The Kendall Reviews Interview
KENDALL REVIEWS: Could you tell me a little about yourself please?
ADAM LIGHT: My name is Adam Light, and I write horror and strange stories whenever possible. I’m married to my lovely wife, with whom I make my happy home, along with our daughter and the two furry boys. I’m in my late forties, as of a few days ago, when I turned 47. I don’t like to share too much personal information, but I will say I am diabetic, which has really changed my life in a lot of ways. I haven’t lost any limbs or anything, but managing it is top priority, and throws me serious problems once in a while.
KR: What do you like to do when not writing?
AL: A lot of what I enjoy seems intrinsic to the lifestyle of the writer: I watch movies and television shows (Jen, my long-suffering wife, and I love to binge shows, currently embroiled in the greatness that is Handmaid’s Tale), read books, review the heck out of them— at least I used to review the heck out of them. I scaled way back on the reviewing thing to focus on writing my stories. I’m also into trying to stay alive. I quit smoking two and a half years ago, and have been trying to get more exercise. Swimming and walking are important aspects of my life, and the dogs help by taking me on plenty of long walks. Though I am still nervous about returning to this type of thing due to the pandemic, going to concerts has always been one of my favorite outings.
KR: I think Prince was my last concert. I really should get to more live shows. What is your favourite childhood book?
AL: I had access to so many books as a child. As far as children’s books, I loved Where the Wild Things Go, and The Headless Horseman. I had fifty or sixty Doc Savage books that helped me through a lot of summer days. My stepdad was a Sci-Fi and comic book nut, so I had a lot of cool classic books around. I read Have Spacesuit Will Travel by Robert Heinlein many times. I loved Martian Chronicles as well. That goes for anything else by Ray Bradbury, come to think of it. Reading Bradbury opened the doors to Poe, Lovecraft, and more adult themed books by the likes of King, Barker, Koontz, and Laymon.
KR: I recall the odd children’s book but it was my Dad’s horror collection that offers fond memories. What is your favourite album, and does music play any role in your writing?
AL: I love music of most flavors and varieties, and it is difficult to nail down one favorite album, because my tastes change like the seasons, and one day it might be Pink Floyd’s Animals, while the next, I might be really enjoying Brian Eno’s Music for Airports, or Slayer’s Seasons in the Abyss. I love to write to a soundtrack, but setting up a writing playlist takes way too much of my allotted writing time. I need to work on that!
KR: I’ve never really clicked with solo Eno. Roxy Music Eno is certainly my kind of thing. Do you have a favourite horror movie/director?
AL: I love David Cronenberg and Sam Raimi. John Carpenter may be my favorite horror director, and The Thing is my favorite of his films. I also love Stuart Gordon’s movies. My daughter, Emily, and I watched Dolls the other day, and that one was not bad at all. We really loved it in spite of how dated it was. The practical effects were brilliant. He was really something. I’m also a big Hitchcock fan, and will watch anything by Kubrik at least once. My favorite horror film of all time is most likely The Shining. Society and The Descent are also a couple of my most loved horror movies.
KR: I’ve seen all of those bar Dolls. I’ll see if I can rectify that this weekend. What are you reading now?
AL: I am currently reading several books, as is my way. However, my reading has declined from over 100 books per year to one per month, if that. The last two years have been tough for me, when it comes to reading. I feel like I have come back around a lot since reading Duncan Ralston’s Woom, and then Jeff Strand’s Bring Her Back, and just falling in love with reading all over again. I’m currently reading The Rib from Which I remake the World, by Ed Kurtz, Bear: The Life and Times of Augustus Owsley Stanley III, and Malorie, the sequel to the game-changing Bird Box by Josh Malerman.
KR: I wish I could read multiple books but I’m strictly a one at a time reader. What was the last great book you read?
AL: I hope a tie is okay. I feel that Ghostland by Ralston, and Recursion by Blake Crouch were the best recent reads for me. Though, The Brides of Hanover Block by Gregor Xane was an overlooked masterpiece, and Stephen King released one of his better recent efforts, in my opinion, with the Hard Case Crime Novel Later. There are really so many excellent books out there, and I just wish I could read all of them.
KR: E-Book, Paperback or Hardback?
AL: All of the above.
KR: Who were the authors that inspired you to write?
AL: Early on, it was the adventure books like the Doc Savage serial novels my Mom’s second husband bequeathed to me one fine day in my young life. Those were authored by Kenneth Robeson, and though other fine writers have carried this series forever now, his were my favorite. There was H.G. Wells, and Heinlein, and then came Poe, Hitchcock, and Bradbury, and King’s books opened up my passion for the written word completely and irrevocably after I was permitted to read Eyes of the Dragon, and then went and immediately got The Shining from the library, read it twice, and have read it plenty of times since. It’s like a writing clinic to me.
KR: Seems your Shining is my Barker’s Books Of Blood. Do you work to an outline or plot or do you prefer to just see where an idea takes you?
AL: I have used outline and plot, and a couple of times it worked, but I find that as long as I have a strong feeling that I know the story is going to go somewhere interesting, I will let it take me along for that ride, which is most of the fun of writing for me.
KR: What kind of research do you do, and how long do you spend researching before beginning a book?
AL: I almost never do any research until I reach a point in the story when it becomes necessary. And then I do as much as I can on whatever subject it might be. I believe in getting the information correct.
KR: How would you describe your writing style?
