Hamish came up with this idea because he was accumulating too much material for his Famous News Sushi column and asked if he could do these mini-interviews. Why would we say no?
Thank you Hamish for being such a trooper for us. We really appreciate all for your hard work.
Let us know what you think of these interviews in the comments below.
STA: I’d be happy to! My name is Sifton Tracey Anipare and I’m an author (finally – yay!), teacher, dancer, and all-round nerd. I was born in Canada and raised by Ghanaian parents, video games, movies, and strange, unusual stories. I’ve been writing fiction since I could write, but I only got serious about it when I was introduced to NaNoWriMo two months into my teaching position with the JET Programme in Japan. Now I’m back in Canada working as a teacher (most of the time) and writing in my free time when I’m not playing games or catching up on an overdue anime series.
TGG: Tell me about it. This year I finally caught up on “Neon Genesis Evangelion” after over 25 years. So, could you tell us about your debut novel?
STA: Sure! Yume (夢) is all about a young woman teaching English in Japan who slowly tumbles down a Wonderland(ian)-rabbit-hole of culture shock. It is an urban fantasy about demons and dreams. It’s jam-packed with imagery, nods, and references to Japanese culture and mythology (both historical and modern), and garnished with moments of dark disturbia, hope, and humour. I think anyone who grew up with “classic 90s anime” will enjoy this story, but it’s also for any adult who knows what it’s like to live in a place for an extensive length of time and know (not only feel, but know) they don’t fit in. It’s about strength and weakness, isolation and acceptance, the dynamics between predator and prey, and most of all, our innate fear of the unknown. There are also lots of Japanese food references, which I hope readers get a kick out of, too.
TGG: I’ve read the reviews on Amazon (from your back cover), and it sounds like people are really digging your book. I can’t wait to read it! So, what did you learn while writing the novel?
STA: I learned that I have tons of patience for others but very little for myself. (I’m working on that.) I also learned how important it is to know every nook and crevice of your story so that you know what needs to stay and what can be trimmed or nixed during the editing process. (Yume has several little hints and mentions that don’t seem important but actually mean quite a lot – so to any readers with the time and commitment for a subsequent read, have fun looking for them!)
TGG: Now that you are famous – to misquote Naomi Campbell – how many freshly made pancakes will it take to get you out of bed in the morning? (In case you are too young, she once said that she wouldn’t get out of bed for less than $10,000 per day)
STA: Three. Two, if eggs/bacon/sausage are involved. I don’t need many pancakes to be happy. Plus, that’s like the maximum number I can eat at a time.
TGG: Sorry for that, it’s a bit of an inside joke. Now, I have to ask the question that creators hate… What’s next?
STA: Many people have been asking me this question lately, so I guess I should dig up “Yume Prequel #1” and “Yume Prequel Side Story Hybrid” and finish writing them.
TGG: Sounds great! How can we best support you? (follow on social media, BUY the book?)
STA: Buying the book would be awesome! But if your local library has it, by all means grab a copy from there and support your community
Dundurn Press: https://www.dundurn.com/books_/t22117/a9781459747371-yume
(Chapters Indigo in Canada, Barnes & Noble in the US, and several international Amazons also carry it)
“Yume” Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/faeriedark/
TGG: And thank you Sifton! It seems like your book is doing respectfully on the Amazon charts, but everyone please go out and support my friend and debut novelist, Sifton!