K. Trap Jones is an award winning demented horror author of novels and short stories that appear within various anthologies. With a sadistic inspiration from Dante Alighieri and Edgar Allan Poe, he has a temptation towards narrative folklore, classic literary works and obscure segments within society.
His novel THE SINNER (Blood Bound Books, 2012) won the Royal Palm Literary Award. His splatterpunk novella, THE DRUNKEN EXORCIST has been released by Necro Publications. His narrative horror short story collection, THE CROSSROADS is available from Hazardous Press.
He is also a member of the Horror Writer's Association and can be found lurking around Tampa, Florida.
Could you tell the readers a little bit about yourself?
I’m a demented author that loves writing narrative horror. I became fascinated with folklore and tall tales at a very young age, which prompted my interest in the horror realm. I’m also a product of the ‘80s, which explains my love for splatterpunk movies and metal music. I entered the writing industry ass backwards by writing a 2-book novel set straight out of the gate. My debut novel THE SINNER (Blood Bound Books, 2012), in its manuscript form was entered into the Royal Palm Literary Awards and clawed its way to the top, winning First Place. I’m currently on my fifth novel and I also write a shit ton of short stories that are within various anthologies. I’m a member of the Horror Writers Association and lurk around Tampa, Florida with my wife and three sons.
Do you prefer the term Horror, Weird Fiction or Dark Fiction?
I actually prefer Demented Words on Paper, but I know that will never stick, so Horror or Dark Fiction works for me.
Who are some of your favourite authors?
I love all things classical horror. I read the words of Poe, Lovecraft and Dante almost every day. My mind is a twisted playground and for some reason I find myself more comfortable with the words of dead, famous writers. I don’t wish to join them anytime soon, but it would be cool to eventually have a beer with them at a tavern in the afterlife. Hopefully, there are taverns in the afterlife. That would suck if there weren’t any.
How would you describe your writing style?
Dark and full of raw emotion. Someone told me a long time ago, that if you aren’t scarred from writing narrative horror, then you are doing it wrong. It’s true, I believe that I am slowly going insane, but the keyword here is slowly. Listen, anyone can describe an axe going into the back of someone’s head and describe all the blood and whatnot, but that’s not what I’m about. I want to know what is going through the mind of the killer as his hands grip the handle. Does he have any hesitation as he raises the axe? To me, the mind of a killer is the most sadistic thing. I want to explore that within my writings. I put regular people into terrible situations and allow them to speak within the narrative horror tone of my stories. I love putting myself into the stories and that’s where the raw emotion comes into play.
Are there any reviews of your work, positive or negative that have stayed with you?
Oh man, I’ve read some pretty cool reviews over the years. I try to add twists within my stories that will hit the readers over the head with a rusty shovel. When it works, I get some awesome reviews. With THE SINNER, I wrote a complete narrative novel in verse format (ala Dante’s Inferno). I specifically did not describe the narrator and the last sentence, he says his name. I’ve gotten some kick ass comments, which tells me that the risk worked. I recently got a review for my novella from Necro Publications, THE DRUNKEN EXORCIST that started out with “You want to talk about bat-shit crazy? Then you want to talk K. Trap Jones’ novella.” I love that shit! It’s nice to receive insanely written reviews on books that are insanely written.
What’s your favourite food?
Tacos! I swear I could eat them every day. They say that the human body is comprised of 60% water. I believe that I am about 75% salsa.
Who would be on the soundtrack to your life story?
Although I like all genres of music, heavy metal plays a huge part in my writing, so the soundtrack would most likely consist of the following bands:
-Lamb of God
What’s the most important lesson you have learned about writing?
Patience. It is something that has grown within me and has actually helped me within other aspects of my life. I used to count the days after submitting a new story to a publisher. Now, I don’t give shit. I immediately start writing something else, which helps me not dwell in the turnaround times.
What aspects of writing to do you find the most difficult?
