Comic Fantasy (e.g., D. Adams, J. Fforde, C. Moore)
Home on the Web:
WHAT WOULD SATAN DO? (September 2011) – Satan retires, leaving Hell for a quiet life in Washington, DC, only to find that someone has gone and started up Judgment Day without him. Available on Amazon.com: http://www.amazon.com/What-Would-Satan-Anthony-Miller/dp/0615540023/
BJØRN AGAIN (Future) – Having grown tired of making safe cars and flat-pack furniture, Scandinavians return to their Viking roots of raiding, pillaging, and plundering. Once again it is up to Satan to save the world.
Places Where Books are Available for Purchase:
Currently only Amazon.com, on account of the Kindle Lending Library program. After March, the book should be available again via other outlets.
How did you get your start in writing?
I first started writing when I was thirteen, after I read the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. I loved Adams’ limitless galaxy where anything and everything could happen – the sociological equivalent of an infinite number of monkeys in a room. I was motivated to write WHAT WOULD SATAN DO? after attending a Bible study class about the Book of Revelations, which is the supposed prophecy for how the world is going to end. In it, Satan’s job is to pick a fight that he’s supposed to lose, according to the Divine Plan. I thought, “Wow, if I were Satan, I’d just say, ‘To Hell with all this! I’m out of here!’” And then, of course, it occurred to me that a lot of crazy things might happen, and a lot of people might get very upset, if Satan did retire.
Who Are Your Biggest Influences?
Douglas Adams, Christopher Moore, and David Foster Wallace, but for different reasons. Adams for his big-big-BIG-ideas. Moore for his ability to identify and magnify absurdities in extraordinarily mundane situations. Wallace (or Foster Wallace?) for his virtuosic ability to toy, manhandle, and be best buds with the English language. Go read CONSIDER THE LOBSTER right now!
What Is Your Biggest Inspiration When Creating?
Unrequited road rage.
Could You Give Us the Details of Your Current Project?
I think I’ve got this mixed up. I’m working on something currently, but I think it’s probably better for all of us if I tell you about the book you can actually buy.
So here’s the synopsis for WHAT WOULD SATAN DO?
Disgusted with God’s plan for Judgment Day, Satan has quit his job and left Hell in favor of a quiet retirement in Washington, D.C. But life on Earth is tricky for an ex-angel with a short fuse and no impulse control. When a parking attendant mysteriously bursts into flames and a fat lady ends up in low-Earth orbit, Satan finds that he suddenly has a lot of friends at the FBI. Worse, there are signs that the governor of Texas has somehow gone ahead and started up the end of the world without him. The Prince of Darkness heads for the Lone Star State, where he tangles with a megalomaniacal televangelist, joins the Militant Arm of the American Geriatrics Association, and wields the Flaming Stick of Divine Justice at a Jesus impersonator called Festus. Through it all, one thing is clear: Someone has to put a stop to Judgment Day. Now, having spent millennia trying to wreck the place, the Devil may be the world’s only hope.
What Is the Next Goal You Would Like to Achieve with Your Writing?
I’ve garnered some good reviews (see, e.g., http://cannonballread4.wordpress.com/2012/01/02/iamachaiaddicts-cbr4-review-2-what-would-satan-do-by-anthony-miller/), and sold a few thousand books, which is pretty decent for an indie author, but I’d obviously like to reach more readers. Not just to sell books, but because I’d like to try to affect readers in the way that some of my favorite authors have affected me. I try to make my writing work on multiple levels – there’s the Beavis-level humor, of course, but there’s also some deeper themes and ideas that people can tap into (and, actually, quite a few allusions to 80’s music). I talked to a guy who read it whose response was, “It’s funny as hell, but whoa!” and the review I’ve linked to above says, “[S]ome books barely scratch the surface of your soul, while other books leave an indelible imprint on your psyche. For me, this was one of those books.” That connection; that impact, is what makes all the long hours and hard work of writing worthwhile.
When the zombies take over the world, where will you be?
I will be in the front lines, killing as many zombies as I can. I mean, socially-acceptable decapitation and killing? Right on! Sign me up! I’ve often thought it would be cool to be able to go back in time to join the Vikings as they raided and pillaged and chopped the heads off monks, but folks haven’t been terribly enthusiastic when I’ve mentioned that particular dream. I think everybody could get behind killing some zombies, however.
Jedi, Ninja, Vampire, Were-wolf, Pirate, Fairy, or Spartan?
Jedi, just because that’s the most versatile skill set. Also, you have the potential – however slight – to advance to the rank of Emperor, which is a position that I understand comes with several Star Destroyers and one or more Death Stars.
What one piece of art, be it music, book, film or picture, do you think people must experience before they die?
I thought of saying the Bible, because there’s just so much in it, from beautiful poetry, to profound lessons about life, but I’m going to go with The Hitchhiker’s Guide, based on pretty much the same reasoning. I realized, a couple of years ago when I re-read it, that a huge part of who I am, how I think about the world, and the sorts of things I tend to like to think and talk about, come from that book. That is the sort of thing – i.e., its impact on the reader, viewer, experiencer – that makes any work of art great.
Give one fact that most people would not believe about you?
I love lifting weights.