September’s Author of the Month (2017) – Jason Parent

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    1. Jason, it’s wonderful to have you with us for this Q&A. Please tell us about your humble beginnings as an author.

    Thank you for inviting me to participate. I’m happy to be here. My beginnings as a writer? Humble, and perhaps humbling, is a good way to describe it. I finished my first novel in the mid-2000s and, after a long search, I landed an agent. After she couldn’t sell the book, I was almost ready to throw in the towel. Instead, I sent the book out to another editor, and my real education in both the craft and the business of creative writing began. After a ton of rewrites and endless editing and polishing, I am happy to say that first novel is now published. It only took thirteen years to get there.

    1. Which was the first of your works to become popular?

    My very first novel, What Hides Within, gained an almost instantaneous cult following. It’s a quirky tale that mixes mystery, horror, and dark humor, so it’s definitely tailored to a unique audience—you know, people who like their books somewhat offbeat, like me.

    1. You’ve written novels, novellas and short stories. Which length do you prefer to write in the most?

    The story that needs to be told dictates its length. That said, I am finding novellas to be a fast, fun medium for traditional horror.

    1. From your Facebook page I was able to gather you love watching movies. What are your all-time favorite flicks?

    Yes, I love watching movies and have probably seen way too many. There are so many that I love crossing so many genres—from the Carpenter flicks Big Trouble in Little China, The Thing, and They Live to 80s comedies like Get a Life to Princess Bride to Shawshank Redemption to Predator and Alien and Aliens. From that list, I’d say sci-fi horror ranks high, and I would include Pandorum and Event Horizon in that respect. I still need to see Life and will definitely be running to see Dark Tower this weekend.

    1. What are your hobbies besides reading/writing books and watching movies?

    I like to travel, but don’t get to do so often. I also like to play poker and spend time at the beach. If the company’s right, I’m happy doing just about anything.

    1. Who was your first beta reader?

    Showing my work to that first person was very difficult, so it’s not something I’m apt to forget. I’d say an ex-girlfriend was my first beta reader, and she was very supportive—perhaps not as critical as I needed and could have hoped for, but encouraging. I don’t think I would be writing today without her initial support.

    1. Have you or will you be writing a story in a genre other than horror/science-fiction?

    Two of my novels are crime thrillers, though they both have a touch of horror/science fiction. For charity anthologies, I’ve written a few dramatic or literary pieces. As for the future
    … let’s just say I will be adding a bizarre genre to my repertoire.

    1. Who are your favorite authors?

    King and Poe go without saying. Laird Barron, Kealan Patrick Burke, Michael McBride, Robert McCammon, Tess Gerritsen, and Cormac McCarthy are others. I also branch out into fantasy often and enjoy Tolkien, George R.R. Martin, and Michael J. Sullivan. In science fiction, Vonnegut, Dick, and Heinlein are favorites. But I read so many horror authors with chilling books that I have many favorites from many authors.

    1. Which story did you last read and would you recommend it?

    The last novel I read was Northwoods by Bill Schweigart, which was quite good and I would recommend it, but… it’s a sequel, which I didn’t realize going into it. That said, I think it worked as a stand-alone. Currently, I am reading Odd Man Out by James Newman and Sour Candy, both of which I would recommend so far, and Final Girls by Riley Sager, on which the verdict is still out.

    1. Tell us about your upcoming projects.

    In the nearest future, I will be releasing a traditional horror novel, a creature feature from Sinister Grin, and re-releasing my first novel. Beyond that, I have sequels to Seeing Evil and What Hides Within (more of a spinoff, really) in the works, as well as a couple of short stories on the way.

     

    Jason Parent’s website.

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