I want to welcome a friend of mine at the wonderful St. Martin Press publishing house Brendan Deneen. A man to whom I first met when I submitted a book to and have since gotten to know. He's got a great eye for detail and great taste. So here is the interview that I conducted with him for all of you.
What made you want to write the book?
I wrote my first novel at 18. Ever since I could pick up a pencil, I’ve been making up stories. THE NINTH CIRCLE is the fourth novel I’ve written but the first to be published. I started working on it in 1995, so it was a long time coming.
Why did you choose the genre that you did?
I based this book on Dante’s INFERNO and knew I wanted to tell the story of a kid running away to the circus, so I think the genre just kind of created itself. It’s hard to pinpoint. I guess it’s a mix of horror, coming-of-age and magical realism.
If you were to name a favourite scene what would it be?
I love the scene where Mr. Atlantis is underwater and the three lion tamers are trying to get a reaction out of him, but nothing they do works. It drives them fricking crazy!
What part of the book that you found the hardest to write?
Everything after the first 50 pages. I wrote and rewrote the first 50 pages for YEARS.
When and how did you get the idea for the book.
After I graduated from college, I was toying with what to write next. I knew I wanted to tell a circus story, mostly because I think we (humans) treat animals so poorly. I was also interested in INFERNO. My girlfriend at the time (now my wife) suggested combining the two ideas.
What do you look forward to the most with this book being on sale?
I just love the fact that strangers are reading the book…and that some of them are loving it. That’s such an amazing feeling.
Where do you see your story going?
I do have a sequel starting to percolate. After all, the Divine Comedy is a trilogy……..
Thank you Brendan for being on and I'm sure that I'm going to check out your book for sure and hope that the rest of those who reads this blog will also find it an interesting one to add to their booksheleves.
Come back again soon for another interview or even a review from myself or even Joe.