Q: First off, if you could tell a little bit about yourself and what types of stories you enjoy writing as well as which genre(s) you write in?
A: Hi Sara! I’m thrilled to participate in the launch of your website. At my day job, my position is called a “Predator” because we can write, produce and edit content for a large media company. My television commercials, radio pieces, and internet promos are shown all over Canada on Global TV. Though I love mainstream media, I am also fascinated with the creative that lurks in the darker corners of the imagination, so I write speculative stories. Horror, sci-fi, fantasy, steampunk, solar punk, you-name-it-punk, anything with a twist interests me.
Q: I’d love to share a bit about your most recent work, if you could let our readers know about it?
A: At my day job, I am the producer responsible for Clarice (among other shows), a TV drama that takes the Silence of the Lambs story to the next step. It is a beautiful and intense series. The originating US network usually sends us promos that are already created, and I have to “Canadianize” them. I joke that I spend a lot of my day doing “dead body removal”. Our network won’t show corpses, extreme violence, or anyone taking a bullet. After hours, I’ve recently created a podcast called “Read Me A Nightmare”, where I produce little radio dramas using short stories. I’ve got five done so far and over 100 downloads, so this is a promising start. So far, I’ve only used my own stories, but I have some great writers and talented voice actors slated for the near future.
Because my journey had been frustrating, exhilarating and featuring a really steep learning curve, I’ve been trying to find a way to help other authors navigate the path with less torture and rejection. To this end, I started interviewing publishers and editors, trying to find the tricks and tips to more success submitting. I was also very curious as to who are the people behind the magazine and podcasts. You can read my interviews on horrortree.com and mythaxis.com. I’ve also published three books (that you can find anywhere, including Amazon) and I call them the Selling Stories Series. There is The Guide of All Guides (which lists all the best markets in order of what they pay, plus hints for acceptance.) Then I have two short story collections that include chapters on the market that bought them and how they made it to print. The Story Behind The Stories, and The Publishers Behind the Pages. There are some dandy rejection letters featured, lol.
Q: You have so many short stories out in the wild, do you have a favorite?
I have two favorites. The first one is “Invasive Species” which is a sci-fi murder mystery. It’s the very first story I ever penned, back in 2017. It took me almost four years to get it published, with multiple intensive re-writes. It finally found a home with DreamForge Anvil and Scot Noel. Noel is a gem amongst editors and he and his wife Jane are genuinely trying to help writers find their footing and create good content. I highly recommend checking them out. “Invasive Species” is also the most recent podcast I’ve produced and Noel chats with me about his journey and why he buys some stories and not others on it.
Then there is “Inked” which you can find in Jolly Horror’s anthology Accursed. It is a horror comedy piece about a tattoo created out of a magical love potion. Once again, this story helped me forge a relationship with another wonderful editor, Jonathan Lambert. He has been my mentor throughout my journey and one of the first editors to actually work with me and give me a chance to get published. He rejected my first two stories but encouraged me to keep trying, letting me know I was close. My third story hit the jackpot.
Q: Are there any characters that you would love to return to who you have written in the past?
A: Scare Street recently published a story of mine called “The Metamorphosis” about Seth, a leech man with a heart of gold. I absolutely love Seth and am currently trying to write a paranormal romance novel featuring him, his barn of pet pigs, and many mysterious vampire-like murders.
Q: Where were you born (and/or are you from) and how has that affected your work?
A: I was born in Southwestern Ontario’s farming country, but was raised in downtown Toronto. Farming must be in my blood, because as soon as I could, I moved to a farm and stocked it with a million animals. I have horses, cows, goats, chickens, dogs, and a cat. Animals are often featured in my stories, and I love anthropomorphizing them. One of my favorites “Farmyard Follies” features talking chickens who use the word “cluck” a lot. Like “Cluck off, you motherclucker.” I’ve also written a memoir detailing our farming adventures and do some freelance writing for the agricultural world. You can check that stuff out at www.fawns.ca/farm
Q: What was the first story that you published (and if it was a short story, where?)
A: I was really lucky with my first published story. Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine purchased “Three Calendars” at the beginning of my fiction writing career in 2018. You can find it in the November 2019 issue. It’s a murder mystery told from the point of view of a grandmother with Alzheimer’s. Goes to show that writers should not be afraid to submit and shoot as high as they can!
Q: I’ve read countless of your interviews over at Horror Tree. How do you do research on the authors and editors you interview? (I might be stealing these ideas for later, no promises but you always flesh out such fun ones!)
A: A lot of my interviews are with editors who published my stories. It makes contacting them easy because I am already working with them. I am also quite nosy and want to know more about the people behind the magazines. In addition, I’ve interviewed a lot of editors who reject my work but send good helpful rejection letters. The authors I’ve interviewed tend to be ones who I’ve noticed in my research and seem to have figured something out I haven’t yet. If I have questions for someone, I assume most writers might want to know the same things.
Q: Thanks again, do you have any teases of what you’re working on next that you could hint at?
A: I have one of the best voices in the television world working on “The Golden Falcon” right now for my podcast. Kristi Stewart is one of my favorite people, and I am VERY excited about this upcoming episode. Speaking of amazing voices, one of my fellow editors, Karen Shute, has a soothing sexy voice, and she is working on “Three Calendars” also for Read Me A Nightmare.
You can follow Angelique at any of the links below!