*How long have you been writing for?*
I’m pretty late to the writing game. I wrote my first short story for submission last year at 33 years old. It was the first time I’d written anything creative since high school. Being published was something on my bucket list, and it sort of turned into an addiction from there.
*How many rejections did you receive before you first became published
and how did you stay motivated?*
I think I received around ten or so rejections before Deadman’s Tome picked up two of my stories; ‘The Way Out’, and ‘Escape’. I was such a noob at the time that I’d submitted ‘The Way Out’ to as many publishers as possible, not realising that most places have a ‘Simultaneous Submissions’ rule. As a result, the story was actually accepted four times- but Deadman’s Tome had got in there first.
Rejection is just part of the game, and most of the time it doesn’t get to me. Most of the time.
*Favorite Author and book when you were a child?*
Roald Dahl was my favourite writer, and I almost always got his books for birthday’s, and at Christmas. He created such imaginative worlds, and I was fortunate enough to read him whilst he was still alive. My favourite book of his was probably ‘The Witches.’
My first horror book was an illustrated collection of Edgar Allan Poe stories, when I was about ten.
*What music do you listen to when you write?*
I don’t really listen to music as I write. I find it a bit distracting. I’m into the bands that I grew up with like The Offspring, Blink 182, Linkin Park, and Korn. You can’t listen to stuff like that when you’re trying to frighten someone. haha.
*Any superstitious rituals that you go through when beginning a new story?*
I always write my first draft longhand, in a notebook. I think the prose flows better that way, but it’s not really a ritual. I’m not particularly superstitious.
*Favorite book released in the last year?*
‘The Fireman’ by Joe Hill. A fantastic combination of darkness, and romance. It feels like a true epic adventure. I met him on his book tour of the UK, and got the hardback autographed. He did a ‘beer and a book’ reading, which makes me respect the guy even more. It got pretty merry, and I was amazed that I managed to ask him a question about the book without slurring my words.
*Favorite quote from a book that is not your own?*
“The world had teeth and it could bite you with them anytime it wanted.” Stephen King, The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon.
*Favorite quote from one of your own works?*
“I suppose that technically speaking, they’re not cryptids anymore because they are here, and they do exist, I care for the bloody things after all- but I keep them a mystery so the world can keep wondering.” PET Shop. Out now in audio format at Gallery of Curiosities.
*Do you play any table top RPGS?
Not recently. As a thirteen year old I used to play a lot of Warhammer Fantasy Battle, and Bloodbowl. More recently I have backed Kickstarter board games like Zombicide, and the upcoming Evil Dead 2 board game. I’m a bit of an Evil Dead nerd.
*If so, tell us about your favorite character that you’ve used.
It’s got to be Ash from Evil Dead hasn’t it?
Actually it would be a River Troll that I painted once for a Games Workshop young painter competition. I entered it thinking it was the bee’s knees and then saw how good the competition was. Epic. Fail.
*Advice for new writers who are struggling with character creation?*
Base it on somebody you know, or borrow traits from different people and combine them. Listen to the way your friends and family speak, and use it to create convincing dialogue.
*E-Reader or Physical copy?
Physical copy all day long. You can’t beat the smell, collectability and feel of a real book. That said, 90% of my books these days are consumed through Audible, and podcasts.
I do a lot of driving in my day job, and sometimes its the only chance I get to consume literature. I’m listening to ‘The Dark Tower’ series at the moment.
*Favorite genre to read?
Of course, horror is my go-to genre, but I also like true crime stuff, and detective novels like the Helen Grace series by MJ Arlidge.
*What first inspired you to become a writer?
My six year old daughter, Holly is my true inspiration. I want to be a positive role model to her, and to inspire her to be creative. Holly was the primary reason that I finally lost almost thirty kilo’s in weight (so I could run around after her,) and she’s the reason why I keep writing. She tells everyone I’m famous because she’s seen my name in print- including the entire waiting room at an opticians once. I went beetroot red.
Holly’s actually got a story (called ‘Dog of the Dead’) coming out in an upcoming anthology of my stories. I wanted to make her feel good about writing, so she’s about to be published.
It’s a project that I’m really excited about.
*Tell us your favorite joke.*
This bit could get incredibly offensive, so I’ll try to think of a clean one;
“When I see lovers’ names carved in a tree, I don’t think that it’s sweet- I just wonder how many people take a knife on a first date.”
Gary Buller is an author from Manchester England where he lives with his long suffering partner Lisa, his daughter Holly, and dog Chico. He grew up in the Peak District where the hauntingly beautiful landscapes inspired him to write. He is a huge fan of all things macabre, and loves a tale with a twist. He is a member of the Horror Writers Association.
Check out his story PET Shop which is available to listen to at Gallery of Curiosities Podcast (www.gallerycurious.com
He also has a horror anthology coming out in April. Keep an eye out on hisTwitter account @garybuller