Nouveau Haitiah - Donald McEwing
This is one of those rare times when I'm just not sure what to say. I had a very surreal feeling while reading this book.
It felt like more of an experience as opposed to a work of fiction. Oddly enough, it reminded me of some bizarre combination of Orlando by Virginia Woolf and Apocalypse Now.
I feel that this is one of those books that you could read several times over and still find more pieces of the puzzle that you had missed in prior readings.
This book requires time and attention to detail to fully enjoy and appreciate it. Don't expect to fly through it.
Some Bio Information
Donald McEwing was born in the southwestern sector of Paris, in Auteuil. After studying comparative religions at Miskatonic University in Arkham, MA, he went on to become Professor of Popular Education, Science, and Culture at the same institution.
He came under intense criticism for his choice and presentation of subject matter during his tenure, with many accusing him of being little more than “a connoisseur of degenerates.” Despite the accusations, or maybe to prove them, he wrote the stories that became Nouveau Haitiah, including The Official Hostess, Scattering Ashes, The Grand Maestro, The Unofficial Hostess, and The Fountain of Youth.
Mr. McEwing is currently accompanying the Miskatonic expedition to the high altitudes of the Chthonic Dome in Eastern Antarctica, where he hopes to discover what happened to the ill-fated 1931 Peabody Expedition. Upon his return, he is expected to publish “The Ghosts from the Mountains of Madness” in early 2016.
1. What inspired you to write this book?
Nouveau Haitiah has been in the works since the 1990’s. I always wanted to create a work of art and this was the result. My background allowed me to combine a wide variety of interests into a unique novel that says what I wanted to say.
2. Was there a deciding point in your life that made you want to become an author?
Becoming an author is something I always wanted to do. In high school and college I was writing poetry and short stories that were heavily influenced by various modernists of the early 20th century, and I have always been a vociferous reader of science fiction from an early age. Majoring in English Literature further strengthened this interest. Raising a family was a priority and forced me to postpone writing full-time until later in life, but I am very happy with the way things worked out.
3. Are there any authors who influence your writing?
Jorge Luis Borges, T.S. Eliot, Albert Camus, H.G. Wells, and more.
4. Can you tell me a little bit about your writing process?
My process is painfully slow. Basically, I turn an idea for a plot into an outline, draft a few pages, and continue expanding those pages into a story and finally a book.
5. Who is your favorite character in your work?
Victoria! Currently I am working on a nearly completed novella; a Lovecraftian horror story entitled Ghosts from the Mountains of Madness, which should be out in early 2016. In the meantime, I am also working on an additional story that takes off where Nouveau Haitiah ends. The working title is Victoria and the Zombies of Nouveau Haitiah.
6. How would you describe your writing style?
Nouveau Haitiah is closest to my true writing voice, but I am comfortable with other styles. Ghosts from the Mountains of Madness is written in a more academic style. Another humor book in the works uses a manic, exaggerated style similar to Hunter S Thompson.
7. What’s your ultimate writing goal?
To write something that lasts.
8. Why are pug puppies so cute?
They are just irresistible. My house has an embarrassing amount of pug paraphernalia, so it will be immediately obvious to anyone who enters that I am a crazy pug person. However, there is a new non-pug addition to the family, a Persian Himalayan doll face kitten with silver-shaded chinchilla fur. Her name is Beatrix, and OMG she is adorable! I’m going to play with Queen B right now- Best wishes!