Getting personal with Craig Wallwork

Craig Wallwork lives in West Yorkshire, England. His short stories have appeared in many journals, magazines and anthologies in the UK and US. He is the author of the novels, The Sound of Loneliness, and the story collections, Quintessence of Dust, and Gory Hole.

 

 

1. How old were you when you first wrote your first story?

Too old. Probably about 30. The story was about my grandfather who died of dementia. It was picked up by Laura Hird, a Scottish writer moving in the same circle as Irvine Welsh. She gave me my first publishing break. No payment, and it was online only, but damn was I happy. I felt like I’d arrived and was soon to be a bestselling author. I’m 45 years old now. Fifteen years of having more rejections than acceptances. And I’m still waiting to write that bestseller. I don’t get disheartened much now if a story isn’t accepted. I just remind myself that William Saroyan received 7,000 rejection slips before landing his first short story. So I did better than him.

 

2. How many books have you written?

Eight and counting. Half have been published by indie presses. The other half are like children staring out of the window of some orphanage every time headlamps flash by. I’m sure they’ll land a home soon, but until then I’ll keep each fed and watered. But never after midnight. Oh, man. I never feed any after midnight.

 

3. Anything you won’t write about?

If you would have asked me that five years ago I would have said no. But time, and perhaps being a parent, has mellowed me. I’ve written some really terrible stories, not bad writing, just the subject matter was terrible. I’m sure they’ll come back to haunt me one day. Their my skeletons in the closet. My dirty family secret. The affair and misdemeanours. But I was a different writer back then. I’ve changed. Honestly, judge.

 

4. Tell me about you. Age (if you don’t mind answering), married, kids, do you have another job etc…

 

In five years I’ll be fifty. When I was at school, my grandparents were fifty. They had grey hair, no teeth, and had lived through a world war. I have all my own teeth. Don’t even have any fillings. Any grey I may have is limited to my face when the stubble grows. As for war; Syrian, Iraq, Afghanistan – maybe not as close to home to what happened in Europe, but nonetheless. I will say I’ve aged more since having kids. My oldest is ten this year. My youngest is five. Being a parent accelerates the ageing process. It’s like that scene in Interstellar when Mathew McConaughey and Anne Hathaway go to that planet for about twenty minutes but when they return back to the spaceship, twenty-three years has gone by. Being a parent is like that, and you’re the one on the spaceship where time moves slower compared to everyone else around you. I’ve had friends drop off presents when my first child was born, returned a month later, and tell me I looked like I’ve aged five years. It’s scary. But hey, I love them now they’re sleeping in.

 

5. What’s your favorite book you have written?

 

That’s like asking, which of your ex-partners did you like the most? I liked them all at one point, but you always love the one you’re with right now. So I would say it’s the novel I’m currently editing. I won’t mention the title, only because I’ve said it before in interviews that go back about three years. Yeah, that’s how long it’s taken me to polish that baby. Once it’s done, I’ll start something new, which I’m sure I’ll love more than any of my others. Basically, I have commitment issues.

 

6. Who or what inspired you to write?

I wanted to be a cartoonist but failed. Then I wanted to be a filmmaker and failed. I then attempted to be in a band, and I failed. Failure inspired me to write. And continues to do so.

 

7. What do you like to do for fun?

 

I enjoy grave robbing. Something about leaving the house late at night, sneaking into a cemetery with shovel in hand looking for a fresh grave. It keeps me fit too. Excavating six-feet of earth is a great workout. I’m thinking of releasing a fitness video: Tone and Bones, maybe. The bind is selling the bodies on the black market. People are so fussy. Does the body still have all its limbs? Is the skin attached? How many teeth does it have? Sheesh. And returns is just a nightmare. So I do that for fun. And I enjoy lying too.

 

8. Any traditions you do when you finish a book?

Berate myself for not writing a better book.

 

9. Where do you write? Quiet or music?

 

I write at home. Mostly in the bedroom, sometimes in the living room, but it depends if the kids have had sugar. Writing is a bit like going to the toilet; you really need your privacy, but sometimes that’s impossible when you’ve got kids. But I do prefer quiet when I can get it. I used to buy those ear protectors, you know, those little orange foam things that look like thimbles. I’d push them into my ears so all I could hear was my heartbeat and blood in my skull. Now I have attained the ability to write anywhere in the house, even downstairs while the kids are watching Colin’s Key make slime or eat ultra sour candy. I can write to Victorious, Sam and Cat, Mr Bean, Hotel Transylvania 2, Sister Vs Bro and Funnel Vision. But I still struggle when they watch Ed Sheeran videos.I walk out then.

10. Anything you would change about your writing?

I’m trying to make it more accessible. By that I mean, a lot of my old stuff had a literary edge. There was plot, but the language and structure was more important to me because that’s what I love reading. To this day, I get very giddy when an author performs alchemy and creates these perfectly formed similes or descriptions out of very little. That was my goal back then, to seduce the reader with words. Now I’m trying to find a balance by retaining some of that magic, while at the same time offsetting it with decent good old fashion storytelling. Yes, it’s taken me fifteen years to reach this epiphany, and I’m hoping the time I’m putting in will be appreciated. If not, I’m going to begin writing trashy erotica.

11. What is your dream? Famous writer?

 

If I’m being honest, I’d like to earn some money (any money) from writing so I can drop my hours at work. If I could go part-time and write for maybe, two days during the week, I’d be more than happy. That’s the dream. If that doesn’t come off, and please, no one hold your breath, I’d settle to see just one of my books in hardback, cloth bound, and in a library.

