What are you most proud of accomplishing so far in your life?
Getting out of bad neighbourhoods through hard work. Finishing college. Setting up a college fund for my daughter. It might sound stupid, but most people my age or from my background don’t set up college fund. I carry my student debt on my back now. My daughter won’t if I (and my spouse) have anything to say about it.
What is your favourite color?
I don’t really have one. My visual art’s strictly black and white these days but I could say that I love the color of the sun about an hour before it sets. If you’re a photographer, you know that’s happy hour.
What is your favourite food?
All things vegetarian. I eat a lot of good veggie food from all over the world. I found a way to make real deli subs without the meat. You add the same spices as you would on steak or you use smoked paprika/rosemary on thinly sliced tofu and you throw in your vegetables, dried tomatoes and salad, some oil and plenty of cheese (you could make it vegan, but I’m not quite there yet) and a toothpick on top of the bread and that’s it.
What’s your favourite place in the entire world?
My home. Right now it’s a bit small and it’s a bit of a mess (try to fit a kid and two artists, two cats and two lizards in a two bedroom apartment!) I’d like to have a workshop at home and it would be perfect. I don’t like being out of the house unless I have something to do. Some people are travelers and explorers, I feel I’m more of a builder. I stick to one place and try to build on that.
How has your upbringing influenced your writing?
I can’t say that it has. My parents made sure I was a decent human being so there’s that. I did a few mistakes on the way there but hey, I’m 31, I’m engaged, I’m a dad, managed to finish college. I guess my parents did something right. They taught me to always be honest because living with remorse or regret is to live a shitty life. I try to have the same honesty about my work so there’s that. I have them to thank for my work ethics, but my parents never sat down and went “so, here’s how you do a proper outline,” you know? They always supported my writing but there’s no way they could have known how to help me write better stories.
Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
I was still in grade school and we used to play role-playing games. Then we decided for one reason or another, to write our own quests and games. I don’t think I’ve stopped writing since.
When and why did you begin writing?
I remember it was a game called Hero Quest and we had pretty much played all the quests in the game so we tried writing new ones. That was in grade four I think. Then I tried writing my own role-playing game and I have vague memories of what it looked like but I remember writing background stories for a bunch of monsters and all. That didn’t go anywhere and it didn’t make me a popular kid, that’s for sure (and then high school came!!!) but the very first think I ever wrote was a quest for some board game, I guess. (Not as glorious as you’d think, right?)
How long have you been writing?
Creatively, I’d say grade three, maybe four (it was a while ago). I don’t remember anything before that but the first few lines of original concepts, that was maybe age 9 or 10.
“All they really wanted to do was fuck around, be creative, listen to music, skateboard or go to shows. People kept telling them growing up was supposed to be tough but it’s not like they didn’t know that already. Timmy had listened. Timmy had finished school and got himself a job. That didn’t stop him from running his van into a pillar one night so what was the fucking use? Nobody seemed to have an answer.“
Conor and his friends are growing up in a one factory town where the most likely employment prospect is the assembly line or the farmer’s coop. Aiming higher than the local college, Conor finds himself spending more and more time in downtown Montreal, discovering himself through punk and hardcore music. But as his girlfriend wants nothing to do with the city and his friend Jake loses his brother when the factory closes, Conor’s ambitions could require him to burn bridges he might not be ready to burn.
With A Teenage Suicide, Ian wanted to write a story about kids making decisions and kids making mistakes. Stylistically, it is fair to mention influences of Truman Capote and Mordecai Richler. Imagine of the “cold-hard-fact” descriptions of In Cold Blood mixed with the realistic and witty dialogue of The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz.
Ian Truman is a hardcore kid turned writer. He proudly claims to be from a working class family and has been straight edge and vegetarian for at least a decade now. He hopes to bring the passion, verve and dedication of hardcore into the art form of the novel. Born and raised in Montreal, he is a graduate of Concordia University’s creative writing program. A Teenage Suicide is his third novel.
Genre - Literary, Coming of Age
Rating – PG13
Connect with Ian Truman on Facebook