Zeke Clark Might be Interested in Publishing You
St. Alban’s Zeke Clark is only 19 – but already, he’s started his own publishing company. His company, Electric Ocean Press, is seeking submissions of the “odd variety.” Clark’s MySpace is linked to http://www.electricoceanpress.tk.
Graffiti: What are your latest projects?
Clark: “Flood the Earth,” a novella about the entire Earth flooding. The protagonist must survive the entire globe being an ocean. Aside from the antagonist of loneliness, he most also face the Christians whom believe this is caused by God, as well as anarchists and acid freak cannibals. Aside from my novella, I’ve been putting together a collection of short stories and poems from my first two years as a serious writer. It’s called “Eyes Nailed Shut.” A friend and I have been in talks about writing and filming a short film.
Graffiti: Are you a lifelong West Virginia resident?
Clark: I lived in Ohio when I was baby but I don’t remember that. The only memories I have are in West Virginia.
Graffiti: How does being from West Virginia affect your writing?
Clark: If anything, I feel living here makes my writing more ambitious. I struggle a bit more to get my writing heard. It improves the quality of my work. I had a few good English teachers along the way.
Graffiti: What authors/books have been the most influential on you?
Clark: One man got me to start writing as a serious writer: Carlton Mellick III. Carlton writes a type of literature known as bizarro fiction. Bizarro is the genre of weird. If it starts raining cats and they form a ladder that takes you to an above the clouds version of Egypt and in this Egyptian Nirvana you’ve found Elvis — you may have stumbled into bizarro. His books never cease to amaze me and his encouragement got me where I am. I don’t write bizarro, but it is my favorite type of literature.
Graffiti: How do you get inspired to write?
Clark: My entire childhood into early teens, I read a lot. When the other kids were outside playing with friends, I stayed inside and read. I’ve always been interested in literature and it’s always been a big part of my life. I started writing seriously when I turned 18. I mainly write because I really have fun putting unique ideas into words.
Graffiti: Would you describe yourself as highly disciplined or laid-back?
Clark: I’m sort of a mixture really of the two. Sometimes I’ll set deadlines for myself and I try to write so many words a day but lately I feel that my writing is better if I just write when I have the time rather than cramming.
Graffiti: Did you grow up with a lot of books in your home?
Clark: Of course. I was reading 700-plus page Stephen King books when I was in middle school. My reading level was always way above my peers. Reading is just something I’ve always enjoyed.
Graffiti: How did you decide to become an indie press entrepreneur?
Clark: I’ve tried different little projects through the years. Electric Ocean Press was originally my little record label a couple years ago, but I shut it down after a month. I just decided one day that I would love to be behind a little press and put out experimental writing. I came up with a small plan, which was originally to just publish books from people I know and only make them in limited edition chapbooks with no ISBN (the ISBN allows for international sale of the book). I later decided to accept submissions from people that wanted their voice to be heard as much as I originally did. Now the books will have ISBNs and be available through Amazon.
Graffiti: What do you look for in submissions?
Clark: I look for originality when reading submissions, as well as good writing. I don’t want to publish something that I wouldn’t read myself. I like books that are offbeat and I’m really into dark comedy. My latest writing is post apocalyptic and I think after I’m done with that book I’m going to go off in the direction of The Twilight Zone.
Graffiti: What books are you reading lately?
Clark: I’m in the middle of reading a submission titled “Septemberville.” Outside of submissions I’m reading “From the Corner of His Eye” by Dean Koontz. A friend suggested it to me and said that it would change my view on Dean Koontz as a writer. We’ll see about that.
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