Friday, 13 March 2015

Men in Horror: MATT SHAW

Introducing the infamous, soon to be famous Matt Shaw. Matt is an author which you either love or hate. No middle ground for this horror author, according to readers. He has a reputation for extreme horror and he does not hold back when writing. He does things with his characters that make people want more, or want to crucify him. Either way, they keep reading, even the ones that do not like him. Weird.

They keep reading because Matt has a talent that is rare, a gift for writing, and the productivity to make him an iconic author akin to J.A Konrath. 

But do not be fooled. Matt is not a one-trick pony. He has written some beautiful and touching books as well. It is not only the darkness that Matt dabbles in (although he will disagree, stomp his feeties while wearing his rabbit onesie and scream I am evil, I am, I am).  THE MISSING YEARS OF THOMAS PRITCHARD was incredible. First horror book ever that made me cry at the end. And there was a scene in another book that totally caught me off guard by the beauty and love a father showed his child. 

Then there is one of my favourites, I'M FINE. Little talked about, little discussed, but a great insight to the mind of a writer and what some of us go through, and I believe, what troubles most of us, but most won't admit. 

If you do want to delve into Mr. Shaw but do not know where to start, and you aren't sure about the extreme horror, try THE MISSING YEARS OF TOMAS PRITCHARD. It is a story you will not soon forget. This book made the SOLSTICE LIST OF BEST HORROR NOT TO BE MISSED as best novel of the year.

1.     When did you start writing horror?

The second book, after a book dealing with depression, was horror so Right at the beginning of my career. It is only the last year, or so, which has seen that work turn extremely brutal though and get labelled as extreme horror.

2.   Have you written in any other genre?

I have written romance, erotica, science-fiction and even a childrens book but I am known for my extreme horror. I actually think its good to branch out to other avenues once in a while. It helps you grow as a person. And, believe it or not, Im very proud of The Missing Years of Thomas Pritchard (science-fiction) and Heavens Calling (romance).

3.  What makes you uncomfortable?

G-strings. Theyre like cheese-wire and go right up the crack. Although my wife says I shouldnt be taking them from her drawer when she leaves the house anyway but what can I say? Im a curious kind of fella and Id run out of clean boxers.

4.  Does your family read your work?

No. The bastards. Youd think they would support me butNot a sausage. Actually, thats not fair, my mum does support me. Once, when I couldnt pay my bills, she did my shopping for me. I just told you a lie without realising, she reads my books too! But only because she points out the mistakes for me

5.  Does your writing make you uneasy?

There has been a couple of times when Ive thought ooh, did I just go there?but mostly I dont feel uneasy. I am writing for the adult market. I am writing for horror fans who wish to be disgusted and shocked. No point feeling uneasy when I know I am writing for people are seeking. Just get your head down and get on with it. It is important - however - to have a point to the gore and scares. Horror with no point, just for the sake of being disgusting, is actually boring to read and boring to write.

6.  Who would you say you write like?

One review said I write like a talentless baboon. Not the best review to be honest.

7.  Who are your favourite authors?

Roald Dahl. Genius. Love the man. Id marry him I would. Well, if he were alive.

8.  Who influences you as a writer?

I just write. I try not to get influenced as it would be less methen. When reading books, for example, I avoid the horror genre completely. I tend to read autobiographies. I mean, at the moment, Im reading Graham Norton! Actually its a good book. Very funny and a nice break from the horrors.

9. Do you remember what your first horror book was that you read?

I think it was a Goosebumps book but I dont remember much about it.

10.  How old were you?

I think was about eleven when I read my first book, chosen by me. Usually I was reading Dahl, was instructed by my school. Thats no bad thing. Love the man. Well, loved him. Hes dead now and that would just be a bit grim, right?

11.  Is there any subject you will not touch as an author?

I think I have touched upon nearly every subject deemed taboo now. When writing horror you need to push boundaries. That means going places you normally wouldnt. Sometimes Ive come under fire for it, sometimes people have enjoyed the work more because of it. Theres a fine line to cross, Ill admit, and I tend to fall off quite a bit.

12.  What was the best advice you were given as a writer?

No one really gave me advice. People just kept telling me I wouldnt make it. That made me more determined and now I can sit back with a smug look on my face and poke my tongue out at them.
I do have many friends in the industry, though, and we tend to feed ideas off each other in an effort to support one another. Sadly not everyone is like that and there is a lot of jealousy in the game though which is rubbish. (You may insert a sad face here).

13.  If you had to start all over again, what would you do different?

Start with extreme horror earlier. Its only after those books I was able to quit the day job. I would also start writing earlier still.

14.  How many books do you read a year?

About 5. Honestly I am always writing. When Im not writing books, Im doing things such as this or chatting to readers. I am 100% accessible to those who wish to seek me out for chats and I take pride in that fact. Too many people forget the reader is the most important thing and ignore them once theyve bought their book. That isnt the way to be. We need to keep chatting with our readers and respecting them as individuals. Its also good to get to know them because you can them tailor your books around them.

15.  Do you write every day?

Without fail.

SO TEMPTED TO USE THE RABBIT ONESIE PIC........Yes, I kept that one.....blackmail......

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