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An Interview with Dean Hoff

Dean Hoff lived on the American road for many years before leaving the United States and traveling the world. Dean currently lives in Africa.

Image provided by Dean Hoff


List three interesting facts about yourself. I was a drifter on the American road for over a decade, and now a world traveler. I am a professional bellydancer.


Tell us about you and your journey as a writer. I started writing when I was a little kid, around 7 years old. I’ve been writing ever since. I’m not sure I ever decided to be an author, it’s just something I’ve done almost every day of my entire life. It’s always been an automatic thing for me.


What inspires your writing? I know some writers need isolation, but I’m the opposite. I need interaction with the world or the writing tends to stagnate.


Where is the most interesting place you’ve travelled to? Tenerife. After a lifetime of traveling and living all over the world, it’s an incredibly surprising place. I know it gets a lot of bad press but that’s partly because most people haven’t really explored the island.

Cover image provided by Dean Hoff


According to your website, you're a folklorist and historian specialising in monsters. Which type of monster is your favourite and why? Angels, hands down. They are fascinating. Questions of good vs. evil, free will, immortality, why they look the way they do.


Which three words would you use to describe your writing style? Down to earth.


What are the key differences between writing drama and prose in your

experience?

Writing films or plays often means a streamlined version. You can’t keep everything in there, and in some ways writing novels is easier. You don’t have to worry about budget and can do anything you like.


When you write scripts you have to consider other things, like realism and budget, and descriptions are often extremely lacking because the visual medium is meant to do that for you.


I’ve always felt something is lost via scriptwriting, because the human mind can conjure up far better imagery than anything we can do on stage or screen, especially because each individual can construct their own world based on the words they are reading.

Cover image provided by Dean Hoff

What do you enjoy most about writing and why? I’m not sure I enjoy it. It’s just something that happens to me. Do you suffer from writer's block and if so, how do you overcome it? No, I tend to suffer from the opposite issue, too much of it.

What is the most surprising thing you’ve learned as a writer? That what people say they want to watch or read is very different from the content they actually end up consuming. What advice would you give to aspiring writers? Write. Do it over and over again. Don’t put all your heart and hopes into a single book. Finish one and start on the next.


Think of them like pizzas, a creation at that level of importance; that book may be your baby but nobody cares about it like you do. Some will love it, some will hate it, some will not even notice it.


Just get back in there and make the next ‘pizza’. Fail and fail again until the day you succeed. Often, it will not be the book you love or the one you expect to take off. Remember, it only takes one yes.


Many thanks to Dean Hoff for this interview

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