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Wednesday 12 August 2015

ℚ♫ Tales of Blood and Sulphur: Apocalypse Minor: The Tales of Blood and Sulphur [1] - J.G Clay

Today we have the pleasure of meeting up with author to talk about Tales of Blood and Sulphur: Apocalypse Minor (, Forsaken, 220 pages), volume one of The Tales of Blood and Sulphur.

Synopsis | Teaser | Author Q&A | About the Author | Tour Stops

J.G Clay, welcome to BooksChatter and thank you for joining us.

What was the inspiration for Tales of Blood and Sulphur: Apocalypse Minor?

"There’s a whole host of inspirations for Tales of Blood and Sulphur: Apocalypse Minor, ranging from the sublime to the ridiculous.

Each short story is a window into my thoughts, feelings, even the music I was listening to at the time of writing. For instance On The Beach, one of the very first stories in the collection and also the oldest, was inspired by the song Message In A Bottle by the Police. The title was taken from the B-Side of New Order’s finest song Blue Monday.

At the other end of the scale, you have The Writer’s Friend which was inspired by a combination of a hangover, writer’s block and a strange patch of earth in my back garden. Horror’s a brilliant genre in that sense. There’s so many things out there that can inspire you. You just have to be receptive to inspiration when it comes calling."
Indeed, and talking about inspiration and music, do you have a particular playlist for Tales of Blood and Sulphur?
Here’s the top 10 tunes that were being played as ‘Tales of Blood and Sulphur: Apocalypse Minor’ was being written.

How much of yourself is reflected in this book, and how?

"Oh, there’s a lot of me, my life and background in this book from my thoughts and feeling about day jobs right down to my local pub. Readers who know me will be able to spot the references and also get the ‘pop culture references that I’ve inserted here and there. There’s also a small in-joke between me and my two brothers - a sly reference that I’ll be giving a nod to in each piece of my fiction. I’ll let the readers figure that one over time."
The first thing that draws me to a book is its cover. Can you tell us about your cover for Tales of Blood and Sulphur: Apocalypse Minor - why you chose that concept and who the artist is.
"The cover is dark and atmospheric with bloodied hands reaching out to you. My cover designer, Ashley Ruggerillo is an in-house Forsaken/Booktrope designer recommended to me by one of my fellow Booktrope/Forsaken authors. The only guidance I gave her was to make the colour scheme dark with red lettering and also to use a certain type of font. Everything else was Ashley’s own work. She hadn’t actually read Tales at all, not even an excerpt. It’s a testament to her skill and imagination that the very first concept she sent to me was the one I went for. She nailed it from the start."
Why should we read Tales of Blood and Sulphur: Apocalypse Minor and what sets it apart from the rest? What makes your book unique?
"There’s a thousand other horror collections out there, but I think mine stands out due to the originality and also the sense of dark humour and fun in the book.

In an age when every horror writer seems to try and out-zombie one another, Tales of Blood and Sulphur: Apocalypse Minor brings new creatures, new fears and new locations to the Horror Milieu. It’s fresh, it’s bold and it’s vital. And it has a zombie story in it. I had to put one in, at least. "
Can you tell us something quirky about Tales of Blood and Sulphur: Apocalypse Minor, its story and characters?
"It’s not set in London for a start. I tried to move away from the British author trope of setting everything in London. A few of the stories are actually set in the small Midlands town where I live. In fact, the pub in LLTC and Whatever Happened to Pete The Neat? is a real place. It also happens to be my local haunt."
Who would you recommend Tales of Blood and Sulphur: Apocalypse Minor to and what should readers be aware of (any warnings or disclaimers)?
"Anyone who loves horror – Stephen King, Clive Barker, John Carpenter basically. I think there’s enough crossover appeal for sci-fi fans to enjoy it too.

I like to think that ‘Tales Of Blood and Sulphur: Apocalypse Minor ‘ is a book that can be enjoyed by anyone who loves a good read. However, there are no sparkly vampires with emotional issues in the book."
If you could / wished to turn Tales of Blood and Sulphur: Apocalypse Minor and the The Tales of Blood and Sulphur series into a movie, who would be your dream team?
"If I could turn this into a Tales From the Crypt type series, there could only be three directors for me – John Carpenter, George A. Romero and Lucio Fulci.

Locations wise, anywhere near my home town would be great, so I could have a nose at what’s going on.

Carpenter would have to do the music score. I’m a massive fan of his soundtracks as well as his films. In fact, they are required listening material when I write.

Actors. There are too many to list fully but top of the list would be Ben Browder, formerly of Farscape and Stargate. He’s a fantastic actor and very underrated. I’d love to see him in more stuff. I’d also have to put Matt Smith into the mix. He comes from my area so it’d be good to have a local boy around and his turn as the Doctor was amazing. Also throw in Simon Pegg, Idris Elba, Jennifer Lawrence, Dev Patel and finally, Paul Darrow, Avon from Blakes 7, just because he’s a childhood hero of mine."
What do you like to write and read about? Do you stick to a particular genre or do you like to explore different ones?
"Horror with an element of sci-fi. I was raised on Doctor Who, Blakes 7, Star Trek and on the books of King, Barker, Graham Masterton, James Herbert and Ramsey Campbell. Those are the genres that I’ve loved and still do. I do have a hankering to write a British crime novel one day though. Maybe that will happen, maybe it won’t. Time will tell.

One pet project that I let slip by unfortunately was a historical one. My grandparents and parents came from India back in the 1950s and 1960s and settled here in the UK. I grew up hearing the stories of coming to a new land radically different to the one left behind, adjusting to new ways and situations. It was fascinating stuff. Unfortunately, there aren’t many of the original generation left. That opportunity has gone now. I’ll always regret that missed chance to chronicle an important part of British cultural history."
What is your writing process?
"I try to get down 2000 words a day at a minimum, sometimes in one go. If that’s not possible, then I try to write for at least an hour. It’s a delicate balancing act when you have to work full-time, be a husband and a father and also have time for yourself, but the job always gets done. If I miss it, even for one day, I feel guilty for the rest of the week.

I don’t tend to plot things out in great detail, whether it’s a short story or a novel. I sketch out the bare bones and just get on with it. That seems to work."
What is in store next?
"Next up, we have my first full length novel for Forsaken (Booktrope) called H.A.D.E.S. It’s an action horror set in the 1980s and (reluctantly I might add) also set in London as well. That should be out by the end of the year.

From 2016 onwards, the plan is to release two novels and a Tales of Blood and Sulphur collection a year. I’ve got more than enough material and ideas to keep that momentum up for a long time.

There are also other things that I’ll be doing with the Forsaken imprint (short stories, novellas etc). The future beyond ‘Tales’ looks bright and busy; not that I’m complaining. I’m just starting out in my dream job. I’ll take bright and busy over miserable and unfulfilled any day of the week."
And as a final quirky thing, to get to know you a little bit better... do you have a pet or something that is special to you (this could be absolutely anything!)? Could you please provide us with a picture of you with them?
"Me with my two Shih-Tzus: Alfie and Smudge"

Hello Alfie and Smudge!   ... just look at those little faces 
Thank you for sharing them and so much about you and your writing with us!
Have a great tour and we look forward to reading Tales of Blood and Sulphur.

Tales of Blood and Sulphur: Apocalypse Minor - available NOW!

UK: purchase from purchase from Nook UK US: purchase from purchase from Barnes & Noble find on Goodreads

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