TIH 542: R. A. Busby on Corporate Body, Supernatural Experiences, and The Joy of Redrafting

TIH 542 R. A. Busby on Corporate Body, Supernatural Experiences, and The Joy of Redrafting

In this podcast, R. A. Busby talks about Corporate Body, supernatural experiences, the joy of redrafting, and much more.

About R. A. Busby

R. A. Busby is the 2021 Shirley Jackson Award-winning author of the creepy hit “Not the Man I Married” (Black Petals Issue #93) and the author of Corporate Body, out now via Cemetery Gates Media.

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They’re Watching by Michael David Wilson and Bob Pastorella

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Michael David Wilson 0:07

Welcome to This Is Horror, a podcast for readers, writers and creators. I'm Michael David Wilson, and every episode alongside my co host, Bob Pastorella. We chat with the world's best writers about writing, life lessons, creativity, and much more. Now today we are chatting to R. A. Busby, the author of corporate body and this is the second in a two part conversation. But before we get into it, a quick advert break

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Bob Pastorella 1:43

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Michael David Wilson 2:21

Okay with that said, here it is, is R A Busby on this is Hara. So, I wanted to talk about if you had had any supernatural experience, because I understand from my research, that there was an incident that happened in a small town in Texas. Is there anything you can tell us about that?

R. A. Busby 2:51

Okay, I I I'm a skeptic about most things supernatural. When I was growing up, my mom insisted that the ghost of her mother haunted our house whenever the whenever the central beam of the House would crack. She would say that that was that that was her mother. But other than that, no, not really. But there was this one time where I was driving cross country from from Chicago to back home and I went to I went through an area of Texas, and I don't want to name the town because you know, obviously I don't want to I don't want to you know, badmouth anybody. But it was a very, very small town and I was practically the middle of the night, that kind of kind where you get stupid from the road. And I am like, I'm going to be pulling off because I just, I just can't make it another, you know, another mile. And I get this I go to this motel, you know, one of those old fashioned ones that are like a courtyard motel. I wake up the guy who's pissed off at about, you know, being woken up, which I don't blame him for. But I pay for this room. And I and I go into it and it's literally decorated, the curtains the lamp shades, the shower curtain, the the bedspread, in yellow gang. So it was like entering a little girl's dollhouse, which was creepy. And what was worse was that the door was one of those. Those hollow core interior doors, like it wasn't even in and it wouldn't lock besides. And so I'm thinking this is the creepy dollhouse motel. I'm going to be in here and then somebody's going to be coming in and getting all stabby and so finally I said no, no, I just can't I just can't do this. And so I woke up the proprietor again, he was also not happy about that either. And got a refund but each of the units had a garage that was off to the side of it. So it'd be like garage unit garage unit. And as I was getting into my car, I got this overwhelming sense of bad, just bad, just terrible, and it for no particular reason. I mean, I had was certainly awake by that point, you know, having been to the dollhouse motel and you know, getting out of there. But it was, it wasn't even scary per se, it was more just like this sense of something pervasive and heavy and thick. Like a terrible, messy, ugly job you had to do in the middle of the night, and you couldn't put it off. And I don't know what the hell that was whether it certainly could have been my imagination. But if so it was distinctive. So I got the hell out of there. I probably ended up I don't even remember what I did, I probably just drove to the next town and found someplace else. But it was bizarrely specific. And so let's just say I wouldn't be super surprised if you know, if if that had been the site of some like, you know, unpleasant business in the past that left its lingering traces. I would not be surprised.

Michael David Wilson 6:19

Goodness, there's so many areas that I want to now go into. And in terms of that pervasive feeling of just rung and, and badness for one of better phrasing. So did that only show up as you got into the car like in? Or did it happen? before? And then I mean, you said you've got the hell out of there went, when did it stop?

R. A. Busby 6:54

It stopped when I got the hell out of there. And it had not been there to the best of my knowledge, because I've said, because I asked that same question like, did I was I picking up on some of this before? And no, I do not recall that it was when I was getting back into the car. This just sense of overwhelming. A big, ugly pain in the butt heavy burden that was simultaneously gross, and ignorable. And it wasn't scary. It was just mostly not only sad, but a pain in the ass. And there's a great Yiddish word for how it felt, which is it felt like a schlep. And I have like I said, I've I don't know whether or not it was some kind of supernatural presence, whether or not it was my imagination. But I do know it was really, really distinctive. And I really hope never to run into that one again, because that was unpleasant. Yeah. Avoid those motels. Kids go for the big city, Motel Six or whatever, they'll leave the light on for you.

Michael David Wilson 8:07

Yeah, yeah. And to back up slightly. I mean, what are your beliefs pertaining to the supernatural? Now, you said before, that you're a skeptic? I mean, what if somebody says, Do you believe in the supernatural? How do you answer that related to that? If someone asks, Do you believe in the afterlife or a god, how? These are big questions to be unpacking? In the second hour? It's like, hang on a minute, we haven't even reached the 10 minute mark. But well,

R. A. Busby 8:44

I remember some dude from your neck of the woods, saying something to the effect of there are more things in heaven and earth Horatio than are dreamt of in your philosophy. And that, you know, in that, in that it's the undiscovered country from who's born, no traveler returns, so I don't, I don't know. I genuinely don't I, a big part of me hopes that some part of our continued consciousness continues to, to exist in some in some way, or at the very least, that we're like, I hope that we're like water. And that our current form is like an ice cube or it's an aggregate of a particular set of, of, of water molecules, and that when we die, we continue to exist but in a dispersed form, like water evaporating into gas, and then we form into something else. I hope that we, we exist in that kind of in that kind of way, where it's not where, you know, to coach and Morrison, or to, you know, where it's not just the end. And, but I don't know, I know what I hope I know what I fear. And I guess my fear would be that, you know, it's just, you know, out out brief candle, and then that's it, and boom, boom out go with the lights when. And that to me, I think would be a terrible, a terrible waste. And so that's why I hope it doesn't happen.

Michael David Wilson 10:12

Yeah, my fears I guess, paradoxical in a sense because like yourself, I don't like the idea that the candle goes out and that's it. But at the same time, anytime I try to conceive of existing forever for infinity that scares me to yes like, and but it feels like I mean surely the answer has to be one of those two things it either eventually ends or it never ends.

R. A. Busby 10:46

Yeah, there's not much of an in between Yeah, I guess the only in between ish Ness that I can conceive of is if you keep on if you keep on going but you don't remember that you keep on going. And so everything feels like a you know, feels like a reset. Yeah, sort of, I guess spiritual Alzheimer's on a grand scale. Where you where you don't remember that you don't remember?

