Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Interview with Mark Rinker

Hello Mark, welcome to you! Thanks for being today’s “Pick”. I hope you enjoy your visit and let get to the grimy stuff!!

Thank you! I look forward to it.

Please share a little about you, your works, and what got you into writing.
Well, I’ve lived in eastern Pennsylvania most of my life. I love it here, it’s great—except for the winters. Every year between November and April, I wish I still lived in California, where I spent the first six years of my life.

I’ve had some short stories published in the past, and Evil Ambulance is my first novel. I’ve always been interested in writing. One of the first stories I wrote was a “slasher” of sorts, modeled after Friday the 13th, called Death Stalker. That got me an honorable mention when I was eleven years old, after entering it in the local library’s young writer’s contest. That might’ve been when I first started considering that I’d like to spend a lot of my time writing.

I am curious why all the strained relationships with Eric? Parents , his girlfriend and Uncle Dan?

It just makes everything tense right from the beginning. Eric isn’t comfortable in his new home, but then, he wasn’t comfortable back with his parents either. Which is worse? OK, well, obviously being attacked by a possessed ambulance, and seeing your uncle slowly lose control of himself—that’s worse. But I guess, with his relationships at home strained, he’s hoped for a better start with his uncle, only to find that his new-found independence hasn’t gained him any comfort whatsoever.

What was inspiration behind the story?
It was inspired by an evening drive between my home in Bethlehem and Easton, an approximately twenty minute drive I make just about every week. I caught an ambulance in my rear-view mirror, and the basic story came to mind.

Why the winding road to only the house?

Just to add to the weirdness of the place. There will be more about that in Evil Ambulance 2.

What was the powder that Victor used in his incantation in the beginning?

The powder and the glowing, pulsing pool of light that is a haven for Victor’s spirit and a means of his spirit’s transfer to another, is just a different take on a sorcerer’s methods of preserving himself. Just some magic craziness.

What did happen to the old ambulance that Victor had used?

I like to think that it’s been in a sort of limbo during the years between its true existence and its supernatural return and reunion with Victor. Driving down a long, empty highway in outer-Hell, patiently waiting for resurrection.

I loved the history with the whole backstory, what was Bern’s part?

Bern’s a creepy, not-entirely-well-meaning fellow who’s obviously more acquainted with the events of the past, with the Victor Devlin murders, than he lets on. The basic plan I have for Evil Ambulance 2 involves him a bit more, shows a little more of what his relationship with Victor and the town of Ravenwood was all about.

What was going on with Charlie Barnett? He seemed to be stalking the house and Eric…was he trying to find closure?

Charlie’s a deeply disturbed individual who, with nothing else going on to occupy his time, has spent years obsessing over the Devlin murders. He’s got no hobbies, no interests, no friends, and nothing to do. Going up to the Devlin house, his only hope is that something, anything, will happen, whether it’s something to give him closure or just something to provide him any activity at all for an evening. Of course, he gets a lot more than he could’ve wished for.

What was the idea with the visions Eric was seeing while driving? (his mom and dad looking sad, and then Dodger).

That scene is about the battle for Eric’s, mind and soul. He imagines himself taking over for the ambulance driver, and what that would be like—and yet, somehow things he thought didn’t matter so much, poke through that veneer of evil and murderous thoughts, and struggle to exert their influence.

And lastly the fun questions:

Plotter or pantser?

I usually write up a general outline. Sometimes I’ll even have a plan for each chapter, but that always ends up being changed.

Early Bird or Night Creature?

Definitely a night person. I have a very difficult time getting up in the morning, and have been fortunate, in the early years of my adult life, to find jobs that don’t start until ten or eleven a.m.

Are you more like Eric or Dan?

Eric, though I’d prefer to be more like Dan.

White, Milk or Dark chocolate?

Milk chocolate. Dark is a bit too intense, and I’ve never been into white chocolate. My candy preference, though, is for fruity candy like Skittles and Chewy Spree, over chocolate.

Coffee Tea or other?

I like coffee, but have a difficult time limiting my intake to one or two cups.

Music or quiet while working?

I almost always write with music on. Usually something heavy. Sometimes classic hard rock or rap.

Favorite place to sit and write?

On my bed, in front of my computer. The computer monitor is aimed directly at the bed, making it an ideal place to watch movies or write.

Computer or good old pen and paper?

Computer. I’ve always held pens kind of weirdly; for some reason I didn’t learn the correct way to hold them when I was a little kid. And I have a habit, then, of pressing down too hard, and after a while, my hand gets very tired. Also, I can type faster than I can write.

Pick your poison (alcoholic drink of choice when going out)

My favorite beer has always been, and always will be, Miller Lite. Favorite mixed drink is gin and tonic, and my favorite liquor to drink on the rocks is brandy. Miller Lite goes best with writing, though.

Thanks for “dropping” in Mark. It was a pleasure to have a guy around for once. Although I can’t say I have a very girly blog! *laughs*

You can find my review of Evil Ambulance Here.

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