Monday, November 7, 2016

The Gal's 62 Days of Horror Day 31: AMONG THE STACKS: Kyle M. Scott

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
Hi, Kyle.  Welcome to The Gal.  I really appreciate you joining us here today for The Gal's 62 Days os Horror.  You... are the great #31.  Let's start with something 'easy' - Tell us a little bit about yourself.

Kyle M. Scott:
Hi there.  I'm an author hailing from Glasgow, Scotland, and have been working in the industry both independently and with a number of publishing houses for the last few years.  I write in the horror genre.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What are five things most people don't know about you?

Kyle M. Scott:
Okay, let me think.  I'm pretty much an open book (pun intended), but I guess many of my readers may not be aware that:
  1. I used to write and direct theatre.
  2. I was the singer/lyricist in a psychedelic band called Plan 9 for a number of years.
  3. I've been known to call up friends in the middle of the night if there's a mid-to-large spider in my home, and beg for help.
  4. I love wandering aimlessly in the rain.
  5. I can, at times, be very introverted.
The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What is the first book you remember reading?  What are you reading now?

Kyle M. Scott:
The first book I remember reading was The Hobbit by Tolkien.  That was in my first year of high school, I think.  The first book I read of my own volition was Misery by Stephen King.
            I'm currently reading IT by the very same author.  I'd read it in my youth, but wanted to experience it again from an adult perspective.  It's every bit as spellbinding as I'd hoped.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What's a book you really enjoyed that others wouldn't expect you to have liked?

Kyle M. Scott:
I rarely read fantasy, but I absolutely loved the His Dark Materials books by Philip Pullman.  Those were great.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What made you decide you want to write?  When did you begin writing?

Kyle M. Scott:
I've always wanted to write since the first time I read Richard Laymon.  Something in his style inspired me to give it a go.  He made it all look so easy.  Very deceptive, of course.  He was a phenomenal writer.  I dabbled as a teenager, but moved onto other art forms.  Fast forward a few decades, and my daughter was born.  Her mother is an American, and wasn't allowed to stay in Scotland, so she and my little girl had to move back to the states when my daughter was less than a year old.  I decided that I wanted to leave her a legacy.  A body of work that was palpable and that she would always have to remember me.  That began as writing a journal for her, and eventually morphed into writing fiction.  And as I've always been a lifelong horror obsessive, that became my playground.  It gave me courage and hope in a very dark period of my life.
            I've always been expressive, through music, painting, poetry and so on, yet when I began to write I felt entirely free.  It was a long time coming, but I knew from my first proper short story, called Shopping, that this was what I was supposed to do.  Theatre didn't cut it for me.  I hated the limelight, so being a front-man in a band wasn't my bag.  Writing fiction allowed, and continues to allow me to express myself in a way that is rewarding, limitless and fun as all hell.  My little girl won't read my work for quite some time, but it puts a spring in my step knowing that, no matter what, she'll have a whole portfolio of work to enjoy when she's older.  Hopefully she won't read my stuff and think I'm a lunatic.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
Do you have a special place you like to write?

Kyle M. Scott:
Anywhere where I can fluff some pillows and stretch my legs out.  I'm pretty lazy, and do my best thinking horizontally.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
Do you have any quirks or processes that you go through when you write?

Kyle M. Scott:
I tend to fixate on an idea for a week or two before I begin.  I obsess over underlying themes and abstract notions, and I often isolate myself a little to ponder them.  Once I have the basis for the story, and what I want to say with the piece, I just crack on with it and let it become my life.  I tend to allow the actual storyline to develop of its own accord.  My characters are dropped into my basic narrative, and do as they please.  I just kick along for the ride.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
Is there anything about writing you find most challenging?

