Interview With Joe Giordano, author of Stories and Places I Remember: A Collection of Short Stories

Previous Interview with Giordano covering his author journey - HERE

 What inspired your latest book - a collection of short stories called Stories And Place I Remember?

The experiences my wife Jane and I had traveling and living around the world inspired the stories and I was encouraged by readers to put together a collection. Rogue Phoenix Press normally publishes novels, but they read Stories and Places I Remember and agreed to support the work. I’m grateful that they did.

You did a wonderful job of making each story sound like you were sharing your own history, so I wondered if some of them reflect your own experiences or those shared with you by others?
Norman Mailer once said that every character he created was at least five percent him. I would paraphrase and say that every piece in Stories and Places I Remember contains at least five percent of my experiences. Fiction is real life with all the boring parts taken out.

Review HERE!
As these stories were set in different places and times, did you have to do any research to help portray the time and people accurately?

Although I’ve lived in or visited every story location, additional research was vital to maintain a sense of reality. For example, I’ve never met a witch doctor or participated in a Candomblé ritual like the one described in “Dreams and Aurora.”

As you've written both short stories, short story collections and full novels I wondered which you enjoy writing the most? 

I’ve met writers who’ve told me that if they could do something else, they would. They feel compelled to write. For me, writing is an enjoyable form of self-expression. Compared to short stories, novels are monumental tasks. Each of my novels required a year to draft, whereas some of my short stories have been written in a day. Because of the far greater effort, finishing a novel brings a greater sense of satisfaction, but if my writing is flowing, whether for a short story or a novel, I’m happy.

Full novels versus short stories - what is hardest and easiest for you in each genre?

Novels require a massive investigative effort – their most demanding element. For example, North Korea figures importantly in my next thriller. I’ve been to South Korea but not the North. I’ve read everything I could get my hands on and hopefully will create a text that gives the reader the sense that they know the Hermit Kingdom. The challenge in short stories is to explore some aspect of being human either in a unique way or from a new perspective. In either genre, the easiest part is writing about what I know and like.

Other books by Joe Giordano - Appointment with ISIS review HERE

What would you most like readers to know about you?

This year, Jane and I are celebrating fifty years together, forty-six as a married couple. Stories and Places I Remember is my latest work I’ve dedicated to her. My bio contains some of the other headlines of my life, but to really know me, all you need do is read my work. We writers can’t help but reveal ourselves.

What's next for you - short story, another novel or ???

Both. The working title for my next novel is The Art of Revenge. Anthony Provati is joined by a co-protagonist, Valentina Esposito. She was abandoned to an orphanage as a baby but has become a brilliant computer programmer and is working to rewrite her destiny. My next short story collection will likely be titled More Stories and Places I Remember, humorous and poignant fiction from around the world. 

The COVID-19 crisis and the restriction on travel have put my wanderlust in overdrive. As soon as we’re able, Jane and I will travel again, and I expect to reap a lot of new experiences that will help me in my writing.

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