Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Interview with Amy Grech

Amy Grech has sold over one hundred stories and three poems to various anthologies and magazines including: Apex Digest, Fear on Demand, Funeral Party 2, Inhuman Magazine, The Book of Dark Wisdom, The Flash Fiction Offensive, The Horror Express, Space & Time, The Brutarian, Zombie CSU, and many others. Damnation Books published her second collection, Blanket of White.  Fallen Angel, a novella written with Mike McCarty, has just been released at Darkside Digital.

She is an Active Member of the Horror Writers Association who lives in Brooklyn. Visit her Web site: http://www.crimsonscreams.com.  Follow her on Twitter: http://twitter.com/amy_grech.

What drew you to the horror genre?

I was raised Catholic; that had a lot to do with it. Funny, I’m not very religious now.

Horror is an intense emotion that everyone has experienced at one point—we’re all afraid of something: death, rejection, etc. Horror is also extremely cathartic, enabling me to work through my fears without the expense of a therapist!

What scares you?

I’m afraid of rejection. Sadly, I’m still single and it seems whenever I’m approached by a guy asking for directions on the subway, I’ll help him get where he needs to go, but when I try to strike up a conversation, he just smiles and says, “I’m on my way to meet my girlfriend,” or something similar…

Why do you think there are fewer women writing horror than men?

The Horror genre is male dominated. I think men feel threatened by women who write Horror and are successful because they’re not afraid to get down and dirty!

Who are some women horror authors that you admire?

Lisa Mannetti, Joyce Carol Oates, Lisa Morton and Lucy Snyder.

What is your advice to aspiring women horror writers?

Read many authors in the genre, good and bad, so you’ll know what’s being published and what not do to. Attending conventions is a great way catch Editors’ attention, especially at the late-night parties!

What are your favourite horror novels?

The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake by Aimee Bender, The Girl Next Door by Jack Ketchum, The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold.

Who are your favourite authors? Who influenced you the most?

An Aunt introduced me to Stephen King’s novels when I was 12.  I started with Cujo and have been hooked ever since!

Other influences include: Franz Kafka, H. P. Lovecraft, Joyce Carol Oates, Edgar Allan Poe, Mary Shelley, and Alice Sebold.

You’ve written several short stories. Do you have a favourite? Why?

The title story from my collection is my favorite; it was also the most difficult to write due to the subject matter. The title story actually evolved ten years ago, when I saw a real life story on the news about a little girl who had a terminal illness and the compassionate way her father chose to end her suffering. The little girl in my story, Suzy, is extremely remarkable despite her illness. “Blanket of White” has a profound affect on readers who are also parents. 
Can you tell us about your most recent short story collection, Blanket of White?

Blanket of White is a collection of 14 short stories, mainly horror, though there are a few sci-fi/horror hybrids as well. The title story is a quiet horror story, as are “Perishables,” “Rampart,” “Prevention,” Raven’s Revenge,” and “Damp Wind and Leaves.” Two sci-fi/horror hybrids are “Perishables” and “EV 2000.” The more extreme stories would be “Come and Gone,” “Cold Comfort,” “Initiation Day,” “Crosshairs,” “Russian Roulette,” and “Apple of My Eye.”

You’ve also written a novella, Fallen Angel, with Mike McCarthy. Can you tell us about it?

Michael McCarty and I really clicked. The initial story idea that became Fallen Angel was his, but he wanted to collaborate with a woman to bring Angel to life!

When she turns eighteen, Angel McAllister forcibly endures an incestuous relationship with her father. Angel's long-time friend and sarcastic, stand-up comedian Uncle Brew pays her a visit to catch up on old times and consoles Angel when she learns of her father's death. And strange things start happening when she moves back home.

Do you own an e-reader? How do you think e-readers are changing the publishing industry?

I don’t own an e-reader.  I see people with Kindles on the subway all the time; no need to lug heavy books around anymore! 

I can tell you that the Kindle edition of Blanket of White is outselling the paperback; probably because people can download books instantly, without having to wait in line at a bookstore.  Digital editions appeal to publishers because there are no printing or shipping costs.

What do you hope readers get out of your work?

If I’ve done my job, my stories will linger in my readers’ minds long after they’ve read the last paragraph. I strive to create characters and stories that everyone can relate to.

What are you currently working on?

A novella set in a once-run down neighborhood in NYC, Alphabet City. The story centers around a devious eye doctor, who’s looking to let loose. Things get carried away when he meets Ruby, an 18-year-old writer at Anatomy Bar. They witness the latest crazy among college students, Vodka Eyeballing, where they pour vodka shots directly into their eyes to get drunk faster. Ruby invites the doctor back to her apartment near by. They hook up and he kills her with his scalpel. A couple of months later, he meets Gia, her older sister a piercing specialist/tattoo artist with scars on her face at a different bar. She picks him up and invites the doctor back to the apartment she shares with her father, who has a nasty temper. He beats the doctor senseless in their living room then goes for the jugular with the doctor’s scalpel, payback for Ruby’s senseless murder.


4 comments:

Conda V. Douglas said...

Good interview--I'll be heading out to late night parties after the Mayhem in the Grove conference!

Amy Grech said...

Glad you enjoyed!

Fran Friel said...

Those horns are so apropos, Amy. Great interview, doll.

Hugs,
Fran

Amy Grech said...

Thanks, Fran! I got them signed by Joe Hill himself @ an event in NYC last year! God you enjoyed the interview!