These interviews are related to our GHOST AND GHOULS AND OTHER CREEPY THINGS campaign. For those just joining us, we are crowdfunding three projects on Kickstarter and also taking some time to introduce you to our participating authors, some of whom are new to eSpec. The campaign is approaching its final week! Check it out to see how we’re doing, and what awesome rewards are left to be had!

eSpec Books interviews April Grey, contributor to Even in the Grave, edited by James Chambers and Carol Gyzander.

eSB: Even in the Grave is a collection of ghost stories, without spoilers, can you tell us a bit about your story and how you came up with the idea?

AG:  My writing group was doing a gothic story challenge and I was inspired by my apartment house and next-door community garden to write about a disabled vet and her challenges as she struggles to rebuild a life for herself.

eSB: Okay, first off the top of your head, who is your favorite ghost and why?

AG: Zero from The Nightmare Before Christmas. He’s man’s best friend and devoted to Jack Skellington.

eSB: Have you ever incorporated aspects of your own experiences in your fiction? Tell us about it.

AG: Yes, my novels take place in NYC (where I’ve lived for nearly 50 years). As I’ve lived much of that time in old tenement buildings, I often incorporate what it’s like to live in a place where you walk up five flights of stairs, have inadequate heat and hot water, deal with pests, walls that are cracked and ceilings that cave in.

eSB: What haunts you as an author?

AG: Fear of alienating readers and friends when I deal with controversial subjects. I fear going too far.

eSB: What drew you to appreciate the horror genre? What inspired you to write in it?

AG:  Horror is an incredibly flexible genre. As long as you are invoking a sensation of unease or fear you can write with elements of other genres: There’s romantic horror, gothic horror, SF horror, horror westerns, comic horror, cosmic horror, you get the idea. It’s an emotion and so as far as world building goes there are fewer rules. Just scare people!

eSB: What is your least favorite aspect of being an author, and why?

AG:  Self-promotion and marketing. It can take up a huge amount of time and effort possibly better spent writing. This is harder on a novelist than a short story writer as most publishers have it in the contract that the author will at the least maintain a social media presence.

eSB: Could you tell us about one of your most amusing experiences promoting your books?

Grey_HellsMallAG:  Two teenagers walked up to me at the HWA booth at Comic Con and said their teacher recommended to his students to read the anthologies I produce. I thought at first someone was pulling my leg. I was deeply touched that I was helping young people become fans not just of horror movies but also short stories.

eSB: What are some of your other works readers can look for?

AG: I have three urban fantasy novels out, and I am editor of the Hell’s series: Hell’s Garden, Hell’s Grannies, Hell’s Kitties, Hell’s Heart, Hell’s Bells, Hell’s Highway, and Hell’s Mall.

eSB: As a horror author, where do you find support for your writing?

AG:  Broad Universe and The Horror Writers Association—both excellent organizations.

eSB: What advice would you give aspiring horror writers?

AG:  Read and write every day, and understand your genre and the business aspects of being a writer.

GreyApril Grey’s short stories are collected in The Fairy Cake Bakeshop and in I’ll Love You Forever. She is also the author of urban fantasy novels: Finding Perdita, Chasing the Trickster and it’s sequel, St. Nick’s Favor.

She edited the anthologies: Hell’s Heart: Tales of Love Run Amok; Hell’s Bells: Wicked Tunes, Mad Musicians and Cursed Instruments; Hell’s Garden: Mad, Bad and Ghostly Gardeners, Hell’s Grannies: Kickass Tales of the Crone and last year’s, Hell’s Kitties and Other Beastly Beasts. She is a co-editor on the Stoker Award nominated New York State of Fright.

She and her family live in Hell’s Kitchen, NYC in a building next to a bedeviled garden. Gremlins, sprites, or pixies, something mischievous lurks therein. Someday she’ll find out.

Learn more about April Grey:

GoodReads  *  Amazon

Follow April Grey on social media:

Twitter  *  Facebook  *  Instagram  *  Pinterest

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