Here at Luna Station, we like to pick our most recent issue authors’ brains about their masterful stories. Today on the table we have Tiffany Meuret and her story “Mouse, Crow, Cockroach, Valkyrie.”
LSQ: Writing from the point of a view of a non-human character can be difficult, but youdo it extremely well. What advice would you give to writers trying to do the same?
Tiffany: I struggled with this quite a bit. There is a fine line between the story being believable and being readable. A mouse wouldn’t know the name for a streetlight or a prison, but I found when I leaned too hard into (my best guess of) a mouse’s perspective that the prose was too confusing to be enjoyable. So I guess my advice to other writers would be to be deliberate and precise in your word choice. Yes, your character is a mouse, but sometimes you have to call a streetlight a streetlight so the flow of the story isn’t impeded by abstractions. That said, try not to lose the whimsy. You are pretending to be a mouse, after all.
LSQ: Why did you choose not to use human perspective for this story?
Tiffany: I tried writing scenes with human perspectives and I found that those lent themselves to something far more visceral and dark than the rest of the story. The tone was off, and I just didn’t like it, so I cut it.
LSQ: Which was your favorite part to write—mouse, crow, cockroach, or Valkyrie—and why?
Tiffany: Crow was my favorite. Maybe that’s just because I love crows? It was the easiest section to visualize, likely because there is so much material to work with–crows are well known for being clever and curious and mischievous, which lessened to load on me as writer. Readers can fill in the blanks. But while crow was my favorite, the Valkyrie section was the easiest to write. They served as inspiration for a novel too, which I completed last summer. Hopefully it becomes a real book one day.
LSQ: Are you working on anything else at the moment? If so, can you tell us a bit about your other projects?
Tiffany: What am I not working on? I don’t think I’ve ever been busier in my writing career. I just finished up recording a part for a science fiction podcast written by one of my author friends, and am in the beginning stages of co-writing a book with another author. On top of that I’m working on another solo novel that is scaring the crap out of me simply because the idea is so big (it involves multiple selves and the multiverse and revenge and talking mirrors). I’ve also been working on edits for my debut novel, A Flood of Posies, releasing this fall. And it only took 14 years to get here (lol).