Michael David Wilson 11:11

Yeah, yeah. So I guess the, the almost in between is something like reincarnation, and it's like, oh, no, you exist forever. You just never know that. And now I'm thinking about are That's terrifying? Do I just need to stop being scared of everything? Everything? every possibility is, is pretty scary.

R. A. Busby 11:33

Well, I guess you know, we're all going to find out. Yeah, for sure. We can't be sure of a whole lot better. You know, sooner or later, we're all gonna find out.

Michael David Wilson 11:40

I mean, one hopes that, you know, is just terrifying, because, you know, we are humans, we are not built to understand this. But perhaps, you know, post life, we will understand it will be infinity. But it won't be scary because we've been given that knowledge now and it is no longer a scary thing. I

R. A. Busby 12:08

hope it's something like that or that it's like a joining with the adjoining with all that is and and I hope very much that it's not scary. Hope it feels like a homecoming. Yeah. And that's my that's my hopefulness. But you know, could be just, you know, we we go to we go to sleep, and we don't wake up. And that's all she wrote. And so I literally don't I literally don't know, I kind of, and I'm kind of glad I don't Yeah.

Michael David Wilson 12:42

Yeah, yeah. I mean, if anyone found out or if everyone found out the entire world and humanity would change, because I mean, religion and the afterlife, it seems to be the source of a lot of conflict and a lot of battles and a lot of arguments. And if we had the answers, I'm sure because we're human, we'd find something new to fight over, don't you worry. It would change the dynamic. At least. Now, I'm assuming as your mother said, That was her mother she felt was going through your childhood house. So I'm assuming that her beliefs pertaining to the supernatural were were stronger. I

R. A. Busby 13:32

think my mom who's no longer with us, so I can badmouth her from behind from beyond the grave. So I think in many ways there. It's the growing up. Where I did when I did was was helpful to me in becoming a horror writer. In the sense that you realize that as somebody smarter than I said, once that there are no haunted houses, they're only haunted people. And I think that that, in many ways, was why the notion of the ghosts in The Shining is being like these residues of the of the energies and the Yeah, the spiritual energies of those who lived there before was resonant with with me. Certainly, because it's like, yeah, I could see that. It did seem to be part of the part of the house,

Michael David Wilson 14:31

huh? Yeah. Yeah. To return to the motel would you something do you hope no one would ever say this on a kind of human level. It really does make you wonder what was going through the owners mind that they had it decorated like this creepy doll house, and there wasn't at any point. The idea like we might don't want to give this a paint job. And then you know, as a creative you'd think, Well, is there a reason? Did he try to touch it? And something happened? It's like, oh, you leave this alone? I

R. A. Busby 15:14

don't know. I mean, I've passed by Tonopah Nevada and if you're ever out in Nevada and you want a you know, I'll call it a singular experience because there's visit the place called the clown motel. You'll find it it's right on the main highway and it's right next to the graveyard. No, I'm not kidding. And it is literally decorated with all clowns all the time. So if you've got yourself some color phobia, then that would be one to avoid but but I don't even think that they were doing it for a clown motel and Tonopah kind of thing. I got the feeling that this was just them and I i have no idea why because even if yellow gang were on sale at Joanne's Fabrics that week or something like why why would you do that? It's really just creepy as hell. And then coupled with the the hollow core door on the exterior, which any I mean, basically, you can get a 57 pound kid, you know, halfway shouldering it open, so I don't even know why. It just had psycho killer kaska Save button all over it. It really did. Yeah,

Michael David Wilson 16:21

yeah. And I wonder too, and maybe you do maybe you don't know the answer to this. But was every room in the motel decorated like this? Did he just take you to the one specific room? Either

R. A. Busby 16:33

answer is horrifying. I don't know. I I've speculated about that. Like, did they have yellow gingham and mine and then maybe blue polka dots and the next one or so? Either way. It's like, No, this is the this is like the creepy. This is like the creepy motel dollhouse. Forget it. I'm out of here. I'm so out of here. Yeah.

Michael David Wilson 16:53

So yeah. And you said, you know, he wasn't happy to be woken up a second time. But I wonder too, when you came to him, and you're like, Look, I can't do this. I'm out of here. What was apart from being annoyed that he'd been woken up? Did he have any other reaction? Did he Did you glean like, you know, this was a regular occurrence or now and he's like, Oh, here we go again? Or was it more a case of like did was he confused? Like what? You

R. A. Busby 17:28

more just like he was pissed off that I had woken him up yet again. And he didn't give me too much pushback on the canceling the charges thing, which was fine. Because I had expected him to. And And honestly, even if he had ended up charging my card or you know, some kind of I don't know, we shelving fee or whatever stupid thing. It's like, yeah, pay it. I'm out of there. I don't care. I'm sleeping, sleeping in my car at a restaurant stop. Because that's the bottom line. That's fewer creepy people. Yeah. So yeah. So don't go there. Yeah.

Michael David Wilson 18:06

And these experiences, you know, that they're fascinating, because we can speculate as to what happened, what was going on, and we will never arrive at a concrete answer. Because, you know, I mean, broadly speaking, either something supernatural was happening, or it wasn't you were to put it in a kind of binary. But, you know, it's like, well, well, if it wasn't, if it was, in your mind, the bit that's a little bit confusing, is like, why did it happen when you've got in the car? The bit that confused and, and, you know, it's almost like it was it was either pulling you trying to pull you back? Oh, it was just making you aware. It's like, I want you to feel this before you go. Almost like a kind of cry for help.

Bob Pastorella 19:04

It's amazing how supernatural occurrences that people have is a find that, especially when people tell us this, there's there's often more to it than a fear. There's other things associated with anger, sadness, you know, so it's like, and, you know, and to me, I love those kinds of stories where there's something that's supernatural, that for other people to encounter it, they they feel different emotions. Yeah. It gives it it gives it a multi faceted effect. So that's no I'm not I'm not surprised that that you that you weren't scared.

R. A. Busby 19:52

No, I just felt heavy, right?

Bob Pastorella 19:54

Yeah. And it's, I I've never I've never experienced that. And God, God, I hope I don't, because it would probably mess me up. The closest I've ever been to that is certain people that I that I have encountered, within, you know, a 10 to 15 foot distance in realize that I do not need to go close to this person at all. Don't know him don't want to know him, there's the vibe is is really bad. And it can be just somebody to sit in their own business and I'm just like, Okay, I'm doing, I'm turning directions.

R. A. Busby 20:39

I remember reading Gavin de Becker, his book, The gift of fear, and he's a threat assessment expert. And one of the things that he points out that I appreciated a lot was that he said, you know, we're all here because our, our predecessors, listen to their gut. And if you are, if your gut is telling you something, it's it's probably us that your brain is putting together information that is on its own, so tiny, that it like micro expressions are sent or the way that a person is holding themselves, but in the aggregate, it's, it's, it's, it's raising the red flags. And he said, listen, listen to listen to your gut, listen to that voice. Because the because it's there to save you, it's there to save your, your, your hide. And I agree.

Bob Pastorella 21:35

I think that stuff is primal, it's instinctual. And I think that it's it's not like, you know, it's not something that I could say it's like a superpower. I have this ability. You know, but I've noticed it throughout my life. And I think that it's it's probably steered me in the right direction. You know, I don't know, because I don't stick around and watch the except for one occasion. And I was right. And it was it was other people getting involved with someone. And it was a situation where things were about to get physical and I just happened to pay attention and go, they need to get out of there. Like right now. And, and I was 100%. Right. From, from hearing from other people what had happened, you know, and you don't know, you know, you don't want to have this kind of situation happen where you you got somebody who facing off against your friends. And 30 minutes later, Doc, yeah, the last guy you got to fight with you put him in a hospital for

R. A. Busby 22:39

two months. Yeah, that's not good. Now really?

Bob Pastorella 22:43

No, like, yeah, the guy can handle himself quite well. And he has a destructive force of nature. So it's like, oh, man, we we dodged the bullet. You know? Yeah. Sometimes, when you get involved, you know, sometimes

R. A. Busby 22:56

the best. Sometimes the best way to win a fight is not to have one and just get the hell out of there. Yeah.

Bob Pastorella 23:03

When you try to tell that to drunk friends, you're like, oh, man, I take him down. Like, yeah, you're gonna you're gonna get taken down.

R. A. Busby 23:12

I used to. I used to be a bartender at this little dive bar. And yeah, you hear that conversation so many times, so many times.

Bob Pastorella 23:23

It's like, listen to Bob, but Bob knows what's up. He knows people. I have a super I have a superpower.

Michael David Wilson 23:31

Yeah, I mean, when you listen to experts with regards to conflict, particularly physical altercations, and I'm thinking of people like Jocko willing, former Navy SEAL. He says, just as you said, Ray, the best thing in a fight situation is to try and avoid it to get out of there. You know, and, and people who are experts at this kind of thing, that there's no pride because they know they can handle themselves, but they know that the best thing is not to do it in the first place. I think often these fights and these altercations happen when there are people who and they wouldn't admit it, but they're actually a little bit insecure. They're trying to prove their masculinity for want of better phrasing to themselves. And so they feel that they need to have this fight or this confrontation, to show themselves and to show other people around them, you know, that their strong God or a man or whatever bullshit marker, you know, they've got on that day, but but if you're actually secure in yourself, then then there's no shame in in avoiding the conflict to begin with, and that is the correct thing to do.

R. A. Busby 24:48

And I think being I think being a bartender I was by virtue of the fact that I didn't present a physical set that anybody had to man up against. I think I gave a lot potential conflicts a good exit door, like, well, you know, I don't want to I don't want to, I don't want to fight the bartender because she's, you know, done it. And it was a great reason automatically to discontinue the fight, or to discontinue the bad, the bad vibe, and just, you know, you go your way you go the other way. Because, you know, I think if I had been a big, you know, but a big bruiser that it might have turned into a to a pride thing. Yeah. And of course, that's not always going to work. Obviously, you can just as easily become a victim. But the, again, the best fights are the ones you don't have.

Michael David Wilson 25:41

Yeah, yeah, I think so. And to briefly return to what we were saying about trusting your gut, I think, you know, it is a built in, in a mechanism that serves us well, that has helped us to survive. You know, some people would would argue that it's supernatural, or it's divine, evil way, it has helped us to survive wherever it came from, I tend to find, you know, both for myself and looking other people. And so I guess observationally, the hardest thing is when your gut is telling you to do something, and you really don't want to do it. Kind of mentioned this in the first hour. But I suppose probably the hardest thing is when it's telling you something about a relationship, usually a romantic relationship. And you don't want you feel like you don't want to do that, or you're afraid because it means a new beginning. And I guess in that situation, if you know, your gut is saying, Get out of there, then do but if there's ambiguity, and sometimes there is because sometimes it can be like, Well, hang on, is it telling me to get out of this in general? Or is it telling me to avoid this specific situation? So I tend to find with that, it's like, just just talk to other people. Tell tell somebody objective, what's going on how you feel what the battle is, and you will hopefully arrive at an answer. Now, sometimes, you arrive at an answer purely through talking, and the other person doesn't need to say anything, and you listen to yourself, and you're like, Okay, I know what the solution is. If it's harder than you know, if you talk to multiple people, and you get your their perspective, then you notice that sometimes it takes hearing it from another person to know what to do. And so I mean, that that's something that I have done on both ends of that conversation, like people who are close friends with me, they know that if they want an honest answer, then they're going to get it from me, they might not like what I'm going to say, but I'm not going to bullshit them, I'm gonna be honest, I'm gonna be as respectful as possible. And I'm also going to, you know, conclude with, they have to make the decision that is right for them, you can't do what I'm telling you to do. And if you do the opposite of like, kind of what what I would do, then, you know, I'm still going to love and respect you, because this is your decision, and you have to make that decision.

R. A. Busby 28:35

And I think that that can be really empowering, especially, you know, if you've been in a relationship where there's been some degree of gaslighting or isolation or both. I mean, one of the reasons why those things tend to work in concert is so that number one, you don't trust yourself. And then number two, you don't have an outside voice to to voice your problems to like you were saying, or to hear their honest response either. And so yeah, I completely agree that being that kind of support network for prefer a friend is is absolutely crucial.

Michael David Wilson 29:11

Yeah, I think being a good friend is telling a person what they need to hear rather than what they want to hear. I totally agree. Well, what we want to hear about is corporate body sounds. Let's talk about how did this idea initially come about? And then following on from that, how did it get placed with cemetery gates media and Sadie Hartman's dark library series?

