Seven Questions With Elizabeth A. White

Welcome to a new feature of this website where I waste the valuable time of busy people by asking them ridiculous questions. (Okay, and a couple of serious ones.) My first victim is Elizabeth A. White, book reviewer, taco aficionado, and treadmill-hater. Her website Musings of An All Purpose Monkey is where you should be spending all of your online time.

1. So what exactly IS an “All Purpose Monkey?”

I would think the name is self-explanatory: it’s a monkey who can get done whatever needs doing. Ok, seriously, it started off with the avatar I use most places online, which shows a gorilla reading a book. My husband started calling me the “book monkey” because of it. I’m an attorney by profession (“Hey, you’re a law monkey!”), but I’m also a pretty serious amateur chef so he jokingly said I was a “chef monkey” too. I do all the yard work around here, which means I’m a “landscaping monkey”… you can see where this is going at this point, right? Eventually one day he just declared that I was an “all purpose monkey” and that was that. It stuck.

2. Do you ever have authors behave like big whiny babies over your reviews?

Thankfully I’ve not had anything like those recent author meltdowns that went viral happen to me, though they are entertaining to read – in a train wreck kind of way – when they happen. Of course, I won’t review something if I flat out don’t like it so the odds of such a confrontation happening are pretty low.

3. Who are the best writers working today that not enough people are reading?

Wow. Unfortunately there are so many, some of whom haven’t even gotten mainstream contracts yet. Two that have a fair amount published I highly encourage people to track down are Steve Mosby (The 50/50 Killer, Cry for Help, Black Flowers, etc.) and Duane Swierczynski (The Wheelman, Expiration Date, etc.). Mosby is difficult to find in the U.S., but BookDepository.com does free worldwide shipping. People should also be jumping onboard the trains of authors Benjamin Whitmer (Pike), Wallace Stroby (Cold Shot to the Heart), and Lynn Kostoff (Late Rain). Damn, there are so many.

Some more that I recommend are Chris F. Holm (8 Pounds), Chuck Wendig (Irregular Creatures, Double Dead – coming soon), Josh Stallings (Beautiful, Naked & Dead), Anthony Neil Smith (Yellow Medicine), Dave White (More Sinned Against – and no relation), and Brett Battles (Little Girl Gone, Sick). And authors with debuts coming in the not too distant future you should be on the lookout for are John Hornor Jacobs (Southern Gods), Frank Bill (Crimes in Southern Indiana), Stephen Blackmoore (City of the Lost), and Owen Laukkanen (The Professionals).

I could go on and on. It’s sad so many great authors are either struggling just to get signed or are still flying under the mainstream’s radar.

4. You consider your treadmill your arch-nemesis. Do you think this relationship will ultimately end in violence, or will you learn to understand each other and become the best of friends?

Mr. Treadmill is a punk bitch. He even started a Twitter account (@MrTreadmill) so he can harass me in cyberspace. I foresee our relationship ending very similar to this: http://bit.ly/eI8gvb (NSFW)

5. Describe your ultimate taco.

Is this a trick question? Any taco is an ultimate taco. Except for fish. Really, what’s up with that you Left Coast people? Fish tacos are a crime against nature. A taco should have the following components, in the proportions you individually find pleasing: ground beef (with spices of choice, the hotter the better IMO – if done properly at this stage the taco beef should end up hot enough that it doesn’t need hot sauce as a topping), onions (some cooked in with the ground beef and some more, raw, as a topping), cheese (preferably queso oaxaca/asadero), shredded lettuce, finely diced tomatoes, and if you’re feeling frisky, a little dollop of sour cream. And even though I know it’s more of a North American thing than a traditional Mexican presentation, I am a proponent of the hard shell, not soft.

6. Share something about yourself that would make me cluck my tongue in a disapproving manner.

I don’t really care about Halloween. The holiday that is, the movie is great.

