Interview with Lori Lopez
Interview with Lori Lopez
What inspired your new release?
My latest E-book is SPOOKED, a ghost story obviously. Then there is a piece that was chosen as the story of the month on Servante Of Darkness. I have a story and poem in the new BONES II anthology. My weird tale SLEEP OF FOOLS is already out, but it will be released soon in HEARTCORE (Volume One or Two), a charity anthology to benefit authors in need. A story and poem were published in the thirteenth issue of THE SIREN’S CALL E-zine honoring WOMEN IN HORROR.
These were all written for publications, which is a great inspiration for me to write stories. I missed the anthology deadline with SPOOKED. I had finished in time, but I still needed to read through it. I don’t leave that to other editors. I go through my work meticulously, at least three times, after editing while I write (checking for redundancies and discrepancies, polishing lines, proofing and so on). The bright side is that when I don’t get into an anthology, I can release the work myself. Either way, I have a new story.
Tell us about any WIPs you have
Let’s see, the most immediate ones are illustrating a story co-written with Blaze McRob some years ago to release both print and E-book versions (TIDES OF CHAOS), and a story that is already an E-book, JAR BABY, to release in print with artwork at the request of a fan. Then I have stories to finish for an anthology and a couple of new collections. I also promised myself I would focus on sequels this year to stories and books such as UNLEASHED: TAIL ONE; HEARTBEAT; FOSSIL; DANCE OF THE CHUPACABRAS (which I will also turn into a “graphic novel”). My next two poetry collections based on my column are close to completion. I just have to add some extra poems. An art book needs additional sketches. There are novels to finish and begin.
How many people ask you to read their books?
I’m not known enough to be hounded by newbie writers, though I do get some. I also get occasional requests from fellow authors I know. If it interests me, I’ll accept a copy or exchange titles. But I have to explain how busy I am. I can’t guarantee when I will read it. When I do, I’ll review it. I don’t like to trade reviews.
In a word sum up your writing style
Eccentric. Quirky also fits.
Do you have a character you enjoyed writing the most?
It’s a toss-up between Meezly of An Ill Wind Blows, Dwayne of Monstrosities, Midnight of Unleashed, and Spider of The Fairy Fly. Those are extremely different characters, not at all alike. But I connected with each and had great fun conjuring their exploits. I say conjuring because writing can feel like magic, the way all of the pieces fall into place.
Is there a genre you would like to try?
Steampunk. I’m drawn to the atmospheric quality of it, and the alternate-reality aspect. I have a story or two waiting for me to get around to them.
Could you live without coffee?
I could and have my entire life. Never touch the stuff, same as alcohol. I have an occasional tea. I used to drink A LOT of diet sodas. Not very healthy. Now I drink water with lemon, occasional juices, almond or coconut milk, also coconut water, and plain water if I’m exercising.
Tell us one of your favorite jokes
I used to tell one about a farmer and his wife, who agree to ride in a small open-cockpit plane at a county fair. The farmer thinks ten dollars is too expensive, so the pilot offers to take them up for free if neither of them says a word during the flight. He then performs all kinds of stunts to scare them, but finally lands and pumps the farmer’s hand telling him, “Not many people could have gone through what you just did without saying a word!” The farmer replies, “Well, you almost had me once when my wife fell out!”
I learned it from a joke book I loved as a kid. I prefer to make up something funny if I want people to laugh. My own books can be amusing.
What’s your favorite thing about the writing process?
I love being in a story, carrying it in my head and assembling it word by word like a puzzle. It’s the best time for me, when I’m creating. I actually enjoy editing my work as well. It’s still part of the creative process. I don’t enjoy editing for someone else. Once the writing and editing are done, I enjoy making the cover. These are all very satisfying.
Three facts about you
I’ve been a vegetarian since age fifteen but am eating vegan more and more. I plan to teach myself ukulele (I already play guitar and drums). I’m afraid to drive.
Do you believe in UFOs?
Yes. There is simply no reason to not believe in them. This is a vast universe. There are parallel universes. It would be crazy for there not to be other worlds like ours out there in the cosmos.
What was your favorite snack growing up?
Wow. I loved going to movie matinees and eating Good-And-Plenty candy, so I would say that. I have the cavities to prove it.
Would you rather have fame or fortune?
One or the other? I’d be happy if my books were being read by a lot of people. That’s one of my dreams. It would also be nice to have money to help organizations like Greenpeace and animal-rights groups, shelters for abused children and women, things like that. I guess then I could hire people to read my books. But it wouldn’t be the same. Difficult question.
Pick one book that is your all-time favorite?
An even harder question! Seriously, I could scream! I love ALICE’S ADVENTURES IN WONDERLAND and THROUGH THE LOOKING-GLASS, which are actually two parts of the same story. There are so many others, like FRANKENSTEIN, that I love too. But ALICE is just so brilliant, so incredibly clever. Sigh. I could name others. And there are some I haven’t read yet. This is impossible to answer, really. Ever.
Are you an introvert or an extrovert?
