Ginger Nuts of Horror
To celebrate the launch of the new charity anthology Splatterpunk: Fighting Back from Jack Bantry's Splatterpunk Zine Ginger Nuts of Horror brings you a series of interviews with some of the contributors to the anthology. Today Ginger Nuts of Horror is honoured to welcome David Benton to the interview chair.
David Benton is the bass player for internationally renowned heavy metal novelty act Beatallica, as well as performing in one of the Milwaukee area’s most sought after original music groups, Chief. Published fiction collaborations with W.D. Gagliani have appeared in The X-Files: Trust No One, SNAFU: An Anthology of Military Horror, SNAFU: Wolves at the Door, Dark Passions: Hot Blood 13, Zippered Flesh 2, Splatterpunk Zine, The Horror Zine, DeadLines, and others.
Could you tell the readers a little bit about yourself?
Outside of my creative endeavors I work days as a janitor at a nursing home. In the past I’ve been employed as a bricklayer, a cheese maker, forklift operator, I’ve worked on a printing press, and those are just the day jobs that readily come to mind. I have two grown daughters who I’m very proud of. And I’m currently living with my mother who is being treated for lung cancer (so participating in the Fighting Back anthology really hits home)
What do you like to do when you're not writing?
I actually don’t spend nearly enough time writing. Writing is what I do when I’m not at my day job, maintaining the house, making music, or upholding my social obligations. I suffer from the consequences of serving too many masters. If I had the option I would spend more time writing.
What does Splatterpunk mean to you? What attracts you to writing in this genre?
Splatterpunk is a sub-genre that doesn’t flinch away from graphically depicting sex, violence, or often a combination of the two. I don’t think I’m specifically drawn to Splatterpunk so much as I’m drawn to horror fiction in a broader sense, and what draws me to it is its dark and imaginative nature. I guess I can’t explain exactly why. I grew up a huge fan of Universal, Toho, and Hammer monster movies, as well as Warren Magazines. From there I was drawn to Advanced Dungeons & Dragons which exposed me to a lot of fantasy and horror fiction, and I guess I just liked the darker fork in the road better. Basically, I like monsters.
A lot of good horror movements have arisen as a direct result of the socio/political climate, considering the current state of the world where do you see horror going in the next few years?
I think the ease of self-publishing, POD, and electronic publishing will end any large scale movements in publishing, and instead we will be able to find new work (and a lot of it) branching in every direction. The age of the gatekeepers and tastemakers is over. In much the same way that home recording and streaming has changed the music industry, technology will continue to challenge the status quo. As a fan it will be a great time to find new works from a wide variety of voices representing every sub-genre and style. Unfortunately it will also make it more and more difficult to earn a living wage as an artist.
What is the best piece of advice you ever received with regards to your writing?
I’m a big fan of the Joe Konrath quote: “There’s a word for an author who doesn’t give up… published.” I think that, not just in writing but in life, giving up is the only way to ensure failure. As long as you stick to it and keep pushing forward you will improve.
What piece of your own work are you most proud of? Which book or story do you think is a good ‘jumping on’ point for new readers?
I’m proud of all of them for different reasons. I don’t think I can pick a favorite. I think the story W.D. Gagliani and I wrote for the Fighting Back anthology, Feast of Consequences, is a fine place to start. It’s actually a self-contained excerpt from a longer piece of fiction we’re slowly picking away at between other projects.
Can you tell us about your last book, and can you tell us about what you are working on next?
I recently finished my first novel and I’ll be self-publishing it soon, hopefully before the end of the year or early in 2018. It’s an apocalyptic tale of nature run amok entitled Fauna. Now I’m working on a longer piece of fiction about reincarnation.
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