Red Tash is the author of The Wizard Takes a Holiday and the quite amazing This Brilliant Darkness. She is also a columnist, journalist, “Guerilla Mom”, former Derby Girl and the winner of “Best in Show” for the 1st Annual Coffin Hop Horror Author Hop. She is also one of the most brilliant, versatile and kickass writers I have met in my travels, as well as a staunch supporter of the controversial “Christmas Pickle” tradition.
I am spotlighting this bad mammajamma to kick off the 12 Days of #Creepfest and introduce you all to her glorious book This Brilliant Darkness, exclusively available on Kindle KDP Select (although we just may be giving away a free copy, along with an ecopy of Living Dead at Zigfreidt & Roy. Stick around to the end of the interview for details 😉 )
Please welcome, the incomparable Red Tash!
TBD has been described as “Original”, “Complex”, “Compelling”… “Mystery Science Masterpiece Theatre”… And has been lauded for being the antithesis of “Heroes Journey”-type SFF. Why do you hate George Lucas so, so much?
Oh my gosh. Have you seen that ugly MFer? Who has the audacity to make an action figure customized after himself, and name it Jorge Sucal? He should have at least made the X-wing pilot version of himself in good enough shape to pilot an X-wing. As if Porkins weren’t stretching it enough, already?
I actually don’t hate George Lucas at all. I just wish someone would have stopped him from making those embarrassing prequels. The Clone Wars cartoons were okay, with their full-tilt action and lack of dialogue. Then he had to go and ruin those, too.
Maybe I do hate him.
Give us the gist of TBD and explain why Michael Bay should not direct the movie.
This Brilliant Darkness is a very intense story about a very simple question. Does love really conquer all? There’s more to it than that, of course, with one of the major characters being an alien entity and there being past-lives and time travel, and all–but the crux of it is that.
TBD is a short book and a quick read, but it moves fairly intensely through the lives of the different characters involved. No one’s really who you expect them to be.
A reader wrote to me yesterday about the baddie, Greachin. She wanted to know if he were truly evil, or if he were some kind of messiah figure. We talked about it, and she pointed out “No one in the real world who is evil thinks of himself as evil, does he?” and I gave her props for being the first one to point that out, because it’s a major aspect of the antagonist’s character.
He also happens to be most writers’ favorite character. Readers go for Christine or Richard, writers go for Greachin.
It has a sequel, which I hope to finish in 2012.
Troll, or Derby?
I think the question there is “Why not both?”
OK, Tell us about the upcoming “Troll or Derby”
Troll or Derby has been a joy to write from start to finish. After completing This Brilliant Darkness, I wanted to work on something light and fluffy, so of course I headed straight to the meth labs and illegal casino operations of America’s Heartland. My motto was “The trashier, the better,” and every time I run across something unbelievably distasteful here in my neck of the woods of Southern Indiana, it becomes part of the scenery of Troll or Derby.
I actually started the story before I got involved in skating, and then picked it back up when my roller derby days were at an end, so what began as a passing characteristic—a teenager who likes to skate–turned into a defining trait. Roller Deb finds out she’s a fairy, takes up with a troll kind of by accident, and has to save her idiot sister from peril because of some prophecy that she doesn’t understand. Mix in a little lesbian coming-of-age tale with your typical “I play roller derby in a drug haze surrounded by trolls with maces and clubs,” and I guess you’ve got my version of Are You There, God? It’s Me, Margaret.
You are a former rollergirl and a self-described “Guerilla Mom”. How long have you been awesome? Is there some kind of topical ointment that will achieve the same result for a regular Joe like me?
Gosh, thank you.
Believe it or not, there are male rollergirls. You have not seen awesome until you have seen the likes of Quadzilla wowing the crowd. I would not dare put a wheel on the track in his presence. Some of the guys even skate in skirts to show respect for the fact that derby is a female sport. They are beyond cool, I mean that sincerely.
Seriously, though, I have my kids to thank for both my Guerrilla Mothering column and my writing now, as well as my derby days. I was basically sleep-walking for a decade or so, until they came into my life and gave me a reason to be a better person. My column was all about my quest to be the best mother they could ever want, and it was after my first home birth that I finally got the courage to write a full-length novel as an adult.
Until six or seven years ago, I didn’t take writing fiction or poetry seriously, and hadn’t since I was what us old geezers now affectionately refer to as “a kid.”
Roller derby was something I just had to do. At first I was just going to write a story about it for the paper. I did do that, but I also got talked into trying out for the team, which was probably the scariest thing I’d ever done in my life at that point. I was completely outside my element, out of shape, and surrounded by tattooed women ten or more years my junior. But I had given birth three times by then, so I figured there was absolutely nothing they could do to hurt me physically any worse than that.
And finally, the real question on every mind at this special time of year. Clark Griswold or Ralphie’s Old Man? And please answer in the form of a Haiku.
The Old Man, his broken prize
The stuff of legends