Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Interview for Justin Bienvenue

Here's an interview that I completely forgot about. It was for fiction reviewer, Justin Bienvenue:
1.What can you tell us about your latest novel “Hoffman’s Creeper and Other Disturbing Tales”?

It’s a self-published collection of short stories. Some of them have previously appeared in magazines and anthologies and others are brand new tales. The stories are varied, some are suspense or horror, others are just quirky works of fiction. Some are set in exciting places like the Scottish highlands or the French Pyrenees and others have a suburban backdrop. However, they all have one thing in common – they are all disturbing tales.

2. I notice you’ve written quite a lot of books, how do you devise the time to come up with all the great ideas and concepts for them?

Coming up with ideas doesn’t require much time, I get them at work or listening to music or in the middle of the night. I have a list of story ideas waiting to be worked into a work of fiction. Putting the ideas down in writing and developing them and then rewriting and editing over and over is the time-consuming part. Time for writing isn’t always easy to find but every now and then I try to dedicate a whole weekend to my passion.

3. Being a writer of horror, how big of an influence has Edgar Allan Poe been to work?

An enormous influence! Poe’s stories are amongst my favourite. Tales like “The Murders on Rue Morgue” and “The Gold Bug” aren’t just thrilling reads, they are also important milestones in the development of the mystery genre. His countless tales of horror still chill readers today and skilfully combine gothic imagery with supernatural and scientific speculation and psychological preoccupations. Poe and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle are probably my two greatest influences.

4. What is it like to collaborate with fellow authors to work on an anthology or book?

It’s what I love the most. Rock stars play at festivals and dancers participate in ballet performances. Anthologies are how we solitary writers get it on together.

5. What intrigues you most about the horror genre?

The everyday stuff - not monsters or vampires, but the way society can be horrible. Obsession and greed are a couple of themes that my stories often touch upon. Horror is a versatile genre and has a lot to say and, of course, it’s just plain exciting – like mystery, it keeps you guessing until the end!

6. What do you find easier about writing short stories compared to writing novels?

Short stories aren’t as complicated as novels and there is a lower risk of getting the story mixed up or contradicting yourself. That’s not why I prefer writing short stories though - I prefer writing them because I prefer reading them – it’s as simple as that. In my opinion, most of the best short stories say a lot more than most of the best novels even though they are so much shorter. I like being able to sit down and read a tale from start to finish in one sitting too. In general, I prefer the short work of my favorite writers - such as Doyle, Ruth Rendell, Stephen King and Christopher Fowler - to their novels.

7. How would you compare your writing style to other authors of your genres?

That’s a tough one. I don’t really think about my style. I just write the way the story reads itself in my head. I’m probably a little old-fashioned in my writing due to the fact that I read a lot of Victorian-era fiction… don’t worry, my characters don’t usually wear top hats though and they tend to use mobile phones to check the time, not pocket watches.

8. What would you say makes your writings of horror and suspense more intense compared to others?

I don’t know that my work is more intense than that of others but I think that it’s more thought-provoking than a lot of horror out there because I focus on real world situations and problems rather than speculative ones. My tale “Hardwicke’s Fair Share” is a good example of this, it’s about greed and broken promises.

9. Who is behind the magnificent cover art of your novels and novellas?

I did the cover art for my short story collection, novel and novella. I’m glad you like it.

10. How has social media helped you in promoting your blog and works?

It has helped quite a lot but there are so many people struggling to be heard on sites like Facebook and Goodreads. I really want to get involved in more direct promotion within my local community through representation in libraries, bookshops and other retail outlets – that’s my goal.

No comments: