Friday, December 5, 2008

Interview with Marvin D. Wilson, author of Owen Fiddler (featuring Owen Fiddler!)

Diary of an Eccentric is happy to welcome Marvin D. Wilson, author of Owen Fiddler (read my review here), as he kicks off The Owen Fiddler Experience: Christmas Cyber Tour 2008!

I'd like to thank Marvin for taking the time to answer a few questions and for bringing along a very special guest, Owen Fiddler. (Or maybe I should hold off on thanking him for Owen's presence right now. At least until I see what mood Owen is in.)

Well, let's jump right in, shall we?

Anna: Owen, I hope you're still on your best behavior these days. How did you feel about Marvin exposing all the sins of your past to the world?

Owen: You know at first I was like, wow. Man, did you have to tell everything bad about me? Felt like I had my dirty underwear on the outside of my slacks. I was pretty pissed, tell the truth. But you know what? It’s okay. I’ve learned that it is important to be transparent. I don’t have any “secret life of Owen Fiddler” anymore. So I think Marvin did the right thing, telling the truth, telling it like it is, well was.

Anna: Marvin, I hope this isn't too personal of a question, but how are/were you like Owen Fiddler? Why is it so important that his story be told?

(Marvin looks at Owen, they both laugh. Then Marvin looks back at Anna.)

Marvin: It’s okay, everybody asks that one. That’s kind of a personal joke between Owen and me. Yeah. It’s true. Owen is a part of me. He’s a part of everybody. But most people don’t want to admit it. And now that Owen has grown up and taken responsibility for his own life and actions, I’m proud to say I am very much like Owen Fiddler. Neither one of us is very proud of how we used to be. Thank god for salvation. And second chances.

(Marvin and Owen high-five)

Anna: Marvin, when you were writing the scene toward the end of Owen Fiddler with Jesus Christ, aka Kris, and Frenda, did you think it would stir up controversy? I know a line about a kiss "with tongue" made me uncomfortable.

Marvin: Yep. That’s me. I’m controversial kinda guy. I like to stir up feelings, question traditionally accepted ideologies, push the envelope. I really enjoy pressing the emotional sensitive buttons of the religiously thin-skinned. Bit of a rascal that way, I am. You are the second woman whom I respect that asked me that, who was just a touch offended by the depiction of a Christ figure French kissing a woman. I would ask you the same thing I asked her. Find the root cause of the discomfort. Something inherently nasty about French kissing? God invented that, remember. I know, I know, God invented everything, but just because He invented genocide doesn’t mean we should do it. Free will. Choices. But to me, Kris was just being friendly, just loving his Frenda, being his fun-loving humorous self with that kiss. I don’t think Frenda was offended. Maybe a bit shocked. Like you were.

Anna: Owen, is there anything Marvin left out of your story that you think my readers should know?

(Owen leans over to Marvin and whispers something in his ear. Marvin nods okay)

Owen: Ahm, well one thing. He never wrote out my middle name. In fact, all the main human characters in my story have the same middle name. It’s “The.”

Anna: Marvin, the artwork on the cover of Owen Fiddler is very creative. At first I wasn't sure what to make of it, but after completing the book, it makes sense. Can you tell me a bit about the artist and the story behind the cover?

Marvin: Sure. The artwork for the cover was sketched by my son, Blue Moon-sky Wilson. How did he get that name you and everyone always asks? It’s kind of a Native American thing. I’m not Native American, but I always admired their way of naming newborns. My wife and I had a home birthing, with a mid-wife assisting his delivery into this world. It was my turn to get to name the child (we have three children and Blue is the youngest), and I had intentionally not chosen the name yet. I wanted it to be spontaneous and serendipitous and natural. Kind of a God epiphany. So once he was born and the midwife was attending to him and my wife, I walked out into our backyard. It was I think about two in the morning. I looked up toward the heavens. It was a deep blue clear sky with a full moon. Hence his name, Blue Moon-sky.

**The rest of his answer might be considered a spoiler to some, so here's your warning!**

The scene depicted on the cover is where Owen and Frenda meet in the never-world. The eye is the omnipresent universal eye of Christ (named Kris in the book). Kris is observing the two of them as Frenda is exhorting her Daddy to please meet with Kris and get rid of his demons before it is too late. The physical Owen back on earth is lying in a coma, perilously close to death and a horrific afterlife if he does not heed her admonitions.

Anna: Owen, how difficult has it been to break out of those old habits? I want to believe it's possible for someone to dramatically change and stay that way, but you seemed too far gone. Is there any way for you to convince me that the scumbag Owen at the beginning of the book is gone forever? I must give Jewel a lot of credit. I'm not sure I could ever consider forgiving you if you did to me what you did to her. Hmm ... what does that say about me?

