrilled when they agreed! Some people, I never had a chance to read a story by them, but I just had a feeling--like you! I read posts on your blog, and noticed you were an excellent wordsmith.  Of course, I didn't get a chance to read any of your fiction, but I knew by your posts you could craft an amazing story.  So, I asked (heart in my throat), hoping you would accept.  It was really great to work with people like you.  All the writers are amazing.  All of the stories are brilliant.  I have been blessed to work with such talented people.

DC: You're making me blush. Stop it.

KG: Wait. What is happening here?

DC: What kind of stories are your favorite to write?

JH: Literary.  As a reader, I'm very much influenced by Hemingway and Updike.  I

DC: How has your life affected your writing?

JH: I can write a hell of a story about not getting dates.

KG: *laughs* Josh, come on. You can't be serious.
DC: Music while writing?

JH: No.  it interferes with my own rhythms.  But I do take Dance Breaks.  Cause, white.

DC: Snacks? Drinks? And how do you eat an Oreo?

JH: Beer, sake, whiskey, or rock gut coffee (If you bring one of those flavored things to me, I will punch you in the temple).  I have always made it my dream to die like Hemingway--fat, drunk, and in Europe.  I open an Oreo and get the cream out.  Also, TWSS.

KG: Mmm, how 'bout wine? D'you drink wine?
DC: Oh dear, this is all going downhill now... Okay, last question: What advice would you give to our fellow writers out there, whether beginning, querying or otherwise?

JH: Don't listen to me.  I suck.


JH: Seriously, the best advice I can give is read.  Read lots.  And, when you watch TV or a movie, think about how you would have approached the story.  How you would have made the leads.  Imagine always.

DC: Fantastic advice that I second wholeheartedly. Thank you so much for taking the time to interview, I really appreciate it. And Karen, did you have anything you wanted to add before we go?

DC: Haha! Thanks so much to both of you!

There you have it readers! Go check out the WORLD'S END series of short stories on Josh Hewitt's blog, A Beginning, And End, and All that Lies Inbetween and follow Josh on twitter at @the_j_hewitt.

Thanks for reading! See y'all soon.


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