Briar's Reviews’s review of The Sexual Compass > Likes and Comments

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message 1: by Michael (new)

Michael Reed I'll answer your question here, if that's OK.

First of all, thank you for taking the time to read the book and for the positive review. I'm glad you enjoyed it overall.

I'm glad you enjoyed the characters, and that seems to have been the most successful area of the book, looking at the other reviews and feedback that I've received. When I'm writing fiction, I use a technique that's a bit like method acting, in that I try to put myself in the place of the character. The main characters were based on a mixture of my own experiences and on people that I have known. For example, the bit where the guy with long hair had “lesbians!” shouted at him and a female friend was one that happened to me, many years ago. When I was in my late teens, I had a long term illness and lost touch with most of my old friends, just like Susan.

I didn't want to do a head-swap at the half way point, as I find them distracting in books like Trainspotting. However, I realised that I needed to explore the idea from more than one angle, which is difficult to do in a first person story without head-swaps.

As for the photos, I was worried that I hadn't included enough descriptions of the locations. Having said that, I wanted to employ my experience with article writing in order to strip things down as much as possible and keep the book a quick read. I was inspired by the title sequences of films like Goldfinger and Torn Curtain (Hitchcock), in the way that they show you images, out of context, and leave you intrigued as to what they mean. For that reason, the photos tend to come way before their part in the story. In the last few years, I've been through a similar experience to John as I've only recently been able to leave home and start heading out on Saturday nights. So, some of those photos are from my own experiences of going clubbing and exploring that world. And yes, I did throw up into that toilet once! ;-)

The specific meaning of the photographs themselves is ambiguous. I think they represent things like a loner's view of the sea-side town in which the book is set, images of Susan's house and John's, along with Tesco at night.

Thanks again for reading it and for the feedback. As with all the reviews, I'll take it on board when writing the next one.

Mouse you later!

Mike


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