Short story writer Micah Castle is here today telling me about his weird fiction/horror collection, The Stone Man and Other Weird Tales.
Micah is a person who writes short stories, mainly horror, weird fiction, and Lovecraftian. While away from the keyboard, he enjoys hiking nature trails, playing with his animals, listening to a wide variety of music, and can typically be found reading a book in his living room.
Welcome, Micah. What do you enjoy most about writing short stories?
They are long enough to get a good story told, but short enough to where I don't waste months at a time on just one story. I get a lot of ideas for stories, some good, most bad, and short stories give me the flexibility to tell them all within a short amount of time.
Can you give us a little insight into a few of your short stories – perhaps some of your favorites?
My two favorites from The Stone Man and Other Weird Tales is "The Stone Man" and "Hugo The Clown."
"The Stone Man" is about a professor of geology who stumbles upon stacked stones in his town's river, but he soon discovers there is more to the stones than just their queer structure. He becomes driven to meet who stacks those stones, and when he does meet The Stone Man, he receives more than just a homeless man living in the forest.
"Hugo The Clown" is a story about a childhood performer who lives in the suburbs, in which he hates and desperately wants to escape from. Through his performances he steals the life force from the children he entertains. With this life force, he plans to use to unlock the gateway to another world in his basement. But, like a lot of things in life, it doesn't work the way he planned.
What genre are you inspired to write in the most? Why?
Horror. I think horror is such a broad genre that almost anything can be done within its boundaries. Also, I've always been to drawn to darker things, and I naturally became engrossed by horror stories and how they play out.
What exciting story are you working on next?
I'm currently going through my backlog of stories for the next collection.
Right now, I'm on "A Star Collector," which is a combination of fantasy and horror. It's a simple story about a boy who meets a man on the way home one night, in which he discovers what the man carries in his large bag are not rocks, but stars. It's simple and sounds boring, but it gives me the of Ray Bradbury's work Something Wicked This Way Comes gives.
When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I still don't consider myself a writer. I think the title "writer," is saved for those who have established themselves to live off their works. I consider myself "a person who writes," though it's a bit awkward to describe myself as such.
How do you research markets for your work, perhaps as some advice for writers?
If the story is influenced by something that actually happened to me, like "The Stone Man," I spent a lot of time in the area where the story is based (in a river in the middle of the woods). Also, spending a lot of time Googling information, and ensuring what I want to write about is factual and realistic.
What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
Not really a quirk, but I have to write in the early morning or it seems I can't really write anything at all.
As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Honestly, I never had a goal of what I wanted to be when I was young. It never really crossed my mind, or anything I thought about. I always lived in the present, even if that ended up biting me in the ass later on (which it did when I grew up, started college, and moved out of my mother's house).
Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
Do something that you love to do, even if you don't get paid to do it.
And, I'd like to give an enormous thank you to my fiancé Nicole, for her love, care and patience.
Thanks for being here today, Micah. All the best with your writing projects!