Ravenous Reader #3

Dan Murphy is author of The Amazing Adventures of the Dispatch Rider.

1.  Do you have an early memory of learning to read?
Yes, I’m at home, and my mother would ask me to read something and then quiz me on what I remembered about the story. And I couldn’t tell her because I didn’t know anything I had just read.

2.  Have you always been an avid reader?
No. My avid reading started in my early twenties.

3.  How do you decide what to read next?
I go to the book store or library. I will switch genres if I can, almost every time.

4.  Do you have any reading rituals that you follow? 
No, I read mostly on transit and would hate to think what would happen if I could afford a car. Ha!

5. What makes a great story or novel?
For me, it’s leaving out a lot of detail because that just bogs me down and makes me tired. I like a fast paced story.

6.  Do you have a favourite genre?
No. I read all kinds of books.

7.  Who was the first author you fell in love with? The last?
That would have to be Hunter S. Thompson. The last would be J. K. Rowling.

8.  What classic or well-known book have you never been able to get through?
This is a bad one because I rode a motorcycle for seventeen years, but I could never finish Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance. I think I tried three times.

9.  What book or books do you reread?
Books that I read a long time ago and just can’t remember. A book like W. P. Kinsella’s Shoeless Joe. Kinsella’s words just went to the centre of my brain. I heard it, when I read it.

10. Do you have dry spells where you stop reading or read very little?
Rarely, but I almost always have something set up for the next one or go to the library if I don’t. 

11. How do you organize your collection?
I don’t; they’re everywhere. I’ve always said that if I ever buy a house, I’ll put them all on shelves. 

12. Do you enjoy recommending books to others? What criteria do you use?
I do like passing along a book, but usually I’ll know the person and will already have a sense of what they like.

13. You host a dinner party for five authors (dead or alive). Who’s invited?
Stephen King, J. K. Rowling, Paul Brickhill, Pierre Burton, and Charles Dickens. 

14. Do you write? If so, how does reading influence your writing?
Yes. I think my writing is influenced (subconsciously) by just reading so much and hopefully learning structure that way. 

15. What are you reading right now?
I’m reading an autobiography by Rob Lowe who has some great stories to tell.

Ravenous Reader is a regular series.

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