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DJ: Hi Nicky! Thanks for agreeing to do this interview!
For readers who aren’t familiar with you, could you tell us a little about yourself?
Nicky Drayden: Hi! Thanks for having me! I’m Nicky Drayden, author of The Prey of Gods, TEMPER, and a whole assortment of weird short stories. I like bending genres and pushing boundaries and squeezing my brain into uncomfortable places. I got my start by participating in National Novel Writing Month twelve years ago, and have been consumed by the need to tell stories ever since.
DJ: What is Temper about?
Nicky: At its heart, Temper is about a set of twins and how their relationship evolves as it’s tested by society, family secrets, and a demonic possession. It’s a pseudo-alternate history, set in a fantastical Cape Town where nearly everyone is born a twin, and the vices and virtues assigned to them during a religious ceremony determine their worth in the world. Auben, the main character, is assigned more vices than his twin, Kasim, and as a result, Auben is nearly guaranteed a life of poverty and strife. To make matters worse, Auben also starts hearing voices that speak to his dangerous side, and he must figure out a way to get rid of them before blood is spilled.
DJ: What were some of your influences for Temper?
Nicky: I wanted to tell a story of an African continent that escaped the ills of colonization, but the story that came out of me wasn’t what I had imagined. This world is full of oppression and injustice, of dark secrets and hidden hopes. I wanted to bring a completely immersive story to the reader, like Jemisin’s Broken Earth or Butler’s Dawn, something that throws the reader in the deep end and then teaches them to swim. Continue reading