 

12. Where do you live?

A small village in West Yorkshire called, Ripponden. It has three pubs, a couple of restaurants, a tea room and convenience shop. It’s semi rural, lots of agriculture and livestock grazing the fields that back onto moorland. I used to live in a large town growing up. People shot each other, whereas here they shoot grouse and pheasant. Before moving here the only deer I saw was in Stand By Me, but the other day I was picking my daughter up from school, and as I was backing into the parking spot, I saw something brown flash past my rear window. I then heard a large clattering noise and saw a fawn hurtle itself at the school fence. It must have got lost and the car spooked it. The car park backs onto a few residential bungalows for retired folk. There were steps leading down to a house close to the fence the fawn had struck. When I looked toward the bungalow the fawn sprang out of a hedge, kicking and flailing around on its back. I wanted to try to stop it, to tell it I wouldn’t hurt it and to calm down, but it was manic, frenzied. Then it just stopped and went quiet. I ran to the school to speak with one of the staff to get the number of a local vet or rescue service. A few of us went back to make sure it was still there. It was. But it wasn’t breathing, and flies were resting in its open eye. The speed and power of hitting that fence could have broken its neck, but I honestly think its heart gave out. It was such a beautiful creature. It’s fur was the colour of autumn leaves and its legs were long and graceful. My daughter cried all the way home when she heard. She’s got heart that girl. I guess this place is quite wonderful, but even in paradise you can’t help but have your heart-broken once in a while.

 

13. Pets?

 

A goldfish only. We used to have a rabbit but it went suicidal on us. It began chewing wires and trying to crawl up the flue over the open fireplace. I just don’t think it liked us. We treated good. Fed it, gave it a nice hutch, but It would stare at us all with this one black eye like we’d murdered its family. My daughter began to think she’d awake in the night and see it there at the end of the bed, staring at her with that one black eye. It was called Fluffy, but after about three months it also went by, Psycho Rabbit, Weirdo Rabbit, Stupid Rabbit, What the Hell, Rabbit?! We eventually took it to a sanctuary to be re-homed. We felt a little like that family at the end of Poltergeist once it was all over, but instead of wheeling out a TV, we wheeled out a hutch.

 

14. What’s your favorite thing about writing?

 

I enjoy the process. I mean, I actually love creating worlds, people and all the problem solving and outlining, adding depth and shade and listening to how the characters talk and where they take the story. To me, writing is a kind of medicine, it’s the cure to something broken inside me. Without it I’d be sick.

 

15. What is coming next for you?

I’ve got a few stories coming out in anthologies this year and next. Right now I can only announce one called, Farewell Valencia, that’ll be in, Takes From the Lake vol 5, edited by Kenneth Cain and published by Crystal Lake Publishing in early November. The story was partly inspired by a real place in Sweden where euthanasia is legal. Around the same time I found out Terry Pratchett had been diagnosed with dementia there were a lot of documentaries the U.K. about people who wanted to end their life because they had no quality of life. These were people who were paraplegic, terminal, or were awaiting a slow and agonising death. One documentary featured this place in Sweden. I never saw the documentary but a friend told me about it the next day. In my mind I’m seeing this place as a plush hotel with Egyptian cotton sheets, Tempur pillows, turndown service, free porn, concierge, fine dining, the lot. I was never so wrong. It was described more as an industrial unit on a Business Park. Okay, low overheads, I get it. But surely it’s nice inside and the end is peaceful, right? Wrong again. You get a bed and a cup of poison. It sounded horrific. There was no dignity. No afternoon massage and favourite meal. No quick game of tennis followed by a gin and tonic on the veranda. You got poisoned and you died in agony. This felt wrong to me. It’s bad enough these people had reached a point in their lives where dying was the preferred option. So I set about writing a story where a hotel similar to the one I envisaged existed. Someplace nice. At least on the surface. Farewell Valencia is essentially about an euthanasia clinic, and because the subject is so heavy, I wanted to make it quirky, like the Shining seen through the eyes of Wes Anderson. But there’s a twist, which I won’t go into. You’ll have to read it to find out. I think people will like it. It’s dark, sad, with a little Gallows humour thrown in. It should fit well in the anthology. It’s already got some great voices in there; Tim Waggoner, Gemma Files, Lucy A. Snyder, Gene O’Neill, Stephanie M. Wytovich, Allison Pang, Paul Michael Anderson, Bruce Boston, Andi Rawson, Samuel Marzioli, Joanna Parypinski, Lane Waldman, Peter Mark May, Meghan Arcuri, Jason Sizemore, Robert Stahl, Marge Simon, Laura Blackwell, Lucy Taylor, Jonah Buck, Cory Cone, and Michelle Ann King.

 

16. Where do you get your ideas?

Keep with me on this. There’s a magic trick where a street magician fans out a deck of cards and asks someone to choose one. They do, and they show it the camera. Queen of hearts, say. Then the magician asks the card be put back in the deck, and then in a display of madness they throw all the cards at the side of a building. One card sticks to the window. Just one. And yep, when he peels it off, it’s the queen of hearts. I don’t know how it’s done and I don’t ever want to know. It’s a great trick and to understand the trick would dilute the magic. That’s the same with ideas; I don’t know how they work, or where they come from, and I don’t ever want to know, because I fear once I discover the secret it won’t be as magical. Magic is great writing.

 

 

 

You can connect with Craig Wallwork here: 

 

My Amazon pages for the UK and US:

UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Craig-Wallwork/e/B003VDNVCC

US: https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/s/ref=is_s?n=133140011&k=craig+wallwork+

A free ebook copy of Quintessence of Dust, a short story collection by me:

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/147029

And finally, Crystal Lake Publishing:

http://www.crystallakepub.com

 

Some of Craig Wallwork’s books: 

 

 

 

Getting personal with Tony Tremblay

Tony Tremblay is the writer of numerous short stories that have been published in various horror anthologies, horror magazines, and webzines under his pen name, T T Zuma. Tremblay has also worked as a reviewer of horror fiction for Cemetery Dance Magazine and Horror World. In addition to his print work, Tremblay is the host of That Taco Society Presents, a cable T. V. show (also available on You Tube) that features discussions on horror as well as guest interviews with horror authors.

