Our newest interview is with contributor Tom Lucas, who supplied us with a fantastic werewolf tale called Missing.
Tom Lucas was born and raised in Detroit, and although currently enjoying the lack of snow and ice in Florida, remains a son of the post-industrial apocalypse. His works include Leather to the Corinthians, Pax Titanus, and stories in many anthologies. He is a college professor, author, and spoken word performer. When not writing, Tom likes to drive fast and take chances.
Tell us a little about yourself.
I’ve been writing professionally for a long time, but the vast majority of that was while wearing the hat of a journalist or copy writer.
I’m also a teacher – about 15 years now and it’s the best thing ever.
Lately, I’ve been feeling old. I turn 50 this year, which means nothing to anyone older than me but since I don’t have their perspective, I don’t care what they think.
Getting older means I no longer feel that I have something to prove but it also means I’m really over a lot of things. I now know why old people are so damn cranky.
But…being older means I’ve seen a hell of a lot of cool bands and read a lot of great books, and I have a lot of great stories to tell. Just don’t hang around me too long or I’ll end up repeating them.
Ultimately, my life is now a constant vortex of déjà vu and forgetfulness.
What kind of books/stories do you write?
Science fiction and horror would be the closest shelves to put me on, but I have a crippling inability to take myself seriously, so satire and the absurd always find their way into my work. It makes me a bit on my own – not quite this and not quite that – but fun and weird is where my works lives.
What do you do when you’re not writing?
Read! Watch! Play!
Tell us about the story you wrote for the anthology.
“Missing” was a werewolf story I wrote mainly for myself a couple years before the anthology came around to give it a home. I was born and raised in Detroit, and I came upon a werewolf legend from the area, the Loup Garou. The French who settled Detroit brought their folklore with them and this one is particularly nasty.
It’s a werewolf that feeds on brides on their wedding day. I thought it would be fun to bring this monster into the modern world and see what would happen. It turned out to be fairly long story, so thanks to everyone for sticking through it to the bloody end.
What compelled you to write about the particular monster you chose?
I’m skipping this one as I kinda answered it already.
Do you have a favorite monster movie? It doesn’t have to be limited to the classic monster movies.
Well…my favorite, all-time absolute “monster,” is the cruel and mighty Cthulhu, but he’s never really been captured well enough in a movie and as far as we know, is still sleeping. Best to just leave him be, I think.
From the classics, it’s one hundred percent Frankenstein’s Monster. He’s a walking existential crisis, something I can certainly relate to.
What are you currently working on? Do you have anything new getting ready to be released?
I have three current projects.
I recently submitted a solicited novella manuscript to a cool indie press. It’s essentially Encyclopedia Brown vs. Cthulhu and I had an absolutely blast writing it. Cross your tentacles and pseudopods for good luck, because as of this interview, I don’t know its fate.
I am halfway through a novel. This one is an open letter to the geek fan community, and is sort of Constantine meets Ready Player One.
And I am nearly finished with a horror novel. What happens when an ex-junkie rockabilly cat inherits a house that contains a portal to the afterlife and its guarded by a terribly evil entity? So, it’s Trainspotting in a haunted house.
What are you currently promoting? Tell us all about your newest work.
This anthology! Last year I spent deep in manuscripts, so nothing new hit the scene. Next year could be a barnstormer. Stay tuned, I guess.
You can find Toms books here.
Jodie Manning-Bares: The Interview
Jodie Manning-Bares, whose story Where the Streets are Paved with Blood takes us to the late 1800’s, and ties Dracula to a famous murderer.
Jodie Manning-Bares has been writing for over sixteen years. She began when she was twelve years old when an English teacher encouraged her to write a story for a contest. She won said contest and ended up taking both Madison county and the state of Illinois in the Young Author’s Awards. Since then, she has been featured in Baum Ass Stories 2: Gayle Force and has plans to release an upcoming novel.
1. Tell us a little about yourself.
I have been writing since I was around twelve years old when I was challenged by my sixth grade English teacher to write a story that would be submitted to the Young Author’s contest. My story ended up placing in the top two and went on to take Madison County and the state of Illinois. From then I mainly just focused on writing fan stories of television shows and book series that I was a fan of.
A. What kind of books/stories do you write?
I am a fiction writer for the most part, though I have written articles on the Supernatural for the Shadow Pokers Blog. I used to dabble in Romance, having my work being compared to a daytime soap opera, but as I’ve gotten older and my interests have become varied, I have expanded my repertoire.
B. What do you do when you’re not writing?
I read A LOT! Pretty much every single day. I am an avid video game player and I make videos in The Sims 4 for my budding Youtube channel. Aside from that I’m just your typical cat mom and wife.
2. Tell us about the story you wrote for the anthology.
I chose Dracula as my theme because I have always been into vampires; we’re talking Anne Rice and not those freaks from Twilight. I have been a true crime buff for a long time, probably thanks to my mother’s influence and countless nights of sitting through Dateline and Nancy Grace with her. Since they have never figured out who Jack the Ripper really was, I thought it would be a cool explanation that he was a supernatural being. Garnet, I had created for another story I was working on, but didn’t really know what to do with her at the time, and Crispin went by a different name at first, but he is loosely inspired by Remus Lupin from the Harry Potter series.
3. What compelled you to write about the particular monster you chose?
I wanted to show a different side of Dracula than most people are familiar with. I wanted to show that despite being enemies in the supernatural world, that vampires and werewolves could find common ground. I also wanted to see what his thoughts would be on 1880s London.
4. Do you have a favorite monster movie? It doesn’t have to be limited to the classic monster movies.
Bram Stroker’s Dracula by Francis Ford Coppola has always been a favorite of mine. Gary Oldman played a remarkable Count Dracula. As for the Universal brand of monsters, I have to go with Boris Karloff in The Mummy.
5. What are you currently working on? Do you have anything new getting ready to be released?
I have a work in progress about a girl escaping from a religious cult, but it is in a very early draft at the moment. Currently, I am more focused on my Youtube channel and the content being created for it. Also, helping my husband who is in the planning process of a book that he has been toiling around with when he asks for my input.