Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Interview with Erin Thorne.

Full Name:
Erin Thorne

Do you have a nickname or what do your friends call you?
Some call me “Red,” which I rather like.
I was at a horror convention once and I tried to use that to pick up a girl.  I was like, “Hey!  What’s up Red?” and she was all, “You’re not the first to say that.” so I was all, alright then, guess she’s not buying what I’m selling.  Found her on Facebook and we hashed it out.  Turns out she’s shy and I scared her with the directness and confidence of my approach.  Hey, when I’m at a convention, I’m usually in town for only three days and a thousand miles away from home.  I don’t have time to hear about all of your hard luck and heartbreaks and hopes and dreams.  And don’t message me a week later telling me you’re interested.  If we’ve got chemistry, let’s make like photographers and go into a darkroom and see what develops.
It wouldn’t have been Rock & Shock, by any chance?  I’ve been there, and it’s not for the faint of heart.  I had a great time, though, and used my own patented Stupid Magic Trick as a way to hand out business cards.
I’ve been to almost every Rock & Shock since the first one.  I used to work as a horror-genre merchandise brand manager so we’d get a couple tables and try our luck.  I think that the convention has a lot of potential, but they won’t hire me to help them make it into the convention that it could be so I guess they’ll have to be content with the gradual organic growth they’ve been experiencing over the past ten years.  For the past few years I’ve been working the booth for the Arkham Film Society.  The Arkham Film Society juries the Rock & Shock Film Festival and programs the films for the film room and in exchange we get a free table which I use to hang a bunch of my art and try to sell it.  I usually make a few sales each year, but not enough to cover the time I have to take off of work, but hanging out at a free table at a horror convention is, if not more fun, at least more interesting than working that weekend.  Plus we usually talk our way into the celebrity reception at The Palladium which is catered and the food is usually pretty decent so the free meal helps to make up for the loss of income.
I went this year with the NEHW, and had a blast! Book sales weren’t bad, some of the costumes were amazing, and I saw the back of Brian O’Halloran’s head.  He wasn’t even supposed to be there that day…
He loves that joke.  It definitely doesn’t make him die a little more inside every time he hears it.

Worcester, MA

Current hometown:
Sturbridge, MA
I bet you’re glad you’re not in Worcester anymore.  In my post-apocalyptic zombie-epidemic book project I turn Worcester into a burning pit of cannibals.  I’m not sure most of the current residents would notice the difference.
There are a few bright spots, like the Worcester Art Museum, but I do try to avoid it for the most part.

Favorite city and why?
I’m partial to Salem, MA.  It’s the birthplace of Nathaniel Hawthorne (who is one of my favorite authors), and there’s so much history to the place.  When you walk along its cobblestone streets and visit Pickering Wharf, it’s like encountering a blend of the modern and the classical.  Plus, the shopping is unparalleled!
I keep forgetting that Salem is one of my favorite cities!  Thanks for reminding me!
No problem!  It really is a great place to spend the day, especially in warmer months.

Birthday / Age:
March 21st / 35

How would you describe yourself physically?
I’d say I’m fairly fit, of somewhat small build, and physically energetic.
It doesn’t help that your boyfriend is ten feet tall.
It helps when I wear heels…

How would someone else describe you physically?
Hopefully, the same.

The first thing people notice about you is…
My smile!  I love meeting new people, and my first impulse is to greet them with a grin.

Religion, if any?
I describe myself as a Zen Pagan Atheist.  It’s an eclectic blend of principles that make sense to me.  Zen Buddhism has a great deal of peaceful, simple wisdom and a real sense to connectedness to the Universe, and Paganism is a beautiful, meaningful way to feel as though one is a part of the Earth and bound to its creatures.  The atheism aspect comes from the fact that I don’t believe in deities as separate, all-powerful beings, but as facets of the human experience that take on personal and communal meaning when you focus on that archetype.
Well, that’s an answer that I haven’t gotten before.  Answers like this make me glad I kept the question in the questionnaire.  I was going to take it out because I kept getting sucked into metaphysical arguments, I mean, “discussions” with Christians.  But I’m getting better at not making fun of them for believing in an invisible man that lives in the sky and grants wishes if you close your eyes and think real hard.
I try to stay out of religious debates whenever possible.  I haven’t found too many people with the same perspective as me, and several seem to have convictions that are too deeply rooted in their emotions to be subjected to logical explanation.

Are you superstitious at all? Any phobias?
I’m not superstitious, but I am afraid of heights.

Do you smoke / drink? If so, what? Any bad habits?
I enjoy the occasional drink; depending on what I’m in the mood for, it will be a dirty martini, a glass of wine, or a beer.  Every now and then, a sweet liqueur is nice, too.

Current occupation / Dream job:
I write, of course, and I also help out at my boyfriend’s gallery, making concrete statuary and art.  After these two occupations, my dream job would be a high-profile, international food critic.

What do you like to do when you’re not at work?
I have two children, and OCD.  I’m always at work.

