Catherine Gracey

Archive for 2012|Yearly archive page

Interview: Brent Abell

In American, Author on October 11, 2012 at 9:00 am

Brent Abell is a horror author from Indiana who seems to project his plans for world domination onto his dog. Fortunately, he is willing to claim the credit for his writing, with short stories such as Stonewall and As I Crossed Lincoln Bridge. He has just released his debut novella, In Memoriam. Brent recently answered my questions.

1)   What is something you do in your professional or artistic life that you think is really cool, and why do you think that about it?

I think that being able to create my own worlds and characters is really cool.  I have also had the pleasure to meet other authors and publishers who I have become friends with and we never would have met had it not been for my decision to give the writing career a go.  it has opened many new door s for me and I’ve been able to some awesome things like read at conventions, seeing your name in print, and signing books for people is fun.

2)   How did you come to be in the career position you are currently in?

The writing career was a long slow path.  I loved to write when I was little and I would write short stuff to read to my friends in high school, but once I got in the real world and had to work, I lost my way.  When I got the job I have now, I met someone to expanded my horror reading list and got me interested in writing again.  He asked if I wanted to go to a horror writing convention close by and I agreed.  Friday night at Mo*Con in 2010, I read the first short story I’d written in about ten years at the open mike readings.  It went really well and one of the authors there tried to get the story sold that night at the after party.  Once that weekend was over, the bug bit me and I was off to the races.  Now at this point I have 15 stories in 13 books and coming up I have the novella and a short story collection.

3)   What is something from your personal life that you are very proud of, and why are you proud?

My wife and two sons.  They are everything to me and all three make me proud to be called their husband or their dad.  I want this to work so I can do more for them.  I work constantly at my other job and I am not home a lot, so I hope this thing can take off and I can spend more time at home with them.  Oh, I forgot my pug.  If Cody found out I skipped over him, he’d never forgive me.

4)   What is a personality trait you possess that other people might not notice, and how would they miss it?

I am really a shy person.  I’d rather be in a quiet room by myself then with a bunch of people.  I can be a social butterfly when I need to be, but I’d rather keep to myself.

5)   If you could change just one thing about the world, what would it be and why would you change it?

I would change the divisions that separate us.  It seems we all keep digging the ditch bigger and we can only go so far out before we all fall in.  In reality, I’d not fall in and it’s just easier to be nicer to each other anyway.

6)   If you could give a young person one piece of advice, what would it be?

What ever you want to shoot for, do it!  I wish I’d stuck with the writing.  If I hadn’t been drug back kicking and screaming into the fold, I’d never have come back.  Those years I could have been working and refining my craft are lost years I can never have back.  Do it!  Do it now and don’t let others dictate your path.

7)   What is something that you would like to do in your life that you haven’t done yet, and why haven’t you done it?

Right now would be finish my first full length novel.  I have the outlines done for two of them and the first couple of chapter are complete also.  I really haven’t moved forward on them because I feel I’m not quite ready yet.  I set goals of starting with short stories.  Once I got the feel for those and had some success, I moved on to novellas.  Now that one of those has sold and the second has interest from a publisher, I have to write the three or four novella backlog.  When those are complete, I’ll be ready for the novel.  I wanted to build up to it.  By working through the different forms and word counts, I’ve learned so much about my voice and writing style that will set me up better to succeed when the first novels roll around.

8)   What is something that you have sworn to never do again, and why won’t you repeat it?

I’ve sworn to never sell myself short again.  I can have some low self esteem problems and when I put my soul out for the public, I wasn’t sure I’d be able to handle it.  My skin grew thick surprisingly fast.  Don’t get me wrong, a bad review or comment sucks, but I look past it and focus on the people who liked it.  Keeping positive I believe will keep the bad low esteem away.

9)   If you could break one personal habit, what would it be and why would you break it?

I’m a completist.  From my book collection to my Star Wars collection…I must have it all.  It is expensive to be like that too!  No, really in the last few years I’ve been able to pare back some of the stuff and even get rid of some.  I cut back on the authors I buy everything from and sold off my extra copies of things.  If I had to get rid of a habit I still have though, it would be my sarcastic attitude.  I would break it so people wouldn’t think I’m such a jerk sometimes.  Sometimes I mean it and some times I don’t.  Sometimes it’s hard to tell which way I mean it…

10)   If you could take up a new hobby or learn a new skill, what would it be and why?

