Today, Gentle Reader, I am pleased to present a not-so-normal interview with my regular writing-buddy, Mr. Blake Charlton. Someday I will tell you all the story of how we met, what a lost and pathetic big-eyed innocent he was when Phran and I rescued him from the yearning maw of his first science fiction convention. Little did I know then what an infuriating (yet sometimes endearing) little piss-ant he would turn out to be.
Here’s a bit of advice:
Never feed stray fantasy authors at conventions; they’ll end up sitting across from you at cafes mocking your technological incompetence and cracking bad puns for the rest of your writing life.
Gail Carriger: Right, Mr. Charlton, here we go. Do, please, try to behave.
Blake Charlton: Yes, Ma’am.
GC: You’re a medical student who’s completed his classroom years but not his clinical years. Is your proper title ‘mister’ or ‘doctor?’
GC: Except for me. I refer to you as My Personal Physician.
BC: Then I’ll refer to you as my Book 2 Romantic Plot Line Councilor.
GC: You say the sweetest things.
GC: If your brain were a vacation destination what would it look like?
BC: Venice at Carnival: crowded, festive, spiritual in purpose but celebrating creativity and the body, brightly colored, and a little—but in that good way—dirty.
BC: Guilty as charged.
GC: Naproxen, ibuprofen, or acetaminophen?
BC: Yes. Especially after a long run. Take with food though to avoid gastritis.
GC: If you were to be magically turned into an animal that had your physical traits and mannerisms, what animal would this be?
BC: A bald eagle.
GC: Would you rather make the NY Times best seller list or win a Hugo Award?
BC: I just emailed you a copy of my student debt statement.
GC: Wow, is that your real name?
BC: Sadly, Blake Randolph Charlton it is. Despite being descended from a proud and poor family from the Louisiana bayou, we all have names that sound like aristocratic characters who were cut from an early draft of Pride and Prejudice for overly admiring Ms. Bennet’s crumpet…or something. Anyway, I narrowly avoided being named Randolph Seville Charlton III.
(GC: And here I was thinking it sounded like a porn name.)
GC: Sell your book in three words.
BC: Language comes alive!
GC: How many pairs of shoes do you own and did any of them cost over $200?
BC: Do soccer cleats, cycling shoes, hiking boots, or skis count as shoes? Otherwise, three and no.
GC: If you had to pick one book to read out of in public, not your own, what would you pick?
BC: Unless I’m reading in a bar, a book of poems by John Donne..well…actually now that I think about some of his early stuff…especially if I were in a bar.
GC: Chose your combination (no deviations): Chocolate or vanilla ice cream, on sugar or plain cone?
BC: Chocolate, plain cone.
(Gail’s diagnosis: Accordingly Blake, despite what you may think at the interview’s end, is not actually insane. I have made a study of ice-cream choices, you must be very very careful of those people who choose vanilla on a plain cone.)
GC: If you came to my house, and I offered you a hot beverage, what kind would you opt for, how do you take it, and what would you drink it out of?
BC: I’d ask for a large mug of strong coffee with milk. A recent study presented at American Association for Cancer Research found that men who drank one cup of coffee a day were 60% less likely to develop prostate —
GC: Thank you very much, Mr. Charlton. That will do.
BC: Wait…wait…how did you just interrupt me? This is an emailed interview. Was it because I mentioned prosta —
GC: Mr. Charlton, I will have to ask that you restrict yourself to topics of conversation appropriate to a lady’s delicate sensibilities.
BC: But it’s important men known about cancer risks. Men’s health (not the magazine) is a developing area and has a lot to learn from how advocates of women’s health educated the population about breast —
GC: All right. Moving on. The next question is “Biggest pet peeve?”
BC: …what happens if I write “Email interviewers who interru—
GC: Right then, final question: Who (or what) is your nemesis?
BC: Well, apparently, y—
GC: And, thank you very much for stopping by, Mr. Charlton. We wish you the best of luck with Spellwright and hope —
Holy shit!1!~! that worked?
Dood! Basic HTML commands FTW!
Gail? are you gonna stop me?
like, for serious, you’re not going to interrupt me at all?
dood! i so win!
*clears throat louder*
there on the face by the way. the nasiolabial folds are. it’s not like I just wrote something…
anyway, yeah, i so won.
and this fits perfectly into the whole “text coming alive” thing for Spellwright! i mean it was such a switcho from what you were doing with the interrupting me.
you’re not there…like, at all?
it’s really not that much fun to just turn you totally off.
well, actually, it kinda is…hahahahaha!
GG: MR. CHARLTON, I SAY. I mean REALLY! That is NOT ON. In my very own blog, and everything! How could you? You will never EVER do that again or I will personally see to it you never drink another cup of that revolting beverage you call coffee! Why I OUGHT to –
well, that didn’t work out so well.
oh hey, not to be totally random
but i’m going to be totally random.
i was meaning to ask you, is there a wikipedia page about you yet?
hold on, i’ll go check.
well…given that when i enter “Gail Carriger” into wikipedia, it asks me if i mean to enter “mail career” i’m guessing you don’t.
here’s a thought
bc you’re not supposed to create a wikipedia page about yourself and all
but what if I created a wiki page for you, and you created one for me
and then in the wiki page we linked to this interview as evidence of our existence
and in this interview we link to the wiki page
it’ll be like a snake swallowing its own tail
but as…like…a…webpage. okaynvrmndaboutthesnake.
but what do you think?
GC: Wouldn’t that be the world snake from Celtic mythology? The ouroboros?
BC: I think you mean Gnostic mythology.
BC: Sorry. I keep doing that.
GC: And you have this thing about not using proper punctuation. Most egregious of you. It’s almost as bad as text speak or shorthand in a blog. Oh wait. BLAKE! ARGH! …
In any case, I like the wiki idea, but isn’t there some kind of authentication process to become a contributor? I don’t think you and I are authentic. Isn’t that something readers should do?
BC: Sure, whatever we made would be deleted, but for a few days it could be quite hilarious. We could write humorous bio’s for each other linking to various absurd things and and and…
GC: Really, I think this would be best left to fans.
BC: Says the author who has fans.
GC: Can’t be helped.
GC: In any case, we should be ending this interview sometime soon. You, being such a one for self-referential puns, might be able to wrap up this interview with some kind of play on the Oroboros. “Come see Gail and Blake go head to head, or eat each other’s tails, at SF in SF April 17.
BC: Eat each others tails or tales?
GC: I’m trying to figure out if your being witty or extraordinarily dyslexic.
BC: I strive, when not in the hospital, to always be both.
GC: Well dear, everyone has to have goals in life, I suppose. So shall we go on to make a play on the tale versus tail?
BC: The Taming of the Shrew, act two, scene one, lines 207 to 214.
GC: Wait, which one of us is the shrew? And when I look that up, will I develop the overpowering urge to beat you about the head and face with my designer handbag?
BC: Without a doubt.
GC: Then I’ll put a brick into said handbag.
BC: Oh…um…well thank you so much for having me on your blog for –
GC: Don’t even try to play gracious interviewee ending this interview as though it were all your idea. We’re going to settle this April 17th at SF in SF.
BC: I’ll put the Emergency Department on notice.
GC: Why bother, you’re a doctor, aren’t you?
Blake Charlton’s book, Spellwright, comes out from Tor on March 2, 2010. It’s almost as tongue-in-cheek as he is.
Quote of the Day:
“Be like a duck, my mother used to tell me. Remain calm on the surface and paddle like hell underneath.”
~ Michael Caine