The good news is that it's still Coffin Hop time! So there is still time to win prizes and meet great people, all coffin hoppin' their way to Halloween. You should visit their blogs to win prizes and get daily doses of insanity, I mean, uh, wit. You can visit any of those fine folks here. And don't forget to stop by the Angelic Knight Press blog for a chance to win frame quality prints of our book covers.
Today I'm hosting Patrick C. Greene. He's the author of the recently released book, Progeny. You can find the book on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and other fine retailers. The book was just released this week by my friends over at Hobbes End Publishing. They are another example of a great small press and besides that, they're just nice people. I don't personally know Patrick but he was kind enough to send us an interview conducted by, well, someone who does know him well. So without further ado, I'll turn it over to them. Stay tuned at the end of the interview for ways you can win prizes this blog hop!
Patrick Greene, the dispassionate observer, interviews THE Patrick C. Greene, first-time novelist and renaissance weirdo, on a variety of topics.
Q: You're one day in as a published novelist. What does that feel like?
A: Very good—but odd. Progeny is already kicking ass, sales wise, and the paperback hard copy, a sample of which I just got a few days ago, looks so sharp. It's that classic experience of almost feeling like you exist outside of all this—like it's happening to someone else and you're just hitching a ride.
Q: Someone's going to ask eventually, so it might as well be me—uh, you. Have you ever seen Bigfoot?
A: Just on TV. And in my nightmares. Plenty of nightmares.
Q: Nightmares denote that the beast represents a source of terror, a threat. What of the shy and retiring Bigfoot from “Harry and The Hendersons” and the like?
A: I think the real Bigfoot, if there is or ever was one, would be just as complex and mercurial as any human being. Capable of both great kindness and murderous rage. And like any mammal, each one would have individual motivations and personalities. The novel's introduction by author Micah Hanks of Gralien Radio approaches these concepts from a couple of interesting angles.
Q: Are you afraid of running afoul of SADL?
Q: The Sasquatch Anti-Defamation League?
A: Funny. Just ask the questions and scribble the answers, Jimmy Olson.
Q: Right. Sorry. Progeny seems to be pretty heavy on testosterone, what with the hunters and the reclusive writer and the two sons playing such a large role. Anything for the ladies in there?
A: As a matter of fact, there is quite a strong heroine in Deanne. She's a very bright and independent half-Native American who serves as a sort of go-between for the town's less assimilated native people and the Caucasian businesses and government. She also helps Owen, the protagonist, and the two strike up quite a romance. She feels very motherly toward Owen's son Chuck, who, as a city boy well out of his element is in need of a little feminine nurturing. She's not the type to be intimidated, not by anyone or anything.
There's a second strong female character as well—but it's best not to say too much about her.
Q: Mysterious! So you have a few short stories haunting Amazon, Barnes & Noble and other on-line bookstores. What can you tell us about them?
A: I had a lot of success with getting some short stories published a few years ago, so when I saw my fellow Hobbes End authors flourishing via on-line self-publishing, I saw the writing on the wall. Even with free promotions, it's a great way to get your writing into a reader's hands. I have quite a few short stories I've written over the years for an eventual collection I'd like to compile, so I'm giving them a little solo time in the interim. To synopsize: "Finders Keepers" is about a young bank-robber couple hiding out in a hotel where they find an old suitcase that contains an indescribable horror. "Bill's Becoming" is about a hopelessly unattractive man who suddenly finds within himself a beauty most terrifying indeed. My "Halloween Double Feature Fiction Affliction" is a pair of spooky shorts dealing with the dead coming into the world of the living on that beloved dark night of nights.
Q: In between fiction projects, you've spent some time as an actor, fight choreographer and screenwriter in the film biz. What was that like?
A: The film industry is a strange animal. I enjoy acting because a good role lets me explore certain aspects of my personality that might usually lie dormant. As a martial artist, I've always enjoyed seeing a great fight scene. Getting to actually construct and oversee them is tremendously satisfying. I don't have the resources of Hong Kong filmmakers, but I hope one day I will be able to compose a truly breathtaking fight scene that will stand alongside those Yuen Woo Ping (The Matrix) or Sammo Hung.
As for screenwriting, I've been working to establish myself over the years and I'm finally starting to get there. There's a pair of anthology scripts in development and also a sort of dramatic thriller called “A Shotgun Wedding” which will shoot next year. I've been involved with a lot of projects that just sort of died under their own weight. It can be frustrating but now that I'm gaining ground as a prose writer it seems to be positively impacting the screen projects as well.
Q: Progeny'smain set up—a small group trapped in a fragile shelter while under siege from forces outside—is one of the most popular set ups for modern horror stories. Why do you think that is?
A: There's a lot of room to play with that. If you really want to analyze it, you could say the shelter represents the womb, and the outside force is the world at large, which you will eventually have to face. When it's done well—"Night of The Living Dead" for example, or "Assault on Precinct 13", you get this feeling of shrinking safety, of feeling like you're okay for now but that could end very soon. It's a breathless, live-in-the-moment kind of feeling that really makes you feel close to the characters. I've written a screenplay called S.O.L. that deals with a similar situation, though with more of a sci-fi/action bent.
It's those moments during the siege when the outside force is not doing anything that makes the imagination come alive; wondering if you're about to get hit, or if the enemy has given up and gone away.
Q: Now that Progeny has been released, can you tell us what to expect? Other than, you know, the unexpected?
A: Damn, bro. You're making me look bad.
Q: Easy, fella. We're almost finished.
A: I've written a story called “Dark Cloud” that is very meaningful to me, appearing in The Endlands: Volume 2 from Hobbes End. I was also handed the opportunity to write the introduction, and considering the level of talent represented in this anthology, that was a very meaningful honor indeed!
I'm between drafts on the dramatic thriller screenplay I mentioned called A Shotgun Wedding, and I'm also involved in writing a couple of "Creepshow" style films, one of which will be directed by the great Jack Sholder.
Then there's my epic vampire novel, already in progress.
Q: Are these new-style, "sensitive" vampires, or old-school savage vamps?
A: They are generally quite complex—but capable of shocking brutality.
Q: I smell bestseller.
A: Me too!
Some dark serendipity plopped a young Patrick Greene in front of a series of ever stranger films-and experiences-in his formative years, leading to a unique viewpoint. His odd interests have led to pursuits in film acting, paranormal investigation, martial arts, quantum physics, bizarre folklore and eastern philosophy. These elements flavor his screenplays and fiction works, often leading to strange and unexpected detours designed to keep viewers and readers on their toes.
Literary influences range from Poe to Clive Barker to John Keel to a certain best selling Bangorian. Suspense, irony, and outrageously surreal circumstances test the characters who populate his work, taking them and the reader on a grandly bizarre journey into the furthest realms of darkness. The uneasy notion that reality itself is not only relative but indeed elastic- is the hallmark of Greene's writing.
Living in the rural periphery of Asheville North Carolina with his wife Jennifer, son Gavin and an ever-growing army of cats, Greene still trains in martial arts when he's not giving birth to demons via his pen and keyboard.
You can keep up with Patrick at www.patrickcgreene.com or http://www.facebook.com/patrickcgreene
Remember, to win a signed (by several authors) print copy of Fading Light: An Anthology of the Monstrous, you must leave a comment every day. To win a free eBook of your choice, from the AKP titles, one comment = one entry.
Be sure to stop by tomorrow when I interview the talented and lovable Fran Friel.