Today, I’d like to welcome author Ian Rogers to Preternatura! Ian has a couple of new releases coming out. Every House is Haunted is his debut collection of dark, haunted stories, just released, while SuperNoirtural Tales is Ian’s collection of urban fantasy novellas featuring a Toronto-based private investigator named Felix Renn who lives in a supernatural world (with an introduction by Mike Carey, which is an awesome endorsement!). It will be out in November.
Ian is a resident of Peterborough, Ontario, and also a photographer, artist and graphic designer. He’s written widely for print and online publications, and has also worked in radio broadcasting.
You can read more about SuperNoirtural Talesat the series website. You can learn more about Ian and his books at his website.
In the meantime, want to win a copy of Every House is Haunted? Read on…
ABOUT EVERY HOUSE IS HAUNTED: In this debut collection, Ian Rogers explores the border-places between our world and the dark reaches of the supernatural. The landscape of death becomes the new frontier for scientific exploration. A honeymoon cabin with an unspeakable appetite finally meets its match. A suburban home is transformed into the hunting ground for a new breed of spider. A nightmarish jazz club at the crossroads of reality plays host to those who can break a deal with the devil…for a price. Rogers draws together the disturbing and the diverting in twenty-two showcase stories that will guide you through terrain at once familiar and startlingly fresh.
Welcome, Ian! Give us the “elevator pitch” for your latest work?
Welcome, Ian! Give us the “elevator pitch” for your latest work?
I’ve got two books coming out back to back this fall. First up in October was Every House Is Haunted, a collection of 22 dark fiction tales from ChiZine Publications. I’m really excited about this book because it presents a good representation of my work to date, from my very first published story to my most recent.
Then, in November I’ve got a book coming out called SuperNOIRtural Tales, an urban fantasy collection featuring a Toronto-based private detective named Felix Renn. It will be published by Burning Effigy Press just in time for the World Fantasy Convention in Richmond Hill, which I will be attending.
What is your favorite scene in the book(s)?
For Every House Is Haunted, I’d probably go with a favourite story, and I’d be torn between “Aces,” which opens the collection, or “The Candle,” which closes it. “Aces” is dark and funny and not like anything I’ve ever written before, whereas “The Candle” is a tale of quiet horror that I personally feel is one of the best things I’ve ever written.
In SuperNOIRtural Tales, there is a scene in “Black-Eyed Kids” where a pair of supernatural entities who look like a boy and a girl with jet-black eyes try to get my private eye protagonist to let them into his apartment. It’s a terrifying scene, and I’m especially proud of it because it actually scared me a bit to write it.
Hardest scene you’ve ever written:
In Every House Is Haunted, there’s a story called “The Dark and the Young” in which I had to describe ancient manuscripts in accurate, scholarly detail. I knew I was making all kinds of mistakes, but fortunately it turned out my editor was doing her PhD in medieval studies and knew all about ancient manuscripts. She saved me from looking like a total idiot, for which I am eternally grateful.
What’s on your nightstand or top of your TBR pile?
The Weird, edited by Ann and Jeff VanderMeer.
Favorite book when you were a child:
Winnie the Pooh, by A. A. Milne.
Your five favorite authors:
Stephen King, Shirley Jackson, Elmore Leonard, Ross Macdonald, and Robert B. Parker.
Book you’ve faked reading:
People really do that? I’m shocked. Just like Ahab shocked the whale with the power cable at the end of Moby Dick. Or was that in Jaws 2…(Suz: Ha! He let us catch him!)
Book you’re an evangelist for:
The Haunting of Hill House, by Shirley Jackson. I suppose I don’t need to be an evangelist for it, since it’s a very popular book. But I think in the current climate of torture porn and gore for the sake of gore, there’s something to be said about getting back to the basics of quiet horror. You know, when horror was about scaring people instead of grossing them out.
Book you’ve bought for the cover:
Jaws. Fortunately in this particular instance you could judge a book by its cover, because the book is actually about a big freaking shark. And true to the advertising, I’ve never gone back into the water.
Book that changed your life:
As a reader it would probably be Tolkien’s The Hobbit. I read it when I was fairly young, and I remember thinking that even though it is for the most part a children’s story, there were quite a few scary scenes in it. It’s the book that made me fall in love with reading.
The book that changed my life as a writer was either The Moving Target, by Ross Macdonald, or Out of Sight, by Elmore Leonard. They both taught me about the economy of good prose and writing sharp, realistic dialogue.
Book you most want to read again for the first time:
Hey Nostradamus, by Douglas Coupland. I remember when I got to the end of the book, I felt like laughing and crying at the same time. I can’t remember the last time a book had that effect on me. I’ve re-read it several times since then, and while I still enjoy it, that feeling was a one-time thing.
Favorite book about books or writing:
Stephen King’s On Writing.
Writing and editing two books back to back is a lot of work, so once the big promotional blitz is over, I’m going to be taking a month off to rest, maybe catch up on some reading. I’m currently putting the finishing touches on a sci-fi comedy novel that I think of as “The X-Files” meets “Arrested Development.” Then, in the new year, I expect to begin work on the first full-length novel in the Felix Renn series.
Thanks, Ian! Ian and ChiZine will be giving away one print and one digital copy of Every House is Haunted! Do you have any experiences with haunted places? I firmly believe I had a benign spirit in my house in New Orleans…complete with cold spots!
Up to five entries possible: +1 for comment, +1 for blog follow, +1 for Twitter follow, +1 for a Tweet or RT about the contest, +1 for a Facebook follow. Contests end at midnight CDT U.S. on Saturday.
Quick note: my apologies for putting the word-verification for comments back in. I’m trying to reduce the recent flood of spam coming to my email address. I’ll take it down once the spambots have moved on!