 

Please welcome Tony Tremblay to Roadie Notes……………

 

 

1. How old were you when you first wrote your first story?

My first story? I think I was around ten years old. It was called, Spiders Ate My Face. I guess the title says it all. Unfortunately, its reception was not all that welcomed in my family, and it has been lost to history. I wrote my first published story when I was 52 years old. After the terrible reviews of Spiders Ate My Face, it took me 42 years to gain enough confidence to write again.

 

 

2. How many books have you written?

I’ve published two full-length books, The Seeds of Nightmares, and The Moore House. There is also a long novella I wrote called Steel, which was published two years ago.

I do have what’s called a trunk novel stored away because I’m not happy with it, but I do plan on revisiting it as soon as I’ve finished the novel I am working on now. I will have another short story collection out in the start of 2019 with Crossroad Press, and a new novella out with John McIlveen’s Haverhill House Publishing sometime in 2019.

 

 

3. Anything you won’t write about?

Vampires, werewolves, most tropes really. To be honest with you, I’m not sure I could add anything to those subjects that hasn’t been done already. Having said that, I did write two zombie themed short stories, but both had twists that I thought brought something different to the trope.

I also tend to avoid detailed sex scenes in my stories and novels. When reading horror tales, I tend to find them unimaginative  and often boring. I usually skim through them or jump down a few paragraphs or pages until it’s over. Talking to other readers, I know I’m not alone in my disinterest. That doesn’t mean I avoid sex in my work. I prefer to leave enough description so the reader can use their imaginations when reading the scene. There are horror authors that can pulloff explicit sex scenes really well, and they can be erotic as hell. Graham Masterton and Ray Garton are two good examples of authors that can jumpstart hormones into drive.

 

 

4. Tell me about you. Age (if you don’t mind answering), married, kids, do you have another job etc…


I do have a full-time job, but I plan on retiring from it on March 1
st. I’ve spent 32 years there, commuting 90 minutes each way. It’s time for me to kick back and enjoy my life, my family, and my friends. Let’s see, I want to get this right…I’ve been married to the same woman for over 40 years (I think that covers me), and we have one son and one daughter. I also have grandkids popping out all over the place, which gives me further incentive to retire.

 

5. What’s your favorite book you have written?

My published books are so different from each other, it would be hard to pick one over the other. The Seeds of Nightmares is more literary than not, and occasionally when I have to revisit those stories for a reading, I can’t believe I wrote them. For most of those stories, I was searching for my voice so I experimented with narration and tone. I looked to my horror author hero’s for inspiration. When I read them now, I can see which author influenced me at the time. I am proud of each of those stories. The reviews, the charting, and the feedback I continue to receive from The Seeds of Nightmares is affirming as hell.

With Steel, I wanted to write something that bridged the gap between literary and action oriented fiction. I was pleased with the results, but the lack of reader feedback had me questioning whether I had succeeded.

The Moore House was my attempt to go balls-out on a fast-paced, page-turning novel. I wanted to write a story that shot out of the gate and kept readers glued to the page throughout the story. I kept exposition to a minimum, removed all tangents to the plot, and gave the characters depth without over sentimentalizing them. I wanted the prose to be lean and the tension constant. My publisher, John McIlveen approved, but he had one suggestion, which I followed on the subsequent re-writes. His advice? Go all the way—make it scarier wherever I could. His advice proved to be spot on, and I admit to having a ton of fun reaching into places I had never gone to before. The feedback on The Moore House has been phenomenal, and it appears that I’ve succeeded in my goals for the book.

After all that, I’ll go with convention and say that the last book I have written is my favorite, which would be The Moore House.


6. Who or what inspired you to write?

I’ve wanted to write since I was a young boy, but I think it was Stephen King’s work that pushed me to get serious about it.

 

 

7. What do you like to do for fun?

When I see strangers on the street, I walk up to them and ask them if they know where Black Brook Road is. When they say no, I give them directions to it.

 

 

8. Any traditions you do when you finish a book?

I’ll pour myself a nice glass of good scotch, which may or may not be followed by dancingnaked in my den while blasting Neil Young out of the speakers. My wife wishes I would quit writing whenever this happens.

 

9. Where do you write? Quiet or music?

As mentioned, I have a den and I do all of my writing there. It has to be absolutely quiet, no music, and no background noise.

 

 

10. What is your dream? Famous writer?

My dream is to retire, and I’m almost there. I don’t aspire to be a famous writer, but I’d be happy if I am recognized in a book store though.

 

 

11. Where do you live?

I live in Goffstown, N.H.  My hometown is featured in many of my stories, and The Moore House is set in Goffstown.

 

 

12. Pets?

We have a cat, and I hope to get a dog once I retire.

 

 

13. Where do you get your ideas?

Soul travel. At night when I sleep, I astral project into people’s dreams. If they are having a nightmare, it’s a gold mine.

14. Anything else you got going on you want to share?

Yes, thank you. Along with Scott Goudsward and John McIlveen, we are putting together a very informal convention for horror/genre authors and fans in Manchester, N.H. on Sept. 15th. It’s called NoCon, and I’ll leave the link here in case people are curious about it: http://wearenocon.com/ .

 

 

 

Thanks for the interview, Rebecca! It was a lot of fun! If your readers want to learn more about me they can head over to my website at http://www.tonytremblayauthor.com/ 

 

Some Of Tony Tremblay’s books:

 

 

 

 

 

Getting personal with Stanley Wiater

 

 

One of my most interesting interviews to date has to be Stanley Wiater. This man has interviewed everyone I have always wanted to meet and then some. He got to sit in the same room with them and pick their brains. I can’t even imagine. I would faint. I met him on a pod cast where I did book reviews and I can say that he is the most down to earth and kindest person I have had the pleasure to meet. He is smart and funny and gives great advice. I learned a lot by talking to him and how to do better interviews. Normally I send the questions to the author and they fill them out and send them back to me. However I had the honor of a phone call for this one. It was an honor and pleasure to be able to speak with him and pick his brain a little. The responses for this interview are paraphrased from the notes I took from our conversation. So if there are errors the fault lies totally in my lap. Thank you for giving me the incredible opportunity to interview you and for being patient with me.

