What first attracted you to horror writing?
I started with non-fiction, looking at some of the Christian themes and images in zombie films. I think pop culture in general has a lot to say to us and shouldn’t be brushed aside as lower or of less importance than “high” culture. And even in my more narrowly theological writing, I always was drawn to darker themes of sin and theodicy. So it made sense to express those ideas in dark fiction, and thereby reach a different audience.
My first novel, Dying to Live, is still everyone’s favourite. I can’t believe how many people tell me they just read it, four years after it was first published, or they’ve read it now for the third time.
What are you working on now?
Right now I’m busy with another theology book, but in the summer I’ll go back to a zombie novel I started last year. It’ll have more of the journey motif than the others, as that’s one archetype I’ve wanted to work with.
Who do you admire in the horror world?
Gary Braunbeck – amazingly humble and talented man. So kind to everyone.
Do you prefer all out gore or psychological chills?
I have no need for gore. It does nothing for me.
Why should people read your work?
I think, when I’m on message, that my writing has an emotional depth to it that readers will find engaging and interesting.
Recommend a book.
I’d say go back and read Moby Dick. Or any great book your high school English teacher made you read and as a result you hated it. When you read it again as an adult, because you choose to, and without someone forcing an interpretation on you, it is such a liberating and enlightening experience.