Q&A with James C. Gillen

My name is James C. Gillen author of the Paul Isaac Vampire Series with Kerlak Publishing.

1) What is the title of your newest book or short story? What is it about? Where can readers find it?

I currently have two books out, 1) Tortured Skin and 2) Crimson Madness, both are part of the Paul Isaac Vampire series. The main idea of the series is set in Orlando, Florida among the tourist district downtown.

In my first book, Tortured Skin, Paul Isaac, vampire executioner, has a problem. In spite of public opinion and politics, he still has a macabre job to do. He finds himself in pursuit of a sadistic monster and injected with a deadly virus designed to turn him into the thing he hunts. Now, he must chose between being manipulated by vampires and solving a bizarre case.

Paul uncovers a sinister night club that caters to the dark side of pleasure and pain that might not only be the key to his survival, but may bring him closer to the rogue killer. He must learn to face his own inner demons and trust in those who may just turn out to be less monsterous than himself.Isaac, vampire executioner, has a problem. In spite of public opinion and politics, he still has a macabre job to do. He finds himself in pursuit of a sadistic monster and injected with a deadly virus designed to turn him into the thing he hunts. Now, he must chose between being manipulated by vampires and solving a bizarre case.

Paul uncovers a sinister night club that caters to the dark side of pleasure and pain that might not only be the key to his survival, but may bring him closer to the rogue killer. He must learn to face his own inner demons and trust in those who may just turn out to be less monsterous than himself.

In my second book, Crimson Madness, Paul Isaac is back and had found himself between a rock and a hard place. Someone or something is killing the human supporters for vampire rights, known as the Knights of the Night. An ancient master vampire has been targeted as the killer. But when Paul discovers the vampire may be innocent, he is forced to confront the police and their possible cover up or turn his back on the monster that may hold the only clues to the deaths.

In order to protect the humans being targeted, Paul must set aside his fears and prejudices and walk through the doors of a new vogue vampire art gallery known as Crimson Madness. What he finds there might be more frieghtening than anything with fangs.

Both books are available through most major bookstore chains, Amazon, iTunes and is available in book form as well as electronic.

2) How did you choose to become a writer?

I have loved writing and creating stories, songs and poems my whole life. When I was in first grade, I even re-wrote the Bible!  After that, I began to write easier material such as a book on a killer shark, inspired after sneaking into a theater and seeing Jaws. I’m very musical and in a few of the bands that I was in, wrote a lot of the music and lyrics to original songs. Life took over shortly after high school, got married, bought a car and house, got a real job, became a father, so writing took a serious back seat.  As time went on, I was able to free up some time and began to write again. In my head I had so many ideas trying to crawl out that it was almost overwhelming. Joined a writers group and after a couple of years of holding on to my manuscripts for dear life, finally took a chance with letting others read it and eventually met up with Kerlak Publishing.

3) Where can readers find you on social media?

My web site : jamescgillen.com, goodreads.com, James C. Gillen on Facebook

4) Was there a book you read in your childhood or teen years that changed your world? 

Not a book, but an author. Edgar A. Poe. It was about 3rd or 4th grade and we read The Raven and a couple of his short stories in class and I was blown away. Until then, everything I had read was puppies and rainbows with happy endings, and now here was this dark, sinister writing that had been placed before me. I was hooked on horror from then on.  After that, every year when school started, the first thing I would do was go through my reading book as see if there was anything from EAP. A couple of years ago, my wife bought me a hard cover edition of the complete works of Poe. Sometimes I’ll slip away, light a candle and read a page or two.

5) What advice would you give an aspiring writer?

Join a writing group. Not just any writing group, but one that will give you honest critiques. If you’re in a writing group and all the feedback is positive, it’s not the group for you.  No ones writing is perfect, much less every time, so be selective when you look for a group. Also, look for one where you are not the best writer in the group.  These environments are the best way to learn how to write well and improve your characters and ideas. Plus, it will be a great way for someone to question the plot or characters along the way and help you with issues in your writing that you might not even know were there.

Beyond that, do the following: Pull up a chair to the computer/typewriter (Do they still make those), sit down, place hands on keyboard and get lost in a great story.

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