Question one: Tell us about your current or last science fiction novel. What is it about and how did you come up with the concept?
My science fiction and horror trilogy The Women of the Grey is about an alien race of women that are sent out on missions in the human world after being raised in a seclusion. The anti-hero of my trilogy is Lisa. She doesn’t know the full of extent of her powers. Throughout the trilogy she discovers the truth of who or what she is: human, alien, or both? The Women of the Grey trilogy is known for being incredibly creepy. One reviewer called it “deceptively simple yet creepily riveting.”
My inspiration for The Women of the Grey was The Leftovers by Tom Perrotta. I liked The Leftovers because the supernatural event was the background for the story. Perrotta focuses on the humans left behind: their pain, their emotions. I had an idea about a race of alien women that were neither kind nor evil, but teetered on the boarder of both. In The Women of the Grey trilogy my focus is on the emotions of these humanoid women that are raised in seclusion then expected to follow orders when they are set free in the human world.
I’ll give readers a hint of the horror aspect in The Women of the Grey trilogy, the humanoid women are addicted to human blood.
I have an upcoming new science fiction and horror release on Sept 1st. Ella is One of Many is a clean, science fiction and horror novel. Ella is inspired by the 1980s mini-series V. The 80s kids out there might remember V. V was the story of a reptilian invasion on earth. Ella is my homage to the V TV mini-series that started my obsessive love with aliens and horror.
Question 2: How did you get started writing science fiction?
There really was no choice for me besides writing science fiction and horror. That is where my interest lays. I have a hard time focusing on things that I have no interest in. Since I’m a proud science fiction and horror fan when I set out to write that is what naturally flows out of me. I couldn’t write anything else if I tried and believe me I tried.
Question 3: What specific sub-genres within science fiction do you write in and why?
The subgenre I write in science fiction is horror. My science fiction trilogy and upcoming new release are horror based. I don’t have an answer as to why I love writing horror, possibly because that’s what I watch and read.
Question 4: What tropes do you think are important for that sub-genre?
That’s difficult for me to answer. I don’t purposely make sure that I hit any tropes in my books. However, The Demon Dealer my very adult horror novel, has one of my most favorite horror tropes ever, evil children. When I wrote The Demon Dealer, I didn’t consider it a trope. It just kind of dawned on me answering this question that it was. So I’m not sure which one I consider important, but I will say I love evil, creepy, wicked children in books/movies/television.
Question 5: Do you prefer to write in first or third person and past or present tense?
Damn, I think I mix all of those together. I’m serious. Each one of my books has an element of each of those. I don’t prefer one or the other I write what feels right for that character and story.
Question 6: What is your favorite part about being a writer?
When someone reads my work then contacts me and tells me they felt something. Whether it be sadness, happiness, creeps, fear, what have you. I made the reader feel that story. Also, when a reader contacts me and tells me that my writing lingered in their thoughts for days after finishing one of my books.
By far though the best part of being a horror author is when someone tells me they read my work and I gave them nightmares. Giving someone a nightmare to a horror writer is the golden ticket, fist pump, good job done sticker.
Question 7: What is the hardest part about being a writer?
I have chosen to be an indie author. That means I’m a one woman show. Being an indie author is running a small business. Carol James Marshall is the business and if I mismanage it, it will crash and burn. The hardest part of that is wanting to do nothing but write, but you know you have to buckle down and handle the business side of your authorship.
Question 8: What stories or authors influence your writing?
Margaret Atwood is an enormous influence for me. She is terrifying. I find her work disturbing because everything she writes could possibly happen. Her MaddAddam trilogy is one of the scariest science fiction trilogies I’ve ever read. The possibility of what happened in the trilogy actually occurring isa possiblity and that is scarier than any demon clown.
Question 9: Recommend a great science fiction book or movie that we might have missed you didn’t create?
All science fiction fans should read Roadside Picnic by Arkady Strugatsky. It is my all-time favorite science fiction novel. The situation, characters, and set up in Roadside Picnic is a solid 5 stars. Go read it now.
Question 10: Anything else about you or your novel that you would like us to know?
I also write nonfiction. My current new release is a memoir of my days bartending at a dive bar in the middle of the California desert. Barflies: A Bartender’s Memoir is out now and is available on Kobo, Apple Books, and Amazon.
Also, let’s all get rid of the horror author stereotype of us walking around looking like Rob Zombie or biting the heads off lizards for kicks. Horror authors are some of the nicest people you’ll ever meet. Maybe because we save our crazy for our writing.
Question 11: What’s the best way to find you online?
I’m very active on my Facebook and Instagram pages. You can find me by searching for Carol James Marshall. Readers can also join my VIP Fan Club. When you join monthly you’ll receive one or two emails from me that’s packed with book goodies, such as sales, freebies, deals, and other reader opportunities.
You’ll find me on Amazon at Carol James Marshall