My interview today is with Justin Bienvenue, writer of horror and apparently westerns as well? Check him out on Goodreads!
1. What first inspired you to write?
I believe I was first inspired to write when I had a writing project to do in school, I would say middle school not sure which grade. I wrote some story about knights and ninjas if I remember correctly and while I’m sure it wasn’t great it really got me to enjoy writing. I was also inspired after reading a poem later on which inspired me to start writing poetry.
2. I see that your new book features horror mixed with westerns. How did that come about, and where did you get your ideas?
The title, A Bloody Bloody Mess In The Wild Wild West popped into my head one day after watching a western movie. After that, I ended up watching a horror movie and then an idea came into my head. Before I knew it I had idea after idea pouring out of my head. After writing down the concept I had I got started. I watched old western shows which tide up any small gaps I had and pieced everything together and before I knew it I had the book which is out right now.
3. What do you like best about horror?
The thing I like best about horror is that your writing with every intention to scare or gross out your reader. After all isn’t that what horrors about? Horror is a popular genre that people just can’t seem to get enough of and you know when you write there’s always going to be an audience that will enjoy it. I also like all the branches of horror that one can work from to create a story.
4. Who is your favorite writer, and why?
Elmore Leonard. He’s probably not known from his name but many of his works have been made into movies such as Get Shorty and 3:10 to Yuma. I read a couple of his books and I just really enjoy the style to which he writes. Not only does he give his characters purpose but he gives them definition and mystery at the same time which I really like.
5. What did you learn from your first experience publishing a book?
I learned that you should always look into a publishing company before you make any decisions. I went with an awful company that wronged me in so many ways. By the time I realized all the bad they did it was too late and I was and still am stuck in a awful contract. I have since moved on from this and accepted it and now I always triple check every publisher I look into to make sure the same mistake doesn’t happen again.
6. Getting reviews is always one of the toughest things to do, especially for poetry. Did you have a strategy, and if so, what was it?
In all honesty, No. I was totally new to the book world. I had no clue what to do however I was aware that poetry is harder to get people to read than any other genre. Basically I just told people if they liked horror that they should give my book a try. Getting people to read poetry isn’t easy but as long as you believe in your work and you try your best then maybe you can get a few people to read it.
7. Tell me about your new book.
My newest book is a western horror, “A Bloody Bloody Mess In The Wild Wild West” It takes place in the fictiona; small town of Toomswood five years after the Civil War. The town still in shambles lead by the son of a recently departed sheriff must battle against a slick Mexican business tycoon and his army of undead Civil War soldiers. It really has a good blend of both the old west and horror.
8. What will your next project be? Tell me about that.
For my next project I will be going back to my passion of poetry. It will be a book of mixed poetry with no true theme. It will contain poems of all different genres written in different poetic styles and will have rhyme and prose. It’s pretty much done I’ll just need to touch it up a bit when I’m ready to get it published.