R. A. Busby 29:45

Well, it I was thinking about the things that creep me out. And one of the things that really, really does is the idea of being invaded by the parasite parasites of any kind. And so like, probably every other horror writer out there, I start to go into YouTube and looking up insect videos. And in addition to the horrors of butterflies, which are nuts, I mean, if you're feeling by the way, if you're feeling nauseated, do not watch the butterfly videos. They're, they're horrible. But the one that really stuck with me was this video about parasitoid wasps. And what they do is nefarious really, they, they inject their they find a caterpillar, they inject their, their, their, their eggs into this caterpillars body and underneath the skin, the baby wasps grow and they come out and essentially even though the caterpillar would have a natural instinct to basically destroy these these cuckoo's eggs of wasps, essentially that had been put into his body to to grow the the hormone, I guess, or though the Wasp The Wasp venom, the Wasp injection causes the caterpillar to have this oddly parental maternal nurturing attitude towards these, these baby wasps that are coming out of coming out of them. And I was horrified by this whole process, not only by the invasiveness of the way that the Wasp uses the caterpillar to gestate its young, but also by the sort of zombie takeover of the, of the caterpillar. So it's looking at these young and is regarding them as as its own child. And that stuck with me. And as I was thinking about, you know, as I was thinking about that I was thinking about, about worms as well. And they're increasing interest in looking at looking at worms for the fact that they're, they're kind of eternal, some of them, like your ordinary earthworms. They don't age, they just keep going. It's not that they can't die. But they'll keep regenerating. They don't age. And that's because they're basically their chromosomes don't wear out like ours do. And so there's increasing research looking at K, can we use this? Can we harness this somehow. And those two ideas pretty much came together? For the the basic idea of corporate body is the this young man who's really totally strapped for cash, gets involved with this, doing drug studies, because he's, he's hurting for cash. And it turns out to be something kind of like that. So that was the genesis of the of the book.

Michael David Wilson 33:03

Yeah, and once again, with most of your answers, there's so many directions that I could take this in. Now. I want to know, about whether you have any firsthand experiences with kind of medical experiments and studies. And, you know, when I was at university, and like, a lot of us were strapped for cash, I, I caught wind of this kind of thing, too. And actually, I mean, my friend, he, he was making money through doing this kind of thing. And he knew that I needed money too. And he told me, like, oh, there's like, this big, this big job coming up. And he was like, so it pays really well. And he took a long time to get to the cat. He was like, Okay, so the only thing is, you just have to be temporarily affected with infected with malaria. And he was like, Don't worry, it's only a little bit of malaria. It won't. It shouldn't, shouldn't be a problem. The thing is, like we were talking about our gut before my gut reaction was No, you're not, you know, I was young and stupid, but I still no do not be infected by malaria. That is a bad idea. And also, because it is arthritis that I have a genetic predisposition to because also as a child, I had epilepsy. I though medically I don't have the best run of things. So I'm sure if it's like oh the mill Larry, I will be fine on most people. I will be in the bracket. Yeah, the malaria guy. Yeah. But I, I really needed money at the time. So I really thought about it a lot. And I think I think in the end, I tell my parents that I was having this dilemma and they're like, don't, don't do that. Do that and

R. A. Busby 35:28

just some cash there, you know, yeah, in. In

Michael David Wilson 35:31

the end, I didn't do that. But it's, it's tempting when you're poor. You know, you need that money. And like, you know, the reality can be like, well, if I, if I don't get the money, somehow I might be dead anyway.

Bob Pastorella 35:48

Yep. I think Robert Rodriguez financed several of his films from doing you know, drug therapy and stuff like that, basically, and from what I've read, I mean, I may be wrong on this, but I think he had part of his liver taken out like a very small part of the liver. But they paid very, very well for that part.

R. A. Busby 36:09

Can it be? What's it can your liver regenerate?

Bob Pastorella 36:15

Slowly, like, it's, it's the I hate use the word worst, but is the least organized of all of your organs. Okay. It does. Like one thing is all right, there's blood. So and so like in for example, your eyes are the most specialized organs in your body. They do a lot of things. And they are multicellular, even is for different types of cells, things like that. But your liver is just, it's just delivered. livers. I damaged my liver, very, very young had a non symptom hepatitis, and it took it took decades for it to heal. But I could scratch my head tonight. And in a day, it would be fine.

Michael David Wilson 37:08

By the way, Oh, yeah.

Bob Pastorella 37:10

So did they hepatitis, I had no symptoms at all. Missed about six weeks of school had take summer school failed a bunch of classes, but I didn't get to go school. So when when wasn't my problem? I feel fine. But going back, I can't I can't get this image out of my head. You talked about the wasp. And of course that was Dana Albanians. Inspiration for the chestburster. Oh, yeah. Alien. Yeah. But but the nurturing part takes Kane story to a whole new level because after the facehugger releases him, Kane's like I'm fine. Just a little hungry, you know? And it's like, okay, wait a second. Was he actually nurturing this thing and didn't tell them that all new level to one of my favorite movies right there, now wow,

R. A. Busby 38:08

and that YouTube video of and I'll see if I can, I'll see if I can find that same one. Because it's a heck of a watch. It's an watching this, this caterpillar who's dying because I mean, these these baby wasps have, have fed on it, watching it, you know, being like this sort of insect pa type of, of concern and care for these actually quite beautiful baby wasps that, that that came that came out of it. And the nurturing was simultaneously horrifying and sweet and horrifying, because it was sweet and, and that that was an image that was important to me throughout that throughout that story. Because it was worth I don't I think I recall Charles Darwin saying something like when he heard of parasitoid wasps, that was the thing that really rattled his belief in a benevolent god. It's like yeah, Charles I can see where you're coming from with that when I definitely can. But to your earlier question, Michael Yeah, I gave so much blood there are people walking around you with you know, with you know, honestly, and a lot of the events in that events in that story of you know, moving on from from going from donating your blood or your plasma to immediately going to a restaurant and having something to eat and feeling like you're kind of feeding on yourself. Yeah, personal experience so much fun. And and so a lot of that is coming out of that, of that those just miserable college student poor days and and more and more as I wrote it, the whole issue of whose body visit and and, you know, I recall that term in Charles Dickens hard times in where the the workers and Cooktown are just aren't they aren't even thought of as people they're literally just referred to as hands, because that's all they are. They're the life support system for a pair of hands to do this work. And that was something that all that became wrapped up with that the our terrible healthcare system that our exploitation of, of, of people. So. So yeah, partly part personal experience.

Michael David Wilson 40:48

Yeah, and it is interesting how Traditionally, it seems to be that men are more known for writing body horror, I mean, possibly the most famous example would be David Cronenberg. But, really, to me, it would make far more sense that women are better equipped to write about body horror. I mean, for goodness sake, you've got menstruation and pregnancy, just to begin with his body horror, you know, that you are experiencing the Recon we're not equipped to. And

R. A. Busby 41:29

honestly, if I am part of it is coming out of having had a cesarean section, which was completely unexpected. And definitely not planned, because I wanted to go no plug no drug. But found out literally when I was halfway through labor that it was that my daughter was was breech. And all of a sudden, bam, the it turned into a very different experience. And, and you wake up, and you look, and you look down at yourself, and you and I realized, oh my god, they've literally stapled me together literal with literal actual staples, which was horrifying, hadn't expected that. And and so yeah, that whole idea of you know, that these medical procedures that are being that are being done to you, you're only partly aware of what's what's what's happened. And then you sort of have this radical re evaluation of yourself and your, your body. Definitely fed into, into the experiences and that but yeah,

Michael David Wilson 42:34

and I feel, too, I mean, not not only are you writing about the kind of personal firsthand experience of body horror, but we're also seeing, you know, how it affects other people. And if we think about the relationship that protagonist has with Charlie, as well, and seeing, you know, that the guilt as well associated in him being the one who introduced this trial, this experiment in the first place, so that there's so many layers for what is a tight and, you know, a pretty slim novella.

R. A. Busby 43:16

Well, and you know, in many ways, it's so much about fatherhood, and parenting and because, because Nick absolutely feels like he has disappointed his father who obviously loves him. And he, you know, you get the feeling that Nick's father, although he's disappointed that, that Nick has left college, that he absolutely still loves his son that this is not a contingent love that's based on if you're successful than I will love you. But he also forms this father son bond with with Charlie, as well. And seeing and essentially seeing, Charlie, what happens to what happens to Charlie and Charlie's own fear. That's what galvanizes Nick finally to leave? Because he needs to be a good father to his very unusual offspring.

Michael David Wilson 44:09

Yeah. And, I mean, have you had moments where you've doubted love or you've doubted? Like, I guess your validity and receiving love or you felt that you've disappointed? Those who you haven't disappointed?

R. A. Busby 44:30

Oh, God, I think we all have and I'm no exception to that particular one. And, you know, I think certainly that are one of our, one of our probably common experiences as children growing up is that horrible moment when your parent isn't angry at you, which you can deal with? It's when they're disappointed in you. All of a sudden, it's like, oh, God, Oh, right. All right. All right. You just got me because and I think that in many ways, It affects us on a level when we become parents to, to our own children, you know, you try not to you try not you try to be a perfect parent. And inevitably you fail because nobody is perfect. And kids are moving, are moving target always changing. And so I think that that's probably one of the deepest fears that we have as human beings.

Michael David Wilson 45:27

Yeah, yeah. Do you think becoming a parent kind of affected the way that you then retrospectively viewed some of your own childhood?

R. A. Busby 45:41

Oh, hell yeah, absolutely. Sure. Because, you know, now you're seeing it from now you're seeing it from both from both sides. Where, and I suppose, like, most kids, you think that parents are these adults who somehow magically know everything. And then when you become a parent, you realize, no, we're just figuring the shit out on a day to day. And we're trying to do the best we can with this individual who is not you, and not an extension of you, not a mini you, but as their own person. And what you want for them is not necessarily what they want or need for themselves. And you try to if you know, if you're if you want to be a good parent, you try to meet them where they are. But that's a that's, I don't I don't know if anybody does have flawlessly? If so, I have not yet met that person. And I'm not trusting what they say, I'm trusting what their kids say about them. Because ultimately, they're the ones that are going to pass that judgment.

Michael David Wilson 46:40

Yeah. Yeah. No, I'm very hyper critical of my own parenting, and particularly because of my situation with with me and my daughter's mother being separated, and it got pretty volatile. And I didn't see my daughter for quite an extended period of time. So I'm, I'm so conscious of doing it, right. But, but sometimes there isn't. You know, you'll get situations where there is no right or wrong move, there is just a move, and you have to decide what you're going to do in that situation. Yes.

R. A. Busby 47:25

And, you know, I guess that I guess that if I learned, I learned a lot of things from my my father with it, because they also had a tumultuous, tumultuous relationship before they parted. And I think that that was really genuinely the best thing for them, and for our family. But one thing that he he did emphasize to me was that you keep telling your children that you love them, you keep telling them all the time. Maybe they get sick of it, but they'll but you know what? Find out My God, my parents told me that they loved me, and I got sick of it. Oh, gee, what a terrible thing. And that, I think was a really important lesson for me when I became a parent. Yeah,

Michael David Wilson 48:10

yeah. Well, I think something that became really apparent through my separation and divorce says that everything ends and you can not take anything for granted. And I think that has served me really well. And actually, like, I mean, there I've spoken about it before. But the final day that I had with my daughter before we were separated for a long time, like I remember, like seeing her there and her her sleeping and me thinking don't take this for granted, because it could be the last time that you ever see her any moment could be. And I think this actually links back to what we were saying about like feeling something in our gut or intuitively knowing I think I must have had an inkling that something was going to happen. And yeah, I mean that. That was rough to say to get completely in a British way, understate it when, when it then happened to be the last time and for like 1819 months. I didn't know if I would ever see her again. But I guess I guess the positive was like me remembering the in that moment I hadn't. I hadn't taken her for granted. But I really, really try now to not take anyone or anything for granted says like, you know, every time I say goodbye to my daughter, then I will tell her that I love I will give her a case. That you know, the same with my girlfriend. It doesn't matter if we've had an argument it doesn't matter what's going on. It's like you if you love them and you tell them because One day, it will be the last day and you don't know when that's coming. And don't take anything or anyone for granted now,

R. A. Busby 50:06

and it's it's because anybody who's ever dealt with a relative or a family member that's passed and you're responsible for, for sort of cleaning up as it were, you realize that it's sort of like this, almost like Vesuvius, you know, preserving this moment in time. And that you you've got all these things fixed in place that they thought that they were going to come back to, you know, they put things in the refrigerator, intending to eat them later. And now they're not. And you realize that Yeah, wow, every moment is every moments like that. And you don't like you were saying, you just don't know. Yeah.