 

Please welcome Stanley Wiater to Roadie Notes………

 

1.  How many books have you written?

At least 30+ and essays, countless reviews and interviews. You can find the links to them here

http://www.isfdb.org/cgi-bin/ea.cgi?842
2. You have a tag line. Tell me what it is please?

“Are you a Dark Dreamer?”
This came from the Dark Dreamers series
3. Tell me about you. Age (if you don’t mind answering), do you have another job etc…

I’m 65 Writing is my job.

4. What kind of awards have you received?

He has won the coveted Bram Stoker Award three times, and been nominated for the International Horror Guild, Hugo, Rondo, Eisner, Harvey, Locus, and Readercon awards, among other nominations.
5. Who or what inspired you to write?

I’m a long time friend of Stephen King and have written books and interviews about him as well as so many others. But Edgar Allen Poe and Ray Bradbury were both major influences.
6.  What else in the writing world have you done?

I have taught workshops at the University of Massachusetts about writing and the business of writing. I have also edited many books and stories. Pretty much everything.
7. You have a YouTube channel.

Yes, there are some interviews on there. You can follow this link https://www.youtube.com/user/gorgo3
8. What is your dream? Famous writer?

He told me he has lived his dream. He has interviewed the best of the best in the Horror industry. He is also the man behind Dark Dreamers a very popular show running 26 episode series. They are available on dvd and some are on YouTube.
9. Where do you live?

Massachusetts
10. What’s your favorite thing about interviews?

Getting to meet the people and sit down and talk to them. He has interviewed more major horror and suspense authors, filmmakers, actors, and artists than any other journalist, living or undead.

11.  Where do you get your ideas?

They come from everywhere.

 

 

 

You can connect with Stanley Wiater here: 

http://www.stanley-wiater.com/

https://www.amazon.com/Stanley-Wiater/e/B0055J3U62

https://www.facebook.com/shadowindinc/

 

 

 

Some of Stanley Wiater’s books: 

 

Getting personal with David Court

David Court is a short story author and novelist, whose works have appeared in over a dozen venues including Tales to Terrify, Strangely Funny, Fears Accomplice and The Voices Within. Whilst primarily a horror writer, he also writes science fiction, poetry and satire.

His writing style has been described as “Darkly cynical” and “Quirky and highly readable” and David can’t bring himself to disagree with either of those statements.

Growing up in the UK in the eighties, David’s earliest influences were the books of Stephen King and Clive Barker, and the films of John Carpenter and George Romero. The first wave of Video Nasties may also have had a profound effect on his psyche.

As well as being a proud VIP writer for Stitched Smile Publications, David works as a Software Developer and lives in Coventry with his wife, three cats and an ever-growing beard. David’s wife once asked him if he’d write about how great she was. David replied that he would, because he specialized in short fiction. Despite that, they are still married.

 

1. How old were you when you first wrote your first story?

 

I’ve been writing for as long as I can remember, but the first time I remember ever enjoying writing something which was liked was back at secondary school. We were assigned to write a story with the title  “The summer I met…” where the tale had to be about an encounter with a fictional character. We were told it had to be at least six pages long but my story – a veritable saga in which I had adventures with Gizmo the Mogwai from Gremlins – took up most of a notepad, easily ten times the required length. The teacher loved it, and I remember that experience fondly; having created something from scratch that somebody else really enjoyed. That’s all I’m doing still, to a fashion.

 

2. How many books have you written?

 

As well as having a number of stories dotted about in various publisher’s anthologies, I’ve got two short story anthologies currently out in the wild – The Shadow Cast by the World and Forever and Ever, Armageddon.  However, I’ve recently finished a full length sci-fi novel called Recreant that I’m trying to find an appropriate home for.

 

3. Anything you won’t write about?

 

Once upon a time I would have said sex, but – as an experiment to prove I could, more than anything – I wrote an erotic horror piece. One thing I won’t touch is extreme horror – much as I enjoy reading it (and there are some damn fine writers in that particular sub-genre), I don’t think it’s anything I could ever write myself.

 

4. Tell me about you. Age (if you don’t mind answering), married, kids, do you have another job etc…

 

I’m about to turn 47, and am married to the lovely (and supportive) Tara. My main job is in computing – I’ve been working in the software industry for the past quarter of a century. (Wow. Putting it like that makes me feel really old).

 

5. What’s your favorite book you have written?

 

I’m really pleased with Recreant, my new sci-fi novel. It’s a world I’d been thinking about and fleshing out for nigh on a decade, so it was great to put some of these ideas down onto paper. I’ve tried to avoid – or play around with – a lot of the typical clichés in science fiction, and I think it’s a really great piece of work that I’m really proud of.

 

6. Who or what inspired you to write?

 

My job is pretty mundane and there isn’t a great deal of flexibility for exercising any creativity – not as much as I’d like, anyhow. Writing is a means of flexing my creative muscles and keeping me sane, I think. I have to exorcise these thoughts somehow!

 

7. What do you like to do for fun?

I used to role-play heavily as a teenager – which is what I did a lot of my writing for – and that’s progressed into a love of board games as I’ve grown older. I’m also somewhat of a film buff.  Just so it doesn’t look like I spend the entirety of my life indoors, I’m a keen traveler as well.  I love going on holiday to new places.