What is your zombie outbreak survival plan?
If possible, head for an unpopulated island somewhere in the Pacific.  If not, a home in the mountains seems like a good idea, equipped with a wood-burning stove and a stockpile of food and weapons/ammo.  The higher up, the better; I don’ think zombies are very good climbers.

Weapon of choice:

Do you have any special skills?
I’m a decent cook, I know how to sew and crochet, and I can build a fire in less than ten minutes.

Did you go to college and, if so, what for?
I did; alas, I couldn’t pick just one area of knowledge, so I ended up with a degree in General Studies.  It was a great experience, though, and I learned about a wide range of subjects.  Plus, I took a Speech Communication class, which helped me to overcome my fear of public speaking.

If you went to college, did you manage to pay off your student loans?
I didn’t have any!

Any pets?   If so, what are they and what are their names?
No pets; there are a couple of caged finches here that suck up free food and make a mess, however, and I’d be glad to give them away to a good home…

What is your favorite animal?
Domestic, cats; wild, hawks.

Speaking of pets, any pet peeves?
Tardiness bugs the bejesus out of me.  I like being on time, and I also value punctuality in others.

Favorite / Least favorite Food:
I don’t think I can pick a favorite!  I love trying new foods, and savoring old classics. I have a sweet tooth as well; that being said, I won’t eat licorice, and I really don’t like Brussels sprouts.
What’s wrong with licorice?
The taste.  It’s one of the few candies I won’t touch.

What is your favorite quotation / motto / saying?
The ones I tend to use the most are “Work smarter, not harder,” and “I know what I’m doing.”

What is the best thing that ever happened to you?
That’s a tough one.  There have been many good things that have happened in my life, but the ones that stand out are the births of my children, and meeting my significant other.
Yeah, those tend to be a lot better than all of those insignificant others.
It’s amazing how, when you meet someone truly significant, how quickly others pale in comparison.

What is the worst thing that ever happened to you?
Also a tough question to answer.  There’s been nothing terribly traumatic, and I’ve been able to see even the more undesirable circumstances as learning experiences.

Ever had your heart broken? Is there a story worth telling behind your answer?
I have.  The story is the standard one of immaturity and overexcitement, and it’s been told ad nauseam by humankind already.

Ever broken someone’s heart? Is there a story worth telling behind your answer?
I’m pretty sure I’ve broken a couple, but it might be considered arrogant to say that with too much conviction.

What is the best thing you’ve ever done?
I’ve brought two lovely children into the world, and they prove they’re my best accomplishments just by being who they are.

What is the worst thing you’ve ever done?
Snowboarding.  It was horrible.  I was bruised from the waist down for two weeks, and spent one freezing day falling down repeatedly.

If you could kill one person, who would it be, and why?
I don’t have anyone specific in mind; however, if anyone seriously hurt or killed a loved one, I’m not sure how much self-control I’d have regarding their assailant.

What do you do?
I write!

How did you get started doing what you do?
In first grade, I won a poetry contest.  My poem was published in the local paper, and my prize was a Carvel ice cream cake shaped like a jack-o’-lantern.  Years later, in high school, one of my teachers wrote some incredibly kind feedback on an assignment I’d submitted – a short story in the horror genre.  Writing had been a dream of mine ever since.  After I attended a presentation given by a literary agent at the local library, I dedicated more time to making it a reality, and am enjoying the results.
You had me at “Carvel ice cream cake shaped like a jack-o’-lantern.”
It was delicious.  I wish that more contests geared toward adults would award them.

What is your advice to other people that want to get started doing what you do?
Write daily, especially on days when you have emotions that are difficult to process.  It helps, and can charge your work with real feeling.  Networking is crucial as well, in addition to self-promotion once you have a finished work.

What are some of the projects you’ve worked on/finished in the past?
Give us a little history if you will.
I have three books out: Diane’s Descent, Deals Diabolical, and Behind the Wheel. In addition, I’ve had a few stories in various anthologies, as well as in IdeaGems Magazine when it went by the name Adventures for the Average Woman.
Thank you for knowing to italicize your book titles.  You may or may not be surprised at how many authors do not know how to format book titles.
I was a little rusty on the correct format, so I used this wondrous thing called a “search engine” to find out if I was doing it properly.
This is one of my favorite sites… http://lmgtfy.com/

What projects are you working on now?
I’m in the home stretch of a new collection of short stories, and have begun the outline for a horror novel that I plan to work on once my current project is done.
Ooh!  A new novel!  I’d ask what it’s going to be about but I don’t want to jinx you!
I won’t give anything away, but I will say it’s loosely based on part of my childhood.

What are you watching?
It depends on my mood.  I enjoy comedy, fantasy, science fiction, older horror movies, and a few TV programs.  My favorite show, which is on hiatus until March, is “Once Upon a Time.”

What are you listening to?
At the moment, the sound of falling rain.

What are you reading?
I’m reading The Brothers Karamazov by Dostoyevsky at the moment.  It fits the New England winter – cold and wild, with a fire inside.

