It’s impossible not to encounter @ruswriteszombie on Twitter or the blogiverse, and since zombies don’t write, I just had to ask him to speak in their name!
AM: I loved your novella Ushers, Inc -what inspired you to write such a funny/creepy story?
Rusty Fischer: It just seemed like such a fun “mashup” of genres. I was able to put my love of writing and reading YA together with the cheesy, late night, B-monster movies I love so much. I also got to add zombies, vampires AND werewolves in the mix and let these “geeky” kids use their movie knowledge to become a real strength when no one else – not the cops, the government, not even the Marines – can stop the monsters.
AM: The way you present yourself as a writer is quite astonishing: accessible, always helpful, and a huge zombie fan. What motivates you to have such a strong presence on the web?
Rusty Fischer: Two words: I’m shy! Like, painfully shy. But I’m also a former teacher and it’s very important for me to write YA and still try to foster reading in young adults. So promotion is very important to me, but can get difficult when I have to, you know, actually leave the house! But now I can do so much online, without standing around looking gawkish and uncomfortable. I can speak freely and share my opinions and blog about publishing advice and host giveaways or write guest posts and people can either respond or not. It’s great!
AM: That’s a great advantage to have been a teacher first, you know exactly what these kids go through – not that you’re old enough to not remember how it was when you were a kid, but times are changing so fast… Will you ever consider writing for adults and in other genres or will you stick to horror YA?
Rusty Fischer: I actually do write for adults. This year my first-ever adult contemporary romance comes out from Aspen Mountain Press. It’s a Christmas romance. So about half the year I spend writing YA supernatural horror-slash-romance and the other half it’s adult contemporary Christmas romance. So… try figuring that out.
Basically, after decades of chasing trends and trying to “fit” in here or there with this publisher or that, and getting rejected each and every time, I said, “You know what? No one’s reading this stuff anyway, so… why not write exactly what you want, have fun with it and maybe one day folks will read it?” So that’s what I did and, I like to think, that’s what I’m still doing.
Rusty blogs and give plenty of free goodies for authors, too!
August 15th, 2011 at 7:35 am
Excellent interview/chat. I agree with Rusty’s sentiment that you might as well as write what you like. It is so tough to get published, and you can waste so many hours/years trying to figure it all out. So many projects can be wasted writing for a trend, that sometimes it’s best to forget it all and write for yourself.
August 15th, 2011 at 8:49 am
He is one clever writer, that Rusty:)
August 17th, 2011 at 2:44 am
Certainly you write what you like to consume. I’d think B-movies would go well with certain strains of YA fiction, too.
August 17th, 2011 at 7:06 am
Two peas in a pod, John – I think the same.
August 17th, 2011 at 12:45 pm
What a great idea for a story! And I love the author pic. Hee. Can totally relate to being shy, too. At least camera shy. I’m okay in twitter exchanges and emails, but I DON’T like the camera. 😉
Anne, thanks for another great author interview!
August 17th, 2011 at 2:22 pm
Anita – Rusty’s Ushers, Inc. is really special, I highly recommend it:)
August 18th, 2011 at 9:56 am
Oh Rusty – I share your pain and joy! Thanks for spilling your guts out to Anne. Excellent interview.
August 18th, 2011 at 10:48 am
Di – Ushers, Inc is such a great read, I highly recommend it!
August 19th, 2011 at 5:35 am
Great Interview Anne and Russ,
What it shows however is write what you want to read and have fun with, not what you think will sell or currently in vogue.
Definitely sounds fun.
August 19th, 2011 at 7:20 am
Oh, it is, Gareth! Rusty has a really unique voice, you should check his books out:)
August 20th, 2011 at 8:30 am
Very down to earth and honest. I love his views on writing and what he enjoys. I like that he writes for himself but wants to appeal to YA. A gift for sure. An enjoyable interview. Thanks for sharing with us. 🙂
August 20th, 2011 at 8:39 am
His stories are so much fun – get them!!!