Painting.  I love art, but I’m terrible at it.  Being able to create with a brush the same images I can create with a pen would be awesome.  Since I want to script a comic or so one day, good art would make it easier.  I could just do my own art for a comic instead of finding someone else.

11)   Is there anything from you that we should be looking out for in the future?

Lots of scary stories for older kiddies!  Next year I hope should see a couple more novella releases and I hope to complete the first novel next year. To keep up with what’s going down you can follow the blog at http://brentabell.wordpress.com.  From there you can find my links to Twitter, Facebook, and my Amazon.com Author page.  I’d like to see everyone stop by and say hi, because the next few years are going to be a hell of a ride!

Thank you, Brent, for taking the time to answer my questions. If you would like to know more about Brent, you can visit his blog, Twitter, Facebook and his Amazon page.

Next Week: Jay Wilburn

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Interview: Kat Yares

In American, Author, Film Maker on October 4, 2012 at 9:00 am

If you are attending the Offshoot Film Festival this month, you might recognise Kat Yares for her work with The Truth of Becoming. Based in Arkansas, this American is an author and film maker who specialises in horror. Her primary focus in the horror genre is to make her audience think, and her favourite work to date is Vengeance Is Mine. Kat recently took the time to answer my questions.

1)   What is something you do in your professional or artistic life that you think is really cool, and why do you think that about it?

In all honesty – my laptop (or computers in general) simply because they make writing and movie making so much easier. I started writing on a manual typewriter, which for me was not very productive since I tend to try and be a perfectionist. One misspelled word and I would pull the paper out and start over.

For the movie making side – computers and Non-Linear Editing software make putting together a digital motion picture much easier than film ever was or will be.

2)   How did you come to be in the career position you are currently in?

I have always been a writer, coming up with stories on paper since I was a young child. For a number of years, I supported myself and my children by writing confession stories – the type you used to see in magazines such as True Love and True Confessions. I started writing horror during the 80s and 90s but was afraid to send it out, fearing it wasn’t good enough. My husband is the one who encouraged me and still is my biggest supporter.

3)   What is something from your personal life that you are very proud of, and why are you proud?

My marriage. We’ve been together for 15 years – raising six kids between us. Lots of Ups and a few Downs, but we’ve been united through it all.

4)   What is a personality trait you possess that other people might not notice, and how would they miss it?

I’m basically shy and not a people person, but once I’ve had a glass of wine or two, no one would know as then I’m able to talk and socialize just like any extrovert.

5)   If you could change just one thing about the world, what would it be and why would you change it?

For people to act more like human beings and not just people. If that were to happen, most of the world problems would be solved as you would see more kindness, compassion and love for your fellow man (or woman) no matter what their circumstances.

6)   If you could give a young person one piece of advice, what would it be?

Never say – I can’t. At least try. And not just once, try over and over. The last thing you want to do is be on your deathbed in old age and think ‘if only’ on anything you may have wanted to try in your lifetime but were afraid to tackle.

7)   What is something that you would like to do in your life that you haven’t done yet, and why haven’t you done it?

Have enough sales from books and short films to earn a respectable living. Haven’t got there yet – but I don’t believe it is impossible.

8)   What is something that you have sworn to never do again, and why won’t you repeat it?

Allow myself to judge myself on how I feel others judge me. I’ve finally reached the point where I don’t care what others think – I am who I am – love me or leave me.

9)   If you could break one personal habit, what would it be and why would you break it?

The answer to this should be smoking, but that isn’t going to happen – at least in this lifetime. So, I’ll go with procrastination. It’s a very easy thing for me to fall into – chasing this shiny thing or that great blog post, etc.

10)   If you could take up a new hobby or learn a new skill, what would it be and why?

I always try to learn something new every year. This year is photography, last year it was learning to play the dulcimer. Come December, I’ll start thinking about what next year’s hobby will be.

11)   Is there anything from you that we should be looking out for in the future?