 

8. Any traditions you do when you finish a book?

 

Drink heavily. It’s a tradition I stick to when writing the book in the first place as well. And beforehand.

 

9. Where do you write? Quiet or music?

 

I have a spare bedroom which tends to be used to store all the crap in the house which is laughably referred to as the “study”. I can’t write in silence, so tend to listen to Spotify through headphones whilst I work, but nothing with lyrics in, or I end up getting distracted. I tend to listen to film soundtracks or instrumental pieces, and I’m sad enough to have a number of playlists set up to match the kind of stuff I’m writing – horror, sci-fi, action sequences, that sort of thing.

 

10. Anything you would change about your writing?

 

I am an absolutely terrible editor of my own stuff. I will literally not spot some errors even if I pour over the manuscript a dozen times with an electronic microscope. Some of the errors I make are honestly embarrassing. Thankfully, I’ve got a great editor who is very, very patient.  I’m way too keen on a tendency of “Yeah, that’s finished” and throwing it out there, without giving it the loving final touches and tweaking the work needs.

 

11. What is your dream? Famous writer?

 

Much as I love my job, I’d love to be able to give it all up to write for a living – that’s my lofty ultimate ambition. I don’t want to be rich, but it’d be nice just to make enough from the writing that I could make a full-time career out of it.

 

12. Where do you live?

 

I live in Coventry in the UK, which is slap bang in the middle of the country in the Midlands. Which is a damn shame, because I really like the seaside.

 

13. Pets?

 

I have three cats. Aslan and Lilith, who are brother and sister, and Twist, who, despite being 11, is the youngest so will always be known as “the kitten. Aslan is my writing companion who insists on sprawling across my lap whenever I’m at the laptop.

 

14. What’s your favorite thing about writing?

 

Readers telling me they’ve enjoyed my stuff. We all crave acknowledgement really, don’t we? A good review will make my week.

 

15. What is coming next for you?

 

Stitched Smile are currently putting the finishing touches to my next anthology – Scenes of Mild Peril.  It’s my biggest collection yet, and I’m really excited about getting it out there so people can read it.  I’ve also got quite a body of new short stories behind me which will shortly be another for another anthology.  There’s a story in the new collection – Let It Cry – set in the time of the Black Plague in Ireland, and I enjoyed the research so much, I’m planning on writing a new historical horror novel set around some of the local ghost stories.  That’s very early days yet though, but I plan on making a start before the end of the year.

 

16. Where do you get your ideas?

 

A combination of strong cheese and exotic wines.

 

 

 

You can connect with David Court here: 

www.davidjcourt.co.uk.  

Twitter @FoldsFive

https://www.facebook.com/DavidJCourt.

 

 

Some of David Court’s books: 

 

 

Getting personal with Brian Scutt

Brian Scutt is a Navy veteran who spent five years on a Ohio Class nuclear submarine before returning to the civilian life. Now he is a family man, author and graphic artist living in the Adirondack foothills. He has published short stories and a critically acclaimed novella. His current projects are adapting the novella into a screenplay, and working on a new novel.

 

Please welcome Brian Scutt to Roadie Notes………

 

 

1. How old were you when you first wrote your first story?
Like most people I wrote a few short stories as a child, I was published in one literary journal for children. I think I was twelve. I didn’t try again until 2016, at 36 when I wrote a short story for a class. It was suggested to me to self publish the story, which I did on Amazon. Despite being super short, only eight pages, it received enough positive reviews to inspire me to give it a go at this thing.
2. How many books have you written?
So far only one novella that is self published, Korean Road
3. Anything you won’t write about?
I’ll get back to you when I find it….

 

4. Tell me about you. Age (if you don’t mind answering), married, kids, do you have another job etc…
I’m 37 and have been married to the wonderful Sarah Scutt for fourteen years. We have 4 children. Currently I am writing full-time and my wife and I also run a graphic design business focusing mainly on book cover design and advertising material for other authors.

5. What’s your favorite book you have written?
The only one I have under my belt, Korean Road!

 

6. Who or what inspired you to write?
I was in college for computer science and took a required class on writing. During the class I realized that people enjoyed what I wrote and the professor took a special interest in my work. It had a major impact on me deciding to move forward and take it seriously.
7. What do you like to do for fun?
Write? Or do you mean other than that? Well, I am a die-hard Buffalo Bills fan. Absolutely nothing gets in the way of a Bills game!
8. Any traditions you do when you finish a book?
Not yet. I think when I finished KR I had a glass of Cognac.
9. Where do you write? Quiet or music?
My bedroom is the size of a small apartment. I have a dual monitor desk, love seat,

 

10. Anything you would change about your writing?
I’m still so green at this that I probably couldn’t pinpoint any one thing. So for me continual growth in my craft is the most important. I devour other writers work just to learn what to do and not do to make the worlds I create come alive for the reader.

 

11. What is your dream? Famous writer?
Fame would be nice, but honestly, just to have people enjoy my work. Being able to support my family with my writing wouldn’t be so bad either!
12. Where do you live?
I live in a small town in New York. It’s in the Tug Hill region and we get all of the seasons. Each in stark contrast to the last. It’s either in the nineties and humid, or six feet of snow touched down in the matter of hours!

 

13. Pets?
We have one dog, a Shar-Pei mix, a crazy cat, and six chickens that never want to stay in their coup or run.
14. What’s your favorite thing about writing?
Discovery. Having the small nugget of a story that slowly begins to grow into something substantial.

 

15. What is coming next for you?
There are so many projects on the table and in the works right now. I was honored with an invitation to write a short story for the upcoming Jack Ketchum memorial anthology that should be coming out this fall. My novella Korean Road is being adapted into a screenplay by a talented screen writer out of LA, Richard Older. Korean Road is also getting further treatment in the form of an expanded novelized version that is in the works. I have a new novel being worked on called Wendigo which will be my take on the “zombie genre”, but with a heavy Native American flair. Also be on the lookout for a co-authored short story in Brandon Scott’s collection coming out at the end of the summer called Night Voices!
16. Where do you get your ideas?
Mostly eavesdropping! The idea for Korean Road came from drinking coffee at a local dinner. An elder gentlemen with a Korean War veteran cap came in and told all the other locals in the place how he was going to hit the road and see his son for the first time in years. Korean Road was born.