I love constructing tales with all the twists and turns along the way. I love it when an ending enters my mind and the complete story works, but putting so much importance of the ending is something that can be difficult. Sometimes, I have this great story in my mind, but I just can’t make the ending work. So, I am forced to side line those particular ones until the package comes together. If over time it doesn’t come to me, then I become Leonidas and kick the outline down into my death pit. It’s difficult to watch a perfectly good story as it flails down into the trench of hell, but it’s not my fault; it should’ve had a logical ending.
How do you think you’ve evolved creatively?
Poe said it best, “I slowly became insane, with horrible intervals of sanity.” I believe the secret to creativity is to always challenge one’s self. With every new story that I write, I am constantly asking myself what I can do differently. I strive not to box myself in and really just write stories that I think I would enjoy reading myself. If I can please the demon swimming within my head, then I think I am doing a good job.
What is the best piece of advice you ever received from another author?
I read a lot of interviews with authors that I admire. Wrath James White is an awesome horror writer and I read an interview with him where he said something like, “If another writer can write your story better than you, then you shouldn’t be writing it.” There’s something about that statement that has stuck with me through the years. I don’t want to write like anyone else, I just want to write the stories that only I can write.
Who is your favourite character from your book and why?
Father Schnitt from my novella THE DRUNKEN EXORCIST is my favourite. I had so much fun writing this narrative. This character is a rogue, unconventional priest that was shunned by the church and forced to extract demons from the scum of society. The narrative tone of the character is so uncensored and just made it a blast to write. I found myself laughing and pushing myself to raise the unemotional limits of the character as the story progressed.
How about your least favourite character? What makes them less appealing to you?
This is a tough question because I have slaughtered many lead characters that will never see the light of day on paper. Since I write narratives, the characters have to be believable, if not; they don’t pass my drunken intellectual final exam. However, there was one asshat that I couldn’t stand. He was the topic of a short story and was a nasty, old man that I started to hate while writing him. Fortunately, he got his in the end and won’t be returning.
Fame, fortune, or respect?
I have to quote the great Jack Ketchum on this one, which will pretty much answer the question for me.
“If you’re in this game for fame or money, do us all a favour and fuck off.” –Jack Ketchum
What piece of your own work are you most proud of?
I take pride in everything I write. I am my own worst critic. I will not submit any story to a publisher that does not meet my standards. With that said, I am truly proud of the novels/novellas that were able to meet my standards and have been accepted by publishers. These include my novels THE SINNER, THE HARVESTER, ONE BAD FUR DAY and THE DRUNKEN EXORCIST. I am also extremely proud of my short story collection THE CROSSROADS. Putting together a collection of previously published short stories mixed with some new ones was a big goal for me as a writer.
Can you tell us about your last book, and can you tell us about what you are working on next?
THE DRUNKEN EXORCIST was just released by Necro Publications. This is one fucked up story that had me grinning like an alley cat on trash day. Think you know something about exorcisms? You don’t know Schnitt. Fresh on probation for his unconventional methods of handling exorcisms, Father Schnitt is burdened to describe his encounters with the possessed. With brutal honesty and nothing to hide, the rogue Father details his procedures for extraction and his arsenal of weaponry including a crucifix, shotguns, and machetes. Last, but not least, whiskey is not only the Father’s cause of addiction, but also serves as his greatest weapon and ally.
“Exorcisms are like removing nails from a piece of wood. Some of them come out nice and clean, but there are always a few stubborn ones that require more effort. As you dig and grind to reach the stuck nail, the piece of wood becomes ruined. That’s where I come in, when things turn to ruin.” – Father Schnitt
As far as in the future, I have a bunch of projects that are in the works. My novel ONE BAD FUR DAY will be published by Sirens Call Publication. THE HARVESTER is coming out soon from Blood Bound Books and there are a few top secret projects that are currently in the hands of a few publishers.
What's the one question you wish you would get asked but never do?
I don’t know, this question about a question is a pretty twisted one. It’s like something out of the movie Inception. Shit man, you got my mind racing now and I may not be able to sleep tonight.
FOR MORE INFORMATION ON K. TRAP JONES FOLLOW THE LINKS BELOW
FILE UNDER HORROR AUTHOR INTERVIEW