This next interview is with the author of an intriguing book, and after reading a #SampleSunday post a few weeks ago its definitely been bumped higher up on my TBR list. Okay, here is my one to one with Jennifer Rainey, author of These Hellish Happenings.
Hey Jennifer, tell me all about the wonderful world of you.
My name is Jennifer, and I'm an Aquarius, whatever that may mean about my personality. In addition to being a writer, I'm an amateur paranormal investigator. I hold a bachelor's degree in English, and I'm currently employed as a secretary. In addition to all this, I am double-jointed in my thumbs.
What was the last *headdesk* moment you had?
I have too many of those to count. I recently accidentally turned the shower on over my head, leaving me rather cold, wet and uncomfortable. If I'd had a desk anywhere in the immediate area, I would've taken my head to it.
I'm an avid reader, and still manage to squeeze in as much time as I can. As a writer, do you still read? If no, why not, and if yes, what genre do you lean toward?
I try to still read. There are days when I can't because writing and promoting and job-hunting take up most of my time, but if there's time I do. I tend to lean more toward the paranormal and supernatural side of things, but I'm not a huge fan of romance, so that can be difficult. I'm currently reading Demonspawn by Glenn Bullion, and it's been pretty great so far.
Facebook, fundamental to the Indie Author marketing platform, or the sixth sign of the apocalypse?
Definitely the latter. Zuckerberg is the forgotten horseman; the others only call him in on busy days, haha! (Gah! I knew it!) Actually, I like Facebook. It's really helped me create a nice little hub for my writing, and it is a nice place to connect with other authors. I don't know if I'd say it's fundamental. I think you could operate well enough without it, but it is nice to have around.
These Hellish Happenings has a captivating blurb … a deal with the Devil, a wayward vampire named Jack trying to avoid being dragged into the pit … tell me, how did you come with this?
Well, Jack was the first detail of the book to come to me. I created his character while I was grocery shopping one day. I knew he was a vampire and he was on the run from Hell. Everything else fell into place a little at a time. For example, the political themes were heavily inspired by the very active political environment in the US at the time the first draft was completed.
You’ve got great reviews on Amazon and Goodreads … how does this make you feel (feel free to well up)?
It's great! I'm very happy that people like it. I was always a little nervous about publishing it. All of my betas/editors liked it, but I wasn't sure what a greater audience would think. I mean, it's not your usual paranormal story; there's not some shirtless, fanged hunk on the cover, for one. But for the most part so far, people have been very kind to it, and I couldn't be happier.
So, what’s next? Any new releases on the horizon?
Not for a while, I'm afraid! I'm working on the first draft of the second book in the These Hellish Happenings series right now. I've got about 50 pages down right now. It's tentatively called When Hell Freezes Over, and it takes place about three years after These Hellish Happenings ends.
Thank you for visiting.
Jennifer is well connected on line and here are her links, click away!
You can buy THH on Kindle and Nook, but for your pleasure, here is an excerpt; (This excerpt features Jack, our Hero, hiding from Hell at his oblivious co-worker's apartment in New York City as they discuss horror films and society's idea of the vampire. Warning: there is brief foul language in this scene.)
"Do you like monster movies? Like horror flicks and stuff?”
“They’re all right,” Jack said and briefly locked eyes with the cardboard cut-out of Bruce Campbell on the other side of the room. “But they’re formulaic, you know? A monster and/or killer is on the loose, and he’s out to kill everyone in the film save for the most attractive of the lot.”
Mark looked as though Jack had just insulted his religion and called his mother a whore in the same breath. “No way, man. I will never tire of this. Give me a crappy monster movie and a couple of beers, and my night is made. The older, the better. Ever seen The Wolfman of West Virginia?”
“Can’t say that I have.”
“Frankenstein in Frankfurt?”
“Sounds brilliant, but no.”
“The Blob Man of the Bermuda Triangle?”
Mark shook his head slowly. “You haven’t lived.”
Mark continued, “But see, newer horror movies don’t get it. It’s all about the blood and guts and stuff. Which is fun, y’know, but it’s not what horror movies are supposed to be about. They’re supposed to be about monsters and aliens and crap. No one makes movies about monsters anymore. Wolfman, Frankenstein, The Mummy… Dracula’s my favorite, though. He’s a bad motherfucker. Drinking people’s blood, getting all the ladies.”
Jack gave a vague nod.
“Then again, he can’t go out in sunlight,” he continued in a tone some might use to describe brain surgery or nuclear warfare. “He can’t have garlic, has to carry his native soil around with him.”
“Carry his native soil around. I never understood that one. Or the garlic, for that matter. Why garlic specifically?” Jack asked. “Why not turnips? They’re just as detrimental. … I imagine.”
“There’s nothing to understand! That’s just the way they are,” Mark said. “Anyway, there are definite disadvantages, but I still think that’s gotta be the life to live.” He shot Jack a soul-searching glance. “So what, are you like a werewolf kinda guy? You seem like a werewolf kinda guy to me."
“Anything but vampires. I hate vampires."
“Aww, c’mon. Vampires are the best monsters ever.”
“I’m not sure I would classify them as monsters.”
“They are! They drink blood.”
“So do mosquitoes.”
“Yeah, but if I saw a mosquito as big as a vampire, I’d call it a monster, too.”
“Monsters or not, they’re the best. They don’t take shit.” Mark shook his head with a sick reverence. “It’s a shame about the whole sunlight thing and the garlic and how they can’t see themselves in mirrors… How do they do their hair, do you think? Maybe it just looks good naturally. They’re too badass to need mirrors, anyway.”
Jack crossed his arms over his chest. “Did you ever think that maybe if they did exist, vampires would just be normal? Sure, some might be particularly badass, as you say, but maybe some would just be like you and me. Most of them used to be humans. I don’t think they undergo some massive personality change when they get bitten, and I don’t think those doing the biting think, ‘Hmm. No. Can’t bite him. He likes chess and stamp-collecting.’”