Michael David Wilson 50:50

Yeah, sorry. In many ways, it's like, it's a bizarre thing, really, because, I mean, this has been the worst time of my adult life. But I think that it's made me a better person. I think the lessons that I've learned from it the things that I've taken away, and I tried to think so hard about like, what, what, what do I ultimately won to? What is my intention here? So like, it was like, an arbitrary argument. It's like, okay, but what what do I want long term. And, and, and so if it's just the, you know, to be happy that I love the person that I don't want the conflict lives a lot easier to let things go. And it also means that I, if I realized that I fucked up, then I apologize much quicker. Whereas when I was younger, I, I believe that, you know, a complete falsehood, to to apologize, and to admit, one was wrong was to show weakness, whereas actually, it's the opposite. It's strength.

R. A. Busby 52:01

It's hard to apologize. It's hard to know. Yeah. And I don't think anybody loves it. I don't think anybody's like, yeah, oh, I totally love, love apologizing for the things I've done. But it's, but I think it's absolutely necessary, at the very least, to grow as a person and then to be that parent for your child to. And if they can see you doing that it's easier for them. And then they can understand, you know, that you're a person as opposed to the sort of, you know, godlike figure that can do no, wrong. I think it's, I think it's more human.

Michael David Wilson 52:37

Yeah. Yeah. And what you said about parenting? It, I guess, like, when I became apparent to you, that was the realization that it's like, parents aren't this, like, kind of magical adult figure, it's like, we're just wearing an adult costume. But we still have the same feelings and emotions that we did when, when, when we were a kid, it just happens that with the passage of time, there's responsibility, he has expectation, but, you know, I'm still the same person. You know, really? Yeah,

R. A. Busby 53:15

I think I mean, I'm looking back at like myself, and as a younger, Z younger person, and trying to think myself my way back into that consciousness, I've got sort of a more, a more full and textured understanding than I did at the time, but I'm fundamentally the same person, I just have a mortgage. Yeah. The, you know, so, but yeah, I but I loved writing corporate body. And it was because it got, it was a chance to talk about a lot of a lot of things of parenthood and, and, and bodily integrity and pregnancy and love and your kids and, and the legacy that you leave for, for them for your parents for the, you know, the parent that you become, in, in the face of those things trying to be exploited or manipulated and for, you know, by corporations and the healthcare system. And so it was, it was a real pleasure to it was a real pleasure to write and to answer your earlier question, by the way about cemetery gates media. Yeah. I'd seen that they were doing this novella project with and I thought, you know, come on maybe maybe I should submit this I don't know it would want to wear warm story. And, and so I did and and I'll never forget Sadie Hartman writing back and saying that she really enjoyed the the part with the the word babies in there we've voices and it was And honestly, I really have, I can't say enough good things about Joe Sullivan and Sadie Hartman both because they've been enormously supportive and understanding and I get sometimes I think a lot of what creative people, not just authors, but it won't just people people need, it's just a feeling that there's just even one person in your corner saying, yeah, go do this, you can do this, or I really love this. So I loved your work or, or I believe in you. And honestly, that is, you know, it's a very small thing, but I think it really sustains you, in a way that surprising. Surprisingly, disproportionate for the for, for the even like the length of the comment, you know, short comment like that can just, you know, power and power. Both. So I'm very grateful to both of them. Really cool.

Michael David Wilson 56:02

Say that again, sir. So then

R. A. Busby 56:04

the other novella is in the My, my dark library series is just so cool. Oh,

Michael David Wilson 56:08

yeah. Yeah. I mean, Sadie Hartman knows what she's doing when she's collating a collection of stories. And I'm glad that we're gonna see a lot more from Sadie in that arena. So yeah, it's just a tremendously exciting time. But, I mean, I wanted to say that when I started reading, corporate body, I felt instantly at home, and I felt such a connection to your writing voice and your style, and I mean, some novels, some writing it, it takes a little bit of time to get into, there are some growing pains, you know, that's fine. But, you know, we've corporate body, and we've cast and winters soft targets, those are the two books this year where I felt Wow, these writers I connect with, straight away. So you know, it's been a tremendous pleasure to, to discover your work. And it means that you know, and he told him, I see you've got a new story out, I want to read it. So. Yeah. Thank you.

R. A. Busby 57:24

So I think you'll get the chance by because I do have a no new novella coming up, do cemetery gate, hopefully by March of 24. Hopefully earlier, and I, I love it because it's, it's very different. Very different from corporate body in a lot of ways. And you know, that to was was a real pleasure to, to write as well. So I'm so I hope you like it as as much as you like this one. And, and I'm looking forward to seeing to sing you use coming out soon as well.

Michael David Wilson 58:04

Yeah. And we've the new book, the forthcoming book, can you tell us much about it? And if you can't tell us much. Can you at least give us the sub genre?

R. A. Busby 58:19

Sure. It's it's a book. It's a book about books, in many ways. It's I, one of the things the one of my favorite horror tropes is one that goes all the way back to Henry James turn of the screw, which is and certainly we get that picked up. And Peter Straub and Stephen King, and others is that group of people in people to you know, in sort of that exclusive club atmosphere, telling horror stories to each other. And I know, for the genesis of the story, I knew that it was going to be one of those, you know, people telling ghost stories to each other, and being surrounded by books. And so the story that I ended up writing is called words made of flesh. And it's about a book that Bond's with the life of its owner. And so that it becomes an extension of your your own body as well as an addiction. But as the main character discovers, it's not just that it's doing other things, too. And so it was a and it's set at the turn of turn of the century from the end of the 1800s in New Bedford, and so was a chance for me to dip into that period of of American history as well. Because New Bedford is a city that I've visited on a number of occasions, and I just love and it seemed the perfect setting for the kind of tale that I that I wanted to tell

Michael David Wilson 59:59

So do you think that you're kind of crafting a library of body horror books? Or does it just so happened that these two in a row of body horror, I wonder, Are you becoming the body horror? Or is this your specialism, she just got something to say she

Bob Pastorella 1:00:23

does have bits, which is also body law, which was just to me those shorter just as good as corporate body. And I love I love how you do body horror. I mean, it's, it's one of my it's one of my favorite genres. And this new book sounds like the chatter society meets David Cronenberg via Clive Barker and I'm just Oh, yeah, look in my credit card is out. I am looking ready.

R. A. Busby 1:00:57

I hope you like it, I really do. It was I loved writing it. And the the characters in there are, are honestly some of my favorites. Because there's a relationship that happens between this guy that goes to the ghost of the, the, the club to hear this story, he turns out to be the only one who sticks around to listen to the sky tell his story from beginning to end. And he starts off not liking this guy and thinking that basically he's we some, you know, some snub, you know, some old fart and he doesn't particularly, he feels that this guy looks down his nose at him. And so he sort of listens grudgingly. But over the course of the novella, as they both sort of uncover themselves to each other, they both revealed themselves as, as people. And, and that is, and that was a real pleasure to write as well. So I hope you like it. I genuinely do.

