This time I talked to author R.D.Teun who was kind enough to answer my questions.
Books & Writing: Can you tell us a bit about yourself please.
R.D.Teun: Not really much to tell really, in my personal life, I am pretty much a loner. Some would say a little bit of a lone wolf. I have my missus and my little boy, so I feel I have everything I need with them. Other than that, I am a great believer in supporting your fellow writer. We are after all just the same as sperm, there are millions of us, and it is just the right time and place for one of us to truly make it. By that I mean reaching the heady heights of let’s say; Stephen king or Elmore Leonard. That is not to say they are not great writers, because they are, it just so happens that they got noticed by Hollywood which in turn made said books into film and boosted their name into the stratosphere. It’s a shame people don’t read more. I was once ignorant to the world of books, a snob almost. That was until I broadened my horizons and steered away from the main stream writers and tried those that are just beginning their careers. I found wonderful writers such as Mr. Bennie Newsome, Adam Millard, chantel beadreau and so forth. They all amazed me and showed me that great writers are not solely found on the best sellers lists, they are also found within the smaller indie circuit. Don’t get me wrong, I am still a fan of some best-selling writers, but to me, I hold each in equal regard.
I’ve always been the person who was the one on the outside looking in, that was until I became a writer, then for the first time in my life, I felt I belonged to something that was purely for me. Don’t get me wrong, I generally have a lot of time for people…But I believe there are times where one needs to be a little selfish and take something that is purely for them. It helps to be a solitary person as a writer, it helps to have the time to write but also helps avoid the pitfalls of laziness such as roman a clefs (That is writing a character based on a real person.) I like to read what they call the “rules to writing” then throw them out of the window, and blaze my own trail. Other than that, I am quite a complex person. For example…I have a huge fear of needles so I went out and had a tattoo that covers most of my upper arm. I fear heights so my first thought is to go sky diving at the first opportunity, still yet to do that one…give me some time though…
Books & Writing: Do you remember the first story you wrote?
R.D.Teun: Actually I do, it was not a horror story. It was written around ten years ago, and was called; Charlie’s horse. It was a tale about one man’s descent into the world of drug addiction and the roads he travelled along the way, his highs (No pun intended) and his lows. At the time, I wrote alone, never told anyone about what I was doing; worse mistake ever. I lost faith and confidence in my writing; I dabbled with writing over the preceding years. I took up writing up full time, a year ago, with the support of my partner and other writers who supported me along the way. I have been going from strength to strength since. I owe that to a great deal of support and encouragement.
Books & Writing: What got you interested in writing horror?
R.D.Teun: I don’t think you choose what you write, the subject chooses you. Never fight against that, follow your calling. Trying to fight against it, could result in writing that is simply not an extension of you expressing yourself. We writers are selling lies at the end of the day; the important thing is we don’t lie to ourselves. Of course taking into consideration outside influences in your own reading habits, of course this can result in poor imitation as opposed to finding your own voice. Of course there will be little nuggets of other writer’s styles in your own writing. Just remember; a good poet borrows, a great one steals – T.S. ELLIOT.
Books & Writing: What is Suicide Solution, the short story you wrote which got published in the Undead Anthology, about?
R.D.Teun: For me, it was about a man’s journey into acceptance, shunned from his family, an outsider who finally finds a place in where he fits. Beyond that, it is a vampire story, which has been described as a supernatural crime story by quite a few people. I cannot say too much about this story as there a quite a few twists and I wish and hope that people will read the story and be entertained.
Books & Writing: Where did you get the inspiration from, to write this story?
R.D.Teun: A lot of the main character is a great deal of the inner demons I faced as a person and a writer. Other than that, it just kinda come together and almost wrote itself. It was a paradox in some regards, it was easy and a challenge at the same time.
Books & Writing: Are you working on something new at the moment?
R.D.Teun: Yes, glad you asked! At the moment I am developing a story which began as one book, then it got bigger, more ideas came until finally I decided to turn it into a series of books which can be read separately or as a series. All four books (So far) are interconnected, so I’ll be rewarding the reader for reading closely.
That may seem arrogant of me to say so, but reading should be a rewarding experience.
Books & Writing: What is the last book you read?
R.D.Teun: Godfather – Mario puzo.
At the moment I’m reading (At the same time)
Adam Millard’s; dead cells,
Stephen king; the shining
Mario puzo; the last don
Stephen king; the stand.
Elmore Leonard; rum punch
Books & Writing: Where can people find you on the internet?
R.D.Teun: Twitter for the time being…I’m always happy to chat. Just tap in; @rdteun
Books & Writing: Which writer(s) inspires you?
R.D.Teun: Any one that has ever had the courage to put pen to paper, and took the dive into getting published.
Books & Writing: Do you have any tips for aspiring writers?
R.D.Teun: Be selfish when necessary. Believe in you and your writing. You’ve gotta have a tough hide, people will can be harsh. It’s just advice; try not to take it to heart. And finally a personal bug bear of mine; Freelance editors. They don’t know you; they don’t know your story. Just handing over a couple hundred and an un-copyrighted story, is plain stupid. Sorry, but it is. (I would talk in greater depth about this, but it would lead to a great deal of cursing and ranting…)
Edit your own work and omit needless words. Also please go grab a copy of; ELEMENTS OF STYLE (Strunk and white.)
Quinn walked slowly past the houses that sat quietly beneath the shelter of night. Not one curtain flickered; there was no news to be heard just yet. However, come tomorrow, those curtains would flicker. The neighbours that had been strangers for years would greet each other to discuss the mystery of the night before. It would be the tale that lovers used as justification to cling together, when the cold was of no available excuse. Cold hearted murders would lay awake at night, clutching their sheets and left to watch the windows for strange faces. Lost in the deep pool of his own thought as he entered the field just beyond the houses, Quinn wandered why this place was chosen, why here? Where it was open and wide. Why not somewhere quiet and secluded? The grass crunched softly beneath his feet as he walked to the edge of the lake. Despite his reservations of chosen location, he could barely contain his excitement; here he was taking what could be his last breaths as a mortal. It was tonight, soon he would be inducted…No. He was to transcend into the upper echelons of a new existence. To live forever, to live a thousand life times. Never knowing the cruel grace of old age, never knowing sickness. He felt the last feelings of regret slowly ebb away. His family would never know of him again. A once in a lifetime chance. If confronted with the moral dilemma that he was given, he was sure they would have made the same choice. Not that mattered anymore, they had refused him their loving embrace for some time now. Fathered by a man who never wanted him in the first place. All Quinn was ever told was that he was a product of a one-night stand; he was never part of that particular deal, as he was constantly reminded during his adolescence. He had spent his entire life not belonging. Now he was old enough to be responsible for himself, he was shown the door never to darken it again with his shadow. All that was left was the world to be explored. Around him, the crickets sung. The animals of the night, made their quiet way through the surrounding trees as they swayed as lightly as feathers caught in a breeze, the night welcomed the end of the day. Quinn hoped this would be the last of his suffering. Life had not been kind to him, it had seemed to be against him at every corner. Maybe in his death and rebirth the pain would falter, perhaps fade away completely. Maybe, for the first time in his life he would finally be a piece of a puzzle that fitted.
‘There have been men who have lost countless years watching their own reflection.’
The voice caused Quinn to nearly leap from the very skin he inhabited. Quinn turned round to face the owner of the familiar voice.
‘Is this gonna be the last night…?’ Said Quinn with a nervous smile. He had every right to be nervous. All the knowledge he had was from what he had seen from every vampire film. The little time he had spent with a real vampire was very different from what he had seen on the silver screen. Maybe it was the Hollywood appeal to the masses, in which the monsters had to have that certain approach-ability, White males, who were always athletic and was always with or ahead of fashion. The Silver screen vampires had a feminine handsomeness. Lastly, they were always perfect boyfriend material, complete and utter gentlemen. Quinn only had one of these qualities. He was not particularly handsome nor was he unfortunate. How new vampires were chosen was a concept beyond him. Whatever qualities he had… they had the attention of the eternal.
Thanks a lot for taking the time to answer my questions!