If you have been reading my work for any length of time, you may have noticed something lately. My previous five books were all young adult stories, and all of them focused on young folks facing very tough situations, with a sprinkle of romantic vibes in several of them. They were…sort of sad, I think, for lack of a better way to put it, but they were necessary for me. They were therapeutic. I had various things going on in my life when I write those stories, particularly the Rust series, and putting those emotions to paper helped me heal.
I’m not really writing those types of stories anymore.
It isn’t because I suddenly have something against tales like those, that isn’t it at all. I’m so happy I wrote them, and I will forever love Alec, Ramona, and Bryson. I’m even toying with a spin-off story about Aidan. It’s just that, well, those aren’t the stories I want to be writing. They also aren’t the typical types of novels I pick when reading myself. I sometimes enjoy a book like that, don’t get me wrong, but there is one area that has always piqued my interest and that I’ve always had a strong pull towards.
So, over the past few months, I’ve been focusing primarily on horror stories.
This shift really began to happen when I wrote Transmission. It’s a dystopian/pandemic/horror/thriller type tale that’s part of a larger trilogy about the end of the world, ushered in by those we should have been able to trust. I wrote that book well before COVID was a thing, and my feelings about the pandemic have only fueled my desire to finish that trilogy and present it to the masses.
Writing that story felt good, in a way that the others hadn’t. I felt more free, like I was really opening up myself on the pages. Then I penned the second book, Ashes, and started thinking about the finale.
The real game changer, whoever, was writing A Taste of Autumn [working title], a horror/thriller story that was inspired by some of my favorite horror authors. I got a taste of this thing that I have loved for so much of my life, and I knew I wanted more of it. Then Cat&Key fell into my lap, along with a host of ways to get our written word to the masses. One way we started to achieve that was via flash fiction pieces.
Every single piece I’ve written so far has been horror/paranormal in some capacity. The flood gates have opened up, and they haven’t stopped since.
While I do have a couple of books I’ve been holding onto for awhile to put out, that are more akin to the Rust series, those will likely be the last of their kind. At least for awhile, and definitely for the foreseeable future. After the Rag & Bone Trilogy comes the Dreadful Seasons series, which will feature four books all in the horror vein. I plan to do 31 Days of Horror Shorts in October, and then put them out as a short story collection for folks who want to purchase them.
I also recently applied for, and was accepted to, the Horror Writers Association. I recently sold two of my horror shorts to the Creepy Podcast, have submitted two more to the No Sleep Podcast, and have some others submitted for various horror publications.
It’s a big change, but I think it’s a good one. For me it is certainly a happy one. This feels right for me, and it feels like the place I belong. While I’m glad I wrote those other stories, and got to travel to Rust and take so many people with me, I hope that those who have enjoyed my writing in the past stick with me. Even if you aren’t necessarily traditionally a horror fan, you’ll find something in these stories that you like. Not all horror is gross or vulgar or whatever other preconceived notions people have about the genre. Sometimes it’s heart-stopping and tense, and surprising too.
Maybe it will surprise you. Maybe you’ll find yourself enjoying these stories just as much as the others. If you don’t, I understand, but finding my groove as a writer has taken me so many years, and now that I’m here I plan to stay for a good, long while.