Two new novels – Beneath the Tor and The XIII. More short movies, as that is a passion that both myself and my better half, Kevin, share. My one hope is that I remain creative and productive until the end of my life – so who knows what the future holds.

Thank you, Kat, for answering my questions. If you would like to know more about Kat, you can follow her blog or peruse her Amazon listings.

Next Week: Brent Abell

Interview: Wayne Bauman

In Australian, Musician on September 27, 2012 at 9:00 am

Wayne Bauman is passionate Australian musician, and has been performing on stage for more than half his life. He has been playing the guitar in a Melbourne based band, Dialysis, since its formation in 2004. Music is the cornerstone of his life, and one of his greatest joys is found in writing new music that captures the whole range of human emotion. I managed to haul him out of the recording studio long enough to answer my questions.

1)   What is something you do in your professional or artistic life that you think is really cool?

I play guitar in an original four pieve prog rock band called Dialysis and have been doing so for the past eight years. I like that with this style of music it is easy to blur the lines between genres such as pop, rock and metal. It makes it very easy to get your emotions out artistically and reach a wider audience.

2)   How did you come to be in the career position you are currently in?

We as a band are currently recording a new EP for release and distribution. After the departure of our previous vocalist we now have an amazing female vocalist named Mauze who has opened up many doors both musically and creatively.

3)   What is something from your personal life that you are very proud of?

I am very proud of the music that I have made with Dialysis and the CDs and live DVDs we have produced. And the fact that we have been able to do so independently and have been able to forge out own path makes me very proud.

4)   What is a personality trait you possess that other people might not notice, and how would they miss it?

My ability to listen and comment on pretty much any topic. Obviously that would actually require you talking to me first about something other than the weather. People don’t tend to talk as much as they did when I was growing up.

5)   If you could change just one thing about the world, what would it be?

I would like to change people’s perceptions on popular art and culture. People who follow trends and follow what social media deems to be the “in thing” are mindless drones dancing to the tunes of corporate greed and exploitation. I think if we all opened our minds a little more and actually followed our own paths that we would be more open to see how amazing a lot of things truly are.

6)   If you could give a young person one piece of advice, what would it be?

Never give up on the things that you truly want. Music for me is a part of my soul in a way. I will never stop playing and never stop listening. If you give up on your dreams because you don’t “make it” so to speak you are only doing yourself an injustice by doing so.

7)   What is something that you would like to do in your life that you haven’t done yet, and why haven’t you done it?

I would like to tour overseas with my band. The opportunity is yet to arise and financially it has not been viable for us to pack our bags and try to make it on our own on the European music festival scene.

8)   What is something that you have sworn to never do again, and why won’t you repeat it?

I have let people in the past talk down to me and make me believe that I am not worthy of being happy and getting the things I want. The negative mind set is very hard to break once you find yourself in it. I will never let this happen again because I have learnt the value of self-belief and self-respect.

9)   If you could break one personal habit, what would it be and why would you break it?

I can often doubt decisions that I make and at the last minute try to back pedal out. Most of the time it is best to go with your gut instinct and live with the consequences than live your life jumping from one plan to another.

10)   If you could take up a new hobby or learn a new skill, what would it be and why?

I would like to learn how to play the piano properly. It is such a versatile instrument and because notation’s can be played with both hands as an instrument it is in many ways twice the artistic outlet over guitar.

11)   Is there anything from you that we should be looking out for in the future?

Yes over the next few months we will be releasing our new 5 song EP with our new vocalist. I believe it will be something that will open many doors for us. It is sonically everything I have ever wanted and more.

Thank you, Wayne, for taking the time to answer my questions. If you would like to know more about Dialysis, you can find them on Facebook.

Next Week: Kat Yares

Interview: Matthew Farmer

In Australian, Author, Copy writer on September 20, 2012 at 9:00 am

Matthew Farmer is an Australian copy writer, who recently added author to his resume with the release of his first novel, The Girl From Out Of Town. A long time writer for others, I was curious to see how Matthew would answer my questions now that he is also writing for himself.

1)   What is something you do in your professional or artistic life that you think is really cool, and why do you think that about it?

In my professional life a service I offer is Social Media Management. This service relies a lot on content, finding articles of interest and relevance to an audience, finding ways to grab a following and bring people to a business’s website.