7. In 75,000 words or fewer, tell me about your website and make me want to visit it RIGHT NOW.

FREE TACOS!! That and I am incredibly passionate about the books I review. I try very hard to focus on exactly the kind of authors you asked about in question 3, the ones who are doing great work but not getting anywhere near the recognition they deserve. I also let my site get taken over on a fairly regular basis by authors, and they have been kind enough to share some very powerful and personal things in their guest posts. Please stop by, look around, and leave a comment: http://elizabethawhite.com

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Mayhem on Twitter!

The #1 question I get asked is “When the hell are you going to write the fourth Andrew Mayhem novel, you lazy jerk?”

The answer is “This year.”

Want more updates than that? Do you loooooove Twitter? Then scramble on over there and follow @MayhemNovels, the official Twitter account for the Andrew Mayhem series. Ask questions! Learn about the e-book re-releases of the first three novels! Politely threaten me with physical violence if I don’t write at a more accelerated rate!

World Horror Convention 2011: My Schedule

Are you going to be at the World Horror Convention 2011 next weekend in Austin, Texas? Of course you are! Everybody is! I’ll be there the entire time, but here are three consecutive hours in which my valuable (?) time has been scheduled:

SATURDAY, 3:00 – 4:00 PM: I’ll be in the dealer’s room doing a signing at the Dark Regions Press table. You can buy stuff from Dark Regions (Wolf Hunt, Gleefully Macabre Tales, The Mad & The Macabre, and even possibly a copy of the hardcover edition of Dweller) there and have me scrawl my name on it, or bring stuff you’ve already got. And then at…

4:00 PM: …I will stay in the dealer’s room but jog over to the Horror Writers Association table, where I will be handing out brochures and failing to adequately answer your questions about the organization. I’ll be there until about 4:45 or so, at which point I have to take off so I’m not late for…

5:00 PM: my reading, where you will be the first to hear a short excerpt from a super-duper secret project. And if that’s not enough, I may just have a special guest star join me at the end!

And then I’ll rush off, grab dinner, and hurry back because at…

7:00 – 9:30 PM: …it’s time for the mass signing! Authors everywhere! And it’s open to the public! I won’t have a huge selection of books available–probably just Pressure and Dweller–but I’ll sign anything you put in front of me.

Be there!

The Gleefully Macabre Podcast: Episode 2

Wow, has it been two episodes already? Dread Media Presents: Gleefully Macabre has surpassed all expectations and not ended after the first episode. In the second epic 8-minute episode, I talk about the World Horror Convention and really botch a joke. Search on iTunes for Dread Media, or go to http://tinyurl.com/3rjfrkr.

Big Scary Fire Ants–Cheap!

Do you like fire ants? Of course you don’t. Those things suck. Unlike sharks, who many people will defend as noble creatures, everybody hates fire ants.

But do you like to read about them? What if they were big ones? With deadly stings? And not in some small town where minor characters die off one by one until the local sheriff discovers what’s really going on, but millions of them swarming a big city? (Tampa, Florida.)

Then you need Mandibles, now available for the Kindle. (Other e-book formats coming very soon.)

As with Wolf Hunt and The Sinister Mr. Corpse, this novel is only $2.99.

Get it HERE!

Gleefully Macabre: The Podcast!

Got an extra seven minutes? No? Nobody does in these busy times. But do you want audio stimulus for while you do seven minutes’ worth of something productive? Then listen to the first weekly episode of Dread Media Presents: Gleefully Macabre, my brand-new podcast!

It’s basically a spin-off of the Dread Media podcast, except a lot shorter and with me talking instead of Desmond Reddick. In the premiere, I talk about my teeny-tiny wee role in the new Herschell Gordon Lewis movie, The Uh-Oh Show.

If you’re an iTunes kind of person, just search for “Dread Media.” Or you can go to the Dread Media site and listen there.

If you understand things like RSS feeds, I’m told this link does stuff.

Once you’ve listened, share your thoughts at the Dread Media message board. You have to register to post, but I’ll love you forever.

