Indie author Steve Stred does dark horror

Interview with indie author Steve Stred. 

Being an indie author, I love meeting other indie authors, I mean, why wouldn’t I?

I’d like to introduce you to a horror writer, Steve Stred. If you’re wondering, yes, I have read some of his work, specifically The 12 Hymns of Misery. My first thought was, I would not want to see what his nightmares are like because this dude’s stories are dark.

Anyway, Steve is a friendly guy and was kind enough to do an interview. Here’s a little about Steve.

Bio

Steve Stred is an up-and-coming dark horror author. He is the author of the novel Invisible, the novellas Wagon Buddy, Yuri, and Jane: the 816 Chronicles, and two collections of short stories; Frostbitten: 12 Hymns of Misery, and Left Hand Path: 13 More Tales of Black Magick.

Steve also has a number of works on the go and enjoys all things horror, occult, supernatural, and paranormal.

He is based in Edmonton, AB, Canada and lives with his wife, son, and dog OJ.

Interview 

1. Do you ever write naked? (I like to break the ice with an off the wall question.)
– Sadly no, but that’s because I do all of my writing at work and I think they would
frown at me if I was nude every lunch hour writing!

2. What places or activities inspire you the most?
– The more I write the more I find I am inspired by two things; where I grew up and
nature/the woods. I have a number of short stories that specifically reference the
small town I grew up in, and a big part of growing up where I grew up was the
proximity to the woods behind us. My childhood home is at the base of a mountain
with the woods super close. We used to run and play unsupervised through the backyard
all the time and that included a good section of the woods. There was a massive
flat rock in the middle of the backyard that we always used as a fort or a starting
point for our imaginary adventures.

3. Would your life story make an interesting book?
– I’m biased, but yes. And it already is a book! My novel Invisible is about 40%
autobiographical. I discuss some aspects of my life that were very hard to write
about. But I have done some cool stuff and think there are some who might find my
adventures neat.

4. What genre do you write? What is it about that genre that attracts you?
– I write dark, bleak horror fiction. Very rare that I have anything close to resembling
a happy ending. I have always been drawn towards darker stuff and horror in
particular, but I can’t fully tell you why. It’s just the best and what I love!

5. Does writing energize or exhaust you?
– Both actually. I find no greater joy than writing and creating. I write for me and for
me only. I love to develop a storyline, create dark characters and put them in horrible
situations. Saying that, I find it so amazing that people like what I release. I also find
writing exhausting because you have to constantly work on developing the story,
editing, writing, deleting, rewriting. I’m an indie author so I also have to look at
doing marketing, getting the cover work set up with my amazing cover guy Mason,
getting my drafts off to my street team for beta reading, re-editing, getting it sent off
to my editor and then packaging and releasing. It’s a boatload of work so it can be
exhausting.

6. What authors are you friends with and how do they help you become a better writer?
– Well, that’s a different beast in the new social media world. While I would consider a
number of these folk’s friends, I haven’t met any of them in person! Through email,
Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram, you are able to develop these amazing pseudo-friendships.
I don’t know how else to define them. Don’t get me wrong, I love our
interactions and hope to one day meet them, but right now we are fantastic online-only
friends! I would say my best online author pals are David Sodergren (author
of The Forgotten Island), JZ Foster (author of Witch Hunter, The Wicked Ones and
Mind Wreck), Justin M. Woodward (author of Tamer Animals, The Variant and
Candy), Andrew Cull (Author of Bones), Mason McDonald and Brian Bogart. They
all have made me a better author by putting out fantastic work, reading and critiquing
my work, and genuinely been fantastic humans to me. The list goes on from there
of amazing authors, and if I started naming more folks, I would end up forgetting
someone and I don’t want to do that. But that group there has been instrumental in
making me a better writer.

7. What books have you written?
– I have a few releases out now. I have my novel Invisible, my two short story
collections; Frostbitten: 12 Hymns of Misery and Left Hand Path: 13 More Tales of
Black Magick (this is currently in the final stages of being re-edited) and have three
novellas out; Wagon Buddy, YURI, and Jane: the 816 Chronicles. My collection of
dark poetry Dim the Sun comes out on December 1st, 2018.

8. How many of your characters are inspired by real people?
– Well as I mentioned before, my novel Invisible is partly autobiographical. So in
that story, a number of people are fairly factual, and I discuss a number of real-life
situations. For some folks, where either I couldn’t get a hold of them or decided to
just change their name, I would refer to them by a capital letter for their name. As
for my other works, I typically don’t base characters on people, but will frequently
use friend’s names as characters. They know it’s them when they read it and I always
thought that would be cool to have a character with your name from someone you
personally know.

9. What are you currently working on?
– A number of things. I’m pretty prolific at writing I guess you could say. I just
finished up a chapter for Don Gillette’s Community Experimental Novel idea, which
I think is fantastic. He invited 30 people to participate (some authors, some bloggers,
some reviewers) and each person contributes a chapter, in order. So I wrote chapter
3, after reading chapter 1 and 2. For my own work, I plan on having three full-length
novels out next year, one novella, my third batch of short stories, and hopefully,
fingers crossed, a collaboration novel with another author.

10. Do you read your book reviews? How do you take them?
– Oh 100% I read every one! I want to know what people think. If they hated it, fine,
fair enough. Not everyone will like everything out there. And if there is a constant
criticism towards something, then I can use it as a learning tool. That’s what I did
with the reviews for Left Hand Path. A lot of folks said the stories were great but the
editing was atrocious, so I had it re-edited. I don’t want to put out subpar stuff. I want
to release stuff people are excited about, that people pre-order. So reviews can help
build on that foundation. Look – I write dark, dark, bleak, awful stuff. People die,
stuff happens, and it’s not for everyone. So if someone reads it and says “1/5 stars.
The characters were great but the story was too dark.” Well, that’s a fantastic review,
but ultimately it wasn’t for them. I was an athlete for a number of years who was
constantly scrutinized and criticized so maybe it set me up well for reviews haha!

11. Do you hide any secrets in your books that only a few people will discover?                                                                                         – Kind of. I have a few interlocking stories and carry over characters throughout my
literary releases! Not really a secret, but if you’re not looking closely you may miss
them.

12. Do you have anything else to add?
– Yeah, I think the last few things I would like to mention is that the world of being an
indie author is incredibly hard. I am a very, very small fish in an ocean of releases.
So if you read something of mine (whether you loved it or hated it) please leave a
review. On Amazon, on Goodreads or on Bookbub. Just tell the world why you read it
and why you liked it or didn’t! Reviews matter and make a massive impact for us all!

Thank you so much for having me, Paige!

Thank you for your time and letting us learn a thing or two about you, Steve.  You’re a very interesting guy.

If you’d like to check out Steve’s books you can find them on http://www.stevestredauthor.wordpress.com

Dim the Sun – out December 1st, 2018

Interview with author Perry Lake

Imagine if you will, you’re deep into a horror story replete with ghouls, goblins and gore, and you begin to wonder who are these people? I mean, seriously? Who can think up all those creepy, goblinesque, highly imaginative worlds and characters?

So, I decided, of course, let’s interview one of these authors. Let’s see what he’s made of. As luck would have it, I know such a character, I mean writer.

Please welcome horror author Perry Lake.

Perry Lake is the author of THE LEGEND OF DRACULA, LEGEND OF FRANKENSTEIN, and GHOULS AMONGST US series.  More available at www.perrylakeproductions.com

 

Do you ever write naked?

I do all kinds of things naked.

 

Would your life story make an interesting book?

No.  I’m a boring guy.

 

What genre do you write?  What is it about that genre that attracts you?

Horror is my life.  From the age of five, when I saw my first horror film (Universal’s “House of Frankenstein”), I loved the classic monsters.  That love only continues to grow.  Halloween is my favorite holiday and I write horror, predominantly.  Via supernatural literature, authors can say things about the human condition that would be unacceptable or ignored in any other genre.

I’m not as horrifying as the characters I write about.  Really, I’m not.

 

Have you ever written yourself as a character in one of your books?

I would not make a very interesting character.  See the above answer about being boring.  But I suppose a bit of myself must enter my main characters.  My versions of Dracula, Victor Frankenstein, the Monster of Frankenstein, and Hugo Krantz are all very driven characters who let nothing stand in the way of their goals.  I’m like that with my writing and my hobbies.  Hugo is sarcastic and loves art and literature.  Edgar is slovenly and unashamed of it.

 

Does writing energize or exhaust you?

Writing definitely energizes me, especially when it’s going well.  Finishing a story leaves me with a feeling of euphoria, like sex.  Better than sex, actually.

If writing ever becomes a chore or drudgery, I will stop doing it.

 

What authors are you friends with and how do they help you become a better writer?

This is an excellent question.  I have found a handful of up and coming authors whose works I admire greatly and they feel much the same about mine.  Nuzo Onoh, “The Queen of African Horror” writes tales of witchcraft and hauntings set in her native Nigeria.  I love to learn about other cultures and I love great horror and Nuzo delivers both.  Our mutual friend, Eden Royce, sets her tales of horror in the Deep South, a locale that easily lends itself to horror.  She has great insights into that culture and mind set.  John Huber goes deeper into the mind of madness than any author I have ever read.  His books are filled with axe murderers and demons and torture.  His books have turned more than a few stomachs.  But like a car crash, you can’t look away.  I’d love to meet him some day but I’m not sure I’d like to sleep in the same house with him.

These three and a few others all went out of their way to say nice things about my books and to promote my work on Amazon, Twitter, and Facebook.  They’ve also given me good advice on my writing and my

 

What books have you written?

I have written ten books so far; seven of them are in print.  I have three books in my Legend of Dracula series (VAMPIRE WARS, BRIDES OF DRACULA, and DRACULA ARISEN) and four in the Frankenstein series (THE NIGHTMARE OF FRANKENSTEIN, MONSTER OF THE WORLD, MONSTER OF THE EAST, and FRANKENSTEIN VS. THE MARTIANS).  The first two books in my Ghouls Amongst Us series (GOBLINS & GHOULS and HUGO KRANTZ) are finished and should be published soon.  I also wrote a Sword & Sorcery book as a teenager that will hopefully never see publication.  Years ago, I wrote and illustrated the amateur comic books, CASSIOPEIA THE WITCH and RAWLINS, THE LAST TOUGH COP, and a few one-shots.  I’m now turning some of the best stories from those series into prose collections, and I have plans for more books.

 

How do you write?

I get more writing done at work than anywhere else.  The job gives me just enough exercise to get the blood pumping to my brain and out of an eight-hour shift, I have about four hours to do anything I want—so mostly I write.  Where I work, there’s no Internet access and no distractions.  Of course, I need to write more than those few hours, but that’s consistently the most productive time.  Plus, the double-dipping factor is cool.

 

Do you work to an outline or plot or do you prefer just seeing where an idea takes you?

Mostly I work from a plot or an outline.  Sometimes I find myself writing based on just a list of things that happen but that often leads to meandering prose that end up needing a ton of editing to get to the real story.  Curiously, some of my most exciting stories (and everyone agrees those are among the best stories I’ve written), were written in a fiery rush, where I just got a sudden idea and typed into the wee hours with hardly any idea where I was going.  But I’ve tried that other times and the story just trudged.  So for me, it’s best to have a roadmap most of the time.

 

What are you currently working on?

My next book is the second installment of my Ghouls Amongst Us series, entitled HUGO KRANTZ.  Continuing my tales of ghouls and goblins, I now introduce Hugo Krantz.  Hugo is an urbane ghoul, well-educated and well-mannered.  When he eats someone’s corpse he does so at a dining table with candlelight and a fine wine.  I call these horror stories, but most of them in this series are either adventures or humorous tales, albeit with the trappings of horror.

 

Do you hide any secrets in your books that only a few people will discover?

Yes.

 

How can readers discover more about you and your work?

Website:  www.perrylakeproductions.com

Blog:  https://www.perrylakeproductions.com/blog

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/perry.lake.33

Twitter: #LegendOfFrankenstein

Amazon Author Page:  https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=dp_byline_sr_ebooks_1?ie=UTF8&field-author=Perry+Lake&search-alias=digital-text&text=Perry+Lake&sort=relevancerank

Book Links (USA):

Vampire Wars:  http://www.amazon.com/Vampire-Wars-Perry-Lake-ebook/dp/B00IWTUK2O/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1452275255&sr=1-1

Brides of Dracula:  http://www.amazon.com/Brides-Dracula-Perry-Lake-ebook/dp/B00JHISKFS/ref=sr_1_4?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1452275255&sr=1-4

Dracula Arisen:  http://www.amazon.com/Dracula-Arisen-Perry-Lake-ebook/dp/B00KY0F4Y8/ref=sr_1_2?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1452275255&sr=1-2

The Nightmare of Frankenstein:  http://www.amazon.com/Nightmare-Frankenstein-Perry-Lake-ebook/dp/B010E8RBPO/ref=sr_1_3?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1452275255&sr=1-3

Thank you for your time Perry Lake, and giving us an insight into what horror authors are really like. You seem like such a normal guy – hehehehe.

 

 

Interview with author Linda Meilink

My guest today is author Linda Meilink, who is an award-winning writer, columnist, and journalist. She has been a busy woman, writing for national publications, as well as, being an editor for a newspaper in California.

This is my first author interview, so I will do my best to keep it interesting, after all, who wants to read a boring Q & A session right?

I came up with questions that I think are a little more than ordinary.

Thanks for doing this interview, Linda Meilink. You are the first author to test the salty, hot waters of my blog world.

Her first book is What Your Doctor Doesn’t Know About Fibromyalgia – Why Doctors Can’t or Won’t Treat Chronic Pain. It is about her struggles with Fibromyalgia and can help others experiencing the same challenges that come with chronic pain.

Currently, Linda is working on a fiction novel starring pirates (a 180 from her nonfiction.) Yours truly has read several pages and I love, love the protagonist! Linda has a gifted way of bringing her characters to life; each with his or her own distinct personality, they create a story that any adventurous spirit would want to be a part of. When she is ready, we will post an excerpt from this story.

Until then enjoy our interview.

Do you ever write naked? (This is my icebreaker question.) 

I don’t write naked, but I love to write in a large T-shirt with no underwear.

What places or activities inspire you the most?

My biggest inspiration is the company of other writers. We are a breed apart. I always feel at home with them. I also draw inspiration from reading the truly great writers: Chaucer, Jane Austen, John Donne, William Stafford. They have seen me through many a lonely night. My father was my original teacher. I like to say I grew up so poor I had only words to play with.

Do you have any secret talents? 

I do handwriting analysis. Most people don’t believe it, but I can, in almost all cases, take a stranger’s handwriting and give you a personality profile. Even my husband, a skeptic in all things, is a believer. I once decided not to hire someone whose handwriting showed he was depressed, deceitful and dishonest. My boss scoffed at me and convinced me to hire him. He turned out to be a molester who had done hard time. After that, my boss asked me to help assess handwriting of his job candidates.

Do you have a place you would like to visit to do research for a book?

I would like to go back to Europe. We went to London and Paris on our honeymoon, but it was mainly sightseeing. However, I am working on a historical novel and just the memories make it much easier to imagine. If I could spend a year in England… It is wonderful for research, but the smells, the weather patterns, language quirks and interactions with people who don’t share your background… Such a wonderful and pleasant learning experience. I am part English, and I believe they created the most incredible literature of any country. I cried at Westminster Abbey at the tombs of Chaucer and Austen, just to name a few who are buried there.

Have you ever written yourself as a character in one of your books?

My first (and so far only published) book was non-fiction, but I wrote sections from my point of view. In my fiction and poetry, I generally adopt a persona, which is part of me, I guess — often a part I don’t express. I am having great fun in my book with an old hag, Miranda. She is unwashed, uneducated, rude and promiscuous, everything I learned not to be. But she never worries and she is kind-hearted. She can do and say things I can’t. All my characters are little pieces of me.

When did you know you were a writer?

I knew I was an author when I first understood the concept that someone was writing the books I loved. I was about four years old. My feeling was reinforced by my father and my high school journalism teacher. College was where I came into my own, winning the undergraduate award in creative writing. In graduate school, I was one of the judges. I have often been surprised by my success since writing is something I do for myself. And as I said, my favorite people are writers.

Thank you, Linda, for sharing your stories with us.

If you are interested in reading her book on Fibromyalgia you can find her book here: http://amazon.com/Linda-Meilink/e/B003NUPK86