Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
Hi, I am James WF Roberts, Australian poet and writer, based in Melbourne. I have written several self-published poetry collections, one major collection, Blue Electric Dusk; and am currently writing and releasing the Tuesday Suicide novella series.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
My latest book is called Tuesday Suicide: Revenge, it is the third act in the Tuesday Suicide novella series.
Tuesday Suicide is a hybrid book, it is part memoir, part metaphysical/mystical journey, transgressive, meta-fiction. It is a dark and twisted story of love, betrayal, addiction, murder, insanity, redemption and sex. I was inspired to write it from my own life, from things like American Psycho, Natural Born Killers, Junkie, the Divine Comedy and 1984.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
I don’t know if it is unusual but I often play computer games before I write, if I am writing at home, I spend a lot of time on public transport so I do an awful lot of writing on public transport. I like to write in cafes and bar, where-ever I can grab a seat, have a cigarette, a coffee or a scotch.
What authors, or books have influenced you?
The biggest influences on my work, would have to be the Australian author Vanessa de Largie, the novelist Tara Moss, the Welsh-Indian writer Tishani Doshi. Older influences are Dante, William Blake, Allen Ginsberg, William S. Burroughs, Ian Fleming, Edgar Allen Poe. The books that inspired me the most are American Psycho, Fight Club, Junkie, Paradise Lost, there are so many it is hard to list them all.
What are you working on now?
I am currently working on a self-published poetry collection of Erotica pieces called Satyr and a Spoken Word album that I hope to be out towards of the end of May this year. I have just started doing a Masters of Communications and Media Studies at Monash University, Australia, and am going to to Shanghai in July so that is keeping me really, really busy.
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
I guess social media is the best way to do things these days, despite the restrictions Facebook is always putting on people of late. I think pages like this are important too for readers to get to know the authors. Read outs, facebook takeovers, blogs, there are so many good ways these days to get the word out there, especially word of mouth.
Do you have any advice for new authors?
WRITE! Want to be a writer? Just bloody write. I think writing is the only way to be a writer, courses and seminars and writer’s workshops can be helpful, but ultimately a writer needs to find their own voice and the only way they can do that is by writing, doesn’t matter what it is. Don’t be a slave to trends and make sure you have the ability to, as Ginsberg says ‘kill your darlings’, be brutal and honest with your work, only you know how the story should go. So be yourself.
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
I forget who told me this one day, but someone once told me all you need to have to be a writer is to feel. Write with honesty, clarity and heart.
What are you reading now?
Mainly academic journals, while studying, but I am currently re-reading Slouching Towards Nirvana by Charles Bukowski ad John Milton’s paradise lost.
What’s next for you as a writer?
Writing more parts to Tuesday Suicide. Working on developing some short film ideas and working on completely a spoken album. I am always pretty busy.
What is your favorite book of all time?
I have two, William Blake’s the Marriage of Heaven and Hell, and Vanessa de Largie’s book Lascivious; both two extremely powerful books about sexuality, desire, hope and salvation.