 

You can connect with Brian Scutt here: 

 

@brianscutt

https://www.instagram.com/brscutt/

writingscutt@gmail.com

https://amzn.to/2OdVHzo

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16693505.Brian_Scutt

https://www.facebook.com/coversWritingScutt/

http://www.brianscutt.com

 

 

 

You can pick up Brian Scutt’s Novella here:

Getting personal with Kenneth W. Cain

Kenneth W. Cain first got the itch for storytelling during his formative years in the suburbs of Chicago, where he got to listen to his grandfather spin tales by the glow of a barrel fire. But it was a reading of Baba Yaga that grew his desire for dark fiction. Shows like The Twilight Zone, The Outer Limits, Alfred Hitchcock Presents, and One Step Beyond furthered that sense of wonder for the unknown, and he’s been writing ever since.

Cain is the author of The Saga of I trilogy, United States of the Dead, the short story collections These Old Tales and Fresh Cut Tales, and his latest Embers: A Collection of Dark Fiction. Writing, reading, fine art, graphic design, and Cardinals baseball are but a few of his passions. Cain now resides in Chester County, Pennsylvania with his wife and two children.

 

1. How old were you when you wrote your first story?

Five or six, I believe. It was an awful rendition of the whole Baba Yaga thing.

 

2. How many books have you written?

Written or published? Written, I would say, so far: 6 novels, 5 novellas, 4 collections of short stories, and maybe a hundred stories that aren’t in those books that will likely end up in other collections. As well as a bunch of poetry, a lot of which is in a themed collection, most of which is still unpublished. The most recent releases will be a novella titled A Season in Hell (due out September 7th) and my next collection, Darker Days (due out December 7th).

 

3. Anything you won’t write about?

No, I don’t believe in taboos. There are stories in every taboo. They say not to kill the dog, but there’s a story there as well. It’s been done, too. I have to tell the story I have to tell. If it’s in me, it’s going to get out, like it or not.

 

4. Tell me about you. Age (if you don’t mind answering), married, kids, do you have another job etc…

I’m 48, married to a wonderful woman with two kids. I write pretty much full-time, other than keeping up chores around the house and coaching my son’s baseball teams.

 

5. What’s your favorite book you have written?

It has to be A Season in Hell. This short book tackles many modern issues, things that matter to me. It’s hard-hitting, and a love story for the game of baseball.

 

6. Who or what inspired you to write?

If I had to put he onus on just one person, it would have to be my mom. She loved horror, and growing up, I saw several movies (The Omen, Psycho, etc). They fueled my passion, but so did discovering the stories in the various Writer’s Digest books my parents kept on their shelves. It’s there I discovered Poe. Or perhaps it was hearing that Baby Yaga story for the first time.

 

7. What do you like to do for fun?

Read. That’s fun for me. I also like to check out an original series now and then. Nothing that’s been rehashed or rebooted but something really original. Like Dark on Netflix. I also like gardening, fishing, coaching baseball, trying to play my guitars, drawing and painting, hanging with my family, and enjoying the beauty of this world.

 

8. Any traditions you do when you finish a book?​

Wine! A bottle of Merlot, something like Smoking Loon.

 

9. Where do you write? Quiet or music?

I have an office…now, with a desk and all, though it’s more like a dungeon to me. As for music, it varies. Sometimes it’s music, which can be anything from Pink Floyd to Metallica to Sinatra. Other times, I listen to baseball games or baseball chat. Then there are the podcasts I listen to, sometimes chat about the craft and other times stories. My brain is usually able to separate the two, so I can write a story and still hear what I’m listening and process it. Kind of weird. But there’s also times I need silence.

 

10. Anything you would change about your writing?

Well, I would have started much earlier for one. I don’t know why I started so late, but it often feels like it’s too late. And I’d be far more patient, not taking the first offer, honing my craft before I rushed out there. I likely wouldn’t have hurried to get so much out there.

 

11. What is your dream? Famous writer?

I’m living my dream. At least I think I am. I get to write a lot, read a lot, do all the things I enjoy. I married an awesome woman who is SO supportive of all my endeavors and two really bright children who are blossoming into great adults. And sometimes, once in a very great while, someone will leave a kind review or contact me or make a post about something I wrote, and it will touch my heart deeply. Who could ask for more?

 

12. Where do you live?

Chester County, Pennsylvania.

 

13. Pets?

I recently got rid of all my reef tanks, but I’ve had several over the years, as well as many, many birds. Right now, though, I have two dogs, a Catahoula leopard mix named Iggy and a Labradoodle named Kady. They’re both sweet, loving dogs.

 

14. What’s your favorite thing about writing?

Getting it all out of my head. It’s cathartic; helps me sort my thoughts and feelings in a way I can deal with them. I’m putting myself out there for my readers, getting naked with my feelings. Hopefully they get something from my stories that elicits a similar feeling.

 

15. What is coming next for you?

A young adult novella entitled Shadows in the Storm where Nita faces off with Shade, leader of the Shadow People. Though I still have to work on finding a publisher for the book.

 

16. Where do you get your ideas?

My inspiration typically starts with a seed from something I know quite well. For instance, with A Season in Hell (due out September 7th from Crystal Lake Publishing) I drew from my long career playing baseball, as well as coaching. The story is about a woman playing baseball in the minor leagues back in the nineties and what she must endure just to play the game she loves. For that story I took from my own personal experience, even down to the smallest details like taping up a torn muscle with duct tape just so I could play the next game.