I have done some hard work to find ways for content to be delivered to me. I think it is really cool that, when I get a new client, I can spend a day setting up content feeds, searching for and getting content sent to me. Content which is strong, and is appreciated and sometimes surprisingly good. I think it is cool that a little bit of hard work has made the flow on work easier for me.

2)   How did you come to be in the career position you are currently in?

Three years sitting in the very same chair, in a claustrophobic office with literally no windows, talking to angry customers who were upset due to the machinations of an inept marketing department. I was going insane and really hated my job. So, after much discussion, it was decided I would venture forth on the road of freelance writer. I have always said I am a writer, so it was time to put my money where my mouth was.

I am certainly a happier person, everyone tells me so. And, other people have said- FINALLY! You should have done this AGES ago…

3)   What is something from your personal life that you are very proud of, and why are you proud?

My basketball refereeing. I was invited to attend A Grade Reffing school as others felt I was good enough. I passed the theory, twice, one of only 2 people to do so well in theory.

So now I am an A Grade referee. I have had many parents come up to me over the past few years and say what a good referee I am, and I am quite happy and proud that I passed the school so well. I am considered a senior referee, and often given the younger ref’s to mentor them.

4)   What is a personality trait you possess that other people might not notice, and how would they miss it?

I am full of bluster. I am a large man with a jester’s hat, Hawaiian shirts, I smile a lot and laugh a lot and can get very excited when in a group of writers. However, I am still, after all this time, very insecure about my writing. Especially now that I am charging money for it. An example is today and yesterday, I was asked to write 150 words for a person going for local council. I had the brief, and wrote to the brief. I sent it to my contact, and didn’t hear anything for 3 hours. Now, it was because my contact was in a meeting, and the client took a while to get feedback to me, but all that time I was thinking- gawd, they don’t like it. They think I am a hack!

For this same job, I have written 3 re-writes of the original, with little tweaks here and there, which further makes me think- they don’t like me. I can’t get it right on the first go? I must suck!

I know it is a common call of the writer and artist, but with my extroverted outer shell, it is hard to tell that I still fear for the quality of my writing.

5)   If you could change just one thing about the world, what would it be and why would you change it?

Acceptance and tolerance. I would love to change our reliance on money to survive, but right now, acceptance and tolerance.

Accept the fact that not everyone is the same, that people believe in different things, in different religious beliefs and sexual beliefs and stuff, and that is okay. It does not make them any better or worse than you. It does not make you right, and them wrong. It should not make them the focus of ridicule, insults, pain or violence.

Just everyone get along believing what they want, and accept that all this diversity is awesome

6)   If you could give a young person one piece of advice, what would it be?

If you like something, don’t stop liking it because others don’t. It might be tragically hard to like, say, the piano, through school and high school, where bullies and those who would cause damage, pick on you. But once you’re through that, you’ll regret not continuing with things you enjoyed doing.

7)   What is something that you would like to do in your life that you haven’t done yet, and why haven’t you done it?

Go to the base camp of Mt Everest. I haven’t done it due to money, and physical conditioning.

8)   What is something that you have sworn to never do again, and why won’t you repeat it?

Not that I can think of, off the top of my head. Work in a factory, I guess. So little respect for the workers, just part of the bigger machine. Ugh. Eat Brussel Sprouts?

9)   If you could break one personal habit, what would it be and why would you break it?

Procrastination. It prevents me from being more productive and doing STUFF, including stuff outside.

10)   If you could take up a new hobby or learn a new skill, what would it be and why?

I am wanting to learn how to paint and mod up Nerf Guns, modify them visually; I want to learn to make cool ear rings out of lego and small star wars toys. Good fun and good to sell.

11)   Is there anything from you that we should be looking out for in the future?

Book 2 in my Girl From Out of Town trilogy, South of the Border. And look out for my monthly newsletter.

Thank you, Matthew, for taking the time to answer my questions. If you would like to know more about Matthew, you can find him on Facebook and Twitter. If you would like to sign up for his newsletter, you can do that here or at his website. His novel, The Girl From Out of Town, is available from Amazon and Smashwords.

