5 Rancid Questions with P. A. DouglasPosted: August 16, 2012
Writers are my rock stars. They are my athletes. They make my whole little universe swirl with excitement and the anticipation of reading the latest masterpieces they put out and whenever I get word that they’re working on a new project my heart skips a beat. And since reading is a favourite hobby of mine, I seek out authors that I know will not disappoint. So, as a reader, it’s vital to my existance to find an author that I can really get into. And they are few and far between.
P. A. Douglas is one of those few. After reading Watchers (Paperback) and Rancid (Paperback) I’m now a die-hard fan! I’m really excited about Hitchers (Paperback) and I’m lovin’ the concept of this one and can’t wait to read it! While they’re available for Kindle, I personally prefer paperbacks to e-books so I’m saving back enough money to buy it as we speak! Now that I’ve derailed from my topic, let me get back on track.
I was able to get five questions answered pertaining to Rancid from P. A. Douglas himself! How awesome is that?!?!? You can also check out my interview with P. A. Douglas about Watchers right here.
JC: I love how Rancid has a style reminiscent of some of the 80s zombies movies without being a copy. In the last interview you said that you’re an “80s Baby”, so was the 80s vibe of this book something that just happened, or were you intentionally going for that style?
P. A.: I intentionally go for that style, because that’s the style I like. However, I tried to mix in a little bit of a new-age twist just to keep things fresh. Well, as fresh as a rotting corpse can get.
JC: I’ve heard that it can be difficult for writers to come up with ways to get rid of cell phones, particularly in horror. Since you had a group of characters, was it difficult to nix cell phones from the picture?
P. A.: Honestly, I am going to go with a ‘NO’. Some authors forget all about that aspect of the story. When I write, I try to think of what I would do in the situation. I wouldn’t run up the stairs to get away. No, I would run right out the front door and keep on running. So…if I am in a situation where I could really use a phone to get some help, then hell yea my characters would do the same. Getting rid of them can easily be done wrong. Just be subtle when and if you decided to do something like that. For example, you would run out the front door when the killer is in your house. If that happened the story would end prematurely. Just think it through. Give them a reason to turn around, or, an obstacle that keeps them from doing so.
JC: When it comes to zombie books or movies, I think all of us Z-buffs analyse what we would have done, or would have done differently than the characters. I think this was the first time that I’ve ever seen scenarios where the characters are pretty much stuck between a zombie and a hard place. And this was the first time that I’ve been at a loss as to how I would have gotten away unbitten! After reading some of those parts over and over, I humbly concluded that I would have been minced meat. You really gave a feeling of claustrophobic terror, and in a good way! With such originality, I have to ask where these concepts came from. Did you take a step back to ask yourself what you could do that hasn’t been done yet, or did the ideas just flow?
P. A.: Well, let’s be honest. Everything in the writing world has been done. It’s all been done in the movies, or in books and comics. Just because something isn’t original that doesn’t mean it can’t be unique. The human isn’t original, but every last thumb print is.
JC: Every writer has a different motive. To tell a story, to recruit readers, maybe even hopes of acquiring fortune and fame. And some write because of a sheer love of writing. What is it that drives you?
P. A.: I enjoy watching things grow. I was a full time singer-songwriter for a long time, and became accustomed to watching the number of fans grow as my career developed. I don’t care for fame or money. I love being creative and watching the readership grow. I enjoy knowing others like what I have created. That is the same with music, books, art… all of that stuff.
JC: The debate over environmental care and Global Warming has become so conflicted. Personally, I think we can all do a little something to take care of our planet. From everyday litter cluttering our streets to the devastation of Chernobyl, it’s a real concern. Was this book at all meant to make people think about the environment and what we put into our bodies, or just a really damn good story?
P. A.: When I write, I write from my life. I was on tour, so I wrote a book about a band on tour (Epidemic of the Undead). I was done with tour, so I wrote about a guy dealing with not being on tour (Hitchers). I made a few new friends that work at different chemical plants, so I wrote about a plant explosion (Watchers). I hate fast food… so… well, you get the point. I’m a home cooked meal kind of guy!