 

There’s another element to the process, what I call the “what if” moment. You’ll see a lot of that in my shorter work. For instance, there’s this story in my collection Fresh Cut Tales entitled “Split Ends.” I was sitting at a pool while on vacation watching a mother furiously brush the knots out of her daughter’s hair and thinking about the “what if.” In this case, what came to mind was a disease, one the mother and daughter thought was very real, and it was but only mentally in this case. So that story is about the struggle of a mother not to succumb to that mental disease.

 

Additional info:

 

I have three books coming out this year (all three through Crystal Lake Publishing). Details for all three books follow

 

The first is a novella entitled A Season in Hell. Due out September 7th.


 

“Kenneth W. Cain takes timely social topics and explores them against the backdrop of America’s pastime. What begins as a baseball story quickly delves into something rich, deep, and dark.” – Mercedes M. Yardley, author of Pretty Little Dead Girls

 

Synopsis:

When Dillon Peterson is honored for his baseball career, he must face a ghost that has long haunted him. He is transported back through his memories to a single season in the nineties that broke his heart. That was the season he met Keisha Green, the first and only woman to play baseball in the minor leagues. He sees what she goes through, what she must endure just to play the game both of them love, and this struggle leads to their friendship. As matters escalate, Dillon finds himself regretting his role in it all, as well as his career in baseball.

 

“A Season in Hell is a gut-wrenching, heartbreaking story. You won’t soon forget Dillon or Keisha. Her struggle is as timely today as ever. A Season in Hell is also a love letter to baseball and how, despite everything, the game can still heal and bring people together who seemed impossibly far apart, and can do so through intimidating odds. A timeless story of true humanity.” —John Palisano, Vice President of the Horror Writers Association and Bram Stoker Award-Winning Author of Night of 1,000 Beasts

 

The second is Tales From The Lake Volume 5. Due out November 2nd.

 

Poetry:

“From the Mouths of Plague-Mongers” – Stephanie M. Wytovich

“Malign and Chronic Recreation” – Bruce Boston

“Final Passage” – Bruce Boston

 

Short stories:


“Always After Three” by Gemma Files

“In the Family” – Lucy A. Snyder


“Voices Like Barbed Wire” – Tim Waggoner


“The Flutter of Silent Wings” – Gene O’Neill


“Guardian” – Paul Michael Anderson


“Farewell Valencia” – Craig Wallwork


“A Dream Most Ancient and Alone” – Allison Pang


“The Monster Told Me To” – Stephanie M. Wytovich


“Dead Bodies Don’t Scream” – Michelle Ann King


“The Boy” – Cory Cone


“Starve a Fever” – Jonah Buck


“Umbilicus” – Lucy Taylor


“Nonpareil” – Laura Blackwell


“The Midland Hotel” – Marge Simon


“The Weeds and the Wildness Yet” – Robert Stahl


“The Color of Loss and Love”  – Jason Sizemore


“The Loudest Silence” – Meghan Arcuri


“The Followers” – Peter Mark May


“A Bathtub at the End of the World” – Lane Waldman


“Twelve by Noon” – Joanna Parypinski


“Hollow Skulls” – Samuel Marzioli


“Maggie” – Andi Rawson

 

The third is my fourth collection, Darker Days. Due out December 7th.


 

Darker Days, the latest collection of short stories by Kenneth W. Cain, delivers on its title’s promise. From the very first story readers are dragged into seemingly ordinary situations that serve as cover for dark secrets. Ranging from subtle horror to downright terror, from science fiction to weird fantasy, Cain demonstrates a breadth of styles that keeps you off-balance as you move from one story to the next. There is something for everyone in this collection–as long as you don’t want to sleep at night!” – JG Faherty, author of The Cure, Carnival of Fear, and The Burning Time.

 

Now that you’ve warmed by the embers, submerge in darker days.

 

The author of the short story collections These Old Tales, Fresh Cut Tales, and Embers presents Darker Days: A Collection of Dark Fiction. In his youth Cain developed a sense of wonderment owed in part to TV shows like The Twilight Zone, The Outer Limits, One Step Beyond andAlfred Hitchcock Presents. Now Cain seeks the same dark overtones in his writing.

 

There’s a little something for every reader within this collection. These 26 short speculative stories arise from a void, escaping shadows that ebb and weave through minds like worms, planting the larvae that live just under the skin, thriving upon fear. These are Cain’s darker days.

 

In this collection, Cain features stories from the Old West, of past lives and future days, the living and the dead, new and unique monsters as well as fresh takes on those of lore. Once more he tackles themes of loss and grief, and the afterlife, always exploring the greater unknown. In “The Sanguine Wars,” Cain takes us to a future where soldiers are made to endure the horrors of war. He explores the complexities of global warming and what lengths men and women alike sink to in “The Reassignment Project.” And, as often is the case, he ends on a lighter note, with “Lenny’s New Eyes” and “A Very Different Sort of Apocalypse.”

 

When the darkness comes, embrace it. Let it wrap you up in cold. Don’t worry, it’s not your time…yet.

