Hey, gang! I have another fantastic interview for you this week! As we continue on with Women in Horror Month, I’d like to welcome Sara Brooke to the blog. Sara is the author of some awesome, creative horror tales such as Still Lake, Gardens of Babylon, and most recently, Renovation, published by Sinister Grin Press. Enjoy the interview and be sure to check out all of Sara’s works here!
TIM MEYER: Let’s start by telling us a little about your latest book release.
SARA BROOKE: My latest release is Renovation from Sinister Grin Press. This book was really a pleasure to write because I am not a fan of big home renovations given the intrusion of people stampeding through the house, trekking dirt everywhere and making a general mess. This story obviously takes things a few steps further and it was fun to write. I must say that I do have an amazing handyman named Kelly who helps me deal with my “don’t-come-into-my-house-to-fix-things-because-you’ll-make-a-mess” issues.
TM: What seriously messed up moment in your life made you want to become a horror author?
SB: I love horror books. Always have. Spent years sifting through books at local used bookstores so that I could buy them by the handfuls. The crazy thing is that now I am actually friends with some of the writers I initially met by combing through the pages of their books.
TM: Do you prefer writing shorter works or full-length novels?
SB: Shorter works. But the books do better commercially.
TM: Name some writers who have influenced your work.
SB: Bentley Little, John Saul.
TM: Was there a particular horror film/book that impacted you as a writer? You can have more than one!
SB: The Shining was pretty intense, and I liked the atmospheric way that Stephen King writes. I also really enjoyed the film. To have that much madness and evil in one place is simply delicious.
TM: What’s your writing process like? Do you outline?
SB: I do create a bulleted outline and a cast of characters to follow. But sometimes, the story veers off course. In that case, you just go with it and see where it takes you.
TM: What do you love about writing?
SB: The immersion. The creation of a world that changes by the stroke of a pen or the click of a key.
TM: What do you enjoy about the horror genre?
SB: The horror genre is in essence, the art of fear. It is never completely explained by logic or science and always keeps you on the edge of your seat.
TM: Do you have any advice for aspiring writers?
SB: Just write. Don’t be competitive with other writers. The beauty in this art form is that you can create your own, unique style of storytelling – even if the topic has been done before. Do it your way. And encourage other writers. Fewer people are reading nowadays, so we all have to encourage each other.
TM: What does “Women in Horror Month” mean to you?
SB: It’s a nice way to recognize women who are writing in the horror genre, but there are quite a few of us now, so perhaps that recognition should be all the time, and not just once a year.
TM: What’s next on the writing agenda?
SB: To be honest, I’ve slowed down a bit. After publishing 11 novels in 5 years, I’ve begun to focus more on adapting the books to films. Still Lake may be the first as I’m in discussion with a legendary director and his team about making it a horror film for 2017. And Kransen House is also in discussion with another international director. In the meantime, I am working on the next installment in the Bloodmane Chronicles series and a horror book that doesn’t have a publisher yet. This is the first time I’ve done that, so that I can write it first and then decide who it should go to as opposed to promising it to a publisher before it’s done. We’ll see how that goes. Life is an adventure, there’s no doubt about that.
PRAISE FOR SARA BROOKE
“Sara Brooke has written a nice Gothic horror story that has twinges of Ira Levin’s The Stepford Wives with a twist of Bentley Little, but on a much darker, sordid level.” – HellNotes on Kransen House
“This novel is taut, well-plotted, and well-characterised…” – Mallory Heart Reviews on Still Lake
“…a body horror reminiscent of Eli Roth’s movie from 2002 – ‘Cabin Fever.’ Unlike Roth’s movie, the characters are actually very likeable, so much so in fact that I felt gutted for them at the end. They are a naïve bunch, young, dumb and full of…..fun!” –Adrian Shotbolt on Gardens of Babylon
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