Saturday, January 28, 2023

Q&A with Stephen Policoff

From my Q&A with Stephen Policoff, author of Dangerous Blues:
How much work does your title do to take readers into the story?

Dangerous Blues was the title of this novel from the moment I first imagined writing it. (Full disclosure: it was originally The Dangerous Blues, because that is the title of the song which helped inspire the novel, but Bill Burleson, my editor at Flexible Press exhorted me to drop The, which he said was clunky and possibly pompous. I profoundly disagreed with him at the time, but now think he was right). Clearly, the title is imagistic rather than direct but I do think it conjures up a fitting picture of what Paul, the main character is going through, and what his eerie world seems to offer. My editor also added kind of a ghost story as a subtitle, which I love, and which I think helps cue a reader into the mysterious atmosphere of the novel. The song, “The Dangerous Blues” is a primal howl of the blues attributed to Mattie May Thomas, who wrote it while incarcerated some time in the 1930s. When the novel was a mere wisp of a thought, I heard that song in a Greenwich Village bar, and it...[read on]
Visit Stephen Policoff's website.

The Page 69 Test: Come Away.

My Book, The Movie: Come Away.

Writers Read: Stephen Policoff.

Q&A with Stephen Policoff.

--Marshal Zeringue