Author Interview with Karina Halle

The Books

11710500Karina Halle
Darkhouse (Experiment in Terror #1) | Read my review.
Red Fox (Experiment in Terror #2) | Read my review.
Dead Sky Morning | Coming October 13th 2011.

With the Experiment in Terror show finding some success, amateur ghost hunters Perry Palomino and Dex Foray embark on their most terrifying investigation yet. A tiny, fog-shrouded island in the rough strait between British Columbia and Washington State has held a dark secret for decades: It was a former leper colony where over forty souls were left to rot, die and bury each other. Now a functioning campground, Perry and Dex spend an isolated weekend there to investigate potential hauntings but as the duo quickly find out, there is more to fear on D’Arcy Island than just ghosts. The island quickly pits partner against partner, spiraling the pair into madness that serves to destroy their sanity, their relationship and their very lives.

Today I’m pleased to announce that I was granted the honor to host an interview with horror author Karina Halle. She wrote two novels in her Experiment in Terror series so far, both of which I reviewed and loved tremendously.

For those interested, she is currently offering the first novel in her series, Darkhouse, for only $0,99 USD on Smashwords and Amazon Kindle. This promotions runs to October 13th, so be fast!

The Interview

1) Hey Karina! Thanks for letting me interview you 🙂 My first question, something I’ve been dying to know is: how did you come up with the idea of Darkhouse?

– No problem! It’s an honour to be interviewed on I <3 Reading. Well, it wasn’t so much that I came up with the idea of Darkhouse, but that I came up with the idea for the series. I always wanted to write a series of books about a realistic character who is in that tumultuous early/mid twenties period and told from her POV, and I’ve always been attracted to ghost stories and don’t think they’re explored enough in literature, so both those ideas just kind of mashed together one day. I still have the original summary of the series I wrote on an iTouch notes section when the idea for Perry Palomino struck me, and even though my original plan for the series was a lot different (ie there was no male lead in the first outline), the overall theme is the same.

2) As a writer of horror novels myself, I’m always curious about why people decide to write books in the horror genre. So…why horror and not any other genre?

– To be honest, I’m just a very sadistic, macabre person (though I’m very nice too ;). From a very young age, I liked to be scared and, even more than that, I liked to scare people. From having haunted houses at Halloween, to enlisting my mother to pretend to be a ghost at my sleepover, to going on night hikes with friends and leaving them alone in the forest without a flashlight…yeah, I’d say the need to terrify is deep in my veins. Now I’ve just found an outlet that’s not so “lawsuit” ish, ha ha.

3) I’ve read on your website that there will be 8 books total in the Experiment in Terror series. When did you decide that there would be 8 books, and why?

– At first I think there were five books planned. This was before I wrote Darkhouse. I always knew Darkhouse was going to be the “set-up” book. I had plotted out the five books too but then half-way through writing the second novel, Red Fox, I realized the overall story of Perry and Dex that I needed to tell was going to take more than five books to do. So I settled on eight. It’s the perfect amount. Frankly, I don’t ever want to stop writing about these characters, so eight was the most I could do while being able to tell the whole story of these people but without overstaying my welcome. The last thing I’d want is for the series to drag on.

4) Dead Sky Morning is the next book in the series. Can you tell us a bit more about that?

– It’s a bit of a departure from the other two books. It’s a similar setting and feel to Darkhouse, being in the cold, rainy Pacific Northwest (where I’m from) and it deals with ghosts rather than skinwalkers (as Red Fox did). But it’s also the most adult book of the series. From this book onwards, it definitely takes a giant step out of the Young Adult section. Not that it’s obscene or overtly graphic or anything, but it’s gorier, scarier and…sexier. I’m interested to see how it’s received. Because the characters are essentially alone on an island for most of the book, it has a very claustrophobic feel. You can just see the threads of sanity snapping for both of them. It’s also based on true events that the Canadian government sort of swept under the rug, so that’s cool too. The island is an actual place, and we may go there in the fall to shoot the book trailer. If only my crew weren’t such scaredy cats, lol.

5) What book did you find easiest to write: Darkhouse or Red Fox? And, I know this is probably a difficult question, but which one do you like best yourself?

– Hmmm. Well the difficult question is the easiest for me to answer. I like Red Fox better. Darkhouse was always about setting up the characters, where Red Fox I was able to play with them more and let them develop. I think it moves fast, like a screenplay, and it really lets the reader see what my characters are capable of. Both Perry and Dex have some pretty intense moments in Red Fox and some of my favorite scenes ever are from that book.

As for easiest book to write? I couldn’t say. Maybe Red Fox, even though there was a lot of research involved and it took a year (versus Darkhouse which took six weeks). I think there was less pressure for me in Red Fox.

6) When you start writing a book, how does your writing schedule look like?

– Well, I don’t really plan too much. I write for several publications as a music journalist, so I’m aware that my other duties can throw me off. It’s tough to write what you want to write after you write what you HAVE to write. I think it takes me about three months or less to write a book and that’s not writing every day. I just pick a goal (usually publication) and get it done.

7) What do you do when you’re out of inspiration to write?

– Huh. Well, I’m always inspired to write (so far). But I take breaks on purpose. No sense rushing through the series since I love writing it so much. I read a lot. I travel a lot (usually for concerts). And since I’m self-published, I do a lot of promotion and marketing stuff to help my books when I’m not writing. I’m pretty much always writing something or always working on promoting the series 24/7. No complaints though!

8 ) What book are you currently working on?

– Lying Season, Book Four. Actually I’m at 97K words at this exact moment and by the time this interview is published, I’ll be done writing the book. I’m on a roll and can’t stop. Been writing for days straight, and all day long, which is not normal for me (I’m a night writer mostly). It’s funny, this particular novel is really wrapping me up in knots at the moment. My characters are going through some changes and I’m getting nervous and apprehensive on their behalf. And a little sad. I’ve never felt so torn up and emotional about the series as I am at this exact moment. I think I’m just really emphasizing with Perry and Dex and their journey at this point and subconsciously aware of what I’m going to do to them. It has to be done, but for the first time…it kind of hurts me! That said, it’s a good thing. I’m very excited to see where things go and I’m really proud of this one.

I’m very excited to see where things go as well. Thank you for this interview, Karina, and thanks for letting me review your awesome books!

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