In this podcast we speak with Shaun Hutson about his latest novel, Monolith, the 80s horror scene, the definition of horror and more.
About Shaun Hutson
Born and brought up in Hertfordshire, Shaun Hutson now lives and writes in Buckinghamshire where he has lived since 1986. After being expelled from school, he worked at many jobs, including a cinema doorman, a barman, and a shop assistant – all of which he was sacked from – before becoming a professional author in 1983. He has since written over 30 bestselling novels as well as writing for radio, magazines and television. Shaun has also written exclusively for the Internet, a short story entitled ‘Red Stuff’ and an interactive story, ‘Savages’. Having made his name as a horror author with bestsellers such as Spawn, Erebus, Relics and Deathday (acquiring the nicknames ‘The Godfather of Gore’ and ‘The Shakespeare of Gore’ in the process) he has since produced a number of very dark urban thrillers such as Lucy’s Child, Stolen Angels, White Ghost and Purity. At one time, Shaun Hutson was published under no fewer than six pseudonyms, writing everything from Westerns to non-fiction. Hobbies include cinema (he has seen over 10,000 films in the last 20 years and cites director Sam Peckinpah as his biggest influence), rock music and slumping in front of the TV. Reformed alcoholic, Shaun was diagnosed by a psychiatrist as having mildly psychotic tendencies. He is extremely unsociable and used to shoot pistols for a hobby (four perfect qualifications for being a novelist, really). Shaun has appeared on and presented a number of TV shows over the years. He has lectured the Oxford Students’ Union. He has appeared on stage with heavy metal band Iron Maiden 13 times and received death threats on a number of occasions due to his work. His work is particularly popular in prison libraries.
- [02:30] Interview start. Shaun Hutson’s start as a writer
- [05:40] Daily writing routine
- [06:35] Editorial cuts
- [07:00] Planning
- [10:15] Influences and inspiration
- [14:00] Similarities between Shaun’s books and films by others
- [15:30] Hammer horror novelisations
- [20:17] Misconceptions about Shaun
- [21:10] High and low points of Shaun’s career
- [25:50] Impetus behind Monolith
- [27:05] Gore in Monolith
- [28:35] Next novel
- [32:30] The horror scene in the 80s and now
- [36:30] Defining horror
- [42:00] From war to horror fiction
- [43:16] Extreme scenes cut from novels
- [47:25] Putting out uncut stories
- [48:50] The state of horror publishing and pulp today
- [51:05] The idea for Slugs
- [53:30] Writing a third Slugs book
- [54:00] Morning rituals and daily habits
- [55:30] Advice for new writers
- [56:37] Getting into writing in 2015
- [01:01:05] Key takeaways and learning points as a young writer
- [01:04:20] Recommended books
- [01:06:20] Connecting with Shaun
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- They Don’t Come Home Anymore by T.E. Grau
- A House at the Bottom of a Lake by Josh Malerman
- The Visible Filth by Nathan Ballingrud
- The Elvis Room by Stephen Graham Jones
- Water For Drowning by Ray Cluley
- Chalk by Pat Cadigan
- Roadkill by Joseph D’Lacey