Jeff Strand is always a delight to speak with. I love his wit and I’m always giggling. He is a brilliant writer who always has me spellbound when I’m reading his latest novel. He has also been the host for the Bram Stoker Awards for the last 10 years running. His many friends and fans will all tell you what an amazing man and writer he is so if you havent read anything he has written shame on you! Get to it!
Please help me welcome Jeff Strand back to Roadie Notes……..
1. It’s been awhile since we talked what new books do you have out now? Latest release?
My latest young adult comedy, HOW YOU RUINED MY LIFE, is coming very, very soon as I type this but should be out by the time this interview is posted. Earlier this year I published the “home invasion with ghosts” horror novel SICK HOUSE.
2. If you could pick any author alive or dead to have lunch with who would it be? Why?
Is the author still dead while we’re having lunch? Because my choice is Douglas Adams, but that doesn’t mean I want to have lunch with him if he’s deceased and untalkative. Assuming he’s come back to life and isn’t too annoyed about his demise, I’d want to have lunch with him because the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy books were a huge influence on my own writing and I think it would be fascinating to listen to him.
3. What is the strangest thing a fan has ever done?
Went around to all of my old hang-outs from when I attended Bowling Green State University. Took pictures of herself in front of them…dressed as me, with a wig, fake mustache/goatee, etc. (To clarify: this was for an online article, posted for public viewing, and not something she sent to me in creepy private messages.)
4. What is the one thing you dread to do when writing?
I hate writing synopses. Hate it. I hate writing them for books that don’t exist yet, and I hate writing them for books that I’ve already finished. Synopses suck.
5. Did you have imaginary friends growing up? Tell me about them
Nope. I had a vivid imagination but no imaginary friends.
6. Do you go to conventions? If not why?
I love conventions! I’m a regular at StokerCon and Necon, and I was a regular at the World Horror Convention before they stopped having ’em. This year I’m also going to Scares That Care, KillerCon, and Monsterpalooza. For me, they’re a lot of fun. For newer writers, they’re an invaluable way to make contacts; social media is awesome, but it doesn’t compare to hanging out with authors/editors/agents face-to-face.
7. How many times did you have to submit your first story before it was accepted?
Of course, that answer is completely misleading. I racked up hundreds of rejections before anything got accepted. But I was very prolific and tended to take things out of circulation pretty quickly, so no individual short story ever got rejected by more than a couple of markets.
8. Ever consider not writing? If so what made you continue?
Never. I don’t know what I’d do with my life!
9. Ever thought about writing in a different category?
Oh, yeah. I love writing horror, but I also love writing non-horror stuff like KUMQUAT. There are plenty of other genres I’d love to tackle. I’d write the hell out of an epic fantasy.
10. Any new additions to the family?
Nope. My cat Chaos has been with us for three years now.
11. What is coming up next for you?
My novella COLD DEAD HANDS will finally be out very soon, at least in e-book form. And then a very, very dark novel called BRING HER BACK.
12. Do you do release parties? Do you think they work?
They certainly don’t HURT, but I’ve rarely done them. I did one for PRESSURE because it was my first mass market release, and I did one for BLISTER because I wanted to do an event at the Wordier Than Thou bookstore in St. Petersburg, Florida. For the most part, I do a lot of promotion when I’ve got a new book but not an actual release party.
13. Do you have crazy stalker fans? Have you ever had one you wish would go away?
Considering the weird-ass stuff that I write, I have remarkably little in the way of crazy stalker fans.
14. Do you still have a “day job”? If so what do you do?
I did boring insurance stuff for eighteen years, but now I write full-time.
15. What is your process for writing? Do you have a voice in your head?
Yes, I “hear” the book as I’m writing it. My process involves a lot of revision as I go; I’m definitely NOT one of those writers who believes in just getting the first draft out and worrying about fixing it later. By the time I type “The End” the book is usually in 99.9% of its finished form, at least until the editor gets a hold of it.
16. Is there a book you want to make a sequel to you haven’t yet?
I’ve played around with sequel ideas for various books, and even started writing some of them, but it’s usually difficult for me to get truly excited about a follow-up. I do have an idea for a “companion piece” to DWELLER that would take place during the same timeframe, but I make absolutely no promises that it will ever happen. There will definitely be a fifth Andrew Mayhem novel and a WOLF HUNT 3, but I’m not sure there will be any other sequels.
You can connect with Jeff Strand here:
Some of Jeff Strand’s books: