Q: Thanks for joining us today Justin! I’d like to kick things off, if possible, with you sharing a little bit about yourself and what types of stories you enjoy writing as well as which genres you write in?
A: Hi! I’m an Englishman and have been living in Barcelona for the last 25 years. Until Covid took care of things, I worked as a waiter in a busy restaurant in the centre, which is possibly the worst job in the world! Blessing in disguise perhaps, I now dedicate myself to writing fulltime, hoping to carve out a career for myself in this particularly difficult and competitive market.
Until a year ago, I’d always written short stories, horror and dark fiction, but, once I knew that in a few months I would become unemployed, I started working on novels. So far, I’ve written a 5-book zombie/demon series, a supernatural serial killer novel, and a trilogy centred around a detective and my fictional psychiatric hospital, Northgate Hospital for the Criminally Insane. And I’ve just started another 5-book demonic possession series. Most of the stories I write might be considered dark fiction, psychological rather than gory or extreme, or based on things that scare me like bugs and spiders!
Q: I’d love to share a bit about your most recent work if you could let my readers know about it?
A: Aside from the anthologies, I have published on Amazon 3 short stories and 2 collections. The second, love Wanes, Fear is Forever Vol. 2 is my most recent and features 11 short stories, some of which are previously published, and can be found on Amazon. I’m hoping to publish another collection later this year.
Q: You have a variety of works out there, which would you say is the one you are most proud of and where can we read it at?
A: From the various anthologies I’ve been involved in, I would say Scare Street’s Night Terrors series, a highly popular series of 14 books to date that contain 8 of my stories so far with another 4 to come. All are available on Amazon. My own works, it would be my first collection, Love Wanes, fear is Forever, Vol. 1. Most of the stories are previously published and has received some good reviews to date. Available on Amazon in e-book and paperback.
Q: Where were you born (and/or are you from) and how has that affected your work?
A: I was born in Norfolk in Eastern England 46 years ago, a small village surrounded by woods and fields, before I moved to Barcelona. Virtually all my stories and novels are set in the same areas from where I grew up. The combination of villages, fields, and rivers, plus the nearby town make perfect, creepy settings for all my books so for me, it’s much easier to visualize when crafting new stories!
Q: I see you’ve launched a homepage this year over at JustinBoote.com, could you tell us a bit about what went into that?
A: Very simple! I am utterly useless with computers. The most basic of tasks is often beyond me so I reached out to my friend and editor who kindly did all the work for me! It’s important nowadays to have somewhere fans can reach their favourite authors and I wanted this ready before I start publishing my novels, in order to send out newsletters in time.
Q: I’ve read that you have a full-length novel on the horizon set to be released in 2021, is there anything without spoilers you can share about it?
A: In September I hope to release Book 1 of my 5 book zombie series. It concerns a young woman who, hiding in a mansion with her parents from the zombies roaming the streets, is possessed by a demon and becomes attracted to the zombies wanting to create a super-race. But in order to do so, she needs to get pregnant first. How? Perhaps her mother’s secret stash of Viagra might help! Not for the faint-hearted and certainly not my usual style or genre but I couldn’t resist writing it when the idea came together!
Q: What’s your favorite and least favorite part of publishing?
A: My favourite, and I imagine for most authors is seeing reviews come trickling in that are, by and large, positive. It’s always a daunting experience, not knowing how readers will react, so that helps one’s confidence enormously! My least favourite, and referenced above, is the technical issues faced with it; the formatting where I’m forced to rely on others to do it for me. Marketing aspects can also be quite daunting and time-consuming but I’m slowly learning that part!
Q: You also have a short story coming out in ‘Shallow Waters’ from Crystal Lake Publishing, what can you tease us about that one?
A: I wrote a short story…3 years ago? And couldn’t find a home for it. Then, I joined Crystal Lake’s Patreon last year and in one of their monthly contests, I remembered that story, submitted it, and it did quite well, so now it will be released hopefully this month. It concerns a lady who makes a rather gruesome discovery on the last train home of the night!
Q: You have a lot of short stories under your belt and with the novel coming out later this year, longer works as well. How do you approach longer and short stories differently?
A: With short stories, I usually just get a rough idea in my head and write it, normally with a vague idea of an ending then just basically see what happens. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t! With novels, though, being a much larger, more complex task, I never really plot but like to very roughly outline the first 10 chapters, then when I get there, the next 10 and so on. I find I have lots of new ideas while in the middle of writing a novel so I don’t like to be too strict on plot or how the ending might turn out. While writing book 1 of my zombie series, one of the ‘victims’ who was just to make a short appearance ended up being a main character and totally changed everything I had outlined for the whole series!
Finally, if there is anything else you would love to share with our readers, please do so here!
Just to say thank you for the questions and letting me explain a little about me and my forthcoming works. By joining my email list, you can get a free short story to enjoy in the meantime while I prepare all these books for launching. And I’m always happy to engage with readers and writers alike, so don’t hesitate to reach out!