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Meet Yancey Williams author of Shoot the Messenger, Worlds Apart and his most recent tome, Rome and Joliet: A Chapterless Continuum
http://www.bookpleasures.com/websitepublisher/articles/6610/1/Meet-Yancey-Williams-author-of-Shoot-the-Messenger-Worlds-Apart-and-his-most-recent-tome-Rome-and-Joliet-A-Chapterless-Continuum/Page1.html
Norm Goldman


Reviewer & Author Interviewer, Norm Goldman. Norm is the Publisher & Editor of Bookpleasures.com.

He has been reviewing books for the past fifteen years when he retired from the legal profession.

To read more about Norm Follow Here






 
By Norm Goldman
Published on December 18, 2013
 



Norm Goldman, Publisher & Editor of Bookpleasures.com Interviews Yancey Williams Author of Rome & Joliet

                                                                                                                                                         

Today, Bookpleasures.com is pleased to have as our guest Yancey Williams author of Shoot the Messenger, Worlds Apart and his most recent tome, Rome and Joliet: A Chapterless Continuum.

Norm:

Good day Yancey and thanks for participating in our interview

Please tell our readers a little bit about your personal and professional background.

Yancey:

A quick summary. I graduated from the University of Colorado in 1973. Since that time, I’ve made certain that my life would be as interesting as I could make it. So far, I’ve kept that pledge to myself. I’ve worked as an elk and deer hunting guide, cowboy, team roped and calf roped, worked as a professional guitarist, piloted my own planes, traveled the world, spent thirty successful years (I’m omitting 2008, whew!) in the investment business, and have now written and published a number of novels. There’s more to come. I can feel it. Existentially speaking, of course.

Norm:

How did you get started in writing? What keeps you going?

Yancey:

Forty years ago, I wrote several short stories and walked them over to an English professor- friend of the family that lived across the street from my parents. Mary read them that day. She called me on the phone that evening. She was ecstatically enthusiastic. I can remember the excitement in her voice even to this day. She said that I had to continue writing. She went on and on and on. My new novel “Rome & Joliet” is dedicated to Mary.

What keeps me going is keeping pace with my imagination which doesn’t shut down. I find that I’m a pretty clever to very clever s.o.b. that has a knack for making most people laugh or pay attention or something. Not in an obnoxious way, but a pleasing way. I’m a big fan of little children and their natural, uninhibited , beautifully unguarded flow. I hope I give off something like that in what I do even as an adult, even with some of the zany stuff I come up with. Plus, standup’s not a option because I don’t care for crowds, particularly drunks. I’d end up in a fight. That’s not good.

Norm:

Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?

Yancey:

No. Nothing. It’s an open tap. I have to sleep. I have to eat. I have to exercise and grocery shop and live outside the writer’s day, but no, writing is not a challenge. It’s a joy. Hopefully, there are people who enjoy reading my work as much as I enjoy putting it together.

Norm:

Are you a plot or character writer?

Yancey:

Neither. Or both. How can you have one without the other. There’s a story to tell. It’s in the telling. The color, the coordination, the sounds, the swervy sometimes disjointed syncopation, the glimmer of reality set forth on the page. It’s amazing what the human mind has in store and in tow. And for that short time, you are the character no matter how ignoble or treacherous or saintly or otherwise human in their makeup. For that same short time, you create the time, the place, and the event that leads to the next time, the next place, and the next event. The chicken and the egg thing sort of.

BTW, I like my eggs scrambled, my chicken baked or roasted. FYI ‘n’ ya know what I’m sayin’. (Rapper talk. & God, do I hate rap.)

Norm:

What helps you focus when you write and do you find it easy reading back your own work?

Yancey:

Writing keeps me focused. Just write. Write anything. Something. But write. Create an image or a character or something on the page. Gibberish sometimes turns into the best chapter or the best paragraph I’ve written to date. Five or fifteen or fifty words scribbled down in the middle of the night then dropped into the last chapter the next day brings a new life to a stalled verse.

Also, I think of trying to impress beautiful women. No, scratch that line. I digressed.

Reading back my own work is wonderful, joyous, critically appealing because I am very critical of everything I write wanting to make it better if not perfect (whatever that means). Plus, sometimes in my leisurely fantasies, I say to myself, Hey Williams, that’s better than Shakespeare! As good as Vonnegut! I just trumped Malamud and Bellow and Updike, even Cheever! As funny as Twain with better delivery! Then I wake up and go back to work the whole time waiting to be lifted victorious onto the shoulders of Coach Fame’n’Glory.

