Coming to Town: Paul Tremblay for A Head Full of Ghosts at Flyleaf Books, interviewed by Richard DanskyPosted: 22 July, 2015
Interview by Richard Dansky:
With A Head Full of Ghosts, Paul Tremblay has catapulted himself into the front rank of American horror authors. Born in Colorado but currently residing in Boston, Tremblay teaches AP Calculus by day and then unleashes an entirely different set of horrors by night. His previous works include Swallowing A Donkey’s Eye and the short story collection In The Mean Time, both from ChiZine Publishing. Nominated twice for the Bram Stoker Award, he also serves as a juror for the Shirley Jackson Awards. He was kind enough to take time out from his Guest of Honor duties at NECON to talk a little about the role of pop culture references in fiction, blogging as a framing device, and why he’s disappointed in Les Stroud, ahead of his appearance this Sunday (July 26) at 4 pm at Flyleaf Books [Facebook].
Q: First question: Do you believe in Bigfoot?
Do I believe in Bigfoot? I do not. You know, I kind of want to, but I’m kind of taking up the “no Bigfoot” position just as devil’s advocate because my ten year old daughter is so [into it]. She hasn’t watched it much in the last six to 8 months, but my daughter had a section of time where she was totally obsessed with Bigfoot. She has a Bigfoot t-shirt and loves the show [note: the reality show Finding Bigfoot, which features prominently in A Head Full of Ghosts] so I would playfully argue with her that there was no Bigfoot. “How come they don’t find any bodies” and she always responds with “well, they bury their dead”. But I have a hard time believing that there’s a Bigfoot.
Q: Just a spoiler alert here – the last few episodes of Finding Bigfoot, they have not actually found Bigfoot. I know that’s a tremendous shock. Read the rest of this entry »
Coming to Town: Lynne Hansen and Jeff Strand for The Nevermore Film Festival, interviewed by Richard DanskyPosted: 18 February, 2015
By Richard Dansky:
Lynne Hansen and Jeff Strand are one of horror fiction’s power couples. A perennial host of the Bram Stoker Awards, Jeff blends humor and horror in acclaimed novels like Pressure and his short story collection, Dead Clown Barbecue. Lynne’s prolific in YA horror (The Return, The Change) as well as working in film (He’s Not Looking So Great, Chomp). And there is absolutely no truth to the rumor that in their last trip to North Carolina, Jeff failed to finish his side of hush puppies at a Durham BBQ restaurant and paid a fearful price.
Q: What brings you to the Triangle?
Lynne: The Nevermore Film Festival at the historic Carolina Theatre Durham. And friends. (Definitely not the snow.)
Jeff: Also BBQ.
Q: Tell us about the films you have showing at Nevermore.
Lynne: Chomp is a short horror comedy about a little old lady named Millie who is determined to prove she’s captured a real zombie—even if he’s not one. Last weekend at the GeekFest Film Festival at Shock Pop Comic Con in Fort Lauderdale, Chomp won Best Short—and our very first Best of Fest award. I couldn’t be more tickled.
Jeff: Gave Up The Ghost is also a short horror comedy, directed by Gregory Lamberson. It’s about a very pretentious writer who loses his ultimate masterpiece novel in a computer crash, and ends up seeking supernatural assistance to retrieve the file from the netherworld. It also features brief appearances by zombies, vampires, mummies, cannibals, and Bigfoot.
Q: Both of you come from a background in writing fiction. What led you to working in film? Read the rest of this entry »
April 23, 2014, Durham, NC: Thanks to a generous last-minute press pass, I had a chance to stop by day one of ECGC – the East Coast Game Conference – this morning at the Raleigh Convention Center. I’ve been to a half-dozen? conventions of various kinds (science fiction, health and fitness, anime, etc.) at this venue and each has taken advantage of the space in different ways. Here, the ECGC is well-laid-out, with branding stickers on the (many!) glass-surfaced entrances into the convention space and plenty of room and people to handle registration without fuss or backups.
