Oct 06

Saturday Six Pack – Randall Peterson – Micro Fiction Guru

Today’s Saturday Six Pack features Micro Fiction guru, Randall Peterson…yeah, I know. I was a bit confused by the term when I first came across it. But Randall is one of the leaders in this emerging trend that I must admit I’m still trying to understand and get used to. But to say that he does things his own way would be an understatement. Regardless, Saturday Six Pack is a place for interesting indie writers and Randall is definitely a very interesting guy. And I think you’ll enjoy what he has to say.

So let’s say hi to Randall Peterson.

1) Welcome to Saturday Six Pack,Randall. I’ve been looking forward to interviewing you ever since our paths crossed on Twitter. Let’s start with an easy one. You write micro-fiction and I’m wondering if you have a standard way of defining what that term means. It is just another term for a short story or, perhaps, a really short, short story?

I usually define my MICRO FICTION as a new way of reading and writing. The concept is based on the idea that words don’t have to be just part of a sentence they can be images linked together and separated by commas. Allow time for an image to form before reading the next word … theatre, dark, gunfire, confusion, death, real, run … Sound strange? Many people think so. I’m bombarded with hate e-mail … to the point where I tend to avoid it altogether. Many writers think I’m trying to destroy traditional literature and replace it with my garbage.

That’s way overly-ambitious since I don’t know what the hell I’m doing myself. I do believe that literature is due for a change and with text messages, Twitter and our brains (computers) getting smaller and faster … so will the ways we visually communicate.

2) You add a new story every Sunday and you’ve written somewhere in the neighborhood of 100 pieces. That’s an ambitious schedule to maintain so I was wondering if you could talk a bit about your writing process and how you make sure you continue to hit your goal of a new story each week?

I sit down and pound the stories out, anywhere at any time. If I fell off a twenty-story building and had my laptop I could have a short story finished by the time I hit the concrete. The ending of course would be terrible. I have this incredible Rhino-skin that lets me not give a damn if I misspelled a word or left a few flying-cows (typos) roaming on my pages. I have good friends in London and other places that I send my stories to. They try to clean them up. I feel sorry for these unpaid editors … I’m pretty messy.

3) You write in various genres and I’ve come across some pretty graphic horror stories, westerns, some that have traditional elements of mystery stories, and even some romantic themes. Do you write in multiple genres by design or does micro-fiction simply provide you flexibility and help keep you fresh? Or perhaps your stories are all a precursor to a novel about a machete-toting cowboy with a horse named Igor who’s searching the Wild West hoping to avenge the death of the Zombie who loved him?

I lose interest in a story about five minutes after I finish the last page. I guess that’s why I never edit. To me the process of writing is the thrill. The part in a story where you can’t type fast enough because you want to know what happens. A hunter on the trail of a wild animal his weapon is his keyboard … that kind of thing.

4) You seem to like to poke fun and have a healthy dose of irreverence which I always find refreshing these days. But in all seriousness, where would you like to take your writing career? You’re on your way to being recognized as one of the leaders in micro-fiction but are you thinking about or working on a novel?

I write a short story every week (about 3500 words) and a novel chapter of about the same length. I will publish DEATH TRAIN by Oct. 31 (Halloween)as an e-book. It’s about two teens who discover a model railroad running in the basement of a mortuary. When they break the toy locomotive a real one starts running in their county with Death as the engineer.

5) You mention your dog, Sickem, on your blog. If he’s real, he’s quite the artist and I commend him. Our Golden Retriever finds the lack of an opposable thumb challenging when it comes to pen and ink sketching. Plus she wants to lick the ink before it’s dry. Until she learns not to do that, she’s pretty much relegated to abstract. Okay, time to fess up. Sickem:Real dog or alter ego?

I of course made Sickem’s abilities up. I was sick of taking all the blame for my writing plus the artwork. Even with Rhino skin there are still times you want to cry.

6) Last question, and it’s the one question I ask everyone because I’m intrigued by every writer’s ongoing effort to improve. If you could change one thing about yourself as a writer, what would it be?

I still don’t care that much about grammar, (although I should). I’m working now on writing to please the reader rather than myself. The greatest writers in the world can move things with the images they create. With this awesome power comes a responsibility to make people’s lives better, more exciting or a little brighter. I have over 12,000 followers on Twitter now. Most of them are writers and each one I consider a close friend even those who hate my guts. It breaks my heart when I see people trash other peoples work. Writers put a part of themselves into everything they author, along with misspelled words, floating cows and adverbs. It’s called voice. I’ve never read one I didn’t like.

Thanks so much, Randall for taking the time to chat. Po$$e members, I urge you to check out some of Randall’s pieces. Yes, they’re a little different, but then again, aren’t we all?

Be well.

Randall’s blog

Twitter: @ItsOnlyMeAndYou


  1. Toots

    A very interesting 6 pack this week. Look forward to checking out “Death Train” upon its release. Sounds intriguing. And as a dog lover…”Sickem” & the Golden Retriever references were most amusing 🙂

    Anxiously awaiting the release of B.R.’s “Larrikin Gene.” Need my Posse fix!

  2. B.R. Snow

    Thanks, Toots. Larrikin Gene is on its way…I could use the dog ate my homework argument but it’s just late. But it’s worth the wait! Be well.

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