Bob Pastorella 1:02:00

It was a pleasure to write it, Sam. Sounds fascinating. I can't thank you for

R. A. Busby 1:02:03

bringing up bits, because that's also one of my that. That was one of the first things I ever got, that I ever got professionally published. And, and it that came from a lot of like, really, really bad dreams.

Bob Pastorella 1:02:20

It is nightmarish. But it had it had that glimmer of hope in

R. A. Busby 1:02:27

it did I hope I hope everything turns out well for her, the other the other folks in that in that unusual gathering at the end. So yeah, I did. So I'm looking. I hope that hope that you like it. Hope. I hope, Michael, I hope you like it as well. And again, it's it's a pleasure to hear that. That you enjoyed which what I wrote.

Michael David Wilson 1:02:51

Now. Yeah, I'm very excited about it. And I will be asking Joe for a copy as soon as he can. can deliver one. And yeah, I'm

R. A. Busby 1:03:02

glad that they were willing to take a chance on me twice, which is, which is really nice. I appreciate that.

Michael David Wilson 1:03:06

Yeah, yeah. I mean, Joe here, he primarily is looking for good fiction, good stories. And so I think if he gets the story, he'll, you know, it, it almost doesn't matter what the author has or hasn't done before he'll do that he is a champion. For horrific. Yeah. And then for good writing and writing cemetery gates media, they're one of the best pendant presses out there.

R. A. Busby 1:03:34

I could not agree with you more. And I, you know, I think the my dark library series is a great exemplar of that, because I think that almost all of us in that series, you know, for some of us, I think that that was our first published work in a novella form, I know, you know, was for me, and the diversity of the voices and stories that they told everything from everything from you know, Chandler Morrison's body horror, to Kelsea us exploration of, of Chinese method friendship, and, and light and and, you know, and you know, and Tim Watts and LP Hernandez, I mean, just a met an amazing, an amazing group of an amazing group of people. So, so, I mean, I think that they're really demonstrating that they're willing to take to take chances on on writers who don't necessarily have a huge track record, but and bring them together to do to show what horror can be in all of its in all of its variety. And I love that.

Michael David Wilson 1:04:48

Yeah, yeah, definitely. And the same thing as well. It's like, you know, cemetery gates media, they don't have a specific sub genre or a niche So you kind of never know what you're going to get, you know, some, some presses they decide, right, this is the kind of narrow sub genre that we're going for, which of course, that's fine, because you've all got to decide what you're going to do. But I like variety I like, I like picking something up and not knowing even what genre is going to be. It's like, let's, let's just see what happens. And

R. A. Busby 1:05:26

I think honestly, that, although I understand the temptation to to subcategorize, and say, Okay, we are the publishing house that specializes in better punk cyber westerns. Great, have I but I love the fact that, that I think that authors are constantly learning from each other and borrowing from ideas here and that. I think that categorization is useful. But I also think that mingling those categories and mixing them up, creates a whole brand new synthesis of ideas that we haven't really seen before. And I love that exploration as well. Yeah.

Michael David Wilson 1:06:08

Yeah. And in terms of the writing of corporate body, am I right in thinking, Did you write it during COVID, largely,

R. A. Busby 1:06:17

largely during COVID. And because bits was out before COVID. And then, and then a lot of the other writing that I did was was during are certainly doing. And I would say that probably the one that's the most influenced by, by COVID itself as a corporate body so much as the story holes, which was through condition press. And it, I started writing it, and then the pandemic happened, and then I understood how it had to end. And so it sort of bridged that pre and during pandemic periods. But yeah, with with a concern about, about health and drugs and sequestration and quarantine and masks and medicalization. Absolutely. All that leached into no pun intended into corporate body itself and the writing of it. Sure. Yeah.

Michael David Wilson 1:07:20

Yeah. Because I imagine like, even if we write about something that is topically completely far removed from COVID, just the nature of writing in that pandemic situation is going to seep into it, it's going to affect the process.

R. A. Busby 1:07:41

Well, you know, there's a little detail about it, because it I sort of took sort of an alt universe idea where the pandemic got worse with subsequent iterations. Not to make, you know, not to make sort of a whole, you know, futuristic dystopia, but, but basically five minutes into the future idea. And honestly, I think without, without COVID, I certainly would have had specific details about, you know, things like Charlie's moustache poking out on either side of his mask, that I probably wouldn't have occurred to me at all if, if, if we all hadn't gone through that experience. So and I think that that, that made us all, uncomfortably confront medical issues in our in our own lives or in the lives of our family in one way or another. Yeah. And and to what degree and to what degree are we? Are we really helpless in a lot of ways, financially and medically and with in terms of the family that we have, or the bonds that we form? Yeah.

Michael David Wilson 1:08:54

Yeah, absolutely. Well, we've got a Patreon question from Nicole Neely. And she would like to know, what is your favorite part of writing a novel? And what is the trickiest part?

R. A. Busby 1:09:11

Oh, boy. Okay, my favorite part of the novel. Actually, I know this is gonna sound paradoxical, but it's the editing. Because it's done. It's done. It's for better or for worse, I've written the end. And it's, it's a done thing. And now I just have to clean it up. It's kind of like the cake is at last in the oven. And now I can sweep the flour off the floor. Because you know, at the at the end of the day, there it is. And I've and I've shut the oven door and it's an it's a reality. I think up until then, I'm always worried that I'm going to that I'm going to abandon the project or I'm going to lose faith in it or you know, I'm going to realize some Dumbo and I'm just holding a little birdie birdie feather and I can't really fly And the that that feeling of being done is a relief. So the editing is just just to clean up. And so that's my favorite part. And what was the other part of Nicole's question? I'm sorry,

Michael David Wilson 1:10:15

what is the trickiest part of writing a novel?

R. A. Busby 1:10:21

I'd say it is that middle section, before things start to slide down into the, into the climax and the end. Because if you are, I don't know, if you are like me some, you know, I like to, as I said earlier, I'd really like to know where I'm going, even if that changes a little bit, but I at least need to have that. That sense of that destination of where it's going to end. And that'll allow me to some degree to kind of aim towards that. But that middle section between that beginning that you've got and that climax that you have, how do you get through that section without getting pulled away into the weeds? And I'm not a super heavy duty plotter, I'm more of the to use that the term I'm more of a plant, sir, where I'll plot out key key segments, but I do enjoy a bit of the journey getting there because I do discover things that I that I hadn't planned on. And that turned out to be rich and, and worth exploring. And, and they've got that they've got that juice to them. And I know that if I were to plot it out and just go, you know, step by step that, that I might lose those lose those sort of moments of opportunity, basically. Yeah. So yeah, that's the trickiest part. Is that that middle section before you get to the big site?

