Patrick C. Greene Unveils Bryan W. Alaspa
Bryan W. Alaspa is the author of the story
in the new anthology from Sekhmet Press
Hi Bryan! Thank you for joining me today. Let’s kick off this interview with the most important question. Have you ever encountered a ghost?
What kind of music do you listen to for inspiration?
I listen to my favorite radio station – WTTS out of Indianapolis, IN. I discovered them a long time ago when I was married to a woman from Indie. I either listen online or I listen via their phone app. I love classic rock and my favorite group is Pink Floyd, so I listen to them a lot. My other favorite performer is singer/songwriter Peter Himmelman whom I also got to interview for my blog – which was AWESOME.
Have you ever started a project, felt it run out of steam and had to abandon it?
All the time. It happens a lot. It seems like I cannot write short stories much anymore so all of the stories are these epic things. I have had several that just sort of petered out. I have a murder mystery that I started about two years ago that I hope to get back to at some point that started strong and then just ran out of steam.
What’s the most shocking book or story you’ve ever read?
Wow – I think Thomas Tryon’s outstanding horror novel The Other has one of the greatest twists and shocking scenes in fiction. His other novel Harvest Home also is just terrifying beyond belief (unfortunately I think both may be out of print – but if you can find them, read them). I was completely enraptured by the novel RUN by Blake Crouch and it just chilled me to the bone from the first page.
Do you remember a particular moment or incident that made you decide to be a writer?
Not really. I just remember loving sharks when I was young and this was in the mid-70s when the movie JAWS was coming out. That made the paperback huge and my parents had a copy. I would stare at that cover image and think – wow, someone WROTE this book about SHARKS! How cool! I want to do that!
Do you have a certain space and time set aside for writing or is it more of a free-form process?
Well, my dream is to be able to write my books and novels full-time and when that happens, I am betting things will get a little more free-form. Since I have a full-time job, I am more structured. I write for an hour or hour-and-a-half each morning before I officially start the day job. I am lucky that the day job lets me work from home, at least. I write 1,000 words a day, minimum, every day.
How would you describe your writing style?
Geez. I really don’t know. I write decent action scenes and I have really good climaxes and endings (or so I have been told). I hope that I create realistic characters and put them into extraordinary situations that thrill and scare.
What other sorts of themes or genres would you like to explore?
Anything. Anything can become a story for me. A news story. Walking the dogs and seeing something out of the corner of my eye. Something someone says. I like writing thrillers, but in the past couple of years I also have had some ideas for what I would classify as drama stories. I have one in my notebook that I think would be my first truly literary work – if I can ever get around to it.
Please briefly describe your path to publication.
Well, I wrote my first novel by hand in high school and college and promptly shelved it because it was awful. However, I wrote my first real novel just after college. I could not find a standard publisher for it and this was when Print on Demand publishing came into existence. So, I used that format to get it out. My first book, published by a publisher, was a non-fiction work about haunted houses in St. Louis (I went to college there and lived there for a few years afterward). At some point Kindle came into existence and I began publishing my works that had been available via POD sources for Kindle and, lo and behold, found an audience. That led to connections with other authors and that has led to me being published by other fiction publishers.
Who are your favorite fictional antagonist and protagonist and what was it about them that struck a chord for you?
For me, a good villain makes a good hero. So, the more vile and vicious the villain, the better the hero. I think the example that comes to mind that stands out the best is the Joker and Batman. I was (still am) a huge comic book fan, and that dynamic always amazed me. It’s because they are really opposite sides of the same coin. I mean, there is no denying Batman is, in many ways, just as nuts as the Joker. No sane person dresses as a bat and tights and throws themselves into dangerous situations like that without being disturbed. But, like the character of Dexter, he uses his insanity for good things. The Joker lost him mind and decided that there were no consequences to things so he commits wanton murder and mayhem. That dynamic is endlessly fascinating to me.
Aside from writing, what is your favorite artistic medium?
Gosh – I don’t do much more than writing, although I have dabbled in photography. I don’t have a really good camera, though, so I haven’t quite reached the levels I would like in that area. However, I was once told by a friend who is a professional photographer that I have an “eye” and that if I got a decent camera I could probably take some great photos.
Thanks again for joining me today and letting us get to know you better. I wish you the best of luck with Wrapped In White and all of your future endeavours.
Bryan W. Alaspa is a Chicago native and published author of over 20 works of fiction and non-fiction. He has written books in the genres of horror, thrillers, suspense, true crime, history, mysteries, young adult, paranormal and even romance.
When he’s not writing, Bryan enjoys spending time with his beautiful wife, Melanie, and their two fur babies, Gracie and Pippa.