What better way to end my Halloween Blog Tour (I need to come up with a better name) than with the Zombie Queen herself, Author Stacy Kingsley! I met Stacy at one of the many conventions us local authors frequent here in Alabama. I was able to sit on a panel with her and I was glad that someone else in my state shared my love of the zombie genre. We also had a great discussion of how the modern media has romanticized the classic movie monsters. We won’t get into that in this blog post, but maybe another time. 🙂 Until then, get to know more about Stacy!
Stacy grew up loving the horror genre. When she first saw the movie CUJO she learned that you have to wait because even in those last five minutes something will happen. Stacy loves horror so much she wrote her Master’s thesis on the decline of horror in popular culture and loves to watch every horror movie she can get her hands on, no matter how bad it might be. Her love of zombies stems from her desire to find true monsters, not sparkling vampires, loving werewolves, or ghosts who help you solve cases. Zombies have one thing on their mind, eating people. She loves zombies so much she has done zombie makeup for an ice skating exhibition, played a zombie in a short independent film, done several zombie themed runs and is working on her zombie series. ZOMBIES ARE PEOPLE TOO! is the first book in her “Do Zombies Win?” series. Her second book ZOMBIES BITE! was released 2014, followed by the third book in the series ZOMBIE WASTELAND in 2016. She has several stories available as part of the series and is currently working on ZOMBIMERICA, the last book in her zombie series. She is always willing to discuss horror with other fans, authors and those who just enjoy the genre.
A. When did you realize you wanted to be an author?
S. When I was 9 I wrote my first book. It was about my favorite toy, a stuffed tiger named Jake, as a detective. I never realized I wanted to be an author, I just was one, starting at age 9.
A. In what genre do you write?
S. I mostly write horror, but right now specifically apocalyptic zombie horror. I am trying to figure out what to write next, but I don’t know what scares people anymore.
A. Is there a genre you haven’t written in, but want to?
S. Monetarily I would love to be able to write Erotica, just because it does seem to be so lucrative, but if I were going to try something new I’d like to write either YA paranormal or a mystery suspense novel
A. What is your writing process? Such as, outlining, freehand, computer vs paper and pen?
S. I write everything longhand, just me and the paper, at first. Then I type things into the computer, which also takes care of my first round of edits. I often listen to music, usually depending on the character. Still trying to work out where to write, back home (Southern California) there was a great coffee shop near a college, but there doesn’t seem to be a place like that here in Alabama.
A. Who are you writing inspirations, famous or not?
S. I write short chapters because of James Patterson. Every book of his has pretty short chapters, which makes me want to keep reading because I always think, “Well I can just do one more chapter,” and before I know it I am halfway through the book. Also, I have looked up to both Stephen King and Dean Koontz because they have written several great books in the horror genre. Mostly though I like looking at all books for inspiration.
A. Dean Koontz! Yes!
A. How much research, if any, did you have to put into your novel(s)?
S. I do tons of research, mostly on methods of death and murder, which makes me believe that the NSA is totally already watching me. I mean you can only look up the different uses and how to create cyanide so many times before someone is watching you.
A. The author search history is a deep and dangerous place.
A. Do you listen to music while you write or edit? If so, who do you listen to?
S. I do listen to music, but not a certain type since I let my characters choose what they want to listen to.
A. When you’re not being an amazing author and writing away, what do you for fun?
S. I am also an artist. I paint on both canvases and shoes, I cross stitch bookmarks, I crochet baby clothes and scarves to give as gifts, I sew a little, and well, lots of other stuff. I sell some of this stuff on my Etsy shop Little Bit O Zombie. I also love being outside, being from Southern California means I love, love, love being outdoors, even if it isn’t super sunny.
A. What has been the most exciting experience for you since starting your writing career?
S. The most exciting things have been meeting fans and other zombie lovers, and meeting other amazing authors. I have made so many amazing author friends and have started really feeling like I am part of a community, which for an Indie Author is a very important thing.
A. Yes, the Indie Author community is amazing. We are definitely cheerleaders for each other!
A. Who created your amazing cover art?
S. I did actually. I drew them and played with them in photoshop. The backgrounds for all of my books are infectious viruses like Ebola and the Plague.
A. Is there an artist, book blogger, editor or anyone else that you want to give a shout out to?
S. I’d love to say thanks to my amazing editor Michelle Hylton, and I’d love to thank the writer’s group I am part of here for accepting me, so thanks Writer’s Group at Lowe Mill and thanks to Jennifer Pinkley for starting it!
A. Give us a brief description of your WIP (work in progress) or your newest novel.
S. I am currently working on the last novel in my zombie series titles ZOMBIMERICA. It is about the end of the zombie apocalypse. I didn’t want my series to be one of those that kept going and going and going without a final conclusion (which seems to happen a lot in apocalyptic books as people/survivors rebuild their lives). This last book follows my serial killer named, Marcus, a smart zombie, and a young girl who has almost nothing to lose.
A. This sounds so awesome. I like final resolutions of stories that have been going on for a long time. It’s bittersweet, but I get why it needs to happen.
A. This is a Halloween blog post so you must tell us, do you enjoy Halloween? Why or why not?
S. I enjoy Halloween so much it is ridiculous. I love the scary side of life and celebrating ghosts, black cat, goblins, zombies, mummies, and all the dark side of life fascinates me. Halloween is the one time where I don’t feel like I have to pretend to be someone else and I can rock my weird self out in the open.
A. Do you have any Halloween traditions?
S. The only tradition I have is watching as many scary movies as I can, and buying either candy corn or those pumpkins which are like candy corn. I used to take my nieces and nephew out, and younger siblings, but the kids have grown up.
A. Do you believe in the spiritual realm?
S. Yes, and I have to do a lot of research on this for the books I write. Even though I don’t have ghosts, zombies themselves are supernatural. There are so many people out there who have claimed to experienced something, that it’s hard to say the spiritual realm doesn’t exist.
A. I have to agree with you on that one.
A. Have you ever had an encounter with a ghost or something happen that you just explain?
S. Yes, but that is another story for another day.
A. What is your favorite scary movie and/or book?
S. Honestly I can’t say that I have just one. For a long time my favorite book was THE STAND by Stephen King, but then I discovered other authors, and I just don’t have a favorite. This is the same way I feel about movies, I can watch THIRTEEN GHOSTS over and over and over, but it isn’t a great horror film, it’s just fun. Although, SESSION 9 is one of the best horror films I have ever watched. It is scary but not in your face, an excellent movie.
A. The Stand freaked me out. It’s such a good story.
A. Most importantly, what is your favorite Halloween candy?
S. Candy Corn and those candy pumpkins, I love love love these, and one bag lasts me the entire month.
A. Hands down, what is your favorite book of all time and why?
S. BLACK BEAUTY by Anna Sewell, it is a beautiful book told from the point-of-view of a horse, and it is so heartfelt. This was the first book which made me cry. I loved Ginger so much and wish life could have been different for her.
A. What book would you like to see in film or do you believe that books should be left alone?
S. I think most books should be left alone, but I would love to see a good movie adaptation of the THE RISING series by Brian Keene. It is a great series of zombie books and I think it would make a great movie series, or even television adaptation, because the characters evolve and the ending was fabulous.
A. As a reader, what about a book turns you away?
S. In these days of anything can be self-published (and I say this as a self-published author) I hate when an author have spelling and grammatical mistakes in their novels. Also. if a book has been overdone (one reason I don’t read a lot of romance is that they often seem the same), I just can’t finish it.
A. If you find you can’t get into a book, do you put it down or be a trooper and finish it?
S. I almost always try to finish, and there really haven’t been many books I didn’t finish. Although, because I can’t not finish a book I have read several bookS that I really hated.
A. Do you stick to one genre or do you like to read around?
S. I will read anything, as long as it is interesting.
A. Are you a book-in-your-hands reader, e-booker, or both?
S. Oh, I am absolutely a book-in-hand reader. I spend so much time on the computer for my day job and writing that I just feel like reading on an e-reader is just me continuing to be on a computer.
A. Favorite movie?
S. My favorite movie has been and will always be FIELD OF DREAMS. It was just such a beautiful movie and it said so much about life and family, plus it was one of the first movies to make me cry.
A. What’s your favorite candy/dessert?
S. My favorite dessert is cheesecake, all kinds of cheesecake.
A. What band or musician can you listen to over and over again? You can list more than one.
S. There are so many bands and musicians, I love, Metallica, Pink Floyd, George Michael, right now Twenty One Pilots has been on a good rotation, Black Keys, there are a lot more, but I don’t think this section alone needs to be twenty pages.
A. Rock on, girl!
A. What’s your hidden talent?
S. I am very handy, I can lay tile, hardwood flooring, laminate, build cabinets, furniture, I love using the miter and table saws, and have gutted and remodeled an entire house with only a little help.
A. Hmm, now I know who to hire to remodel my house!
A. What is your dream vacation?
S. It changes, but right now I have been dying to go to Japan to see the suicide forest and visit the haunted places there. I’d also love to go to Pripyat, Russia and take a tour of the Chernobyl area, well as close as one can get without getting radiation poisoning.
Author Name: Stacy Kingsley