Where are you in “I Was a Teenage Space Jockey”?
Midland, Texas was the closest big town to where I grew up, and it had a mall, and in that mall there was the Gold Mine—this videogame arcade. Every once in a while, while our moms were shopping, a friend and me would get ditched there with a couple dollars for quarters, which we’d always blow through in about ten seconds. Or, we’d lose them even faster when we put them up for the next game, since the older kids would take them, staring at us while they did it. So we learned to try to play the games nobody wanted high score on. And we crawled around in the grossness behind the games, looking for dropped quarters. And I always imagined what it would be like to still be in this place after that grate got pulled down over the entrance.
What are you reading lately?
Reading an early copy of Delilah Dawson’s The Violence and about to jump into Alma Katsu’s The Fervor. Am audiobooking The World Before Us, by Tom Higham, and I’m about to dial up the next The Kingcast podcast, I think. This morning I was reading the latest installment of Wolverine, by Benjamin Percy. Aside from that, reading a couple of MFA theses, and a lot of the moment-by-moment analyses of the last episode of The Sopranos, which I’ve been thinking about a lot lately. I never run out of stuff to read.
Other than writing, do you have any other creative pursuits? What do you do to relax?
I hit the trail on my mountain bike. When I can free up two or three hours, I can usually get about twenty-six miles in on an easy trail, and when I’m more slammed for time, I cut that in half. I usually listen to music, for this. This past week it’s been Karen Lovely, Roxy Blue, and George Strait, I don’t know why. But, for other creative pursuits . . . not really. I mean, I play pool to wind down, I guess, but mostly I’m either at this keyboard, on my bike, or at the movie theater. Or, it being fall, the Halloween store, of course.
What trends in speculative fiction would you like to see gain popularity in the next few years?
I’ve been liking all the non-medieval-ish fantasy that’s been happening. Don’t get me wrong, longswords are fun, too. But so are completely different builds. For science fiction . . . man, science fiction’s so all over the place, always, that it’s hard to identify where it actually is. Seems that the last few years, there’s been lots of generational ships, maybe? And a whole lot of sentient ships. But I’m kind of digging all that, too. And I’m thrilled that the world’s finally coming around to see that horror’s not in some bubble out here removed from the world, but that we’re in dialogue with it, we’re responding to it, we’ve got our tentacles on all the topics, thanks. And we’ve always got more tentacles.
What are you working on lately? Where else can fans look for your work?
I’m in edits for the sequel to My Heart is a Chainsaw, right now. And I’m also neck-deep in some television stuff and some comic book stuff. Been thinking I should maybe start making some discreet calls to people who might have some cloning pods or something, really, so I can get more work done. I mean, it’s either that or put a foot pump on the day, try to fill it with more hours. But I bet somebody cracks cloning before we ever figure out how to make an hour twice as long. And, if we did? I’d probably just watch all the monster-of-the-week episodes of X-Files with it, so, anybody out there working on this right now, be advised, I’m probably not going to use the extra time as you intend. But please don’t stop, either. I really do like my flukemen, my chupacabras.
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