Monday, December 2, 2013

A world close to our own: Guest blog and Giveaway with Author Shane Filer

Every work of art, each painting or piece of music, each book I love came from a very specific world-view, and so too does my debut novel “exit”. I have always disliked the mainstream, or generic – stories anyone could have created. I like that “Wuthering Heights” could only have been written by a strong-willed, ultimately lonely young woman in the isolated environment of the sweeping English moors. The person Emily Brontë was is imprinted between the lines of black ink on the paper of her first and only novel.

I was proof-reading “exit” and thinking about the world-view that led to its creation. I was thinking of many years spent alone, and realized that like Briar, the main character in “exit” this trait had always been a part of me, and goes back to childhood. I remember being much happier sitting under a tall fruit tree in the shade, reading over many summers, happier in my own world than playing with other children. Perhaps the world-view that was responsible for the novel was formed that early, in those first experiences of life.

To write, you must of course spend much time alone in silent contemplation, tapping words on a keyboard. When you write, you build a world. Whether it’s a twin-sunned world populated by candy-coloured aliens or whether it’s a world much like our own. But not quite our own. David Lynch creates films which echo the real world, but have no doubt this is a David Lynch world, both darker and yet simultaneously steeped in unattainable innocence.

So, “exit” is also my world. It is not a world for everyone. Some may well prefer the world of Dan Brown. It is a world that can be claustrophobic, a world of darkness and isolation. It is also a world with humour and wry observation of the absurd rituals of modern life.

And cats. Don’t forget cats.

The point is – it is mine. A world that wouldn’t have been created if it hadn’t been for the child sitting by himself reading as cicadas sing high in trees, and the scent of fresh nectarines drifts through air.

Shane Filer

Genre: YA, General Fiction, Contemporary

Publisher: Biblio Publishing

ISBN: 978-1-62249-142-1

Number of pages: 222
Word Count: 58,000

Cover Artist: Ekaterina Zagustina

Book Description:

"Did you know I spent the whole of my fifteenth year in my room?"

Briar’s impromptu, mid-afternoon confession stirs up distant memories of the lonely time she spent trapped in her home; suffering agoraphobia — fear of open spaces.   

Now it’s six years later.  

She’s free, but the year's isolation has left serious personality disorders; disorders which will resurface as she relates her own story, and that of those in her orbit; Melodie, a pretty valley girl who Briar desires to be, Justine, her oldest friend, who has her own dark secret, and Dermot, a man who thinks he's the reincarnation of Robin Hood — stealing from the rich to give to the poor. 

Slowly Dermot begins to draw Briar into his ever-so-exciting world, but who is leading whom on their slow descent into crime? Duel periods of Briar’s life intertwine like a rope around her neck as her lost year begins to overtake the present. It leads her to the answer to one very simple question:       
“Is it what I always feared — am I losing my mind?”

About the Author:

Shane grew up in provincial New Zealand, a small place where options are small, were people wear PJs to the mall, a small place where dreams of being a writer or artist are not only actively discouraged, they are actively quashed. Nevertheless he fell in love with books, comics and writing at a young age and his early influences include Oscar Wilde, Alan Moore and Dr Seuss.

After many years of trying to get books, documentaries and films accepted in his own country, Shane gave up and settled for working in the fairly creative world of video-making and advertising.

A trip to Europe and the USA rekindled his love of writing, and he wrote the American-based novel ‘Exit,’ submitted it this time to American publishers and immediately, received several offers for the work. He chose one and ‘Exit’ will be released December 2nd 2013 in the USA as his first novel from Biblio Publishing.

It is the story of Briar Averill who spent a year trapped in her room, suffering from agophobia. Six years on, she’s free, yet ripples from the year's isolation still lap at the edges of her life, and that of her friends: Melodie, a pretty valley girl who she wishes she could be… Justine, her oldest friend, who has her own dark secret and Dermot who thinks he's the reincarnation of Robin Hood — stealing from the rich to give to the poor. Ripples echo down through the years, leading her to the answer to one very simple question: Is it what she always feared — is she losing her mind?

Shane has since had comic book scripts accepted in the UK by DC Thompson, publisher of the long-running ‘Commando’ comic, fulfilling yet another dream for his child-self.

He lives with a very old and very vocal Tonkinese cat, and they both dream of eloping together to the USA or Europe.

He likes oranges, orange juice, and orange furniture — in fact even the color orange. Why? Well, because it's the best color, of course. While he believes that being a grown up is not all it's cracked up to be, he still enjoys ruining his appetite before dinner, and staying up past his bed time.

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1 comment:

tiago rosado said...

thx for the give,best of luck!