IJ Fenn writes stories for fun and has been published three times since 2006 (a true crime, two volumes of miscellany – stories, poetry and essays). Fenn is currently finalising a miserable novel befitting our current COVID times, has a volume of short stories under consideration with a publisher in the UK, and is mapping out two further novel outlines.
On a personal level, Fenn has no life worth talking about, drinks tea to excess, is neither vegan nor lactose intolerant, and eats gluten-filled breads and biscuits to Olympic standard.
Q: If you could travel back in time, which of the great writers would you like to meet and why?
A: Vita Sackville West or Richard Brautigan. Purely for the entertainment value. VSW had a thirst for life that would be quite thrilling to feed off and RB was barking.
Q: Do you have a favourite quote? (From a book, film, song, speech…)
A: ‘There’s a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in.’ Leonard Cohen. Says it all (or at least it says it all about my writing). Whenever I find the going tough (writing-wise) I listen to Cohen and remind myself of imperfection’s beauty.
Q: What superpower would you like to have and why?
A: It’s funny, but whenever this question came up when I was a kid (and it always does) I never understood why anyone would want that kind of power. I still don’t understand why. I quite like the magic of the ordinary.
Q: If you could teleport yourself anywhere, real or fictional, where would it be and why?
A: 1) Milos. The most beautiful Greek island, unspoiled by mass tourism. 2) 221B Baker Street when Sherlock Holmes is in residence. The atmosphere, the chat… 3) Euripides’ Athens for the ground-breaking drama (even if he only ever comes third).
I have this recurring dream, maybe twice a week. Or, maybe because it has recurred for so many months, it’s only once a week but it seems like twice a week. Whatever. The dream arrives like the slow-motion appearance of a wild-eyed merry-go-round horse emerging from the swirling fog of sleep, and it seems to …