Friday Feature: Interview with Alex Puncekar
Each week, the editors of Jenny Magazine sit down with either fellow literary magazine editors or past Jenny contributors for short interviews. This week’s interview is with Alex Puncekar, a past contributor of Jenny Magazine.
Describe your first publication. Where was it, when, and what was the piece about? How old were you at the time and how did it feel?
My first publication was in Aphelion Magazine of Science Fiction and Fantasy back in August of 2013. I was 22 at the time. I was pretty overwhelmed, and immediately went out to celebrate. My story — “Selling Ghosts” — was about a girl who is tricked into purchasing a ghost.
What inspired your piece in the Jenny?
My story “Battery Days” is about the relationship of technology and the pursuit of immortality, and what that does to our relationships with people. I actually inspired by cyberpunk influences, such as the film Blade Runner and the videogame Deus Ex. Of course, I focused less on the fantastical elements and more on the personal elements.
What got you into writing?
My imagination, really. That, and my parents, who pushed me to pursue it. Originally, I was writing and drawing my own comics, but then I decided that it was writing that I much more preferred.
What do you like writing the most? Is there a certain style you prefer?
I like writing sci-fi and fantasy stories, but I’d like to branch out and try others. There isn’t much of a style I prefer, though I’ve been told that I’m a very blunt writer.
What are your influences? Who are your favorite writers?
Other than my family, my influences include the Star Wars films, The Hobbit (the novel, not the films), and a multitude of comic books and videogames. My favorite writers include J.R.R. Tolkien, Neil Gaiman, Patrick Rothfuss, Cherie Priest, and James S.A. Corey (to name a few).
What’s your proudest moment as an author?
Probably when I was first published. It was a milestone that I had tried really hard to reach, and when I did, it was a defining moment, I think.
How has your writing developed over time?
I like to think that my writing has developed into a short but punchy style that gets the point across very quickly. I sometimes have a tough time with more detailed sections of my writing, but I’m working on that.
Are you currently working on anything?
Other than a few flash fiction pieces, I’m working on notes for a novel I plan on tackling over the winter break.
What’s your writing process?
I’m one of those “seat-of-the-pants” writers, so once I jot down a few preliminary notes, I dive right into a story. I set myself a word count and write until I hit that count for the day. It’s all about the numbers for me.
What are you currently reading?
I actually just finished reading The Mirror Empire by Kameron Hurley, which is an awesome fantasy novel. Right now, I’ve just picked up Zane’s Trace by Allan Wolf, which is a novel that combines prose poetry, playwriting, and prose to tell the story.
Have you ever worked with a medium other than writing? Or collaborated with someone in another medium with your writing?
Well, other than writing, I used to draw my own comics, but those days (as well as my skill in artistry) are long gone. Wouldn’t mind picking it back up, though.
Are you a past Jenny contributor or an editor at a literary magazine and interested in an interview? Send us an email.