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Veronika Carnaby: Audiences are wary of new concepts and techniques in fiction

 Veronika Carnaby: Audiences are wary of new concepts and techniques in fiction

'Whenever a writer introduces the public to a new concept or technique, the audience immediately defaults to a negative reaction. They only come to accept it with the passing of time,' says Veronika Carnaby, author of'Bohemia, a novel that chronicles the lives of a group of mid-century twenty-somethings seeking creative fulfilment.

Veronika, whose writing is redolent of the Beat movement in both subject matter and style, says that this is certainly how it'played out for the writers of this era.

'Readers were so used to this formulaic concept of literature that when the likes of Ginsberg and Kerouac experimented with uncensored freeform, they thought it to be blasphemous.'

Its a trend that she has noticed stretches back to writers such as James Joyce, and which can be seen in the beginnings of rock 'n roll, civil rights and so on.

'The truth is that the general public isn't very receptive to stepping outside of their comfort zone, and I think that they're just now starting to warm up to the work of the Beats.'

And they are, if the recent rereleases and film adaptations are anything to go by.

Perhaps this historical wariness among readers has had an influence on how Veronika approaches her own work.

Theres no one specific type of audience that she aims to reach, she says. Instead, she strives to create something that will endure long enough that any potential misgivings from the reading public can be overcome.

'Whenever I write, I hope to create something with a universal message that can reach out to people of all walks of life. Whenever the writing can resonate with a variety of individuals and perhaps even generations, that's when I've succeeded.'

Given this goal, its perhaps little surprise that Veronika is no stranger to refining her style and technique. Reading, of course, is one of the most important tools to help her do so.

'Reading is an incredible platform for discovery. It's where I learn new techniques, sharpen up my diction, possibly draw some inspiration. I don't limit myself to reading any one particular author or genre simply because it's a breeding ground for improvement and there's always something new I can pick up from a story.'

For example, sometimes she might read with a view to specifically paying attention to elements like the narrator's voice or imagery or the flow of the plot. Whatever the case, being exposed to new ideas through reading has had a strong influence in shaping her writing.

In addition to reading closely, Veronika has also availed herself of a variety of different writing approaches in order to develop her writing. One of these is 'free-writing', a free-form writing approach where a writer writes without worrying about things such as style, punctuation or grammar.

'One of the things that initially attracted me to spontaneous prose is the freedom it gives me as a writer. There are no limitations, so instead of writing something mechanical and nitpicking it for months after completion, it makes for a very vibrant and true-to-life narrative.'

Even Veronikas approach to publishing recalls the mentality of the Beats. Though with a solid bibliography under her belt, shes chosen to opt for an independent route.

'The fact that authors have options when it comes to releasing their work can only please me,' she says of the changing world of publishing.

'For a while, I was involved in the traditional publishing realm, but I ultimately opted to go independent for a number of reasons. With that, I pinched some techniques from both ends to create my own distinct style. For me personally, there's a lot of dabbling and risk involved, which is something that I feel is missing from a lot of books nowadays.'

About Veronika:'American author and poet Veronika Carnaby possesses a vintage charm that transcends well into her written works. Recognized for her Beat-style prose, her pieces have garnered international recognition after appearing in such publications and functions as The Ed Sullivan Show blog, SESAC Magazine, SXSW, Dan's Papers Literary Journal, and the SESAC New York Music Awards, among others. Whether penning poems, short stories, or novels, Carnaby infuses her writing with a poignancy and passion for 20th century culture.

Visit Veronikas website | Twitter'| Facebook


 Veronika Carnaby: Audiences are wary of new concepts and techniques in fiction

Purchase'Bohemia:'Amazon USA| Amazon UK

In her debut novel, Veronika Carnaby picks up where the Beat Generation left off. Set in 1960, Bohemia chronicles a group of twenty-somethings who defy the ideals of a mid-twentieth century society to seek creative fulfillment. In the process, they spotlight the creative path that artists of all mediums tread, all the while depicting the challenges faced by youth in the decade that changed the world.

Your turn: Do you think its true that readers take some time to accept a new literary movement? Why do you think this is?


  1. I think it makes sense, sometimes we can be resistant to the unknown but when exposed to something new over time we become more openminded to it.

    Bohemia sounds like an interesting read

    • Stephanie /

      I think its probably some sort of in-built safety mechanism. Sticking with the known and the familiar doesnt pose a risk, whereas embracing something new can threaten our intellectual/social/physical standing. I think a lot of people stand back and wait for authorities (or sometimes the masses) to give something the tick of approval before choosing to accept it.

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