After registering I headed straight for the Expo, which starts as an in-hallway affair before expanding into the Expo Hall Proper. Here, schools pitch their programs and specialties and game companies pitch both their projects and open positions as well as their engines and platforms. In the hall, the two which most caught my eye — though “swag of the day” goes to the Magic 8-ball from Insomniac Games — were Wake Tech’s Simulation and Game Development program as well as a “Goat Simulator” game showcasing Epic Games‘ Unreal Engine. Getting hands-on with the goat simulator, I was encouraged to perform a backflip, but instead got carried away with running my goat forward for a hard stop to force a pretty nice “skid stop” animation; this eventually led to darting my goat out of an alley and into a street just in time to be killed and thump-thump-thump run-over by a very large truck. (I think I earned some bonus points, somehow, for this spectacular method of demise.) Read the rest of this entry »
Interview by Richard Dansky:
Think “Gothic” and you might not immediately think Minnesota, but Wendy Webb is working on changing that perception. Building on a writing career that began as a journalist for a Twin Cities arts & entertainment weekly, she’s published three critically and commercially successful gothic novels set in her home state. The third, The Vanishing [ebook], was released in January 2014, and in support of the book, she’s visiting Flyleaf Books in Chapel Hill on Saturday, February 1st for an early reading at 11 am [Facebook event] in one of three North Carolina events on her current tour [the others include Thursday, Jan 30 at Charlotte’s PARK ROAD BOOKS and Saturday evening at Asheville’s MALAPROPS]. Ahead of that visit, she was kind enough to take a few minutes to answer some questions. From the “Devil’s Toy Box” to the influence of Downton Abbey, here’s a few questions with Wendy Webb.
Can you tell us a little bit about The Vanishing?
All of my novels feature long-buried family secrets that bubble to the surface in big, old mansions. The Vanishing is the story of Julia, who receives an intriguing job offer when her life seems to be falling apart around her. A man, Adrian Sinclair, asks Julia to be a companion to his elderly mother, a famous horror novelist who the whole world thinks is dead. For reasons unknown, this novelist chose to vanish from public life and now lives in her magnificent estate in the middle of the wilderness. Intrigued, Julia accepts the position. But when she arrives at Havenwood, she begins to wonder whether this too-good-to-be-true job offer is exactly that.
The gothic as a genre is usually associated with windswept moors and craggy mountains. What was the inspiration for setting The Vanishing in northern Minnesota? Read the rest of this entry »
By Richard Dansky:
26 novels (and 1 solo album) into his career, Steven Brust still isn’t afraid to take chances. Visiting Flyleaf Books in Chapel Hill on October 2nd in support of his new novel, The Incrementalists — co-written with Skyler White — Brust is best known for his centuries-spanning Dragaera series. But with a bibliography that includes everything from a high fantasy retelling of Paradise Lost (To Reign In Hell) to an Ohio vampire story (Agyar) to a multiple volume tribute to the works of Dumas (The Phoenix Guards), Brust remains a master of confounding expectation. Here he is, in his own words:
Q: The Incrementalists is your second shot at more or less straightforward science fiction, after Cowboy Feng’s. Why come back to it after all this time? Read the rest of this entry »
[Editor’s note: this is the first in a new, hopefully-many-more-where-this-came-from series in which authors and other creators “coming to town” for an event answer a few questions for the website. I hope you enjoy! -Sam]
By Richard Dansky:
Five books into his wildly popular and critically acclaimed Sandman Slim series, Richard Kadrey is a significant voice in urban fantasy. Coming to Flyleaf Books on Thursday August 29th in the wake of Kill City Blues, the fifth book in the Sandman Slim cycle, Kadrey also has an unrelated novel, Dead Set, coming out this fall. While this would be more than enough for most writers, Kadrey has an extensive track record as a cyberpunk author, futurist with publications in Wired and Discovery Online, comics scripter, and animation writer. And yes, he has also been turned into an action figure.
Ahead of his visit to the Triangle, Mr. Kadrey was kind enough to answer a few questions about his work, his approach to book tours and, perhaps most importantly, how you kill an unkillable wizard with his name:
With Kill City Blues, the Sandman Slim series is now five books in. Can a new reader just jump right in and read it as a self-contained story, or do they really need to go back and pick it up from the beginning (which, to be fair, they ought to do anyway)? Read the rest of this entry »