Ville Meriläinen is a Finnish university student, author of speculative fiction, and Death Metal musician. His short fiction has appeared in various venues online and in print, including Orson Scott Card’s InterGalactic Medicine Show, Pseudopod, and Cast of Wonders. His musical fantasy novel, Ghost Notes, is available from Digital Fiction Publishing.
His story, “The Scholomance”, appears in the Weird World War III anthology.
Tell me about yourself. Where are you from? What’s your background?
I’m from a small-ish forest town on the west coast of Finland, from where I moved to study across the country to a small-ish forest city near the Russian border. While writing this, I’m visiting my parents, and can see the sea from the guest room window. Wood and water are prominent elements in my work and it’s no marvel why.
What kinds of stories do you write? Why?
The latest bio line I’ve given editors is: “Ville Meriläinen writes stories like the Finnish winter: long, dark, and someone probably gets hurt.” You try living without the sun for half a year and see how cheerful it leaves you.
Which of your short stories is your favorite? Why?
It’s always the latest one. I’m severely self-critical and whatever is newest usually feels passably competent. God forbid someone tells me they’ve read one of my older pieces, because the reaction is invariably thinking “Oh no not that one” while trying to convincingly smile and nod like I appreciate it.
Besides yourself, which other contemporary authors would you recommend?
I don’t think I’ve ever recommended authors over books, but Victor LaValle’s The Changeling, Justin Robinson’s The Dollmaker, and G. Willow Wilson’s The Bird King have hit me pretty hard lately, so I suppose there’s a list. I don’t know anything about the authors or their other works, to be honest. When you grow up on Black Metal you learn to separate art and the artist pretty fast.
What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever done?
All I want in life is to write silly stories in my bedroom and never talk to people, and yet somehow I keep winding up on stages. Dive bar stages, lecture hall stages, and then there was that one time in a black tie Hollywood gala beside a mechanical dragon and a number of genre grandmasters.
Each of the stories in this volume evoked certain themes and emotions that can sometimes be approximated with music. The below video is the editor’s best interpretation of the feelings and themes that this author’s story evoked. Please note that this is only the editor’s interpretation. The author did not know this portion of the blog post existed until the editor published it.
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