Tuesday, August 05, 2014

Strangely Funny II Authors: Meet Marc Sorondo!

Today, I introduce you to Marc Sorondo, author of "The Trouble with Decorations". The story involves a decorative item/toy that didn't exist when I was young (I would have flushed that ratfink). This particular specimen, however, is more gifted than the ones available in stores.

When did you know you wanted to become a writer?
I started writing stories when I was a kid. I want to say junior high, but it could have been freshman year of high school. I was hooked right away and based my college choice on the writing program it offered.

How did you pick the genre/setting/era you (usually) write in?
My stories are all over the place: distant past to sci-fi future, and all over the world (and universe in some of the science fiction). I go where the stories seem to want to go, but I do get some extra enjoyment out of setting stories in places I’ve actually been and know. I love adding little details about settings that are completely accurate but that only someone who has been to a place would recognize as being real.

How did you come up with the idea for your story in Strangely Funny II?
The toy “Elf on a Shelf”…it creeps me out. A little elf doll that comes alive and spies on you. Come on, that thing is a horror tale already without knowing it.

Do you think certain genres lend themselves to a humorous twist?
I think a humorous twist can work with any genre.

Plotter or pantser?
Hybrid. I tend to let ideas marinate for a long time in my head before I actually sit down to write them. I’ll spend months or even years letting an idea ripen and jotting down notes on scraps of paper. Then, when I write a story, I've got some scenes that are already written and vaguely in order, but with a bunch of emptiness in between that I fill in as I go.

Which author do you most admire, and why?
I’m going to cheat a bit and name two. For pure storytelling skill, I love Stephen King. The man can weave an insanely layered and complicated story without it ever lagging for a paragraph, but he can also compose a short tale that packs a tremendous punch. He’s a master of both the long and short form. For the poetic nature of his prose, I envy Ray Bradbury. There is a quality to his writing that is unique to Bradbury…it’s got a haunting simplicity and a rhythmic aspect. His shorts and his novels all feel like long narrative poems.

Which place that you haven’t visited would you most like to go?
I’ve got a long list of places that I’d like to see. At the top, battling for primacy are Spain and Germany.

Okay, so you're an author. What do you enjoy reading?
Right now I’m working on a Ph.D. in History, so I read a lot of history and science history. In between semesters, I load up on fiction. I’ve already mentioned my love of King and Bradbury. Some of my other favorites are Clive Barker, Dan Simmons, Joe Hill, and Robert McCammon. There are a million others who I admire and probably should name, but I’m trying to keep this short.

Thanks for talking to us today!

Marc Sorondo lives with his wife and children in New York. He loves to read, and his interests range from fiction to comic books, physics to history, oceanography to cryptozoology, and just about everything in between. He's a long time student and occasional teacher. To learn more about Marc's fiction, including his novella Aurora: Dawn of a New Era, visit his site at:

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