Owen: It’s not hard. I really don’t have to fight my old demons anymore. They are gone. You are right, Jewel is, well – a real Jewel. Not many women would accept such a former – as you say – scumbag back into their lives. Forgiveness? That’s the easy part, really. Lots of Christians can forgive. And I’m not just talking Christians. People. People can forgive lots of stuff. But forgetting? That’s the hard part. That’s where most folks stumble spiritually. I treated God, myself, and everyone around me like dirt for most of my life. I was stupid, and selfish, a drunkard, and a sexual and ethical whore. But Frenda forgave me. Forgave me for everything. And God. God forgave me and forgot everything. Forgetting is the key. God’s grace is unconditional, free and eternal. Once you repent of your sins and ask Him into your life, the slate is wiped clean and your are reborn a new person. So Anna, I would just ask you to realize, to know for certain, that Owen Fiddler today is a whole and happy and free man. I am a Free Spirit. And I would also ask you, however difficult it might be, for your own good and spiritual health, to not only forgive me my past, but to also forget the old Owen Fiddler and his sinful ways. That dude is dead.

Thanks, Marvin! Thanks, Owen! What an interesting discussion! **If anyone has any questions of their own for Marvin or Owen, please leave them in the comments. They'll be around to answer them!**
Follow Marvin and Owen as they make the rounds! Click here for the entire list of tour stops and information on how to win a copy of Owen Fiddler.

The next stop on The Owen Fiddler Experience Christmas Cyber Tour 2008 is tomorrow, Dec. 6! Stop by Katrina Wampler's blog, where she will interview the "selfish irresponsible jerk" that was Owen Fiddler at the beginning of the book.


Marie Cloutier said...

what a fun interview :-) sounds like a very interesting author!

Cactus Annie said...

Fun interview! Really different - I like the way you included the Owen character. I got my copy of Owen Fiddler ordered. Just started following Free Spirit and Marvin and love it. Really like your blog, too, Anna. I'll be over here lots!

Joyce Anthony said...

It's good to see Owen was on his best behavior today :-) Marvin--I can't believe I'm still learning new things about you-great way to pick a name! I have always loved Native American names and culture. I "felt" my son's NA name when he was still a baby--but have told very few. He's getting close but it isn't the right time for him to take possession of it yet.

Helen Ginger said...

Great interview -- definitely different! But, then, so are you Marvin. And you, too, Owen.

I bet your son has been shaped by his name. It's a cool name.

Anonymous said...

Good thing Owen is willing to cooperate with the interview. He can be a bit contentious.

Serena said...

Great set of questions.

I'm wondering now what Owen is doing now that he has a clean slate?

Anonymous said...

I agree that it's nice to see a softer side to Owen! Great to learn more about you, too, Marvin. By the time your tour is done, I'll know more about you than many of my "real-life" friends!

Anonymous said...

Hi everyone! Appreciate the cool comments! Serena, Owen is trying like heck to make up for being such a jerk to Jewel in hopes that I will one day be able to write a sequel that chronicles their reunification as husband and wife again. Oh and Emme, Owen sez thanks for noticing. Yes, there is a VERY tender side to Owen. He was just never whole and man enough to show it before (smile)

Dana Fredsti said...

Excellent interview! Marvin, what is your son's nickname? I really need to know. I like Blue, personally...

Wendi said...

Anna and Marvin - Great interview! I love the candid and personality-filled answers. :)

Your interview has been added to About the Author - An Author Interview Index!

Take care ~ Wendi

Anonymous said...

That was Fun :) Anna thanks for this one :)

Anonymous said...

Hey thank you Wendi! I'll have to hop over there and check that out.

Oh and Dana, My son gets called everything under the Blue Moon (smile) Really - "Moon," "Blue," Moon-Sky," and his best friend's (now deceased) mother always called him affectionately "Bluie." (pronounced Bloowee)

Btw, my daughter chastised me a little this morning for not really answering Anna's question about "tell us about the artist" question with any more depth than to describe how I named him. Blue is a multi-talented artist by nature. He does excellent sketch-work, any kind of craft having to do with hands-on skill he masters with ease. He currently lives in Jersey City where he is a highly skilled finish carpenter and woodworker (also among my skills - I made my main money during my young adult and middle ages that way) and he has a very significant other who is an actress trying to "make it" in the Big City and also who teaches school.

Jeannie said...

What a very unique and fun interview. Thank you so much, Anna, Marvin And Owen. :D

P.S. Being open and accepting of oneself is so freeing. I had to forgive myself many time for some dumb thing I've done before ultimately letting go.

The Bookworm said...

Great interview with Marvin and Owen :) This does sound like a good book.

Jean Henry Mead said...

Wonderful interview and very revealing. I'm really getting to know you, Marvin, and I suspect that there's a lot of you in Owen (the good traits). :)

Owen Fiddler said...

Yeah, Jean- Marv's a lot like me. Used to be a WHOLE lot like me. But now that I'm Whole, I'm more whole more like him.

Mebbe not makin any holy lotta sense, but I promise I aint been drinking. Quit.

Charlotte Phillips said...

Hi Marvin,

As you can see, I'm still running a few days behind. I was wondering how Blue Moon-Sky feels about his name - and that might have changed over time. Care to share?


Anna said...

This definitely was an interesting interview. It's the first time I've interviewed a character from a book. It was hard to think up questions for Owen, but I think it all turned out great. Thanks for all your kind comments, and thanks to Marvin and Owen for dropping in!

Darlene said...

Great interview! I love how your son got his name-cool story.