1. It’s Halloween, pick 3 of your favorite writers to paint the town red with and tell us why you chose them.
Jon says: Daniel Arthur Smith and Stefan Boltz are both NY writers who I've come to respect and like a great deal. I missed a chance to hang out with them some time ago and am hoping we can fix that at some point. I think that Neil Gaiman would make an interesting add to the NYC Halloween experience.
2. You’re ready to head out with your pillowcase to collect loads of confections on All Hallows’ Eve, what’s your costume and why did you choose it?
Jon says: Phil Coulson from SHIELD. My wife tells me I sort of look like him, and in a real sense, Coulson held the first phase of the MCU together.
3. Old Mrs. Robinson opens her door and you’re holding open your pillowcase patiently waiting. “Oh deary,” she says in her frail, little old-lady voice. “I forgot it was Halloween. Don’t know why you kids go begging anyways. Let me go find something to give you.” She shuffles off and finally returns three and a half minutes later with 5 pennies, 2 peppermint candies that look like they went through the dryer, and her deceased husbands dentures. “Take what you like,” she offers, squinting at you.
What do you choose and why.
Jon says: I take the pennies, arrange them artistically,frame them and put a placard under the frame that says "NICKEL BUILDING KIT." I think it's all about presentation.
4. I really love reading Dean Koontz but some of his stuff scares the bejesus out of me. What’s the spookiest book you’ve ever read?
Jon says: IT by Stephen King, scared me silly when I first read it 20+ years ago. The story is about violence, and specifically deals with bullying. I had lots of memories of being bullied as a kid and never properly dealt with them. King helped me do that.
5. You’re a writer by day and supernatural creature by night. (Shed that human skin you sack of bones) What are you and why?
Jon says: Werewolves rock. Next question.
6. Every author has a bookshelf filled with his or her favorite reads. Run on over to yours and tell us the scariest book you have.
Jon says: Well, IT, by King, as I said, and What Dreams Will Come, by Richard Matheson. Matheson's afterword said that the story and characters were fictitious but the events were not. The idea that we really do drag our bad decisions with us into an afterlife should scare anyone.
7. We don’t all write horror but there comes a time when you’ve got to surprise your readers and make sure their hearts are still beating. How do you prepare yourself to get in the spooky writing mood?
Jon says: I go back to Clive Barker's Tapping the Vein series of graphic novels. Brilliant, creepy story telling.
8. Stephen King’s front porch light is on but there are no Halloween decorations.
a) trick-or-treat and cross your fingers that he’s handing out the good stuff
b) run screaming
c) call your mom to bring your favorite King paperback and beg for an autograph
Jon says: I've seen King's house. It is surrounded by a cast iron grate that's guarded by a three headed dragon. If that's closed, they're not taking requests. If it's open, I'd bluster through it, ring the doorbell, hold out a bag, and see what happens.
9. Congratulations, you just won the literary lottery and sold a million books at full price! The royalty check clears on October 28th. What are you buying for the neighborhood kids?
a) an assortment of mini candybars
b) an assortment of cheap, hard candies
c) full size Hershey bars
Jon says: Full size Hershey bars, of course. Good fortune needs to be shared.
10. Your writer friend calls you with some frightening news. They’re giving up on writing, can’t take the pressure any longer. What do you tell them?
Jon says: If they can't take the pressure, then they're giving up on publishing, not writing. These days, with the growing indy author crowd, all the pressure is self-imposed. That bears repeating every now and then.
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