Favorite author / book?
I could never pick one; a few of my favorite authors are Ray Bradbury, H. P. Lovecraft, Edgar Allan Poe, H. G. Wells, George Orwell, Marcel Proust… It really is an almost endless list.
That’s weird… wait till you read the bio I tag onto every interview.  We’re book twins!
Let’s try this.  Favorite stories by Bradbury, Lovecraft and Poe respectively.  GO!
Bradbury: The Halloween Tree
Lovecraft: “The Silver Key”
Poe: “The Masque of the Red Death”

Favorite band / song?
Much like what I choose to watch, it depends on my mood.  There’s a rock station out of Boston that played some Quiet Riot this morning, which I liked.

Least favorite band / song?
There are so many that annoy me, both new and old, and I can’t pinpoint the one I like the least.

If you could do anything other than what you do now, what would you do?
International food critic, all expenses paid, plus salary.

Who would you want to meet that you haven’t met?
You get three choices: Alive. Dead. Fictional.
I choose all three.
Alive: any of my favorite actors from OUAT, because I think they’re wonderful.
Dead: Oscar Wilde, because I love his work, and he seemed like the life of any party.
Fictional: Severus Snape, because like most tragic literary heroes, he could use a hug.
D’aw!  I used to work with adolescents and one of the girls I worked with had a speech impediment and she used to say “I WOVE Awan Wickman!”.  It was adorable!

What’s the best and worst job you’ve ever had?
The best jobs would be the ones I do now.  The worst was waitressing.  I met some great people during the period that I held that position, some of whom ended up being lifelong friends, but the job itself was brutal and often thankless.  To this day, I try to be extra-nice to servers when I go out to eat.

Are there any questions that I didn’t ask that you wished I had asked that you would like to answer now?
No, I think this was a pretty comprehensive list.

Anyone you recommend I interview that you can put me in touch with?
Stacey Longo Harris.  She’s a fellow author, the co-owner of an independent bookstore in CT, and an all-around cool person.
Cool!  I sent her an imaginary friend request.
Be sure to ask her about Richard Hatch.

Got any questions for me?
What’s your favorite element of conducting interviews?
The part where I get to talk about myself.  But, in all seriousness, I like the way that I managed to make it a correspondence/conversational style interview.  I used to have pen-pals and I miss having pen-pals.  This way I get to “meet” and get to know new and interesting people and I never have to leave the house.  The older I get, the worse my social phobia gets.  I don’t really like humans.  They’ll let you down and hurt your feelings if you let them. 
Sadly, that can be all too true.  I still enjoy meeting new people in person at signings.  I’ve actually become much more extroverted over the years, due to the fact that I care far less about the judgments of others.  I don’t think I’ve had a pen pal since the second grade, but from what I can remember, it was a lot of fun!

Thanks for letting me subject you to being interviewed!
No problem; thank you for interviewing me!

Pitch parade:
Give me all of your links for things you want to promote.   All of them.
Facebook: www.facebook.com/authorerinthorne
Twitter: @ErinThorne1
Website: www.erinthorne.org
Amazon Author Page: www.amazon.com/author/erinthorne

About the Interviewee:
Erin Thorne is a lifelong resident of Massachusetts, where she lives with her family. She writes primarily paranormal fiction, and is the author of Diane’s Descent, a supernatural novella set in a rural New York town, as well as Deals Diabolical, a collection of eight spine-tingling tales. In addition, she’s written a book of short stories encompassing science fiction, fantasy, and the supernatural, titled Behind the Wheel. Ms. Thorne is also a member of the New England Horror Writers Association, a regional organization composed of authors who specialize in horror and dark fiction.
Her work has been featured in Adventures for the Average Woman (now IdeaGems Magazine), Reflections of the End (Author’s Choice Select Anthologies 1), and Canopic Jars: Tales of Mummies and Mummification. She also has a story in the anthology, Willow, Weep No More, released by Tenebris Books.

About the Interviewer:
Scott Lefebvre 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.
He is currently working on ten novel-length book projects which will be released in 2014.
He also publishes themed collections of interviews from his interview blog You Are Entitled To My Opinion.
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: theendoftheworldisnighbook.blogspot.com
Check out the Facebook Fan Page for the project here: www.facebook.com/TheEndOfTheWorldIsNighBook
Check his author profile at: www.amazon.com/Scott-Lefebvre/e/B001TQ2W9G
Follow him at GoodReads here:
Check out his publishing imprint Burnt Offerings Books here:
And here: http://burntofferingsbooks.blogspot.com/
Check out his electronic music here: soundcloud.com/master_control
And here: master-control.bandcamp.com
Check out his videos at: www.youtube.com/user/doctornapoleon
Check out his IMDB profile here: www.imdb.com/name/nm3678959
Follow his Twitter here: twitter.com/TheLefebvre or @TheLefebvre
Follow his Tumblr here: thelefebvre.tumblr.com
Check out his Etsy here: www.etsy.com/shop/ScottLefebvreArt
Join the group for The Arkham Film Society here:
Stalk his Facebook at: www.facebook.com/TheLefebvre
E-mail him at: Scott_Lefebvre@hotmail.com

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