East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai



When I was a kid, writing stories on my mother’s Olivetti typewriter, I wanted to be a science fiction writer. I was fascinated by the folklore of the Golden Age of science fiction, the stories of writers that were also characters and, to a kid living in the shadow of the smokestacks in the outskirts of an industrial town, a sort of heroes. I think this is part of a process a lot of writers go through – when you begin, you want to tell stories, yes, but you also want to be like… ah, like Fritz Leiber or Michael Moorcock, in my case, like Jack Williamson or Tanith Lee.

Later it sort of goes away. Your pantheon of gods and heroes expands, and telling stories, being read, becomes the primary force.
Some shift to other purposes – fame, fortune, being interviewed on television, being popular. Often they are people that do not like to write, and do not have stories to tell – they just seek the lifestyle.

I found out yesterday that I am a horror writer or a game writer. These are the two tags that get attached to my name – so much so that I do not normally appear in surveys of fantasy or science fiction writers in my country. But there’s books out there in which I am listed as horror or weird writer, and two weeks ago I was dismissed with a shrug “Ah, yes, you’re a game writer” (implying I do not do Art).

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