Writing Process Interview: Joe Vallen
Who Are You?
My name is Joe Vallen and I’m the originator of the “Joejitsu” writing style. I penned the Fantasy/Fiction Novel (Unkillable Joe) and am currently in production with the Horror/Action Graphic Novel (Lilith’s Cradle).
- I’m bright enough to recognize genius, just not bright enough to be burdened with it.
What are three things that you absolutely need in order to write?
A quiet room, the perfect song to match the tone of the piece I’m workin’ on, and a weapon of some kind to fidget with…
Most writers have many ideas swimming around their heads competing for attention. How do you decide which idea is worth working on?
I don’t. The dominant idea fights its way to the top then commands me to write it.
When you decide on a writing project, how much do you plan upfront?
I try. I really do. Outlines are just so… not me. I write to experience complete freedom. The last thing I want to do is enforce rules and structure around that feeling.
All writers experience writer’s block from time to time. What you do to get unstuck?
I work on a variety of projects. When I’m hot on the trail of a tasty story, I might start it in novel form. If I hit a wall on that, I’ll set it down for a minute and knock out several comic scripts. If I get too far ahead of my artists, I’ll rework film scripts for practice… If all of the above fails, I lift weights or shoot targets at the range, but usually, I just need a nap.
Tell me something about your writing process that is quirky and unique to you.
I won’t start writing until I’ve located the perfect tune to keep me consistent with the tone I’m trying to capture. The trick is to finish the piece before you go insane from listening to the same song hundreds of times. It’s a gas.
When are you most productive? When are you least productive?
The longer I’m in solitude, the more I accomplish, generally speaking. It’s all over the place though. I could be hot for weeks- knocking out decent 4,000-word chunks per day, then I could also go a full week of just being bitchy and irritable. Total crapshoot.
It’s my birthday and you want to give me a book. Which book do you get me and why?
I would get you “Jitterbug Perfume” by Tom Robbins, because I don’t think enough people know about that book.
Now, the fun part: What is one question that you want me to ask the next interviewee, not knowing who it is?
Ask them if they know the secret of beets? (If not, you can refer them to the book I just mentioned).
What are you working on and where can readers find you?
My Fantasy-Fiction, 4thwall-breaking romp “Unkillable Joe” is now available on Amazon. (Please buy several copies.) I am also working on an incredible Horror/Action Graphic Novel called “Lilith’s Cradle” which you can support on our Patreon page: www.patreon.com/joevallenwriter
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