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A week ago, fellow New England Horror Writer and friend Rob Watts tagged me in the traveling blog known as The Next Big Thing.

So I'm gonna be nice...

So I’m gonna be nice…

No, not that big thing, sicko.  It’s a way for authors to talk a bit about their next book or project and then share the love by passing it on to a couple other writers.  You should check out Rob’s blog when you’re done reading here, because he talks a bit about book 3 in his Crooked Roads through Cedar Grove series.  Next week, you’ll get the chance to read about what’s coming up for Pat Scalisi, T. L. Barrett, and Dane Hatchell.  Links and info are posted below, but first: My Next Big Thing:

1) What is the title of your next book/work?

As it’s in beta right now, I only have the working title “Hair” which is subject to change.  I generally hate my working titles so I can almost guarantee it will change prior to publication.  Still, it’s better than the initial working title, which was “the one where bigfoot kills people”.

2) Where did the idea come from for the book/work?

This one came from a dream, one of the really good ones that can be so frustrating because you can’t remember them as well as you’d like.  I didn’t write anything down like I usually do, but I managed to keep the general feel of the dream in my head for a few days.  A few days later, I sat down and just started writing.  I don’t think it was anything like the dream, but I like how it came out so I don’t really care.

3) What genre does your book/work fall under?

I would file this under creature horror.  Although there are humorous elements, I hesitate to call it a horror/comedy.  I remain hesitant because I don’t want to give the impression that this is along the lines of Scary Movie.  I think the humor comes from the interactions of the characters, particularly through dialogue.  The overall story is not meant to be funny, but early readers did enjoy the humor.

4) What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?

You know, that’s a tough question since the main characters are youngish…camp counselor age, maybe 20?  I can’t really think of many actors that age but I did have images in my head of older actors playing in my head while writing.  I could see a young Terrance Howard as Terrance (no, the name didn’t inspire me…or did it?), a young Jessica Alba as Alice, a young Mila Kunis as Sara, and a young Nick Frost as Bernard.  Actually, Alice and Sara I could really go a lot of different ways, but Terrance Howard and Nick Frost are both awesome and would be an interesting pair.

5) What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

Bigfoot goes to camp.  (It’s cool, right?  It’s got a real 80’s ring to it, right?  Yeah, I don’t like it either…)  

How about: “After receiving numerous reports, counselors at Camp Hollybrook head out to see if there is any truth to the rumors that something is stalking their woods.”

6) Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

Aah, it’s a bit early for that one, but it’s not my intention to self-publish.

7) How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?

I’m almost embarrassed to admit this considering it’s a novella, but it took over a year.  There are reasons for that, namely a significant and difficult day job shuffle that occurred not long after starting the initial draft.  If you don’t count that, it still took about six months.  I don’t write fast because I’m a big time thinker (aka daydreamer).  It may slow things down, but it really comes in handy at times, particularly when I get stuck.

8) What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

Let’s be honest, there are plenty of books about big hairy things tearing people to shreds.  I’d compare this book to any of them, (preferably the good ones).  There are a few well known bigfoot tales that I haven’t read so I hesitate to call out any names for fear of them being really bad examples (or just bad in general).

9) Who or what inspired you to write this book?

Although the idea came from the dream I mentioned, I admittedly forgot most of that.  Since the story takes place at a summer camp, i relied heavily on my childhood for inspiration.  I was a Boy Scout and went camping as often as I could, at times even camping in the backyard just to be outside.  Even as I write this, I have a visual of the Camp Hollybrook layout in my head (not a real camp – it’s from the book).  It’s part scout camp and part Parvin State Park in South Jersey, not far from where I grew up.  I don’t remember any sasquatch-type thing massacring people back then, but that doesn’t mean it didn’t happen.

10) What else about the book might pique the reader’s interest?

If you like monsters (bigfoot/sasquatch-type monsters in particular) then you should check it out.  If you like a bit of humor with your horror, then you should definitely check it out.

Oh yeah, and a bunch of people die in horrible, horrible ways.  Of course, if you know anything about me then you’re already expecting that…

Well there it is, I hope you enjoyed hearing a bit about my next book and I look forward to polishing things up after beta results come in.  I think you’re going to really like it.

In the meantime, you should definitely check out Patrick Scalisi and T.L. Barrett.  Patrick and I were both in Shadowplay, one of the very first Post Mortem Press anthologies.  T.L. and I had the pleasure of reading from our recent releases (my Stripped and his The Wardmaster) at AnthoCon 2012.  They’ll be posting information about their Next Big Thing December 19th on their respective sites, so don’t forget to check them out.

DaneAlso on December 19th, it will be my pleasure to host Dane Hatchell’s Next Big Thing responses right here on my little corner of the internet.  Dane is the author of Resurrection X: Zombie Evolution and more short stories than I can count.  Check out what he’s got to offer on his Amazon page, and don’t forget to come back on the 19th to read about what he’s got coming up next.

pat scPatrick Scalisi is a journalist, magazine editor and emerging author from Connecticut. He has published fiction in several magazines, including The Willows, Neo-opsis, Twisted Dreams and Space Westerns, among others. His short stories have also appeared in a number of fiction anthologies, including An Honest Lie Vol. 2, Shadowplay and Penny Dread Tales Vol. 1. When he’s not writing, Pat enjoys watching way too many movies than are good for him, reading more books than he has shelves for and listening to music (his tastes range from classical to classic and modern rock).  Find him on Facebook and at www.patrickscalisi.com.

tl barrettT. L. Barrett writes weird fiction and lives in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom with his wife and sons. His short fiction has been published in many different anthologies and magazines. He collected 21 scary stories in The Night Library and is publishing The Vale of Shade fantasy trilogy. The Wardmaster (a fantasy) and Hairy Bromance (a horror comedy) were both released in 2012.  Find him on Facebook and at www.tlbarrett.com.