Ten years ago my brother and I drove to Virginia to spend Thanksgiving with our parents. It was literally the last holiday all of us, including my half-brother, spent together. It was also when my mom told the family her cancer had relapsed again and this time she was choosing to not seek treatment. She was tired of all the surgeries and chemo treatments and wasn’t going to spend what time she had left being sick, tired, and weak on top of the cancer. And it was inevitable the cancer would kill her this time.
On the ride home (a 7 hour drive) my brother and I had one of the most sincere conversations of our lives. During the ride I think I pretty much confessed I was having a bit of a mid-life crisis and Mom’s announcement had really kicked it up a notch. I was 30 years old, married for a year to my second husband, had no children (never wanted any), bought my first house five months earlier, had a new car, was making decent money, and I felt like I hadn’t done a fucking thing with my life and I wasn’t going to leave a damn thing behind when I died to prove I ever lived. I don’t know where the idea came from or what the fuck I was thinking but I told my brother when I got home I was going to write a book.
So I went home and I wrote. I wrote 4 books throughout 2010, found a freelance editor, read a million blogs about self-publishing, met two other self-published authors online. I published all 4 books in 2011 and by October of 2011 my marriage had fallen apart and mentally I was in a bad place. I sorta stopped writing and had given up to focus on my personal life.
In 2012 I met Andersen Prunty and he introduced me a much bigger community of writers. I began writing again. Andersen was running two small presses at the time, Atlatl Press and Grindhouse Press, plus working on his own writing. By 2016 he knew something had to give. He had to drop one or possibly both presses if he wanted to continue his own writing and it was looking like Grindhouse was on the chopping block. I didn’t want to see Grindhouse Press close so I offered to take it over and I officially became the owner at the beginning of 2017.
From the time I started I’ve written and published 17 books of my own. My hopes and enthusiasm for my personal writing have waxed and waned over the years. Inspiration comes from all kinds of art. Recently I watched Greener Grass, directed by Jocelyn DeBoer and Dawn Luebbe which I enjoyed a lot and it sparked my interest to write something in the future. In high school I read all of Anne Rice’s works I could get my hands on. As an adult I read anything I could find or was suggested to me. Over the years I found books by Alissa Nutting and Charlotte Roche highly inspiring. I guess you can say I’m more into transgressive fiction which influences me when it comes to writing horror.
Horror isn’t the only genre I write. I have more books that are absurdist with touches of magical realism and dark fantasy than horror and even a literary novel. It’s been nice to see a renewal of Splatterpunk which I think a few of my horror novels fall into and I believe that comes from mixing transgressive fiction, horror, absurdism, and bit of social commentary which I’m guilty of dropping into a story from time to time.
It’s good to see a lot of new writers discovering Splatterpunk and realizing what they’ve written falls into the genre or that there’s a genre out there with no limits on content.
There are a couple of new authors to Grindhouse this year I met at Scares That Care and were recommend to me from people that I trust understand what Grindhouse is all about. I feel like Grindhouse fiction and Splatterpunk go hand in hand. Grindhouse films fell into one or several categories: extreme gore and violence, absurdism (your standard B-side horror movies with ridiculous plots), and social commentary. Since most were filmed in the 60s and 70s there was a lot to say about sexism (I Spit on Your Grave) and racism (The Thing with Two Heads).
I’m excited to see what books will be birthed out of these new authors discovering Splatterpunk.
C.V. Hunt is the author of several unpopular books.