Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in a home consisting of an abusively alcoholic father and a benignly passive mother. I prayed for things to change, but, they never did. My only escape was books and movies and I likened horror stories to my own life.
When did you first start writing?
When I was very young. I received an 'F' on a short story I wrote in second grade because it ended with the shining white knight getting his soul ripped out by the evil black knight. The teacher said that's not how the story should end. I thought, "oh, I'm sorry... here I thought I was the one writing this story."
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I am building my reputation as the Leonardo da Vinci of horror. I don't want to have to fight with editors because I am not writing the genre's "flavor of the week" or because my descriptions are "too graphic". Working as an independent publishing author allows me to stay as true as possible to my reasons for writing.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
Kindle, but I have a love affair with actual books. I prefer to have pages to actually turn, paper and binding to smell... nothing beats a real book.
What do you read for pleasure?
I am an avid bibliophile and read absolutely everything from ancient philosophy to the latest novels.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
1) The Complete Works of Edgar Allan Poe - The original master of the macabre, Poe's work is masterfully crafted suspense. 2) The Complete Works of H.P. Lovecraft - Strange beyond all belief and no other author has managed to inspire their own subgenre. 3) A Game of Thrones - George R.R. Martin's masterpiece (and all of the following books in the Song of Ice & Fire series) completely changed the way I look at characters and storytelling. 4) The Eyes of the Dragon - My first encounter with Stephen King in the seventh grade would introduce me to modern horror. 5) The Bible - No other book is more terrifying... either in its stories or in the carnage it spread throughout the world.
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
I network on Twitter and Facebook. My advice is be genuine, be yourself, and if people think you are an interesting person they will want to read what you write.
Describe your desk
How do you approach cover design?
I design all of my own covers and try to create an image that sums up the whole story in one memorable image that will haunt those that see it for days to come.
What's the story behind your latest book?
I am working on several projects. However, I am excited to have started working on a book titled "Disturbing Visions: Five Tales of Horror Accompanied by Art". It is a showcase of my diversity in the horror genre with stories in several subgenres of horror. Each tale is accompanied by a piece of art created by me.
What are you working on next?
I will be collaborating with my life partner Harley Durant on the first in a series of novellas set during the Victorian era... a time of strange medicine, attractions, and customs.
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