Kyle M. Scott:
I write in two distinct styles.  Both are very much horror, but are very different.  It's almost schizoid.  On one hand, I write fun, freewheeling, no-holds-barred horror; blackly humorous and very graphic.  That's my mind dictating the process.  On the other hand, I write introspective pieces that are far more subtle and informed less by my passions and more by my experiences in the world.  The latter can be very difficult to work on.  I wrote Where the Dead Ones Play as a means to explore my feelings reading my daughter leaving and how I coped (or, initially, didn't cope) with the pain.  It was extremely difficult to write, but I think it's my best work.  Those books/stories are tough, but the struggle is worth it.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What's the most satisfying thing you've written so far?

Kyle M. Scott:
Hard to say.  I love Devil's Day as it's my first full-length novel, and it's my love-letter to the horror genre.  I had an amazing time writing that book.  I think, though, that one of the novels I'm working on at the moment, called The Infernal, may well prove to be my most satisfying work overall.  It's the first time I've merged the two sides of my writing style into a cohesive whole, and I think the book is all the stronger for it.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What books have most inspired you?  Who are some authors that have inspired your writing style?

Kyle M. Scott:
Without question, the works of Richard Laymon played a huge part in my desire to write, and I think the accessible nature of his work has left a huge mark on me.  As for stylistic influences, Edward LeeJack Ketchum and Bentley Little are right up there.  Do lyricists count as literary authors?  Dylan's recent award implies they do.  With that in mind, there are many songwriters whose vision and lyricism inform my work: Jim MorrisonJimi HendrixJason Pierce, all those guys.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What do you think makes a good story?

Kyle M. Scott:
I think a strong grasp of character is key to the whole thing.  If dialogue and insight into characters are stilted or lacking in authenticity, it removed me from the tale.  Insight into character is the foundation of any good story.  Once the reader is on board, they'll stick with you/your character anywhere you want to take them.  Or rather, anywhere the character's choices take them.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What does it take for you to love a character?  How do you utilize that when creating your characters?

Kyle M. Scott:
I love characters that feel fluid.  They can be absolute monsters or perfect saints.  It doesn't matter to me.  If there's an honest emotional anchor to them, and I can feel around inside their head, I'm in.
            When creating my own characters, I run on instinct.  They're all extensions of my own internal life, good or bad, and I trust in my own perception of reality just enough that I can allow myself to cut loose with them in the knowledge they'll read as true.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
Which, of all your characters, do you think is the most like you?

Kyle M. Scott:
Without question, James Kember in Where the Dead Ones Play is most like me.  I dug deep to create that guy.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
Are you turned off by a bad cover?  To what degree were you involved in creating your book covers?

Kyle M. Scott:
Yeah, sadly, I am.  And that's a shame, because many indie authors have no expertise in graphic design, nor the finances to hire someone who does.  That said, if you've worked hard to create a worthy story, you owe it to yourself to find a way to present it as worthy.  Find a way, otherwise your work, no matter how strong, may never find its audience.
            I do most of my own covers, or have done until lately.  The only release so far which features the art of another is Where the Dead Ones Play.  For that, my publisher, Matt Shaw, hired an amazing artist (and a formidable horror author) called Michael Bray.  The man's work is phenomenal, and very affordable.  With Mike, all I did was shout out a concept (a child's hand clenched in an adults, both bloody) and Mike did the rest.  I love his work.  I'll be turning to him for all future covers.  So, any author out there who's looking for a fantastic, very professional artist, look no further.
            There.  Now you have no excuses.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What have you learned creating your books?

Kyle M. Scott:
I've learned that the best way, for me, to understand myself and the world outside myself, is by climbing up into my imagination and exploring inside.  And that I have a really, really sick sense of humour.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What has been the hardest scene for you to write so far?

Kyle M. Scott:
It's in Aftertaste, but I don't want to spoil it.  It's a very violent scene and one that I fought over putting in there.  Any who have read it will know it.  Two words - Door. Knock.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What makes your books different from others out there in this genre?

Kyle M. Scott:
You'd have to ask my readers to get an accurate answer.  Anything I could say would only be skewed by self-perception and ego.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
How important is the book title, how hard is it to choose the best one, and how did you choose yours (of course, with no spoilers)?

