01 November, 2015

#Interview with Ryan Hill, #Author of Barking Madness

About the Author:
My name is Ryan Hill, and I am a fiction writer.  My Debut novel, Barking Madness, is a dark and witty YA Psychological Thriller with lots of Paranormal twists and turns.  It is also a coming of age story that provides an inside peek at the mind of teens, in the complicated and awkward high school years.  The book features two protagonists with alternating POV’s and a psychotic killer.  I really enjoyed creating the different layers of characters and relationships in the story and felt I was successful in building believable and distinctive personalities.  The supporting characters have strong voices, as well, and will grab the reader’s attention.  I first started writing down ideas for my story in middle school and in July 2013 before my senior year, I decided to take the plunge and start writing my novel.  After a lifetime of playing soccer, I quit the high school team and unbeknownst to anyone, began writing.  I was completely dedicated and had a complete manuscript in 8 months.  Barking Madness was published by Pulse Publishing in August 2015.
I was born in Greenwich, Connecticut but now live in West Newbury, Massachusetts with my family.  Currently, I am a sophomore at UMass Amherst and pursuing a degree in English.  When I’m not doing homework or writing, I can be found on my Xbox, at the gym, or watching a movie, as I am a huge fan of film. With survival horror being my favorite genre, some of my favorite movies are Evil Dead 2, Jurassic Park, Jaws, Alien, The Shining, The Thing, Grindhouse, and Scream. But my all time favorite horror movie is An American Werewolf in London.  I have a soft spot for werewolves, which is the main reason I included one in my novel Barking Madness.  I don’t know what it is about them, but I just find them interesting.

Interview with the Author:

When did you first realize that you wanted to be a writer/ a storyteller?
When I was in sixth grade, I wrote a short story with my best friend and realized I enjoyed it far too much for a school assignment.  From that point on I knew creative writing was what I liked to do most, so I decided I should write more.

What inspires you to write?
The idea of having what I’m working on finished.  I love to imagine what my finished project will look like, but the only way to finish it is to write it, so I write.

How did you come up with the idea for your current story?
I always liked werewolves as movie monsters, and I’m pretty confident I know the teenage mind, so I blended those things together.  What I got was more of a disturbed coming of age book, but it worked nonetheless.

Are there some stories tucked away in some drawer that was written before and never saw the light of the day?
Yes, actually, but those stories are the ones I’m working on now.

Tell us about your writing process.
I write slowly, and I think over everything I’ve done constantly, so I write at least 1,000 words a day and then revise what I have written the following day to ensure I really do like what I wrote.  I feel a time gap between writing and reading your manuscript is a necessity, too.

What is your favorite scene in the book? Why?
My favorite scene is in the very beginning.  It’s when Michael, my protagonist, and Kyle, his best friend, go for a walk in the woods the day before school.  Their dialogue and the way they act around each other really shows off their friendship.  I like the chemistry between the two of them.

Did any of your characters inherit some of your own quirks?
I think it’s impossible to say no to that. Odds are most of the characters have something in common with me.  I tend to put a little piece of me in everyone.  It helps me understand and relate to every character.

What is your most interesting writing quirk?
I say what I’m writing out loud.  I don’t know why, I just do.

Do you read? Who are your favorite authors and how have they influenced your writing style?
My favorite authors have not influenced my writing style, at least as far as I can tell.  I try to read from a large variety of authors so I can see as many different writing styles as possible.  I hope to understand as much as I can about writing from lots of different people.

What is the best piece of advice you have received, as a writer, till date?
I’ve been told I spend too much time with dialogue.  I’m hoping to turn that down a little bit in the future.

What is the best piece of advice you would give to someone that wants to get into writing?
Write what you want to write.  Don’t be influenced by other people unless you genuinely like their input.

What would be the Dream Cast for you book if it was to be turned into a movie?
I honestly have no idea.  I just hope they can act.

If you were to be stranded on the famous deserted island, what three things would you carry?
Compass, knife, and a volleyball.

How do you spend your free time? Do you have a favorite place to go and unwind?
I spend my free time watching movies and playing video games.  My favorite place to unwind is my basement.

Can you share with us something off your bucket list?
Be alive to witness the discovery of extraterrestrial life.

Tell us three fun facts about yourself.
I’m a movie fanatic, I have three siblings, and my favorite color is red.

What do you have in store next for your readers?
I hope to have a way more adventurous tale with genre defining characters.

Is there anything else you’d like to share with your readers?
Thank you so much for the support I’ve been getting!  It really means a lot to me.

About the Book:
 “I found you,” whispered into my ear. 
"My life is crumbling away before my eyes while I do nothing to prevent it.  I have visited too many funerals, for too many friends who haunt my dreams.  Everybody dies eventually, right?  No, everybody dies young when they befriend me.  Was I born to die young? I don't think so.  I'm the only one here with the nerve to stay alive.  I can't be left alone.  Not with that hollow man, the one who hides his face.  That's what he wants, me to be alone, because once I'm alone, he's going to kill me!"
Seventeen-year-old Rosetta Harper is plagued by nightmares of a masked man.  With her father’s new career move, her family has just relocated from Florida to the small New England town of Ashwood.   A quiet town and close-knit community where you know your neighbors, and trouble is a word unspoken. But soon after her arrival, her world and the worlds of her classmates come crashing down.
Michael hates his family and feels alone and unloved.  He only finds comfort when he’s with his friends, but even they get on his nerves.  Everything about Ashwood and his life bores him, until Rosetta Harper moves into town.  With her as a new classmate, Michael finally gets the excitement he was looking for, but it may be at too high a cost.

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