Villimey has always been fascinated by vampires and horror, ever since she watched Bram Stoker’s Dracula when she was a little, curious girl and when she was traumatized by the chestburster scene in Aliens. She loves to read and create stories that pop into her head unannounced. She’s had her short stories appear in various anthologies, including Of Cauldrons and Cottages, Krampus Tales: A Killer Anthology, Campfire Macabre, The One Who Got Away: Women in Horror Vol. 3, Far From Home, Were-Tales, Slash-her, Hex-periments. She has written Nocturnal, a vampire horror series with 3 books already published since 2016. Her short story The Banquet was published in April 2021 where all proceeds go to Stígamót, an Icelandic charity that helps victims of abuse. Her debut short story collection, As the Night Devours Us, will be published by St. Rooster Books on July 1st 2022. She lives in Iceland with her husband and two cats, Skuggi and RoboCop, and is often busy drawing, watching the latest shows on Netflix or staying way too long on Twitter @VillimeyS
What first attracted you to horror writing?
Honestly, I was introduced to horror in film form. There weren’t many options in Iceland when it came to horror books except for Stephen King and not many were translated into Icelandic, and I hope readers will forgive me, but I’m not much of a fan of King’s writing.
But back to horror writing. For me, I think it’s the feelings you evoke in a reader. Whether it be fear, disgust, or hope, you can always jump into those stories and know that you’ll come out of there alive, but you emerge with a new sense or feeling of knowledge or compassion.
My Nocturnal series is probably my most notable work. I started writing a novel before I even thought about writing short stories. Both are fun, of course, but very different.
What are you working on now?
I’m currently working on book 4 of the Nocturnal series as well as a Horror Western called The Brimstone Trail that I’m co-writing with my friend, Damascus Mincemeyer. In-between those novels, I try to squeeze out a short story or two if I find a submission call that interests me.
For short stories, once I get an idea, I let it play through in my head. To see if I can find a good beginning, middle and end. Even if it’s vague, I write the outline down in my notebook. Then I start writing it in my notebook. I usually go by the outline but sometimes the characters or the story leads me on a different path, and I’ll have to let my beta readers know if it was the right path.
For my novels, it’s pretty much the same. I write down my ideas and stakes for the story and see if they all fit into a good narrative or plot. Then I usually do chapter outlines and write down what goes down in each chapter. Once that’s all finished, I get a fresh notebook and write everything down. Typically, 3 notebooks are used for one novel, and I write everything single thing in them. Then I transcribe the words into my laptop and that’s where I do some of the editing there. I don’t catch any mistakes when I’m writing by hand, but I see them when I’m transferring them onto Word.
When that’s all finished, I send it off to my alpha reader and my editor and I’ll have to wait for agonizing weeks to see if I fucked up or not. I used to think the editing process was the worst part of writing, but I’ve come to love it because it gives me a chance to make my story better.
Who do you admire in the horror world?
I admire all the women writers in horror as well as BIPOC and queer writers. We all deserve a place in the horror world but women, BIPOC and queer people have all experienced some kind of horror and they deserve to have people listen to their tales.
My favorite indie horror authors are Hailey Piper, Laurel Hightower and Eric LaRocca because they’ve been producing stories that blow my mind away.
Do you prefer all-out gore or psychological chills?
It really depends on my mood, but I do like when there’s a nice balance of gore and psychological chills in a story. Human monsters will always terrify me, and I’ll seek out some gore-filled stories when I want to be disgusted or have a good laugh.
Why should people read your work?
My stories tend to have bleak outcomes, whether it befalls the villain or the protagonist. I was raised on happily-ever-afters mostly because of Disney and heavily diluted versions of the Grimm Fairy Tales, and my critical mind just knew that that’s not how reality works. Because of that, I have a big moral compass and a righteous mind, so my stories also contain a lot of “an eye for an eye, tooth for a tooth” revenge elements. However, the theme of family plays a big part in my stories, whether they be found or biological. So, if you like that with a hefty amount of bloody gore added to it, readers might enjoy my works.
Recommend a book.
The Unfortunate Elements of My Anatomy by Hailey Piper, Dear Laura by Gemma Amor, Below and Crossroads by Laurel Hightower, Things have Gotten Worse Since We Last Spoke by Eric LaRocca, Broken Shells by Michael Patrick Hicks, Low Kill Shelter by Porpentine Charity Heartscape, Ring Shout by P. Djéli Clark, The Dark Side of the Room by Tyler Jones.
Buy Villimey Mist’s books