AL: I like to think of myself as a flexible writer, who can take on more than one particular style, and get comfortable in it. I hope that is appropriate, as I am not the most prolific writer, and haven’t the biggest resume for comparisons.
KR: Describe your usual writing day?
AL: I like to write for one to two hours in the morning, typically after I have gotten at least two miles of walking in, which my dogs help with, naturally. If the writing is not feeling inspired, which is frequently, sometimes, I’ll pull up an old idea and work on that. Or just write a poem or something that will go immediately into the trash.
KR: Do you have a favourite story/short that you’ve written (published or not)?
AL: I love them all for different reasons, so it is hard to pick favorites. I believe a story can come after you and get petty vengeance, so I try to be fair. Seriously, though, Panacea is my favorite.
KR: Do you read your book reviews?
AL: I used to when I first started seeing them. Not anymore.
KR: How do you think you’ve developed as an author?
AL: I believe I understand that I am writing for me, mainly. I write to tell people stories, and share them, but I have only done that for the past ten years or so. I have hundreds of notebooks with the stuff I never shared with anyone. I started as a private writer and have become one who can share his stories without having a full-blown paranoia or anxiety attack!
My brother, Evans Light, even managed to get me into doing conventions, and we did several together, and with other friends and contributors, which also helped me meet others like myself, made me realize how much really goes into this life. Gave me a lot more respect for people there doing it, and writing amazing books, while also working full time.
KR: What is the best piece of advice you’ve received regarding your writing?
AL: “Don’t edit as you go. You never finish anything that way.” It’s so damn true.
KR: What scares you?
AL: Doing anything that involves having to speak aloud in front of people is the worst thing for me. And flying. Every time I fly, I die over and over again the whole time in more and more terrifying scenarios involving the plane. This is after I have guzzled several alcoholic beverages to ease me into it. Figure each time that if I get just buzzed enough, I will fall asleep and never notice any of it. That does not work.
KR: Public speaking triggers me hugely. Can you tell me about your latest release please?
AL: My latest release, Dreams for the Dying, is a collection of previously released short stories. All of them have been released in one way or another all over the place through the years. During the pandemic, I got together with Corpus Press to revise, add story notes, and gather it all together under a shiny new cover with the best editing and formatting we could get. I basically have everything I have published, but under one roof. And what a roof! Mikio created a phenomenal cover for this book. Duncan Ralston, the man who actually brought me back into the world of writing and reading almost single-handedly, wrote a lovely forward for the collection without any torture devices having to be used at all. Duncan’s already a great friend, and I feel his presence truly elevates Dreams for the Dying into another stratosphere it never would have been able to reach otherwise.
KR: Duncan is certainly one of the good guys. What are you working on now?
AL: I am currently working on a long horror story, which may evolve into my first solo novel, but I can’t say for sure. It is under the title “Eerie Inhabitants,” but I have a different one that will likely be used if it turns out the way I think. There are a few stories that I may be finishing up sooner to submit to different things, but we shall see.
I also have two different books in various states of near-completion with my brother Evans that will soon see the light of day. We debuted the Prologue in the last Bad Apples collection. I loved that one so much, and I can’t wait to get that full story, and the other book we have been working on for a little while, released, as well.
KR: You find yourself on a desert island, which three people would you wish to be deserted with you and why?
You can choose…
a) One fictional character from your writing.
b) One fictional character from any other book.
c) One real-life person that is not a family member or friend.
AL: If I found myself on a desert island, and there was no help in sight, but I get to choose my slow-death partners, that would be an interesting decision given the choices.
Nolan from my story Way Out of Here is definitely going to be there. First, he is rich, so someone will notice he is missing fairly soon. In a worst-case scenario, we might be able to use him as an escape route, as well.
Joining us would be Eddie Dean, only once he’s clean, naturally. Eddie is witty, and sharp. He is also Roland’s apprentice, so he knows how to shoot. If we needed to figure a way off the island, he could be useful.
The non-fiction person stranded with me would have to be my wife, because she is the only real person who could stand to be stranded with me anywhere, let alone an island!
KR: Thank you Adam
Dreams For The Dying
Bad dreams don’t always evaporate in the light of day.
Some refuse to fade, forever haunting dark corners of consciousness.
The dread of an approaching headlight on a deserted road . . .
Swirling black clouds claiming the sky, bringing death and madness . . .
The cabin of a trucker’s rig, where a waitress lies bound and gagged . . .
A cursed soul in a moonlit pumpkin patch, desperate and lonely . . .
These are songs for the damned, poisons for the cure, and Dreams for the Dying.
For years, Adam Light has frightened and delighted readers around the world with his stories of horror and the bizarre. Fully revised to best represent the author’s original vision, these fearsome tales of the macabre are finally collected under a single cover for the first time.
Adam Light resides in northeast Florida with his wife and daughter, along with two canine fur babies. He haunts the earth by day, writes horror stories at night, and rarely sleeps. Follow Adam on Twitter @AdamDLight
Corpus Press is a publisher of horror and weird fiction, specializing in modern pulp that emphasizes plot over gore. Based in Charlotte, North Carolina, the press has garnered praise from SCREAM Magazine, Cemetery Dance, Horror Novel Reviews, Hellnotes and others for its anthologies and for its short story collections and novellas.
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Corpus Press is well-known for crafting horrifying and creepy anthologies. Watch for more news about the next anthology from Corpus Press in their most recent series In Darkness, Delight: Fear the Future, which has a planned release date of August 16, 2021.