Getting personal with Duncan Ralston

Duncan is another of my author friends who is quickly rising up the ranks in the horror world. He has two books out that are both outstanding. I highly recommend both of them. If you haven’t read them please give him a look you will love him. He has quick wit and a sharp mind. I always enjoy speaking to him. So…..I present to you Duncan.

1. How old were you when you first wrote your first story? I was 15 when I wrote my first story for myself, that wasn’t for a school assignment. I’d just read Clive Barker’s Books of Blood. The story wasn’t very good–I can’t even remember what it was about–but it got me started, and I’ve been writing almost every day since in some form or another.

2. How many books have you written? I’ve got two books published (my debut collection, Gristle & Bone, and my novel, Salvage), and I’ve got three more are on the way very soon (including the extreme horror novella Woom for Matt Shaw Publications). I hope to have at least another three out by the end of the year.

3. Anything you won’t write about? I believe in not limiting myself. If it makes me squirm, all the better.

4. Tell me about you. Age (if you don’t mind answering), married, kids, do you have another job etc… I’m 39, double-income no kids (we’ve got a dog), and am presently “between jobs.”

5. What’s your favorite book you have written? Always the next one to come out. 😉

6. Who or what inspired you to write? Stephen King’s Night Shift and Clive Barker’s Books of Blood inspired me to start writing. Without those books I probably would still be trying to draw. The screenplay in King’s Nightmares & Dreamscapes and Quentin Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction convinced me to give up writing “prose” for scripts for years.

It wasn’t until I read King’s On Writing in 2006 that I decided to try writing short stories and novels again (although I wrote a couple of short stories after getting into Chuck Palahnuik). I still continued to write TV pilots (unproduced, as yet), but now my focus is mainly on books.

7. What do you like to do for fun? Go for walks (I like to look at houses) or hikes in the woods, watch movies, play video games, and of course, read.

8. And traditions you do when you finish a book? Publish it, or send it out for publication. I’ll likely have a drink, but I’m not limited to drinking after books. I’m not a cigarette and Dom Perignon guy yet.

9. Where do you write? Quiet or music? I write at my dining room table at the moment, in a desk chair–a step up from the couch in the living room, or my bed, where I used to write. Once the washer and dryer are out of the office, I’ll probably be doing most of my writing there. I used to write to music, but now I prefer quiet so I can listen to the demons in my head.

10. Anything you would change about your writing? I’m always trying to get better at it. Maybe that I could write a little faster in the first drafts? Right now I’m clocking an average of 425 words an hour. That’s okay, but I’d like to be able to write faster.

11. What is your dream? Famous writer? I’d just like to be able to do it for a living. I don’t need fame. Be nice if I could get a series produced, or a book optioned for a movie.

12. Where do you live? I live in Toronto.

13. Pets? A miniature schnauzer named Silvio, who is currently growling at me to go out for a walk.

14. What’s your favorite thing about writing? I love when all the pieces come together. I rarely write from an outline, so when things work out it’s a great feeling.

My newest novella, Every Part of the Animal, the first in a series of novellas about the dark side of love, should be out by the beginning of June. I’m also working on a top-secret project for The Sinister Horror Company that will most likely arrive in late-summer, early-fall.

Duncan, as always thank you for letting us get to know you better. I wish you much success!!

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