What would you expect from a good werewolf novel? Scares, certainly. Maybe a good helping of gore. Some kick-ass action scenes never hurt.
Slade Grayson delivers all of those in his werewolf novel Autumn Moon, which I reviewed. But he also provides something you might not find in the average werewolf novel — psychological complexity. Not just on the part of the human characters, but the werewolves too.
As I stated in the review, I was pretty impressed. I asked Slade if he’d answer a few questions for this blog. He agreed. So here goes …
Why did you decide to write about werewolves?
The werewolf has always been my favorite of all the monsters, all the way back to when I was a kid watching Lon Chaney, Jr. prowl around in black and white, and then later I got to enjoy updated versions of the legend with “The Howling” and “An American Werewolf in London.” I think you hit the nail on the head in your review of my book when you said that the scary part of the werewolf-as-monster is that it can be any one of us.
Secondly, although there are a plethora of vampire novels out there, and there seems to be a zombie novel published on a daily basis, I don’t see many werewolf novels (at least not many good ones). So I thought I’d try my hand at it and try to do something interesting with the concept.
Where are you from and what’s your day job?
Originally, I’m from New Jersey, but I’ve lived in Pennsylvania, Virginia, Colorado, and now Maryland. My day job is that of a humble salesclerk in a retail establishment, although I will soon be adding stay-at-home dad to my resume since my first child is due to be born any day now. I’ll still do the retail thing on weekends to help pay the bills, at least until some savvy producer decides to snap up the film rights to one of my books and I can use the money to write full-time.
How did you get into writing in the first place?
When I was a kid, I wasn’t sure what I wanted to be when I grew up – either a superhero or a billionaire, or preferably both (like Batman). But an issue of “Amazing Spider-Man” changed all of that. It had a cliffhanger ending that had me counting the days until the next issue to see what would happen next. I decided that I wanted to make other people feel the way the writer of that particular comic made me feel. I wanted to tell stories that would make people sit on the edge of their seats and go, “What happens next?”
As a kid, I was already a voracious reader, so the next step was to try my hand at putting words down on paper. In college, I took as many writing and Lit. classes as I could. I fooled around a bit with freelance journalism and worked for a weekly newspaper for a while. Toyed with trying to break into screenwriting (a tough gig). Decided to focus on prose and wrote some short stories. Started a half dozen novels that died tragic deaths. And now, here I am. (more…)