It’s been quite a while since I’ve done an author interview, but hey, I’m glad when I have the chance to do one. Today’s interview is with someone else who’s work is being featured in When The Lights Go Out, which if you haven’t checked out I highly recommend you do.

Barbara G. Tarn prefers the term “world-creator”, which I can understand, seeing as she not only writes but does graphic novels and a few other things too. She’s lives in Italy, which I think is pretty cool, and she’s constantly working on something (boy, does that sound familiar). And apparently I know her husband, as do many other writers. Lots of interesting connections here. Her story in WTLGO is related to her upcoming novel, which sounds very interesting if you read the summary. And speaking from personal experience, her short story is pretty awesome as well.

So without further ado, let’s get into it!

Welcome to the show, Barb. What is your short story about and what inspired it?

The Return of the Crusader is historical fantasy. It’s Halloween – when it was still called All Saints Eve – in 1150 AD Lincolnshire and the lady of the manor is hoping her husband will come back from the crusade… which he does, but as a vampire.

This story was inspired by the fact that Miss Naylor [Joleene Naylor, who helped put together WTLGO] wanted a Halloween story and I thought it was a perfect day for someone to be turned into a vampire! So I wrote this “origin” story for Kaylyn, who is Rajveer’s sister-in-darkness, and next year I will write her full story. For now you can see her in Rajveer the Vampire, out Nov.1st.

I’m a middle ages lovers and my historical novel  The Fern and The Cross is still in the drawer since I’m not happy with it. But all the research I’ve done for it will be useful to tell Kaylyn’s story, from 1150 AD to the new millennium – out Nov.1st, 2016.

Tell us what else have you written?

Star Minds is a science fantasy series. Then there’s Silvery Earth, adult unconventional fantasy. All books are actually standalone in both series, but if you follow the chronological order, you might see a pattern. Both series have lots of LGBT characters. Urban fantasy – Samantha’s body switches – and other contemporary titles are also out now. You can find everything at the Unicorn Productions website (that’s a logo I’ve had since the 1990s, when I did photocopied b&w fanzines to sell at the Italian comicons)

Are you a traditionally or self-published writer?

Indie because I’m scared of the draconian traditional contracts. But I’m submitting short stories to traditional markets – and rejections are piling up. Although I did get a Honorable Mention at Writers of the Future (and then indie-published that novella).

Nice! What got you into writing in the first place?

I’m writaholic. I’m married to Mr Writing. I’m an introvert and hate spoken words. I’d rather be writing than hang out. Should I say more? Okay, I was uprooted at 13, so that kinda shut me off from the real world… That’s when I started writing stories!

What is it about scary stories that you think draw people in?

I don’t read (or write) many scary stories, so I have no idea…

That’s a shame. Now, are you working on anything these days?

Redrafting Daya (another vampire that appears in Rajveer’s novel – probably a novella that might come out maybe at the end of this year or the beginning of 2016)) and Beautiful (a “retelling” of Sleeping Beauty with m/m protagonists).

What is some advice you would give to other writers, regardless of their level of experience or background?

Heinlein’s business rules: 1) you must write 2) you must finish what you write 3) you must not rewrite unless by editorial demand (and I mean editor in New York if you have a traditional contract, not a hired freelance) 4) you must put it on the market 5) you must leave it on the market until sold (either trad or indie). Don’t look for perfection or you’ll be stuck in rewriting hell forever. If you must take a course, go to professional writers such as Kevin J. Anderson, David Farland or Dean Wesley Smith. I’ve taken online and offline classes at WMG Publishing – and I started writing back in 1978. Thing is… you never stop learning.

Finally, if you were stuck on a desert island and could only take three books with you, what would you take?

Aren’t we past this with e-readers? 😉 Without wi-fi the battery would last long enough to read more than three books! I don’t know, I don’t have favorite books at this time… I’d probably spend the time telling stories to myself that I might eventually write…

Thanks for joining us, Barb. If you would like to check out more of her work, head to her blog, Facebook, Goodreads, or Amazon page for more. And make sure to check out When The Lights Go Out or Rajveer the Vampire, out November 1st.

All for now. I’ve got a few more interviews coming up, so keep an eye out for those. You have a great day, my Followers of Fear!

  1. Barb says:

    thank you for having me and looking forward to returning the favor! 🙂

  2. Great interview, guys!

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