I don’t need to introduce our next interviewee – she’s been bewitching audiences here on Haunted MTL for years… Her recent coverage includes American Horror, Dexter, Witcher. And of course, there’s always the classic Stephen King. But how well do we really know Nicoleci, Nicole C. Luttrell? Let’s find out as we take a journey into her world, behind the reviews…
Nicole is celebrating the release of her new horror novel, Quiet Apocalypse, available here through Smashwords. She has also written numerous other fantasy, sci-fi, horror and dark & twisted tales including The Man in the Woods from Solstice and Station 86.
I think horror almost feels like a secret club… It’s a community of people who love things that go bump in the night, which is something not everyone can understand.Nicole C. Luttrell
What is the premise of Quiet Apocalypse? What drew you to the haunted house story arc and how did it evolve? What surprises did you find lurking around the corner even as you were writing it? Have you had any haunted house or supernatural experiences that brought you to write Quiet Apocalypse?
So, imagine you’re trapped in your apartment in a winter storm. Some of your neighbors you like, some you don’t. But you’ve all got to work as a family if you’re going to survive. Then, imagine people start dying.
I’ve always loved haunted house stories. There’s just something about being unsafe in your very home that is inherently terrifying. Very root chakra type stuff.
I’ve definitely had some experiences I can’t explain, especially in my last house. There were just places I didn’t feel comfortable. Parts of the house that gave off a bad vibe. I almost felt like there was a body hidden behind the drop ceiling. I never found one, but then, I never looked.
If the best writing has some truth in it, how has your life shaped your written world? Has this offered opportunity to look at your experiences through different lenses and consider alternate possibilities that may not have presented themselves at the time? Is it cathartic or eye-opening to look for these truths in yourself and in others?
I wrote Sadie, the main character, as a witch because a few years ago I started practicing and it’s really enriched my life. I wanted to show a more practical witch. And in writing about Sadie, I’ve thought a lot about what I want from my own life, even my own witchcraft practice. And that’s why I love writing characters. It’s like giving me a chance to slip into someone else’s skin for a bit.
You have celebrated Stephen King as one of your horror heroes. Stephen King is one of mine as well, in part because he conveys his characters so well, really getting inside of their heads, and due to his versatility as a writer. For me, it’s all about connectivity and ability to adapt. (Well, that and general snarkiness in the irreverent sense, but that’s just a core part of who I am.) But why is Stephen King one of your horror heroes? What have you learned from him?
King is a natural teacher. I love that about him. I love his work ethic, and his devotion to his family. He treats writing like a job and a holy thing all at the same time. I think if you’re going to be a serious writer, you’ve got to do that.
Unbeknownst to much of the Haunted MTL readership, you are also an avid fan of Futurama. What is your favorite episode and why? What life lessons can we learn from the show? On your blog Paper Beats World, regarding a possible reboot of the show, you mentioned that they could “bite my shiny metal ass” – but what if the show were to return? What’s your take on the good the bad and the ugly?
Easily the best show ever. My favorite episode is The Sting, because it’s such a beautiful and sad story, and ultimately has a happy ending. It talks about friendship and guilt, and substance abuse after losing a friend.
Futurama teaches us about regret. About things left in the past that we can’t go back and fix. It teaches us to live in the present, to experience life right where we are, even if it’s not where we expect (or want) to be.
I am opposed to a reboot, though. The last episode was a perfect sendoff. It was an end to the story. I don’t think there’s more to tell. Worse, any further episodes would ruin the ending entirely.
Are there any other dark and twisted secrets you’d like to share with our readership? Any mind-blowing tidbits that have shaped you as a horror writer and a fan of the genre?
I think my journey to being a horror freak is pretty much the same as many of our readers. I was a lonely kid, left alone much of the time. A babysitter let me watch Nightmare on Elm Street probably way too early, and I was hooked from there. I spent much of my childhood with my nose in a book, and those books were usually either R.L Stein or Stephen King books.
I think horror almost feels like a secret club. It’s usually not mainstream. Some old horror flicks you have to know someone who knows someone to get your hands on them. It’s a community of people who love things that go bump in the night, which is something not everyone can understand. I love being part of that club.
So there you have it folks. Aren’t we all glad to be a part of the horror community? I know I am. Thanks to writers like Nicole C. Luttrell for shaking things up here on Haunted MTL and out and about! Be sure to check out her new book, Quiet Apocalypse. And follow us here on Haunted MTL for more interviews with all your horror faves.