On the Hot Seat: 5 Questions with Horror Author Patrick C. Greene

As a toddler, Patrick C. Greene was creating horrors in crayon and magic marker upon every available surface. Not surprisingly, he soon discovered comic books and immersed himself in the fantastic worlds found therein. Horror fiction and films came next, and despite spending nights of terror hiding under covers, he always found himself drawn back to tales of dark fates.
Greene cut his fangs in the screenwriting business but found his true calling in the world of prose fiction of the kind his heroes King, Barker and Koontz create.
Living at night, deep in the mountains of Western North Carolina, Greene answers the call of his morbid muse when not enjoying monstrous helpings of horror, kung fu and doom metal.
Q: What’s inside the mind of a horror author?
A: Many surprisingly bright and cheery thoughts, actually. If I may speak for purveyors of the genre, I find my colleagues to share with me a wish for social equality and peace, for beauty/ truth. The horror, with its allusions to the unknown and Unknowable, is both a distraction from mundane bothers and a reflection of the current world state; how it could be so much better with just a little effort.
Q: Tell us why readers should buy The Crimson Calling.
A: Vampires are endlessly fascinating because they are the monster closest to us, in terms of emotional complexity, desire and ambition. They too can feel love of a kind –or try to reject it. The vampires of Crimson are both terrified of and fascinated by us “warmies,” just as we are of them. We are on the cusp of a time when vampires and mortals can find a kind of peace, but the road is fraught with treachery and danger. It’s a close parallel to some of our current social issues, and even mingles with those at times. Oh yeah – the question. Readers should buy The Crimson Calling because it is literally the Single Greatest Accomplishment in Human History.
Q: What makes a good vampire horror novel?
A: The element that makes a book of any genre good, is its characters first, and how they handle the conflicts of the story second. It’s not enough for vampires to be scary in my opinion, they must also have very human thoughts and feelings. A werewolf or zombie for example, isn’t necessarily evil, just hungry and unconcerned with what it destroys in satisfying that hunger. A vampire must be aware of the lives of their victims and either ignore them or relish the pain and change they reap.
Q: What is a regular writing day like for you?
A: Not really a “day” at all. I’m very much a night creature, like the vamps of The Crimson Calling, but without the sometimes messy habits. I’m up in the early evening, off to the gym for a couple of hours, and then on to work on the latest project, wrapping up by dawn. The training settles my body so that my mind can be active, and also helps me to clear stress so that the writing time is most constructive.
Q: What has writing taught you?
A: It’s a constant reminder of the theory of relativity, that every reaction has its opposite. But also, that the opposite can be something wildly unexpected. It has instilled in me the appreciation of having a long term goal and seeing it realized past the doubts and fog of the early stages. So, patience, mostly.