Norm:

Your most recent work, Rome & Joliet is a chapterless continuum. Why were you drawn to this kind of a format?

Yancey:

I started off with a chapter title here, a chapter title there. The book moved so quickly and came to together so effortlessly over the winter, plus the action is within such a short time frame, I said why not?

It fit. And it does. It just fits.

Norm:

What served as the primary inspiration for Rome & Joliet and what would you say is the best reason to recommend someone to read Rome & Joliet?

Yancey:

The primary inspiration was the title itself. I thought of it twenty five years ago. I knew it would be a book about a group of rogues and miscreants near or around Rome, Georgia (no offense, Romans, my father went to high school there) and it would bounce back and forth between Rome, Georgia and Rome, Italy and the city of Joliet, Illinois site of the state penitentiary. Also, I love Shakespeare. The play on words speaks for itself. If it doesn’t, you should stop reading this interview, maybe shoot yourself and not the messenger (pun). The possibilities were endless.

The only reason to read Rome & Joliet is to be entertained, to be challenged, to be engaged, to laugh and to laugh out loud, to enjoy the carnage and the mayhem. It’s slapstick and honey and a celebratory sense of wicked.

Norm:

How did you come up with the title Rome & Joliet?

Yancey:

Thin air.

Norm:

How did you go about creating the various characters in Rome & Joliet?

Yancey:

Satchel Xavier Gilespie, wrote it out on my computer. Misspelled Gilespie. Knew I’d misspelled Gilespie so, being the obstinate swag that I am, I stuck with it. Turned the mistake into a memorably glowing point of contention throughout the book.

Capulet Benvolio, Cappie, straight out of Romeo and Juliet. Mixed the Shakespearian character names to fit my need. Same with Vincenzo, Vinnie.

Norm:

Is your work improvisational or do you have a set plan when writing your books particularly Rome & Joliet?

Yancey:

All of the above.

Norm:

How has your environment/upbringing colored your writing?

Yancey:

Norman Goldman, we’d be here for another lifetime discussing or attempting to answer this question. We are all Sanpaku, are we not? Just read the book Rome & Joliet. It’s all answered in such a tidy form.

Norm:

Where can our readers find out more about you and Rome & Joliet?

Yancey:

On my WEBSITE, on Facebook, on LinkedIn, or on the slalom course where I tournament slalom ski 5 to 7 days a week. Maybe over at the guitar shop on certain weekends when I’m looking for a new amp or another vintage guitar that I need like I need another whole in my head.

I’m hot stuff, Norm. (You asked.)

Norm:

What is next for Yancey Williams?

Yancey:

I’m one hundred and eighty nine pages into The Resurrection of Jesus, my new novel. And, no, it’s not religious. Anything but. Jesus Escobar, a distant cousin of narco-terrorist Pablo, has just been let out of prison. He’s standing outside the prison gate in the first half hour of his release and is offered a ride into town by an anonymous traveler. Things get really ugly from there.

Norm:

As this interview draws to a close what one question would you have liked me to ask you? Please share your answer.

Yancey:

Yes, Norm, you left out the question about how I would achieve world peace.

Answer: Well, there are actually several potentially fractious answers to this question. But I’ll start with the first one that comes to mind and probably is the easiest to understand. I’m left alone you see. I’m left alone on a desolate, gorgeous and sun drenched Caribbean island, say maybe Branson’s place. The 24 hour maid service. The private chef. Full spa. His yacht the size of lower Manhattan gassed up and ready to go. So, I’m really not alone. Fooled ya. Plus, it’s me and Miss Universe. I’m down there helping (try as I might) Miss Universe come up with the answer to the aforementioned, incomprehensible, age-old, beauty pageant conundrum. We’re sharing adjoining rooms. Okay, so she’s staying on the other side of the island and can’t figure out for the life of her how in the hell she got stuck here on this tropical paradise with me. Another story for another time.

Actually, World Peace can be achieved by buying a copy of Rome & Joliet then sitting back to read it. The heaven’s will open. A mightier voice will speak to you from within and without. Life will come into focus. Clarity abounds. (Whatever that means?) Pick up a copy for yourself. Another for your spouse. One for your friends and other relatives. A good chuckle and guffaw accompanied by a laugh out loud (it’s all about the abdominals) keeps the medicine man at bay I always say.

Norm:

Thanks once again and good luck with all of your future endeavors

Follow Here To Read Norm's Review of Rome & Joliet