Not a slight on my neighbours (on one side, retired immigrant couple done well), the other, well, they cut a flowering shrub at a rather terminal point and now all I have is this dry stick rooted into the earth (so the less said the better), but a lead into a rather nifty horror/speculative fiction site called The Monsters Next Door.
Edited by LB Goddard, TMND publishes horror fiction and is currently up to their 7th internet issue. Just so there can be no claims of hidden conflicts, Goddard published Red in Tooth and Claw on the site some time ago.
The interview went as follows:
What’s your background in horror? What drew you to it? Why horror, and not, say, romance?
I don’t understand what draws me to horror. As a child, I was constantly afraid. Dark hallways were the worst! But that fear triggered a certain adrenaline rush that… I suppose… is exciting at any age.
Some of your favourite authors when you started in on horror, and today?
Poppy Z. Brite was a big influence of mine, growing up. Clive Barker, for sure. I loved Oscar Wilde’s writing style… too many to name.
Honestly, though, I am inspired by the authors I encounter everyday, the ones who are struggling to be heard. I’ve read the work of aspiring authors. Some of the small-press books I’ve read left me with the impression that the author was simply writing for fun. And that’s fine! But there are a heck of a lot of us working our butts off to perfect manuscripts, to submit our work–reading, studying, striving to become better and better. These people have my endless admiration.
Horror has different strands to it – what sort of horror fiction do you keep coming back to?
I’ve been known to enjoy a good paranormal romance from time to time, but deep down in the core of my wicked little heart, I say To Hell with love; bring on the terror! There’s nothing like an unapologetic horror story that cuts to the heart of mankind’s worst fears.
What were the reasons for starting up your site?
I really don’t know. I just love what I do. I love to create and to hear feedback from those who enjoy the results.
Do you think the initial expectations you had for your site have been met? Have you achieved what you wanted to achieve, or is there more to do?
There’s always more to do, but The Monsters Next Door has grown into more than I ever imagined. It has a loyal following. If I had to, I could name 100 loyal readers of the issues right now… and those are only the ones I know about! I get emails all the time from strangers who enjoyed the website.
Some of your favourite authors you have published/featured?
Don’t make me pick! Although, I must say The Devil’s Food has an impressive line-up. More details can be found here: http://themonstersnextdoor.com/devilsfood.html
How best can horror make use of the internet to spread the word?
I think it’s easier to reach an audience with horror movies than books / magazines. Only a very small percentage of the population reads anymore.. But we are a tight-knit group. We always find each other, the horror fiction freaks of the world. Sites like Myspace, Duotrope, Ralan, Choateroad.com, Horrormall.com. Little networks are always springing up: Masters Of Horror Writing, The Dark Fiction Guild, The Horror Cafe, etc. Yeah, one way or another, horror readers & writers unite on the World Wide Web. 🙂