Definitely an introvert. I used to be an extrovert when I was small. That changed. Now I’m the opposite, but the extrovert comes out to play on occasion. If you don’t know me in person, I can seem quiet and serious. If you really know me, you’ll know I can talk a lot and be funny. I’m kind of weird either way. Slightly peculiar.
Muppet – I like The Cookie Monster. He’s a monster, he likes cookies, and he’s a puppet. What’s not to love?
Cartoon growing up- I went through phases. TOM AND JERRY, SCOOBY-DOO. Now I watch PHINEAS AND FERB and HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON.
Color- Black. I like others, but that’s the one I like to wear.
Type of Monster- Frankenstein. Sorry, Cookie. Frankenstein stole my heart ages ago.
Do you speed when you drive? Ha ha ha. I don’t drive. If I did, I would probably speed in terror. You do not want me on the road behind the wheel.
Spaghetti or Lasagna and why?
Lasagna. It’s richer, more substantial, and has lots of cheese.
Your thoughts on Self Publishing
If it weren’t for self-publishing, my voice might still be silent, unheard as a writer. I might be posting my poetry column at our website, and free stories, yet not be found. Without this movement, this E-book and Print-On-Demand revolution, I might never be known by the amazing readers I’ve met both online and off. I might not be able to hold my books in my hands (another dream), see them in the library, sign them for readers, share them with the world. Whether the world knows it or not, I am finally an author. I’ve waited a very long time for that.
Your thoughts on Zombies
I love all manner of monsters. Zombies are fun because they’re everywhere. They’re us, dead and revived and hungry. I like to tinker with them. I’m not one for formulas. I tend to do my own thing, whatever the monster. Or make up new ones. But I have four zombie tales out, and I will probably write more.
Do you believe in the Loch Ness Monster?
I do. It’s entirely plausible that such creatures could exist in certain circumstances, left over from the Dinosaur Age.
Are you a tweeter, a re-tweeter, or you couldn’t care less about Twitter?
I do both. My time is so limited, however, that I have little chance these days to check the posts that pass through the Feed.
Would you rather sit on a porch with sweet tea or go hiking with a bottle of water and a smile?
The porch sounds tranquil, on a rainy day. I don’t like sunny days, preferring gloom. I also enjoy hiking. Especially in the woods. Oh yeah. That is the most tranquil place on Earth.
Your favorite type of music
Oh boy. I love so many types. It would be easier to say the types I don’t like. Heavy Metal. Some Rap is okay, poetic, nice tunes. But a lot of it seems unpleasant, explicit. Hip-Hop is better. I’m primarily into Pop and Folk, Folk-Rock, Rock, some Country, Blues, Jazz, Classical. There are other genres, and I appreciate music from other cultures. I like my own music, a blend of Folk and Rock, some Pop and Country mixed in.
Your favorite color of Skittle
I don’t eat them. Don’t see the fascination. I’m more into Dark Chocolate, especially with nuts.
Your favorite way to spend an evening
Seeing a really good movie. Better still, a really good double-feature. The genre will depend on my mood. Horror anytime, but not all horror films (some are just bad); Thrillers, Action and Suspense, Comedy, Romantic-Comedy . . .
Tell us what you are working on now!
I have a story for another anthology in progress, also some illustrations to do involving monsters and mummies (fun stuff). And I just started my next poetry column. I’ll be writing an introduction, then around five poems, primarily dark verse, some of them humorous.
Anything you would like to say to the aspiring authors reading this blog?
If you truly love writing, pursue it with everything you’ve got. Don’t expect it to be easy. But if somebody takes the time to read your writing, and if they enjoy it, that’s the best feeling in the world.
Thanks so much again!
Thank you, Emily! Very entertaining questions!
Lori R. Lopez wears a lot of hats, literally and otherwise, and you never know what madness might lurk beneath them. An author as well as an artist, musician, actress, activist and more, she writes short stories and novels, along with a dark often-humorous column called “Poetic Reflections”. Her books include AN ILL WIND BLOWS, CHOCOLATE-COVERED EYES, DANCE OF THE CHUPACABRAS, THE MACABRE MIND OF LORI R. LOPEZ, OUT-OF-MIND EXPERIENCES, and THE FAIRY FLY (ages twelve through adult). Her stories and verse appear in anthologies such as MIRAGES: TALES FROM AUTHORS OF THE MACABRE, MASTERS OF HORROR: DAMNED IF YOU DON’T, BONES II, SPLATTERPUNK SAINTS, DARLINGS OF DECAY, I BELIEVE IN WEREWOLVES, THE EPOCALYPSE: EMAILS AT THE END, SOUP OF SOULS, THIRSTY ARE THE DAMNED, and SCARE PACKAGE: 14 TALES OF TERROR. Fifteen of Lori’s poems were published for an anthology titled IN DARKNESS WE PLAY. Her prose and poetry have been featured in THE SIREN’S CALL, THE BLACK GLOVE, GHOSTS AND HAUNTS and other magazines. She unapologetically takes pride in creatively bending and reshaping the rules of writing when it suits her style.