1) Who or what inspired you to become an author?
I can't pin it down on one particular author so much as just… books, as an object, as an escape, as my main way of learning about the world as a kid. As an introvert growing up in the 80s, writing and art were always a huge part of my life. Surprise though, I didn't start REALLY writing until I turned 30 and realized, oh heck, it's now or never.
2) Tell us a about your upcoming collection, In Dreams We Rot, and what inspired you to write it.
In Dreams We Rot is a collection of my best short stories that have been published over the last few years. The bulk of my writing thus far has been short fiction and I've had a lot of pieces published by cool indie publishers that I'm so excited to share with my readers. In Dreams We Rot bleeds with imagery you'll recognize from your nightmares, inspiring the title. I take a lot of writing inspiration from my dreams, and I really dig weaving surrealist themes and creatures into my work.
3) Your writing is categorized as cosmic sex horror and bizarro. What attracted you to those genres?
A reader described my novella, The Writhing Skies as cosmic sex horror and it seemed like the perfect description to me! I don't think about genre a whole lot when I'm writing unless it's for a specific call. I mostly just think of my work as the very general "horror." As for bizarro, it's a really wide genre but the whole cult movie/Eraserhead vibe is definitely something that gets me going.
4) Tell a bit about your writing process. Do you have a special space you like to use, or do you have to be in a certain mindset?
I'm still trying to figure this out, but no matter what I do, writing rough drafts is always absolute torture! I much prefer brainstorming, and then the editing process. The first draft is just a skeleton that I try to bang out as quick as possible. Lately I've been using a little laptop to type on, but I think I actually focus better when I'm sitting at the desktop computer, so I guess I'll have to keep fine-tuning there. I do usually listen to music while I write, either movie soundtracks, or trip hop playlists on YouTube, or, very often, Aesop Rock's soundtrack for Bushwick.
5) What’s one of the most surprising things you’ve learned in creating your books?
Well, my first novella, Arachnophile is about an arachnophobic guy in a world where giant spiders coexist with human. He accidentally falls in lust… or maybe love with a giant spider. So, not only did I discover how to write sex scenes for the first time in the most bizarre way possible, but I discovered that uh, a surprising amount of people will read those sex scenes and see spiders in a way they never expected, at least according to the reviews it's gotten.
6) What’s your next project?
Right now I'm working on a kidnapping book about the depths of female friendships and doppelgangers! It's inspired by John Fowles' The Collector and its shaping up to be the best thing I've ever written.
7) Where can people follow you online to keep up with all your updates?
I'm all over twitter and Facebook as Betty Rocksteady, and my website is www.bettyrocksteady.com! People should feel super free to reach out and hang out.
If you're interested in checking out my work, I have a disturbing cat mythos story available to read free here: https://theoutwardinn.wordpress.com/2019/05/10/the-backwards-path-to-the-limbus-by-betty-rocksteady/
In Dreams We Rot is being released October 17, 2019, and you can preorder it here! http://journalstone.com/bookstore/in-dreams-we-rot