For sheer quirkiness and bonus grossout factor, plus a cute octopus bath towel, readers are not likely to soon forget (or recover from) Gregor Cole’s contribution!
He looked around the room and his eyes locked on his cute octopus bath towel hanging over a rail in the corner. The octopus smiled at Takahashi and it made him sad inside. – “The Tub and Takahashi,” by Gregor Cole
* What inspired your piece in The Refossiling?
GC: I was in an Asian market with a friend and she pointed out that one of the women on the counter had this huge golf ball of a mole… the woman threw her the most wicked stare and I told my friend she had put a curse on her.
I tied this in with a recurring nightmare I had had for many years of getting held down by the water in my bath. I think this dream was brought on by watching the film Legacy when I was a kid. There’s a scene in it where a woman gets trapped in a swimming pool and can’t break the surface like there’s a sheet of glass over it… horrendous.
* Favourite / least favourite ___________ and why?
G. seafood dish or delicacy
GC: Favourite seafood dish has to be the salt and pepper squid from the China Garden restaurant near where I live… I swear they sprinkle it with heroin or something because I get the maddest cravings for it at really random times.
* Where can readers and fans find more of your work?
GC: I have a blog where I dump loads of flash fiction that I haven’t found a home for and loads of flash that was included on the (now shutdown) Feverish Fiction website. There’s plenty on there and best of all it’s all for free.
* Share your best, or worst, body-of-water-related memory/experience!
GC: When I was a kid where went on holiday to the Isle of Wight (south coast of England) and we took a boat trip to see one of the land marks called the Needles. Basically they are these giant pillars of chalk sticking out of the sea and there’s this pretty cool light house too.
At the time I had never really been on many boats and the water was real choppy. To cut a long story short I got a bit sea sick and puked into my own hands because I though the bloke piloting the boat would shout at me if I puked on deck.
* What’re you working on, what is your process/routine like?
GC: Plenty of stuff… A follow up to my first novella and a brutal little story about a maniacal building site labourer and a tonne of short stories for upcoming anthologies (fingers crossed).
* What’s the weirdest object you own? Backstory!
GC: I have a cannibal stick. A friend of mine went traveling around the pacific and brought me back this mad wooden fork that is used in ceremonial cannibalism from Samoa or somewhere… it’s pretty cool but I haven’t used it yet… chicken nuggets don’t really count, do they?
* Most useless advice you’ve ever seriously given or been given?
GC: Always wear a helmet. Sometimes that’s just not practical and can come across as just plain kinky.
* What kind of question do you always wish these questionnaires would ask, and how would you answer it?
GC: Fancy a pint? To which the answer is always YES!