In today’s Interview with an Author series, we will be asking Ian Hollis a few questions about his latest novel In a Small, Quiet Village (Where Nothing Much Ever Happens). The novel is a upper magical realism book aimed at upper middle-grade, lower young adult readers.
In a small isolated village that gets no visitors, nothing unique ever happens. One day, that changes when an outsider named Adam visits the village. He is treated with respect and everyone is friendly to him but his visit changes the life and the course of the quiet and peaceful village.
I asked Ian a couple of questions about his novel to better understand his inspiration for the novel.
What inspired you to write a novel for upper middle grade and young adults?
Ian: When I did a creative writing course at UNSW in 2012, we weren’t allowed to write anything lavish fantasy or science fiction stories, so I challenged myself to write something as ordinary as possible, while still being readable and entertaining.
Why did you choose the title In a Small, Quiet Village (Where Nothing Much Ever Happens)?
Ian: To reflect the slow pace of life experienced by the characters in the story.
Your novel feels like it can be a cartoon that airs on tv. Was that inspiration? If not, what was the inspiration for this novel?
Ian: I reached out to a few cover designers and illustrators on the website Reedsy.com, and the one who got back to me and had the time draws in a Disney style. You can see her website here: https://meritxellandreu.com/
What made you write a story about the tight-knit relationship everyone has in the village? Was it from personal experience or something more?
Ian: When I challenged myself to write such simply stories, this is what came out of my mind, through my fingertips as I typed.
What do you want your readers to take away from this novel?
Ian: A sense of longing for the past and simpler times.
You can check out Ian’s novel In a Small Quiet Village (Where Nothing Much ever Happens) on Amazon here.