We’ve got a return guest in the forest today, who sat down with me and the satyrs and nymphs for three questions about Chuggie, Brent Michael Kelley’s muse and drought personified. So pull up a stump and settle in for a quick Q & A that’s sure to entertain!
Brent Michael Kelley’s debut novel Chuggie and the Desecration of Stagwater was released in December of 2011 from Omnium Gatherum. His short story “Ride” was included in Detritus, a collection of stories about collections (also by Omnium Gatherum). His story-poem “Gnoem” was published in A Pocketful of Moondust, a children’s anthology from Rebel Books (UK). He recently finished Chuggie’s next adventure: Chuggie and the Bleeding Gateways of Glughu, which is available now. His regular column “5 Keys” can be read in the pages of CadreZine, where every issue BMK offers five tips or insights for aspiring writers (or, at least he tries to until he gets derailed by his own logic). Visit him at: http://www.catbat.com/bmk/
Three Questions with Brent Michael Kelley
1. So who is this Chuggie anyway? A master of mischief and mayhem? A father of drought? Tell us more.
Chuggie is Drought personified on a world called Mag Mell. He’s the kind of guy who can drain a lake overnight, even rip the moisture from living creatures. He has vast destructive power inside that constantly begs to be unleashed. He has wiped out cities, turned forests into wastelands, and caused lots of misery the world over. Chuggie doesn’t like that aspect of himself. He found that when he got good and drunk, the thirst quieted. Naturally, he got all boozed up and put a curse of permanence on himself. He’s got an elongated skull with five horns growing from it, which combined with his drunkenness, makes it hard for him to fit in anywhere. He drifts about, getting in trouble and having adventures. His world is full of monsters and madmen, so there’s plenty of trouble to be found wherever he goes.
2. Chuggie already raised merry hell in a place called Stagwater. Now he’s back messing with the Bleeding Gateways. Can you tell us a bit about his latest adventures there, and what’s next for Chuggie?
Chuggie and the Desecration of Stagwater was the first book. Chuggie stumbles upon the remote city of Stagwater, where he finds himself caught in the middle of various forces battling for control of the city. In Chuggie and the Bleeding Gateways, we pick up with Chuggie a few days after the Desecration of Stagwater. There’s work to do, there are people to find, and there are monsters to fight. Chuggie’s new dagger, the Bleeding Jaws of Glughu, has been doing strange things. Like the first book, we follow some other characters, too. A lot of people like Fey Voletta, the young blade cultist who works with the Steel Jacks. Covered from head to toe in the ceremonial scars of her order, she’s exotic, sexy, and as deadly as the day is long. The Steel Jacks themselves are lots of fun. They’re creatures of pure energy who live inside 8’ metal suits. They’re masters of technology in a world of magic and mysticism.
Next up for Chuggie… I can tell you the next book has a working title of Chuggie and the Prisoner Gods. I can say nothing more than that. No, wait. I can say a little more. It’ll be filled with horrors, funny drunken ramblings, and plenty of colorful profanity. There’s a good chance this will Chuggie’s most horrific adventure yet. Should be some grins in there, too.
3. How did Chuggie come to claw his way inside your brain?
Back in college, an instructor of mine told us about her muse. This ghostly woman in a brown dress stood behind her while she painted. I demanded the Cosmos send me a muse of my own. I’d hoped for a pretty lady in a bikini or a tight leather dress. Instead, I was sent a gravel-voiced drunk who always had a story about everything. Imagine a very drunk and surly Tom Waits dropped in the middle of Monsterland. Now give him a chain linked directly to his ribcage and an anchor on the end shaped like a lady. There are no vampires, werewolves, elves, fairies, dwarves, dragons, orcs, or trolls. It’s so much fun to write about Chuggie and his friends, I plan to do so for a long time.
You can pick up Chuggie and the Bleeding Gateways now at: