Interviews

To coincide with our competition giving away a free SIGNED copy of Her Infernal Name & Other Nightmares, we interviewed Robert P. Ottone to find out about his writing influences, motivations and more!

Check it out.

How did your interest in writing start? 

I’ve always been writing something in SOME form. I started as a little kid with comic books on sketchbooks of paper my mom used to make for me at her job, then in school, I wrote short stories, children’s books, etc.

What made you choose horror?

Horror, I find, is the most therapeutic of all genres. I think it’s really healthy to put one’s worries or fears or whatever on “paper” and work through them over the course of a narrative.

Her Infernal Name and Other Nightmares contains an array of themes and topics. Where do you draw your inspiration?

This particular collection came out of the everyday fears I harbor, some of which I continue to have, others, through writing, have been expelled into the world. I’ve always been interested in that weird intersection of ancient demonology, modern sensibility and the outcome of that, so, I played with ancient themes in a modern context for some of the stories in there.

What’s next on your agenda? Another anthology or a novel next?

I recently started the second draft of a YA science fiction-horror novel, which is the possible first in a trilogy. After that, I’m going to be starting my first full-length horror novel. I also have a bunch of stories coming out in some really exciting collections this year and next.

As a published author, what advice would you give to those just starting out?

Don’t be afraid to ask established authors questions. For example, I reached out to a bunch of writers I respect and admire, and they were incredibly gracious with their time and words so don’t think that because someone is a “big deal” that they are also unreasonable or whatever. The horror community, especially, I’ve found, is quite wonderful and diverse.

When you’re not writing what are you generally doing?

Usually thinking about writing. Spending time with my girlfriend. Smoking cigars with friends. Teaching, too. But I’m usually thinking about writing.

If you were to set a goal for your future what would it be?

I would like to get more reading in. I’ve been slowly making my way through two wonderful books, one a collection, the other, a modern ghost story, and I’m loving them both, but with all of my commitments, it’s proving remarkably difficult.

And finally, who is your favourite horror icon?

That’s a fun question! I’m going to cheat and answer this three ways.

  1. Movie Character Horror Icon: Michael Myers
  2. Movie Filmmaker Horror Icon: William Friedkin
  3. Horror Author Icon: Brian Evenson

To enter the competition, check out our Twitter page here

To read our review of Her Infernal Name & Other Nightmares, click here

To coincide with our competition giving away a free SIGNED copy of The Crows, we interviewed C.M. Rosens to find out her writing influences, her motivation behind the novel and more. Check it out!

How did your interest in writing start?

My interest in writing started when I was really little and as an only child I had some imaginary friends – my mum and her parents encouraged me to write them down or to tell them about the ‘adventures’ I had in Dinosaur Land (I was obsessed with dinosaurs when I was 5/6). I’m fairly sure you got there via a magic bubble that appeared around you when you jumped down a hole under a bridge, like Alice in Wonderland meets Journey to the Centre of the Earth / The Lost World. I’d seen the Disney film of Alice and read the illustrated Ladybird abridged books of JCE and TLW, so it was mostly a mash-up of that, but with a T-Rex called Lucy who was the queen who let me ride her. I’ve been making up stories pretty much all my life – writing is just a way of remembering them!

What made you choose horror?

I didn’t exactly choose horror as a genre, I’d always thought I couldn’t write anything like that. It turned out that the story I wanted to tell had a lot of Gothic elements (my favourite!) and was based on a romantic cosy paranormal mystery I’d written in 2013 for fun. The rewrite got a bit darker, had more body horror, and went into the darker side of Gothic tropes and conventions. The gory bits are fairly few and not that bad (in my view) but that’s very much dependent on personal taste, I guess. Horror is such a broad genre with so many facets, but it gives you as a writer a lot of scope to explore personal and/or socio-cultural anxieties and concerns, the reasons why certain things frighten or horrify.

What was your inspiration behind The Crows?

Stephen King’s Rose Red was a big influence on The Crows in its current form, and Salem’s Lot, with the idea of a house being evil (Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson was actually something I read after the draft was done!) I wanted to invert this and create a house with a personality that was more three-dimensional than just ‘evil’. Other influences include the Lovecraftian mythos, my own working class background and some real life experiences (not all my own), Hammer Horror films, the early seasons of Midsomer Murders and quite a lot of Terry Pratchett. I have a lot of time for the idea of people just trying to live their lives while surrounded by magic and various things going on.

Will there be a sequel to The Crows? Or anything else written in the Pagham-on-Sea universe?

There is a sequel to The Crows – the next novel is called Thirteenth, and follows the Porter clan more closely. I also have a short story, The Sound of Darkness, which is set in the council estate on the edge of Pagham-on-Sea, coming out in the anthology F is for Fear with Red Cape Publishing. There are a few more books linked to the town in various stages of planning and drafting, which will use overlapping settings and some overlapping characters, but will be standalones. One of them, Eldritch Girls Just Want To Have Fun, is a slasher-romance or goremance co-written with Nita Pan (author of Life and Death, a dark, tragic and philosophical short story in the Supernatural Beings anthology From Ashes to Magic). That follows a different member of the eldritch family you meet in The Crows, but that’s mainly set in Brighton c.2016. It looks like it has series potential on its own, so watch this space.

Now you’re a published author, what advice would you give to those just starting out?

I think my main advice for those starting out on their publishing journey is that it’s not one-size-fits-all. There are pros and cons to every route, and in my case I chose self-publishing as I’d had good feedback from traditional publishing houses but it ‘wasn’t what they were looking for’. I also wanted to collaborate with artist Tom Brown (co-creator of the Hopeless, Maine graphic novels) and wanted to retain the creative control to include illustrations that I would otherwise have to negotiate with presses. However, I’ve got a publishing contract for my non-fiction popular history book, which is being published under my real name rather than my pen-name. I would say in both cases that a good editor makes a world of difference, especially one you can work well with. I’ve also had the benefit of good alpha and beta readers, and my books tend to have about eight pairs of eyes on them before they make it to the editor. I want to produce a quality product as well as a good book, so I think investing in that, however you do it, is really important.

When you’re not writing what are you generally doing?

When I’m not writing, I’m not doing anything particularly interesting – I do like to travel though! Obviously not at the moment… and honestly, apart from walking and working, I don’t think I’ve got anything exciting out of lockdown! I did take up Burlesque and Belly dance online though, but I can’t continue with them due to my shift patterns.

If you were to set a goal for your future what would it be?

In terms of goals… I think my main one would be to get Eldritch Girls out there, which is one of my favourite passion projects and just so much fun to write. I would also like to get an anthology of Pagham-on-Sea short stories completed (co-written with Guillaume Velde) and get the sequel to The Crows out by Jan 2021. For personal goals – I would just like to be able to travel again. I haven’t been to the USA/Canada since I was 14, and I’d love to go there again and visit friends I haven’t seen for years.

And finally, who is your favourite horror icon?

My favourite horror icon is Sir Christopher Lee. I love Hammer Horror films and out of the greats of that era he’s my favourite. Vampires were always my favourite monster as a kid and I will always have a huge soft spot for his Dracula.

To enter the competition, visit our Facebook page here

Want to read our review of The Crows? Click here

You can find out more about C.M. Rosens here

Today we’re going to share an interview we recently conducted with ZACH GREEN (producer, editor and all round horror fan) you may remember him from our feature on the horror short FAMILIAR… If not click here for a refresher.

Hope you enjoy.

Tell us more about the festivals FAMILIAR has been screened at

Familiar had its World Premiere in Toronto via FANGORIAÕS FRIGHT NIGHTS on March 2nd. The film played before the very controversial Japanese Film, Battle Royale. Later in March, it went on to screen at A NIGHT OF HORROR in Australia. It also went on at ChicagoFearFest April 13-14 where Familiar won BEST SHORT FILM, Texas Frightmare Weekend May 4, 5, 6, Dark Brides Film Festival May 3rd-6th, and Fantaspoa International Film Festival, Celluloid Screams: Sheffield Horror Film Festival, Tri-Cities International Fantastic Film Festival,  Fright Night Film Festival, RoundCon Film Festival.

There will be many more as the days come. Please check www.FatalPictures.com for all upcoming screening dates.

What is it about horror that you find so compelling?

I really love the emotion fear. I feel your most alive when you fear for your life, or if you are just really terrified. Ive gained a really big appreciation and love for the genre over the years.

Can you describe the auditioning process of your movies and how you ultimately choose the right actor to portray your protagonist?

Well myself and Richard will audition actors we think would be able to portray what we are trying to depict, and have them one by one come in and audition for the part, most likely we will video tape all the auditions, so we can go back and watch them over and over and ultimately decide who we feel is best.

Your popularity is constantly on the rise with more people becoming aware of your company and projects, but how hard was it to get where you are now?

Well thank you very much for those kind words. I dont really know where i am now, i just know im lucky enough to be a part of Fatal Pictures and to bring the world these great films myself and Richard create.

We recently reviewed your horror short Familiar, tell us, how is the feedback thus far?

The film is really getting some good praise by top critics and getting into great film festivals thus far, so i cant complain to much. I think its getting some great responses and feedback all around.

Tell us about the project you are currently working on?

I am currently still working on promoting Familiar and really getting it into the world. But the next film from Fatal Pictures will be our feature film debut. “WORM”.

What has been the most rewarding part of your career so far?

Some of the most rewarding parts to me are when im on set seeing the film starting to take form and starting to become a film, and also once the film is finished, being able to watch the film with an audience and seeing how they react to it, as well as of course watching it do very well weather its getting into film festivals or getting a great review.

Where can people find out more about Fatal Pictures and what you’re up too?

The Fatal Pictures Official Website (www.FatalPictures.com) to get all the up to date news and content regarding Fatal Pictures as well as  please follow us on Twitter @FatalPictures

Any filmmakers that inspired you to get into the business?

I wouldn’t really say any one filmmaker/producer inspires me to do what I do, I just love the medium and love creating art for the rest of the world to see. There are many filmmakers and producers i think are awesome and do great work of course. I think Richards stories/scripts need to be told and produced.

And finally, who is your favourite horror icon?

Leatherface: From the Original Texas Chainsaw Massacre ‘1974. I think the character Leatherface is really terrifying and real. What to me makes him extremely scary is the fact he’s a real person.

 

Today’s interview is with WD Lady, author of the breakthrough novel Nightmarish Reality.

Now this is a special interview because it is WD Lady’s FIRST interview and you’re reading it exclusively here at Erebus Horror

Here we go!

What made you choose horror as your primary genre?

I actually don’t think horror is my primary genre.  However, I am pretty opened minded and have read a lot of different genres in my life.  I constantly experiment with my writing styles, and one day I decided to do a horror story for a change.  The majority of my stories are lighthearted comedies or fantasy/adventure.  But I wanted to challenge myself and take on a new serious project.  Horror was a genre that I never took on before, until now.  Even though I have written some dark stories…they weren’t generally horror, so horror is in fact not my primary genre.

 

What made you decide you wanted to be a writer?

I really didn’t think much about becoming a writer, until I was in a screenplay writing class, back in high school. I had written a thirty page script once, and my teacher read it and told me he loved it.  He said I should write more, so I took his advice.  After that class, I decided for sure that I wanted to be a screenplay writer.  All I did was write scripts and screenplays.  However, writing a novel was still new to me.  I still didn’t think I was good enough to be a writer and publish a book.  If it wasn’t for some of my teachers and friends throughout high school and college, I probably wouldn’t be here.  They were the ones who encouraged me to keep at it and practice. They saw the potential in my work, even when I didn’t believe it.

 

You’re a published author now; how hard was it to get to where you are?

I would have to say it was extremely difficult to get where I am today.  At the time I started writing, I didn’t have much of a support system besides a few teachers and friends.  Sometimes, I would throw away stories, because I couldn’t bear to look at them anymore.  Not only that, but I’m still a perfectionist and I would rewrite a story over and over again till I felt that it sounded right.  It took me nearly eleven years to finally accept that my stories will never be completely perfect and I had to train myself everyday to stop throwing away old drafts.  I even had to discipline myself to take breaks and to write a little bit everyday, so I wouldn’t overdo it as well.  It was hard enough for me to just focus on one story at a time, because I wouldn’t get anything done if I was working on multiple stories.

 

‘Nightmarish Reality’ is the first book in the Nightmarish Reality series. Can you give us more details as to what it’s about? 

In simple terms, the series is about a boy who suffers from constant nightmares.  He doesn’t know exactly what’s causing them and why they seem so real, which is why he has a hard time determining what is reality and what is just an illusion. He seems like an average student; however, he’s constantly picked on by school bullies. It isn’t until he meets a stranger that he begins to question his life and realize how very different he truly is.  So, it’s only a matter of time before the dark demons of his past suddenly begin to reveal themselves. He does have a journal where he records what’s happening to him. If he can put back the missing pieces of the puzzle, he may be able to stop the nightmares before they start to take on a life of their own.  You will have to find out if it’s too late for him to control what he’s already unleashed into the world…

 

What about the next books in the Nightmarish Reality series? What direction will they be going in? 

The following books in my series will be much darker as the story progresses into a completely unique direction, revealing new characters and plot twists.  I don’t want to give too much away, but readers will find themselves going back to the first novel to find the little bread crumbs I left behind, for I speed on straight ahead with the plot, so people’s heads may turn as they go further down the rabbit hole. When it comes down to the final conclusion, I’m hoping that it will not only leave readers speechless, but also breathless.

 

Do you have any plans to write a completely different novel from scratch?

Yes, I do.  I already made plans to write several novels from scratch.  If things do go well with this first series, I’ve been thinking about and planning for an alternative version that is separate in it’s own right, but has many of the same characters from the original story.  Not to mention, I have other projects aside from this that have been simmering in my brain for over a decade now that I’m just dying to write it all out.

 

When you’re not writing or working, what are you generally doing?

I’ll be watching films, drawing, blogging, editing, or reading.  I try to spend my time wisely on anything that’s constructive.

   

If you were to set a goal for your future what would it be?

Hopefully, in the next five to ten years, I’ll have a lot more books published by then.  Also, I hope to be a film director, making scripts out of my books, so they can come to life on the big screen.

 

And finally who is your favourite horror icon?

I actually have three in fact. Stephen King, R.L. Stine, and Dean Koontz. If I had to pick one to save my life, I’d have to say that I read Stephen King’s books before anyone else. The first real horror book I read was IT.

Well it’s Friday the 13th – A day despised by some, but celebrated by others.

This is a day where horror is at its most popular, so we were left wondering how we would celebrate this momentous day. Should we post a toe-curlingly cheesy feature on the movie Friday the 13th? (like so many will probably do…) Or do we give you something new and different? Well, as you know, we’re all about giving you something new to sink your teeth into.  Why should today be any different?

So, on this gruesomely delicious day, we introduce to you an amazing horror author specializing in……. ZOMBIES!

Yes it’s Julianne Snow! Here’s a bit about her;

It was while watching Romero’s Night of the Living Dead at the tender age of 6 that solidified Julianne’s respect of the Undead. Since that day, she has been preparing herself for the (inevitable) Zombie Apocalypse. While classically trained in all of the ways to defend herself, she took up writing in order to process the desire she now covets; to bestow a second and final death upon the Undead.

As the only girl growing up in a family with four children in the Canadian countryside, Julianne needed some form of escape. Her choice was the imaginations of others which only fostered the vibrancy of her own. The horror and forensic/crime thriller genres top her list of favourites, but she can never turn down a good science fiction, fantasy or mystery read.

Julianne appears in the anthology Women of the Living Dead with a story entitled The Living Dead at Penderghast Manor. Look for her short stories in future anthologies. Days with the Undead: Book One is her first full-length book, the basis of which can be found in her popular web serial of the same name.

Great right? Well we’re lucky enough to have conducted an interview with this great writer and you’re lucky enough to read it!

Here we go…

What made you decide to become a writer?

I’m not sure if it was really a decision I consciously made. I had always written short stories and prose-like poems growing up, but before going away to post-secondary education it got put on the back burner. I didn’t end up coming back to it until later when a situation that arose that caused me to lose a great deal of my sight for a period of time. As a result, I spent a lot of that time in my head, rediscovering my love for creating plotlines and fleshing out characters. After that moment occurred, there really was no looking back.

You’re a published author now. How hard was it to get where you are?

The hardest part was actually writing the book. That’s a lot of words to weave together in some form of coherency! As the ideas and plotlines swarm around the sieve that controls what flows out of your fingers, it can get difficult to filter which ideas are viable for any given story. The fact of the matter is that I enjoy writing; I enjoy the sense of satisfaction I receive when I finish a chapter or a story. Once the story is completely finished, and the editing starts, there’s almost a relaxation that occurs. You have the story that you wanted to write out of your head and your soul, now it’s just polishing it to the point that it’s the best that it can be. Teaming with my publisher, Sirens Call Publications, helped me to traverse the world of publishing as well. Was it a struggle at times? Absolutely, but in the end it was a labor of love and one that I will happily do over and over again.

Tell us about your Days with the Undead series.

Days with the Undead: Book One is the first thing that I wrote after my sight came back. It’s the story of a Zombie Apocalypse which starts in Toronto, Canada and is told completely via journal entries. You get one point of view, that of Julie, a former pathologist and part-time survivalist but don’t let that fool you; the cast of characters come alive through her words. The action starts from the first second and doesn’t let up throughout – the group of survivors, made up of Julie, Max, Bob, Ben and Barbara are constantly fleeing the growing army of the Undead. The uniqueness of a singular point of view is that you really get to explore the psychological turmoil that flight and, ultimately, survival, wreak on the psyche.

What is it about zombies that you find so compelling?

I honestly believe that Zombies are the most terrifying of the supernatural creatures. They are unwavering in their desires to pursue you and your flesh. Akin to a parasite or virus, they continually seek out new hosts to assimilate. That’s pretty scary when you think about it because there isn’t much that will stop them. The only way to protect yourself is to kill as many as you can…

What has been the most difficult hurdle to overcome on your journey?

My own self-doubt. I had a discussion the other day about narcissism and how some authors deal with it. While I am guilty of being narcissistic to a degree (I did put my own writing out into the public forum), I sometimes wonder if my story is appealing enough to the fans of the genre. I have had many positive comments as well as some negative ones but in the end, I grow as a writer from each and every one of them.

When you’re not writing, what are you generally doing?

Catching up on all of the other things that I don’t do when I’m writing! Mainly just work around the house, reading, watching a little television or perhaps a movie, and my daily walk. Oh wait, I totally forgot about the day job! The kinds of activities that allow your mind to relax and that allow the stresses of the day or the passage that I’m writing to melt away.

What has been the most rewarding part of your career so far?

It was receiving my proof in the mail. To actually see my name on a printed book was just awesome and it totally buoyed my spirits. As an author, you write, but there are times when the road to getting your work to the masses seems endless. To get to the point where readers can read it – that’s so rewarding!

Will there be any additions to the Days with the Undead series, or will you be starting something new?

I have many plans for Days with the Undead; there is a second book currently being adapted from my online serial series along with a number of companion books. The story is still unfolding so I have a long way to go before it’s over. I do have plans to write non-Zombie genre novellas and novels as well, I just need to get them finished. It’s hard work with a full time job and my other responsibilities – not that I’m complaining, I wouldn’t change my world for anything else!

If you were to set a goal for the future, what would it be?

To reach the point where I can quit my day job and concentrate on writing full time. Isn’t that every writer’s dream at some point?

And finally, who is your favorite horror icon?

That’s a very good question – Ellen Ripley, hands down! Even though I haven’t been able to sit down and watch Alien in one complete sitting, the franchise is still one of my favorites. As a female lead, she demonstrated that given the right incentive, you can do anything you put your mind to. I think her character really opened up the door to the believability of other strong female leads in horror.

Now we know you won’t need any help falling in love with her, but since it’s Friday the 13th we wanted to give you something extra.
 
Curious?
 
Well wait no longer, here’s a snippet from her book;
“In the areas where they were not so deeply layered at the edge of the shore, we could see that some had ventured into the water. Perhaps they felt that they could walk on the water to the prey that they so viciously wanted. Instead, you could see them being tossed about in the crashing surf; the waves pelting them back toward the shore and the undertow of the current talking them back out again. It was a tumultuous jaunt from shore to cresting waves and potentially one that they would have to endure for some time.

The noise of our engine attracted some of the closer ones. They turned as if in unison to stare milky eyed in our direction. I never thought I would see the day when the Undead had a look of genuine surprise about them, but in that moment they actually looked startled to see us.

On the other hand, we were utterly stricken with horror to see them. This was a moment of truth for us…”
Caught your interest? Well here’s an extensive list of where you can purchase her book:

Purchase Links – Print:

CreateSpace: https://www.createspace.com/3736479

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Days-Undead-Book-Julianne-Snow/dp/1468007998/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1330611569&sr=8-1

 

Purchase Link – Digital:

Smashwords: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/137213

Amazon US: http://www.amazon.com/Days-Undead-Book-One-ebook/dp/B007F14OTA/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1330471120&sr=8-2

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B007F14OTA

Amazon DE: https://www.amazon.de/dp/B007F14OTA

Amazon FR: https://www.amazon.fr/dp/B007F14OTA

Amazon ES: https://www.amazon.es/dp/B007F14OTA

Amazon IT: https://www.amazon.it/dp/B007F14OTA

 

You can’t say we don’t spoil you.

Have a great Friday the 13th folks! And remember – watch out for ladders, black cats, cracks and mirrors… Yeah right!