Thursday, December 12, 2013

Interview with Bryan Cassiday.

Full Name:
Bryan Cassiday

New York City

How would you describe yourself physically?
In reasonably good health.  So far, so good.

Sexual orientation?

Religion, if any?
How would you define that? I know what it means but potential readers might be interested in knowing a bit more.
I can understand your asking.  There are a lot of different riffs on existentialism.  We’ve got Camus and Sartre, Kierkegaard and Heidegger, as well as Nietzsche, to a lesser extent.  The way I interpret it is, we each live alone in an absurd, incomprehensible, hostile world and must learn how to cope with it with the freedom of our thoughts and actions.
That works for me. I know a lot of people can’t handle the thought that there’s not a benevolent invisible hand on the wheel and that not everything “happens for a reason” and the thought of being responsible for their own fate is intimidating so they seek solace in religion, but I think you and I are cut from a different bolt of cloth. Cheers!

Do you smoke/drink? If so, what?
I drink pinot noir and pinot grigio.  Beer.

Current occupation / Dream job:
Writer / Writer and film director.

What do you like to do when you’re not at work?
Read.  Go to the track.  Go to movies.  Walk.

What is your zombie outbreak survival plan?
I live near the beach.  When the outbreak occurs, I’m heading for the ocean.

Weapon of choice:
Meat cleaver.

Do you have any special skills?
I can type.  Do they still teach typing?
When I was in junior high school in eighth grade they had me take typing class. The next year, they gutted the typewriter room and installed twenty or thirty computers and I was in computer class. They tried to teach us BASIC but it was boring and there was only so much they could teach us as the teacher was old and the technology was new. Also, spending a whole class period typing basic code just to get a pixilated image of a circle to appear on your computer screen wasn’t very rewarding.
The QWERTY typing keyboard is the same as a computer’s, so learning to type helped me type faster on a computer.
True, but it didn’t help me any. I tried to use the “home keys” method, but it never stuck. I’m just really fast at hunt-and-pecking.
I hunt and peck with my forefinger on smartphones.  Knowing how to type is useless on those gizmos.
I find the Swype feature on my Samsung Galaxy S3 is pretty handy.  You’ve got to give your phone a chance to figure out your style but once it gets used to you it’s a pretty decent time-saver.

Did you go to college and, if so, what for?
If you went to college, did you manage to pay off your student loans?
Yes.  It seemed like the right thing to do at the time.  I graduated with a BA in English.  No loans.

What is your favorite animal?
A tiger.  Tiger, tiger burning bright. . . . Lions are cool, too.
Ever seen a liger? They’re awesome and terrifying!
I have seen a tiger in a zoo.  I’ve never seen one in its natural habitat--the jungle or in a savannah.  To do that must really be awesome and terrifying.  The same with a lion, the king of the jungle.
No! A “LIGER” half-lion / half-tiger. They’re like the donkey of the big cats and they’re fucking terrifying! Like ten feet note-tip to tail-tip and all muscle claws and teeth!
I’ve never seen one of those critters, and it sounds like I’m lucky I haven’t, especially in a dark alley.
I saw one at King Richard’s faire one year.  A local ren fair that for some reason incorporated an animal show.  I think if I ever ran into one in an alley, dark or otherwise I’d shit myself and hope that liger’s don’t like shit sauce with their human snacks.   Not that the shitting myself would be intentional.  That would probably happen either way.

Speaking of pets, any pet peeves?
People who talk loudly on cell phones wherever they are.  I get the impression they’re trying to show off.
I also hate that.
Your personal conversation shouldn’t be a public performance.
Exactly.  If I want a performance, I’ll go to a theater.  It’s much more entertaining—if it’s a decent movie, anyway.  Individuals chattering on their cell phones aren’t very entertaining.
I wouldn’t half mind if the conversations were interesting. But it’s always the most banal bullshit ever to be made with human mouths. Catch up on the life stories of the blood relatives you can’t bother to make time to catch up with in person on your own time.

They have no respect for the people standing around them.  They.  Are.  Rude.

Favorite / Least favorite Food:
Hamburgers. / Lasagna.

What is your favorite quotation / motto / saying?
We’re all of us in the gutter but some of us are looking at the stars.—Oscar Wilde

What is the best thing that ever happened to you?
I’m still waiting.

What is the worst thing that ever happened to you?
I don’t want to think about it.

Ever had your heart broken? Is there a story worth telling behind your answer?  Yes.  Her panties had pictures of little red cleavers on them.

Ever broken someone’s heart? Is there a story worth telling behind your answer?  I hope so.  I wouldn’t know.

What is the best thing you’ve ever done?
Written another book.

What is the worst thing you’ve ever done?
I’ve forgotten.

If you could kill one person, consequence free, who would it be and why?
Don’t tempt me.
Consider yourself tempted.
You sound like Mephistopheles.
I smoke cloves, so everything I won smells like cloves. I often say it’s my sulfur and brimstone. So if you ever say you’d sell your soul for something and you smell cloves… beware!

What do you do?

