An anomaly of college life is that time can vanish suddenly, and this sudden loss of time can have adverse effects on yourself and others. While preparing for the final issue of the Summit last month, my editor needed content and I wanted a press release about my first novel, so this lead to the creation of an article on me and my book. Alas, I was the only one with time to write it! This lead to an interview with myself, which I have reproduced below. In the meantime, be sure to check out the Facebook and Pinterest pages for December.
Judah LoVato is a senior graduating with a B.A. in Literature Studies, and has published his first book, a short novel called December.
“It’s been difficult trying to publish this book while keeping up with schoolwork,” LoVato explained in an interview with himself April 2, “but I hope it’s worth the stress.”
December is set for official release June 17, 2014 Tate Publishing, a Christian publisher out of Mustang, Okla.
“I found Tate through a friend of mine, Sabre Moore, who had her own first novel, Secrets at Sea, published through Tate as well. Since issues of faith and morality play into December, I was hopeful that they’d accept it as family-friendly writing.”
“It started as a kind of journal project,” LoVato explained, “because my dad suggested that I write about society from my own perspective as a 19-year-old. From this initial concept it slowly evolved into this stream-of-consciousness monster that I’m having published.”
Stream-of-consciousness is a style of writing where the narrative is written to imitate the thoughts of the main character.
“It took me about a year and a half to settle on the stream-of-consciousness, because I had been trying to make things clear and coherent for readers. But last spring [Spring 2013] I realized that I didn’t have to explain myself, I didn’t have to explain my writing or justify it; it can speak for itself and people can draw their own conclusions about what it stands for.
“That was a moment of liberation for me, and that laid the ground work for the style I finally adopted. It also helped that I was taking this British Novel class where we were reading Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf.
“I decided to re-write December so it takes place in the head of my main character, Cole. The style is unique because thoughts aren’t linear, but, as I’ve been learning, there are ways to make the style make more sense.”
The methods, LoVato explained, are to use word repetition and layout patterns for the reader to find. In December the chapters are connected by a theme of self-awareness, and by italicized sections that represent the traditional narrative approach.
According to LoVato, he started thinking about the repetition method when December entered editing this past January.
“The editors made a point of reminding me that stream-of-consciousness lacks descriptive narrative and characterization, and they asked if I ever noticed how most fiction writers provide extensive backgrounds on new characters.
“It forced me to really think about why I wrote stream-of-consciousness, and forced me to think of ways to provide more background on characters and make a ‘through-line’ for the piece.”
LoVato has started marketing December on Facebook, and plans to hold coffee-shop signings over the summer.