Kyle M. Scott:
Very, very important.  In fact, one of the books I'm set to release soon still has no title.  I've gone back and forth for months of it.  It's driving me nuts.  When I choose it, sometime in a decade or two, I'll let you know.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What makes you feel more fulfilled: Writing a novel or writing a short story?

Kyle M. Scott:
Both are really fulfilling in their own ways, but it'll always be the writing of a novel for me.  The canvas is just so much wider, with so many more possibilities, and the huge chunks of your life that you put into it make it as much a part of your journey as the people you meet, love and lose.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
Tell us a little bit about your books, your target audience, and what you would like readers to take away from your stories.

Kyle M. Scott:
I'm a horror fan writing for horror fans.  Those guys are my base, but my target audience is anyone, really.  My books are very graphic, but they're also often warm, funny and insightful.  Anyone who can stomach the violence, whether they're into fantasy, horror, or satire can find something in there to enjoy.  I hope they'd take from my work a little of what I put in it, be it heart and soul, wry humour, excitement and, of course, fear.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
Can you tell isa bout some of the deleted scenes/stuff that got left out of your work?

Kyle M. Scott:
I rarely write anything that needs deleting, only rewritten.  I certainly don't censor myself.  Nothing is off-limits, as long as it's handled with care.  There's a few scenes in the new untitled book that a wiser man would probably take out, but wisdom is for the ageing.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What is in your "trunk"?  (Everyone has a book or project, which doesn't necessarily have to be book related, that they have put aside for a 'rainy day' or for when they have extra time.  Do you have one?)

Kyle M. Scott:
Someday, I plan to write a series of children's books with a horror slant.  I have the mythos all worked out, yet having never read any children's books, I'm in no way prepared to tackle that style of writing as yet.  I will, though, when the time is right.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What can we expect from you in the future?

Kyle M. Scott:
My next release, Untitled, is coming very soon, and is a return to the rollcoaster-in-hell-vibe of Devil's Day and Aftertaste.  It's a lot of fun and I think my readers will really get a kick out of it.  Then there's The Infernal, which is still undergoing growing pains, but is pushing me in new directions and, if it all comes together, should be a troubling ride indeed.  I'm also working on a non-fiction book called Mr. Dread, which documents my personal battle with depression and chronic anxiety.  It's because a surprisingly upbeat, funny book.  No idea how that one will go down, but we'll see sometime around the festive season when it hits the shelves.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
Where can we find you?  (You know, STaLKeR links.)

Kyle M. Scott:
You can all find me over on the following, and I'm always up for a chat:

My work is currently available internationally through Amazon:


The Gal in the Blue Mask:
Thanks, again, for stopping by, Kyle.  It was a pleasure having you.  (Told you that you didn't sound like a git haha.)  I look forward to your next visit.
            One more thing before you go: Do you have any closing words for your fans or anything you'd like to say that we didn't get to cover in this interview?

Kyle M. Scott:
I'd like to say thank you to all my readers and my fans who've supported my work along the way.  It sounds cliched, but you guys make it all worthwhile.  The support has been amazing, heartfelt and humbling.  I've gotten to know and love many of you, and hope to know many more before the clock strikes midnight.
            Take care and keep reading.

About the author:
Born and raised in the dark, desolate wasteland of Glasgow, Scotland, Kyle grew up in a relatively mainstream manner.  Good parents, annoying brethren, stable home.
            Kyle spent his formative years immersed in the duel worlds of horror and rock 'n' roll - two loves that have never left him - and as an adult, went on to write, compose and sing in a number of psychedelic rock 'n' roll bands in and around Glasgow.
            Since frying what little mind he had in the first place, he has went on to write and direct for theater, run a relatively successful horror blog, and now... release his first bona-fide work of horror fiction, Consumed: Volume 2, followed by Devil's DayAftertaste, and Consumed: Volume 2.
            Kyle currently resides in Glasgow with his long-suffering partner, an arrogant cat (whom he believes is currently attempting to end him for it's own unfathomable, nefarious purposes), and an imagination that keeps him up all night contemplating therapy.