 

INCLUDES THE FOLLOWING STORIES:

“A Ring For His Own”

“Heirloom”

“Rust Colored Rain”

“Prey”

“Passing Time”

“What Mama Needs”

“My Brother Bit Your Honor Roll Student”

“Outcasts: The Sick and Dying 1 – Henry Wentworth”

“The Sanguine Wars”

“The Hunted”

“Her Living Corals”

“Puppet Strings”

“The Trying of Master William”

“By The Crescent Moon”

“Mantid”

“The Underside of Time and Space”

“Outcasts: The Sick and Dying 2 – Gemma Nyle”

“The Griffon”

“Adaptable”

“When They Come”

“The Reassignment Project”

“Presage”

“One Hopeless Night by a Clan Fire”

“Lenny’s New Eyes”

“Outcasts: The Sick and Dying 3 – Anna Kilpatrick”

“A Very Different Sort of Apocalypse”

 

 

You can connect with Kenneth W. Cain here:

 

Website: https://kennethwcain.com

 

Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorKennethWCain/

 

Twitter: https://twitter.com/KennethWCain

 

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kennethwcain/

 

Amazon author page: https://www.amazon.com/Kenneth-W.-Cain/e/B004HHALF6/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1

 

 

Some of Kenneth W. Cain’s books:

 

 

 

Getting personal with Chris Miller

Chris Miller is a new author. He has a self published book called A Murder of Saints. It is an amazing read and one that you don’t want to pass up. I have had the honor of reading his next novel that he is working on and trust me when I say it is even better than the first one. He has an awesome sense of humor that you will love.  He is married and has 3 Adorable kids that are the sparkle in his eye. Chris also is a very good guitar player and singer. He even has a YouTube channel. Look him up! Make sure that you get to know him and read his book you won’t regret it!!!

 

Please welcome Chris Miller to Roadie Notes……………….

 

 

1. How old were you when you first wrote your first story?

—I was about 10 or so. I thought I was going to write some new Narnia books, though I’d only read the first one at the time. I had Mr. Tumnus in it and everything. It was terrible, and I didn’t get very far, but I found I really liked telling stories.

 

 

2. How many books have you written?

—Only one published at the moment, but I’ve got a total of three novels completed in various drafts, two novellas, and an epic-length book almost finished. Plus a short-story or two.

 

 

3. Anything you won’t write about?

—Probably wouldn’t write anything about a world overrun by spiders. I’m not a romance writer either. Or Zombies. Unless I could stumble upon a super original way to do a Zombie story. But I doubt it.

 

 

4. Tell me about you. Age (if you don’t mind answering), married, kids, do you have another job etc…

—I’m 35 years old, happily married to a gorgeous and sexy woman, three children, and I work at my family owned water-well company, C. Miller Drilling as Service Superintendent, but I also oversee other departments. Just whatever’s needed.

 

 

5. What’s your favorite book you have written?

—Probably The Damned Place, which is the epic-length one that’s still unfinished. It’s a lot of fun, and it’s the only time I’ve written about kids, which I’ve found great.

 

 

6. Who or what inspired you to write?

—Oh, lots of people and things inspire me. Stephen King is my biggest inspiration. Favorite author, and I’ve read most of his work. I’m also a big fan of Robert McCammon, Dean Koontz, Jack Ketchum, Clive Barker, Lee Child, Michael Connelly, and a hundred others. Inspiration comes from all over the place, be it the news, interactions with people, ect. You just have to keep your eyes open and keep the creative engine running. The ideas will just come.

 

 

7. What do you like to do for fun?

—I enjoy going to the movies, a nice dinner out—especially sushi—seeing a live band, playing guitar. But writing is actually a lot of fun for me as well.

 

 

8. Any traditions you do when you finish a book?

—Aside from grinning widely and pouring a gin and soda, not much. I geek all over myself and text a few friends to tell them like an excited school-girl.​

 

9. Where do you write? Quiet or music?

—two main places I write are at my desk in the front living room of my house, or at my desk at work when things aren’t busy (which is rare). I can’t work to music. There can be background noise, like kids playing in the other room or something, but I just can’t focus on the writing with music. Probably because I’m a musician myself, I’ll start focusing on the lyrics and writing them in my WIP or I’ll start air-guitaring to a great riff. No, quiet is best for me.

 

 

10. Anything you would change about your writing?

—I’d like to be a little more literary if I could. Like the level of the writing in something like The Shining. That book isn’t just a ghost story or a fun novel, it’s genuine literature. I’d like to rise to that level one day. But the fast and fun stuff is also absolutely great to write.

 

 

11. What is your dream? Famous writer?

—My dream is to be able to make a comfortable living doing what I love: writing. I wouldn’t mind being a ‘famous writer’ persay, but I also don’t want to be someone who’s hassled on the streets or at the grocery store. “Hey, you’re that famous writer!” But that’s the good thing about authors, even famous ones (with a few exceptions), most people don’t have a clue what we look like. They may love our words, but our mugs are irrelevant. Which is nice.

 

 

12. Where do you live?

—Little town in East Texas called Winnsboro. Grew up near there, and ended up settling there as an adult.

 

 

13. Pets?

—We have two dogs, a French Bulldog named Socrates (Socs) and a Yorkie named Shoe Shoe Fontana.

 

 

14. What’s your favorite thing about writing?

—The escape of it all. It’s like inter-dimensional travel. We go into another universe and get to explore there, see what it’s like, how different or similar it is to our own world. And on top of exploring it, we get to build it…and sometimes destroy.

 

 

15. What is coming next for you?

—I just finished up a novel and a short-story, so I’m working on polishing those, but next I’ll probably go back to The Damned Place and finish it. I’ve been working on it for two years now, and it’s so close to done (first draft of course) and I’m ready to cross the finish line with that one. Then I need to figure out if we can sell it as a single book or if it needs to be two…I’m telling you, when I say epic-length, I mean it. It’s huge.

 

 

16. Where do you get your ideas?

—You name it. Conversations with friends, with my wife, my kids. News. Sometimes I’ll be inspired by someone else’s work. Like the inspiration for The Damned Place, I had just reread ‘IT’ by Stephen King, and also had recently watched the first season of Stranger Things on Netflix. Those two things had my head swirling and this idea was birthed from them, with nods to both, but also something uniquely its own. Those are sometimes my favorite forms of inspiration.

 

 

You can connect with Chris Miller here: 

facebook.com/chrismiller1383

twitter.com/CMWordslinger

Instagram.com/cmwordslinger

 

You can pick up Chris Miller’s book here: