Life Beyond Writing Q&A: Kevin Fanning

Twenty questions for authors, none about writing. Some questions are not in the form of a question. (Previous Q&As may be found HERE.)

This week we have KEVIN FANNING, aka kfan, author of the newly released Magical Neon Sexuality, as well as Let’s All Find Awesome Jobs and Jennifer Love Hewitt Times Infinity. (See below for purchase links.)

KFAN1. Rename yourself.

kfan: My main nickname is kfan but people are always confusing me with the sports radio station, so maybe a better nickname would be kfanAM1030.

2. Satan hoofs up and says two words to you. What are they?

kfan: You again?

3. Give us an A+ winter song.

kfan: “Valley Winter Song” by Fountains of Wayne [Youtube]

4. What is the worst injury you’ve ever sustained?

kfan: I guess maybe 8th grade, when Jen stopped me in the hall on my way to Bio to inform me that Keri had broken up with me? Like no phone call or anything? And people nearby were just stopping to watch this conversation and delight in my heartbreak. And then in Bio Ms. Bazzolo gave us a pop quiz. It was something about planets which was weird because it was supposedly an EARTH SCIENCES class. So I never even understood why we had that unit. Or what I had done to make Keri break up with me after only 2 weeks of “going out”, which basically just meant we talked on the phone after school. Personally I had enjoyed our conversations.

5. Form a supergroup using any four musicians, living or dead, that would be thoroughly awesome to experience, for better or worse.

kfan: Aaliyah, Shiina Ringo, Susanna Hoffs, Astrud Gilberto. This band is apparently all singers so I don’t know if that really makes it a supergroup.

magical-neon-cover-222px6. What was your best Halloween costume?

kfan: The year I realized I was too old to go trick-or-treating even though I still really wanted to, I went to my friend Matt’s house and handed out candy while wearing a pair of his father’s extremely large bright red corduroy pants. They were super comfy and I wish I’d kept them.

7. Tell us something you built.

kfan: An extremely solid Headbanger’s Ball playlist on Spotify.

8. If you could safely have one non-domesticated animal as a lifelong companion, what would it be? (Fantasy creatures are allowed.)

kfan: I can’t tell you how uninterested I am in a lifelong companion that doesn’t clean up its own poop. I really just want to be left alone and not have to clean up an animal’s poop, fantasy or otherwise.

9. What do you like to grow?

kfan: I live in the city, eat at restaurants, and value my time, so I guess I mainly grow  non-attachment to the idea that spending time in a garden is at all useful.

10. Name a thing you love that nobody else you personally know also loves.

kfan: “I’m Always Chasing Rainbows” by The Four Freshmen. [youtube]

11. How would you like those eggs?

kfan: Eggs are the best, I’m down for whatever. Super into eggs lately.

lafaj-cover-222px12. What’s the worst thing about your favorite holiday?

kfan: My favorite holiday is Easter because it has the best candy, but I am allergic to dairy and get super sick from eating it. But the worst thing is all the religion.

13. You’ve just been turned into a lousy superhero. Who are you, and who is your nemesis?

kfan: The Anecdotal Lead, whose powers are useless against The TL;DRer.

14. Name a thought that has profoundly scared you in the night.

kfan: Sometimes there are neighborhood teenagers having conversations in the courtyard behind my apartment at 2 am and I just want to yell at them to shut up but then I think “Well what if they remember which window my face was poking out of and they begin forming a plan to exact revenge of some kind” so then I just lay there being afraid of teenagers all night.

15. You’re stinking rich. What’s the first thing you add to your home?

kfan: If I had a bunch of money I would never add anything to a home, I would just buy a new one whenever I got bored of the current one or too tired to climb the stairs.

16. What are you up to this weekend?

kfan: Finally thinking of better answers to these questions, probably.

jlhxi-cover-222px17. Which color makes you feel the most comfortable? The most anxious?

kfan: I’m fairly colorblind so pretty much any color gives me low-level anxiety.

18. What is the strangest job you ever had?

kfan: One where I sat at a desk in a cubicle all day and had to pretend like I was typing things so no one would get suspicious about me not having any actual work to do.

19. I mean honestly: aren’t you better off living without ___?

kfan: Human emotion.

20. James Cameron discovers something new at the bottom of the Mariana Trench. What do you hope it is?

kfan: Some really great movie footage that people will talk about for years to come. Something that the rest of us can really build memories around.

Kevin Fanning writes the most perfect fanfic in the internet.

kfan’s official site

Buy his books!

Previous Q&As may be found HERE.

How to Fix a Leaky Tree Stand

Mist, fog, foggy mist

“Hon, I think the tree is leaking,” said my wife.

“@#$%!&,” said my brain.

She was right. There was water on the floor, apparently dripping from the bottom of the stand, so down came the tree to see what I could do.

This year we used lights but not ornaments because of Bones, who’s under a year and might have tried to eat them, so all I had to do was unstring the lights instead of undecorating an entire tree.

1standI dragged the tree to the porch and took the stand downstairs to find the problem. It’s an older metal stand that had partially rusted through at the center of the bottom. I took the stand apart so all I had left was the dish, and then I scrubbed it clean with a wire brush and, having scraped away additional rust, was left with several tiny holes.

Tree stands are a little expensive, unless you want a poorly made plastic stand that’s liable to tip, and it seemed to crazy to throw away a perfectly good metal stand because of a few little rust holes. I went to the store and bought a can of Rustoleum’s LeakSeal. I’ve wanted to use this stuff ever since I saw the cheap generic version on TV, in that ad where the guy replaces the bottom of a rowboat with a spray-sealed screen door to show it doesn’t leak.

2standLeakSeal is like spray-on rubber. It dries tight but flexible in a couple of hours and is fully cured in 24. I stuck Gorilla Tape to the outside of the stand, covering the holes, so when I sprayed the LeakSeal from the inside, it wouldn’t spray right through. I gave it one coat, dried it in front of a box fan, and gave it a second coat two hours later. Then I waited a full twenty-four and tested the stand with water. It looked completely sealed and didn’t leak at all after leaving it full for several hours. So I reassembled the stand and put the tree back up.

It’s been a four days now and the stand hasn’t leaked. I’m eager to try this stuff on other leaks and cracks I encounter in the future.


Colonial-American Word of the Day
Apple Dumplin’ Shop: (n) a woman’s bosom

Go Forth!
The Infamous Ice Sculpture Collapse

The Revels, “I Saw Three Ships”