About the books:
Welcome to Blackhaven, October 31st, 1984...
            A small, sleepy town cut off from the hardships and the horrors of the modern world -  Blackhaven has enjoyed a fruitful, peaceful history in it's 300 years.
            That's all about to change...
            Something is coming.  Something unspeakable.  Something evil.
            300 years ago to the day, the founds of Blackhaven made a deal.  A deal that now, centuries later, requires payment.  A deal that will see the quiet streets run red, and the fires rise.  The people of Blackhaven are about to learn the true cost of sacrifice, for Hell is coming to claim what's owed.
            And the Devil will have his day...

"Absolutely gut-wrenching.  Kyle M. Scott will turn your stomach as you keep turning pages!" ~Tim Miller, author of Hacked and Hell, Texas

When 'Waldo's Burger Emporium' rolls into the small town of Plainfield, Ohio, to open the doors of its first fast food restaurant, the whole town is excited.  It's a big deal for such a quiet community, and soon the families are flocking to taste its wares.
            High school renegade, Slim, can read the writing on the wall. And in the bright, smiling world of Waldo's, she sees a burgeoning franchise that will spat aside the mom and pop businesses of Middle-America like flies.
            She understands how these corporations work.  Not to mention what they put in their products...
            John has witnessed first-hand the immediate and violent illness that has overcome his best buddy, Sam.  He's convinced there's something sinister at work in Waldo's.
            For Slim, John and their loved ones, avoiding the junk food being peddled at Waldo's is a matter of principle.
            It's also the only chance they have...
            Within the garish, multi-colored walls of Waldo's, a darkness is nesting.
            And there's something in the meat...
            Something that feeds on more than human flesh.
            Something that consumes a person's will.
            Something unimaginably evil has come to Plainfield, and soon the quaint little town will come to understand the perversity and darkness that resides in the human soul.
            The people of Plainfield are about to swallow their morals, whole...

Lilith Sinclair has disappeared.
            Two days have passed since pretty nine year old, Lilith, vanished without a trace, shaking the once peaceful seaside town of Arlington, Oregon, to its very core.  The locals are scared, the community fears the worst, and a terrible dread has nestled in the hearts of the town's mothers and fathers.
            The parents are terrified that their child could be next.
            James Kember is one such parent.  An author of horror fiction, James is no stranger to the macabre, but when strange messages begin appearing around his home that seem to target his beloved son, Eddie, he begins to understand true fear.
            Someone, or something, is coming for his boy.  It wants to take his only child down into the darkness.  Now, to protect little Eddie, James will have to embrace a darkness that is all his own.
            For the others are waiting, where the dead ones play.
            Includes introduction from Matt Shaw - author of Sick B*stards and the sick mind behind the infamous Black Cover books.

We are all consumers and we are all consumed...
            Volume 1 of the Consumed series features four uniquely satirical tales of depravity and horror centered around the dark underbelly of the American dream.  Avarice, poverty, religious fanaticism and the mainstream media are all skewed through the lens of hardcore horror in a vicious look at a consumer society gone deeply wrong.
            Hunger comes in many forms, and for the characters featured in Consumed, it heralds pain, torment, bloodshed and unimaginable horror.

Special Delivery
Kentucky Fried
Television Eye

This edition also includes a bonus prologue for the author's novel, Devil's Day.

From the best-selling author of Devil's Day and Protection, comes the second volume in the critically acclaimed Consumed series.  Hardcore horror, satirical satire and the blackest of humour once again merge in this collection of tales set to offend, amuse and horrify, often all at the same time.

Room 7 (previously available in Carnage: Extreme Horror)
Mr. Moustache
Party Crasher (previously available in Floppy Shoe Apocalypse)
When All the Lights Go Out

Crack open a bottle of wine, turn the lights down low and don your wet-suit.  Things are about to get bloody...

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