Michael David Wilson 1:11:51

Yeah. Yeah. And with the editing being your favorite part, or the easiest part? I mean, just just to clarify, do you mean, like the editing in the redrafting after draft one is down? Or do you mean, the editorial suggestions that you get from the editor at the publishing house, those

R. A. Busby 1:12:12

are usually actually the first thing where I'm going through and I'm cleaning up inconsistencies I'm getting rid of what I think of like is the the sort of like the the wisdom teeth and appendix as of, of your, of your narrative that you know, stuff that you thought was going to be important, and then you just sort of didn't pick up on it, or it lost, it lost importance or was overshadowed by other things. And so now, it's sort of this vestigial organ that you need to get rid of. And, and, and fleshing out some scenes that might have been thin, or planting bread crumbs that you know, are going to be important later and putting those into that first, first 10% 20%. So that there is that payoff, later. I enjoy that sort of, sort of going back and cleaning it up process. Because again, it is it is a complete thing. And now you just have to make it pretty.

Michael David Wilson 1:13:12

Yeah, yeah, I'd be inclined to agree with you on that one. Because anytime I'm just first drafting, like you say, there's always the fear Well, what if I abandon it? What if it doesn't work? But then, at least when you finish the first draft, you've got the skeleton, you've got a story. And you've gone far enough that in most cases, you're not going to now abandon it? And so I'm in that process at the moment with the novel that I mentioned before, that is, boy, you know, I'm going through it, I'm cleaning it up. And it's interesting, actually, that like, Yeah, I'm finding there are some bits in the middle, that are actually redundant, we can remove them when the story is still intact. And I mean, that's a general editing tip. If you can remove something in the story is still coherent, then you probably should remove it. Well, I remember

R. A. Busby 1:14:08

watching an interview with the author John Irving, who was one of my absolute favorite novelists in like Junior High in high school, and I think I must have read a World According to Garp about a million times. I was in like, Junior High High School around there. And one of the things that he said, and I don't, it's hard to believe, but I don't have any reason to disbelieve is that he says, he writes the last scene first. And then he goes back and he says, Okay, how did we get there? And then he goes back another step, and how did we get there? That's not the way that I could work. But it would be really nice to wake up and think, Oh, I've already gotten that last scene all written. It's good. Yeah. So I just have to work back to there. It's not my process, but I but it would sort of give me that sense of of the As the novel having been already completed at some fundamental level, yeah.

Michael David Wilson 1:15:06

Oh, yeah. Well, thank you so much for chatting with us. This has been tremendous fun. And I definitely want to do it again some time. I definitely want to read this forthcoming cemetery gates media book. By

R. A. Busby 1:15:24

look, I'd love to talk to both of you. And you know, anytime you want to have me back to talk about my books, pick apart somebody else's books or, or do you know, any of the above? I'd be I'd be honored.

Michael David Wilson 1:15:37

All right, well, where can our listeners connect with you?

R. A. Busby 1:15:42

Well, certainly on the on the, on the the website, formerly known as Twitter, but also Instagram, Tik Tok, threads, blue sky, pretty much anything that I can add discord, you know, with pretty much anything I can think of. And I have got a link tree, all those sites. So that's, that'll take you to my, my website. So try to I try to have multiple points of access.

Michael David Wilson 1:16:13

Right? Do you have any final thoughts that you'd like to leave the listeners with?

R. A. Busby 1:16:19

Oh, just, I guess just keep just keep reading that good horror, just keep talking about it, just keep buying it. Just keep recommending it, you know, put out you know, if something has moved, if something's moved to you tell people and because that, because it means the world to not only to you, but to them and to the person that created it, and whether it's me or whether it's somebody else or whatever, because you have to loop back to something that you said earlier. books don't stop saying what they are saying. Even if they've been out, you know, three months, five months, 500 years 1000. They're still talking to us. And so it's important we talk about them.

Michael David Wilson 1:17:02

could not agree more. Thank you again for joining us.

R. A. Busby 1:17:08

Thank you so much for having me. It's a pleasure.

Michael David Wilson 1:17:14

Thank you so much for listening to This Is Horror with RA Busby. Join us again next time when we will be chatting with Rachel Harrison, the author of black sheep. But if you would like to get that and every other conversation I had with the crowd, support us on patreon@patreon.com forward slash, This Is Horror. You can also submit questions to each and every interviewee and we have a wide range of brilliant guests coming up in 2024. So keep listening to find out who's coming up soon on This Is Horror. Okay, before I wrap up, a little bit of an advert break.

Bob Pastorella 1:18:01

From the host of This Is Horror Podcast comes a dark thriller of obsession, paranoia and voyeurism. After relocating to a small coastal town, Brian discovers a hole that gazes into his neighbor's bedroom. Every night she dances and he peeps, same song, same time, same wild and mesmerizing dance. But soon Brian suspects he's not the only one watching. She's not the only one being watched. They're Watching is The Wicker Man meets Body Double with a splash of Suspiria They're Watching by Michael David Wilson and Bob Pastorella is available from this is horror.co.uk Amazon and wherever good books are sold.

John McNee 1:18:39

The town of St. Nicholas in northern Canada, our community in decline until it's purchased by a Chinese American corporation intent on turning it into a luxury ski resort. There was neither the residents or their new benefactors realize this and Nicholas already has an owner, something strange and inhuman which has long held the town in its Thrall and won't give it up without a fight. The children call it Santa Claus. Blood bone books proudly presents hail Santa by John McNee this Christmas season reject God worship Santa.

Michael David Wilson 1:19:10

Now another way you can support This Is Horror is to leave us a review on Apple podcasts. You can also buy our books such as my debut house of bad memories. And Bob Pastorella is Mojo rising, as well as our collaborative novel They're Watching on a course you can follow us on Tik Tok at This Is Horror Podcast. It is our fastest growing social media platform and it is updated more frequently than any of the other platforms. So if you want to get a little bite of goodness every day, a clip from This Is Horror some actionable writing advice Then may I suggest you follow us At This Is Horror Podcast. Well that about does it for another episode of This Is Horror. But until next time with Rachel Harrison take care yourselves be good to one another, read horror. Keep on writing and have a great, great day.

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