How did you get started doing what you do?
Back in high school.  Maybe before.  I wrote horror poems like Poe’s when I was young.  I wrote one about killing a raven with a shotgun.  Pretty violent stuff.
I started off with poetry too. I think it’s a great way to play with prose as short experiments, but thankfully none of my early efforts have come back to haunt me.
Likewise, I wouldn’t show any of my early poems to anyone.  Hopefully, they’re lost, but then again, they might be stuffed in a closet somewhere in my mother’s apartment.
Hopefully if anything they’ll resurface after you’re dead.

I’ll turn in my grave if they do.
You work in the zombie genre sometimes.  Maybe you can turn it into a story idea.  Cut me in if you do, I’ll send you my payment information.

What is your advice to other people that want to get started doing what you do?
Never give up, but always have a backup plan.

What are some of the projects you’ve worked on/finished in the past? Give us a little history if you will.
The Chad Halverson zombie apocalypse series.  It has five books, so far.  In order they are:  “Zombie Maelstrom,” “Zombie Necropolis,” “Sanctuary in Steel,” “Kill Ratio,” and “Poxland.”
Sounds interesting. Once I get caught up on my review queue I might hit you up for PDFs to check out for my book review blog. Tell us a bit more about the series.
In a nutshell, a plague has infected the human race.  The plague is called a zombie virus because it kills people then resurrects them as flesh-eating zombies.  At first, it is thought that the plague started in China, but that turns out not to be the case.  As the series progresses, we find out how the plague really started.  In that respect, the series unfolds like a mystery novel.  It’s like peeling away the layers of an onion to find out what’s inside.

What projects are you working on now?
I’m thinking about doing another book in my Chad Halverson zombie apocalypse series.  I’m also writing short stories.

What are you watching?
The Pit and the Pendulum, directed by Roger Corman.
Good choice. Vincent Price and Barbara Steele? You could do much worse.
Definitely.  Barbara Steele is the queen of horror divas.  There’s nobody really like her nowadays, or, for that matter, like Vincent Price.

What are you listening to?
The score to it.

What are you reading?
Phantom by Jo Nesbo.

Favorite author / book?
I really don’t have a favorite.

Favorite band / song?
Guns n’ Roses.  “Welcome to the Jungle.”

Least favorite band / song?
Simon and Garfunkel.  “Bridge over Troubled Waters.”

If you could do anything other than what you do now, what would you do?
Direct movies.

Who would you want to meet that you haven’t met? You get three choices:
Alive. Dead. Fictional.
Alive: Stephen King—I want to see if he’s really taller than me.
Dead:  Dracula.
Fictional:  Dracula.

What’s the best and worst job you’ve ever had?
Worst:  I was a courier for a company in Hollywood.  I had to use my own car.  My brakes went out once as I was driving down a very steep hill. I thought that was the end of me.

Are there any questions that I didn’t ask that you wished I had asked that you would like to answer now?
What is my newest book?  “Poxland,” a zombie apocalypse thriller, which was just released this month.

Thanks for letting me subject you to being interviewed!

Pitch parade:
Give me all of your links for things you want to promote.   All of them.

About the Interviewee:
Bryan Cassiday writes horror fiction and thrillers.  He wrote the Chad Halverson zombie apocalypse series, which includes “Zombie Maelstrom,” “Zombie Necropolis,” “Sanctuary in Steel,” “Kill Ratio,” and “Poxland.”  His horror story “The Invisible Enemy” is being included in the anthology “Horror Society Stories Volume One,” which is scheduled to be published in December 2013.  He lives in Southern California.

About the Interviewer:
Scott Lefebvre has probably read everything you've read and can write about whatever you want him to write about.
Mostly because when he was grounded for his outlandish behavior as a hyperactive school child, the only place he was allowed to go was the public library.
His literary tastes were forged by the works of Helen Hoke, Alvin Schwartz and Stephen Gammell, Ray Bradbury, Richard Matheson, Stephen King, Clive Barker, Edgar Allan Poe, and H. P. Lovecraft.
He is the author of Spooky Creepy Long Island and a contributing author to Forrest J. Ackerman’s Anthology of the Living Dead, Fracas: A Collection of Short Friction, The Call of Lovecraft, and Cashiers du Cinemart.
His reviews have been published by a variety of in print and online media including Scars Magazine, Icons of Fright, Fatally Yours and Screams of Terror, and he has appeared in Fangoria, Rue Morgue and HorrorHound Magazine.
He is the Assistant Program Director for The Arkham Film Society and produces Electronic Music under the names Master Control and LOVECRAFTWORK.
He is currently working on a novel-length expansion of a short-story titled, "The End Of The World Is Nigh", a crowd-funded, crowd-sourced, post-apocalyptic, zombie epidemic project.
Check out the blog for the book here:
Check out the Facebook Fan Page for the project here:
Check his author profile at:
Follow him at GoodReads here:
Check out his publishing imprint Burnt Offerings Books here:
And here:
Check out his electronic music here:
And here:
Check out his videos at:
Check out his IMDB profile here:
Follow his Twitter here: or @TheLefebvre
Follow his Tumblr here:
Check out his Etsy here:
Join the group for The Arkham Film Society here:
Stalk his Facebook at:
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