Since Halloween allows us to both revisit and discover what’s what in the horror genre, we thought it apt to seek out Michael Wilson, head of This is Horror, for a chat about the website and podcast’s origins and mission.
As part of our series of Halloween-themed chats this month, we caught up with Mike Davis – editor of the dynamic and much-loved weird fiction hub Lovecraft eZine, as well as its more recent publication arm. Is Lovecraft, however, the be all and end all of the zine, and what kind of influence does he still exert on horror?
One of the most prolific and dizzyingly experimental writers working today, Joseph S. Pulver speaks to us candidly about what underpins his two most recent collections, the difference between homage and mere fan fiction, and the importance of maintaining catholic reading habits.
The young Bulgarian writer Haralambi Markov burst on the scene with ‘The Language of Knives’, a shocking, surreal and tender story published over at Tor.com. He’s also a Kickstarter success story, as a fund to fly him over to World Fantasy 2015 – in the interest of having as many international writers there as possible – proved to be a success. He speaks to us about the need for speculative fiction to embrace a more internaitonal dimension, and his plans for the immediate future.
Molly Tanzer’s easy-to-love novel Vermilion has been a highlight of the literary year for many: first grabbing our attention thanks to a sumptuous cover illustration by Dalton Rose, but charming us further – the c-word is not incidental here – with its picaresque journey into an (alternate) Wild West, courtesy of young psychopomp Lou Merriwether. The debut novelist and short story writer speaks to us about what inspired Vermilion’s literary brew, her early days as a writer, and what’s in store for her in the near future.
A proud and beloved representative of the darkly teeming milieu of ‘bizarro’ fiction, Jeremy Robert Johnson is attracting acclaim for his debut novel, Skullcrack City – a conspiracy thriller whose grotesque dystopian vision would have made Hieronymous Bosch proud, but whose pulp roots and cyberpunk beats lend it a brisk and ice-cool clip. He speaks to us about the sub-genre that has become his home, the challenges of corralling such a heady premise into a debut novel… and Tacos.
Ahead of Schlock’s ‘Monster March’ we speak to Jeffrey Jerome Cohen, Professor of English and Director of the Medieval and Early Modern Studies Institute at George Washington University. Known for dynamic and interdisciplinary studies on both the themes of monstrosity and ecology, Cohen describes how his interest in the ecological world started from an early age, developing ‘a critical vocabulary’ for monsters, and how all writing is a form of activism.
A seasoned traveller between the worlds of both fact and fiction, the German-born, Malta-based multimedia artist Bettina Hutschek insists on being called a ‘storyteller’ first and foremost, even if her subject matter and methods are far more complex than what that ‘stories by the campfire’ image might suggest. Ahead of our chat with her for our upcoming Destructcast, she tells us about her work, which with a distinctly ‘ethnographic’ twist explores the fine but deep chasm between history and myth.
As part of our December focus on urban spaces, we speak to Malta-based visual artist Adrian Abela, whose latest work, MEDIAN, presents a car journey across the small island of Malta as something of an audio-visual odyssey. Be sure to hear Abela expand on some of this in the upcoming Pop Culture Destructcast, where he will be interviewed alongside fellow Malta-based artist Bettina Hutschek.
The award-winning author of the novel The Etched City and, more recently, the short story collection That Book Your Mad Ancestor Wrote KJ Bishop speaks to us about juggling two artistic disciplines, how the Australian landscape impacts on her work and reflects back other locales that make their way into her fiction, and her story We the Enclosed, an extract of which we’ll be featuring in our upcoming end-of-year issue.