Next Week: Wayne Bauman

Interview: Angus Templeton

In Actor, Australian, British, Director on September 13, 2012 at 9:00 am

Angus Templeton is a talented actor and director, who has spent the last few years roaming Germany and performing Shakespearean plays for school students. Raised in Australia, and currently based in the United Kingdom, he is preparing to return and embark on his next series of projects. Angus recently took the time to answer my questions.

1)   What is something you do in your professional or artistic life that you think is really cool?

As an actor, I think one of the most fun things to do is fall in love on stage – in fact, anything which involves heightened emotion. I was recently in Much Ado About Nothing playing Claudio, and tearing into Hero at the wedding was my favourite part of the show.

And in a broader sense – being in Shakespeare. Where everything you say is laden with huge amounts of meaning, but rolls off the tongue quickly and easily. I love Shakespeare for that reason.

When I’m a director – it’s the moment where you’re watching other people watch the show for the first time. Hearing the laughter and the silence when the audience is really pulled into the play. I find it hard to be aware, when I’m on stage, of whether what I’m doing is working or not, but as a director being able to watch it, and see that it works and works well is probably the coolest

2)   How did you come to be in the career position you are currently in?

Well, I was lucky. Very lucky actually. Being an actor is about pushing yourself as much as possible at everything that’s out there – being a successful actor anyway. I’ve never been very good at that, so I was lucky that I auditioned for the right company when I saw that they had an opening.

3)   What is something from your personal life that you are very proud of?

Learning how to cook? Man I don’t know.

Oh! Wait – when I wrote a bunch of sketches a few years ago with a friend, and getting to see people laugh at something I did. That was probably the thing I’m most proud of.

4)   What is a personality trait you possess that other people might not notice?

I’m quite shy and retiring, at heart. And I get over that by trying really hard not to be.

And alcohol.

5)   If you could change just one thing about the world, what would it be?

I’d make Australia a bilingual country, so I knew more than the one language. Probably German.

But maybe French. Chicks dig French.

6)   If you could give a young person one piece of advice, what would it be?

If you want to get anywhere, in any timely fashion in the creative industry, you need to do whatever it is you want to do (acting/directing/writing) 100% of the time. You need to push yourself at every opportunity there is, and take every job offered. Only when you start getting paid, consistently, for what you do, can you start to be discerning.

7)   What is something that you would like to do in your life that you haven’t done yet?

I haven’t directed a Shakespeare play. And I haven’t because I’ve lacked the confidence/experience.

But chances are I won’t be able to say that in about four or five months.

8)   What is something that you have sworn to never do again?

I will never again be attracted to someone in a show I’m directing. It’s distracting, and clouds your judgement.

9)   If you could break one personal habit, what would it be?

My addiction to procrastination.

10)   If you could take up a new hobby or learn a new skill, what would it be?

Wind surfing. I’ve always enjoyed that. But I never have the time or opportunity.

11)   Is there anything from you that we should be looking out for in the future?

One day I’d really like to see a modern version of Les Misérables. I’m sick and tired of the current one. I think it’d be fun to see it set in Paris now.

Thank you, Angus, for taking the time to answer my questions. If you would like to know more about  Angus, you can find him on Facebook and occasionally on Twitter.

Next Week: Matthew Farmer

Interview: Tania McCartney

In Australian, Author, Editor, Publisher on September 6, 2012 at 9:00 am

Tania McCartney is the perfect example of what happens when you give a determined woman too much coffee, because I can’t imagine how she could maintain her schedule without it and still look as full of life as she does. An author, editor, publisher and a book reviewer, this Australian is also an ACT Ambassador for the National Year of Reading. She is passionate about children’s literacy, which is why you might recognise her name in connection with Kids Book Review and the Riley series of books. Despite all of that going on, she also managed to release Beijing Tai Tai and Australian Story this year.  Tania recently took the time to answer my questions.

1)   What is something you do in your professional or artistic life that you think is really cool?

I get to ‘play’ with words and eventually have them touch people’s lives – especially children. Watching kids’ faces light up when reading my stories is surreal and utterly cool.

2)   How did you come to be in the career position you are currently in?

Hard work. Dedication. Tenacity. A deep love of writing and books.

3)   What is something from your personal life that you are very proud of?