EDIT: I didn’t even think to say this in my original post, but of course the podcast is completely FREE!

Prepare to Itch!

Here’s the cover to the new e-book edition of Mandibles, which, like the e-book editions of The Sinister Mr. Corpse and Wolf Hunt, will cost you a mere $2.99 in United States of America currency.

Cover by Lynne Hansen, who will happily design one for you as well. Visit her website for more information.

In Today’s Mail…

Yes, it’s the hardcover edition of Fangboy! Ooooooh, shiny!

The trade paperback and e-book editions will be out at the end of April. To pre-order the paperback, click right here!

ZOMBIE WARS!!! Round Five: MR CORPSE vs. THE COLD ONES

The Cold Ones is an awesome zombie novella by Elizabeth Donald. “Ha!” you’re probably shouting at your computer, drawing odd looks from the more dignified members of your household. “You’ve admitted that The Cold Ones is awesome! That means you’ve lost this time, jerk! The Sinister Mr. Corpse is goin’ down!!!”

Wrong! Because do you know what just came out? Blackfire. Do you know what Blackfire is? The Cold Ones II. Let me slap a few figures on you:

# of sequels to The Sinister Mr. Corpse: 0

# of sequels to The Cold Ones: 1

And so I ask, which book got it right the first time? What possible reason could there be to write a sequel to a book unless you re-read it after publication and said “Oh, crap! I left stuff out! Crap! Crap! Crap! Better write a sequel before anybody notices!” When you finish reading The Sinister Mr. Corpse, you don’t need a frickin’ sequel; you need a cigarette. You are sated, baby. You’ve had all the awesomeness you can handle.

Oh, The Cold Ones is jam-packed full of wild zombie action, and I did give it a blurb (“One page in and we’ve got screaming, bleeding, arm-gnawing, gun-grabbing, and spilled coffee. Clearly this is not a leisurely paced tale.”), and you can get a bundle deal of The Cold Ones + Blackfire that even includes an emergency zombie bite kit, but ultimately I am forced to conclude that The Sinister Mr. Corpse is longer, and therefore better.

OFFICIAL RULING: The Sinister Mr. Corpse for the win.

Remember, if you’ve written a zombie book that’s not as good as The Sinister Mr. Corpse, be sure to take the ZOMBIE WARS!!! challenge by e-mailing a link to your book to gleefullymacabre@gmail.com.

The True Secret of JA Konrath’s Success

SCHAUMBURG, IL.

A sobbing JA Konrath was pulled from his Schaumburg mansion today after the discovery by authorities that his wildly successful e-book venture was, in fact, a money laundering front for a wildly successful cocaine smuggling venture.

“When I first started to hear about his success on the Kindle, I thought, good for him,” said senior DEA agent Bob Floss, speaking under condition of anonymity. “The guy works hard and deserves a little success. But after the six hundred and fifty-seventh time he blogged about how much money he was making…well, I couldn’t help but get suspicious. Why does he keep talking about it? What’s his angle?”

After a subpoena of his Amazon sales records, it was revealed that Konrath’s electronically published works had sold a combined total of forty-one copies, including those the author purchased himself to briefly check the formatting.

“It’s a great scheme. Nobody buys e-books, of course, but if you make the Internal Revenue Service THINK they do, then you’ve got yourself a front for those hundreds of thousands of dollars coming in the door. Let me tell you, this guy knew how to move narcotics. And when he said ‘increase your virtual shelf space,’ what he really meant was ‘diversify.’ Heroin, meth…oh, yeah, he had his fingers in a lot of pies.”

“We should have seen it sooner,” the DEA agent admitted. “The way he kept flaunting his aliases, the guy was practically begging to be caught. Also, there was that one drunken blog post about how much money he was making smuggling cocaine,  which he hurriedly deleted the following morning.”

JA Konrath is scheduled to be hanged at midnight. Schaumburg city officials have yet to determine whether tickets to the execution should be 99 cents or $2.99.

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