I was absolutely thrilled to be asked to be an Ambassador for the National Year of Reading. I’m passionate about literacy, so to be recognised for this was a Life Moment. I’m proud of the way I manage to balance family with career. I don’t always succeed but I do make it a priority.

4)   What is a personality trait you possess that other people might not notice?

Self-awareness.

5)   If you could change just one thing about the world, what would it be?

That everyone should be more self-aware. If people could look openly and honestly at the impact they’re having on others and the world, we would be a much happier, healthier and more balanced race of people. I also think we need to laugh more. I know I do.

6)   If you could give a young person one piece of advice, what would it be?

Do what you love and never give up.

7)   What is something that you would like to do in your life that you haven’t done yet?

Spend three months of the year on a writing sabbatical – each time in a different part of the world. New York, the Amalfi Coast, Santorini and Norway would be a nice start.

8)   What is something that you have sworn to never do again?

Allow anyone to take advantage of my kindness.

9)   If you could break one personal habit, what would it be?

Sitting on my butt all day (writing).

10)   If you could take up a new hobby or learn a new skill, what would it be?

I’d love to learn to juggle and do backflips. I’d love to be fluent-multi-lingual – and skiing is something I absolutely know I would love.

11)   Is there anything from you that we should be looking out for in the future?

A totally new genre of books than I’m used to writing. I’m busting with new concepts.

Thank you, Tania, for taking the time to answer my questions.

If you would like to know more about Tania, you can visit her website, her Facebook page, or follow her on Twitter. Kids Book Review has enough resources to boggle the mind, so if you’re as passionate about literacy as Tania is, it’s worth a read.

Next Week: Angus Templeton

Interview: Herika R. Raymer

In American, Author, Editor on August 30, 2012 at 9:00 am

Herika R. Raymer is an American based in Tennessee. A freelance editor and speculative fiction writer, you might recognise her for her work with Cover of Darkness at Sam’s Dot Publishing or Imagyro Magazine, the official magazine of Imagicopter. I was told in no uncertain terms that I needed to track her down for this website. Fortunately for me she has been super easy to work with, and I don’t have to find out what would have happened if she had declined.

1)   What is something you do in your professional or artistic life that you think is really cool, and why do you think that about it?

I would have to say putting together my geekzine Imagyro Magazine. Why do I like it? Because it helps me draw attention to other people of talent, as I share interviews with them, their websites, and even their experiences at Conventions. I am also a part of Imagicopter – a voluntary co-op of artists and authors who try and promote one another through networking.

2)   How did you come to be in the career position you are currently in?

I am currently an Editor for Cover of Darkness from Sam’s Dot Publishing. I got the position by writing and having a few stories published. The publisher who saw it liked my writing, then talked with me and liked me, so he offered me a chance to read slush as Assistant Editor. The stories I selected impressed him, along with my reasons why, and he promoted me to Editor. It is great experience, and I believe has helped me with my own writing.

3)   What is something from your personal life that you are very proud of?

From my personal life I am proud of my two beautiful children who are intelligent, imaginative, and constantly impress me with their drawings, inventions, and stories. I love them very much!

4)   What is a personality trait you possess that other people might not notice?

That I do listen when people talk to me, and they would probably miss it because I look distracted a lot. I am listening to the person talking to me, but often look around to see what is going on. I am not trying to be rude, I just am interested in my surroundings.

5)   If you could change just one thing about the world, what would it be and why would you change it?

That people would take responsibility for their actions and decisions, and that includes me. Why? Without getting too deep, because I believe taking ownership of one’s actions and decisions would undoubtedly prompt necessary change overall. Of course, I could be wrong.

6)   If you could give a young person one piece of advice, what would it be?

Know that you are loved. Somewhere, someway, there is someone who loves you. I know a lot of people who need to hear that.

7)   What is something that you would like to do in your life that you haven’t done yet, and why haven’t you done it?

Make a living from writing! Which I most likely have not done yet because I have not found a product that breaches the small percentage of stories that are highly marketable. Yet I keep hoping to write it!

8)   What is something that you have sworn to never do again?

Never become part of management, in anything – jobs, committees, conventions, etc. Too much confrontation and stress. Not good for my health.

9)   If you could break one personal habit, what would it be and why would you break it?

Procrastination, and let me get back to you on that. (smile)

10)   If you could take up a new hobby or learn a new skill, what would it be?

Animation, have always loved drawing and would like to be able to draw an animation.

11)   Is there anything from you that we should be looking out for in the future?

Yes, ‘Charm of Dragonelles’ from Kerlak Publishing – a novel I am currently wrapping up. I sincerely hope people will enjoy it, as it is a fantasy story meant for all ages. I would go into more, but I would like to wait until it is published.

Thank you, Herika, for taking the time to answer my questions.

If you would like to know more about Herika, you can find her on Facebook or at her website. You can also find the latest addition of Imagyro on their website.

Next Week: Tania McCartney

Interview: Mandi M. Lynch

In American, Author, Editor, Graphic Designer, Photographer, Publisher on August 23, 2012 at 7:30 am

Mandi M. Lynch is an American who seems to be trying to personally modernize the glorious breadth of skill that came with the Renaissance. Based in Tennessee, she’s the creative head at Ink Monkey Press, which means she is an editor, a writer, a photographer, a graphic designer … phew! I’m tired just thinking about it. As if that isn’t enough, you might have also seen her publications with Clockwork Spells and Magical Bells, Pill Hill Press, and a range of online sources. She graciously took the time to answer my 11 questions.

1)   What is something you do in your professional or artistic life that you think is really cool?

I know I should talk about my writing here, but really, I have to say photography. There’s something about looking at an object that a thousand other people have seen and taking a photo that makes somebody look at it in a different way.

2)   How did you come to be in the career position you are currently in?

Dumb luck and good friends. And maybe a little skill on my part.

I remember sitting in a Starbucks (and I don’t even like coffee!) with my good friend Eric Wilson, making fun of my rejection letters. (The one with four point font and a dozen extra commas in was particularly funny.) By the time we were done, I decided that I could do that and put out a good product. Thus, Ink Monkey was born.

Life has thrown me some crap. Writing is my way of dealing with it and understanding it.

3)   What is something from your personal life that you are very proud of?

I’m a good person, damn it!

4)   What is a personality trait you possess that other people might not notice?

That I’m smart and I would do anything for anybody. I don’t often take a bunch of crap from people, though, and a lot of people can’t be bothered to look past that and see me for me. It’s their loss. I’m awesome.

5)   If you could change just one thing about the world, what would it be?

I’d teach everyone that people are people. Strip everything away, and we have the same needs and desires – to love and be loved (and that basic oxygen/food/lodging thing). Maybe if we could remember that, the world would be a better place.

6)   If you could give a young person one piece of advice, what would it be?

Love unconditionally and never be afraid to be yourself. I’ve spent too much time watching life happen because I was afraid of what would happen. And I’ve lost a lot because of it.

7)   What is something that you would like to do in your life that you haven’t done yet?

Get married. Have kids. Unfortunately, that requires a man first. Any takers out there? I’m looking for a left-handed redhead that doesn’t mind cleaning. S**t, no wonder I’m single.

8)   What is something that you have sworn to never do again?

Work at Panera. That was the worst job I ever had, and I will live homeless under a bridge and never write again before I go back to that.

9)   If you could break one personal habit, what would it be?

Self-depreciation. I’m really good at saying I suck. And thinking it.

10)   If you could take up a new hobby or learn a new skill, what would it be?

Tatting. Seriously. My great-grandmother tatted into her mid 90s. I’d like to just be able to make bookmarks. LOL!

I also wish I could sew.

11)   Is there anything from you that we should be looking out for in the future?

I’ve already been accepted for Pill Hill Press’s Daily Flash and Daily Horror anthos (should be published in Nov or Dec), and I have a dozen feelers out there. Really, I should submit more.

Thank you, Mandi, for answering my questions.

If you would like to know more about Mandi, you can check out her website. If you would like to know more about Ink Monkey Press, you can visit their website too.

Next Week: Herika R. Raymer.

First Interview, Coming Soon

In Uncategorized on August 20, 2012 at 5:03 pm

Welcome to Catherine Asks 11 Questions.

While you patiently wait for the first interview to go live, please feel free to read the information pages here.

There will be some exciting people here in the future.

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