Friday, October 1, 2010

One Outrageous Raconteur

Warning: This interview is uncut. E.C. Stacy can be very shocking.

That caution suited the opening of this feature best. I’ve known E.C. Stacy for more than a decade, and you’d think in that time, I could somewhat predict the author. Not really.

Let me first give you a tidbit about the name that many don’t know. E.C. Stacy is a business. The writers behind the pseudonym are husband and wife. Whereas they both share the multiple duties behind seeing a manuscript to publication (if you’re an author you know about all these) one of them pens most of the stories. They flipped a coin and decided that E.C. Stacy would be a female and thus referred to as such from then on.

That’s how different she is.

Stacy writes erotic romance that probes fairly deep into character exploration as far as the genre is concerned. But she also kicks out horror. Damn scary horror. It’s not bloody just for the sake of gore…and actually blood is rarely emphasized in her books. Her horror titles quite simply get under your skin.

A modestly talented artist, Stacy drew The Erotic Coloring and Activity Pad over the summer and released it on Amazon. Even though she took the art work seriously, she admits that the publication was designed to get attention.

Because we go way back, I steered in a different direction with my questions for E.C. Stacy. If for nothing else, the departure could be entertaining. After all, Halloween lurks around the bend. Got to drive down the road with the sign that says DO NOT ENTER.

CIR: I’m going to start with my oddball question first. Do you do anything to celebrate Halloween?

ECS: Thanks for having me on Chiseled in Rock. You already know I do this, but what the hell, we’ll spill it for the readers. My squeeze and I streak. No kidding. It’s usually in an area with a few people around and just for a few seconds, but we always pull that stunt. Talk about getting your heart rate up. We just about got caught one year, but elaborating on the details would give us away.

CIR: You don’t have a webpage. Why?

ECS: Because I’m still experimenting. A webpage is supposedly a tool to bolster sales. But I actually have some titles that are doing surprisingly well without one. I’m trying to isolate each promotional venture to see what works best. If I have several campaigns going at once, including a webpage, and I sell a lot of books, how do I know which one worked? Incidentally, I have a MySpace page which has attracted some readers. I assume they’re mostly readers anyway. I started a facebook account over the summer too.

CIR: Erotic romance is selling. Many agents have expanded their representation to include erotica. Why do you think this is?

ECS: What a clever question, Dave. The readers have probably already filled in the blank, but I’ll humor you. People like sex.

CIR: You’ve written some vampire pieces. At a conference I attended a while back, none of the agents wanted to see anything with vampires in them. What do you think the future is for the bloodsucker?

ECS: Can you blame the agents? Before I shoot my fingers off, more power to writers who can sell any kind of book. And I admit that I’ve written vampires in non-threatening roles. However, the market is flooded with wimpy vampires. Christopher Lee was very sexy, but still forced you to sleep with a light on. We’ve lost that. It doesn’t help that horror sales have sagged for a couple of decades. If the vampires aren’t can’t-we-all- just-get-along types, then they’re superheroes. I think the agents predict that the nice-guy vampire thing is going to crash one night like Disco did in the 70s. The fanged fiends won’t drop off the radar, but they are going to have to be reinvented. Quenched, the last of my vampire dating service series to be released in November, is going straight for the horror jugular. I attempt to make the reader feel what it would be like to be drained of blood. Not a fun thing. Ainsley collaborated on it with me.

CIR: I have always wondered this. You are recognized in another “entertainment” career that you could lean on to compliment your book sales. Why don’t you use it?

ECS: Thank you for not brushing too close to the truth, although you could never prove my other job. And it’s not like I’m a big shot or anything. Aren’t there enough personalities out there that get book deals just because they gained some notoriety? It’s too easy and unfair to people who are struggling just to get by. It’s a free country and all, but I get tired of seeing celebrities exploiting their drug addictions. Or they hire a ghost writer to do all the work then they merely slap their flashy name on it. Get over yourselves. I want my books to get snatched up because I worked hard and the idea or story and writing are good alone. And I hope all talented authors gain success for the same reason.

CIR: You admit that some of your titles are out right flops. Any regrets?

ECS: Not a one. Because of the E book boom and the subsequent cheap production costs, my publishers are willing to take big risks. My editors tell me that they love my voice and ideas. That alone makes a stinker worth it. But I love to write. Don’t care what it is. Throw on there some autonomy to try something really out there, and man, I’m in artist’s heaven. The key thing is to love what you do. I used to have a pedestrian corporate job. But I went into work and found ways to cut up yet still get the work done. My coworkers and boss loved me. And we were damn productive.

CIR: Could you give us the low down on Devil Music?

ECS: I’m hoping it appeals to people who look for the fun yet scary horror story. One of the ideas I had for it came from watching an 80s horror flick that had the token sex part. You know…two teens, the girl gets topless for about five seconds and then the killer whacks them? These scenes are stuck in there mainly for guys and amazingly lack any spice. I thought: why not really deliver some passionate sex for the reader. Page Montrose is the heroine in Devil Music and she is hopelessly infatuated with Eddie Setzer, so there are several steamy romps between them. But because of Eddie’s deal with the devil, he is cursed with out-of-body experiences in which he dies for other people. What’s scarier than death? Dying more than once. I also pay homage to several rock guitar icons. Thia Myles Vincent collaborated with me on this one.

CIR: What are you working on next?

ECS: More cougar escapades for Total E Bound Publishing. I don’t like the term cougar as there is no male equivalent for it, but I love how society has finally embraced the mature female lover. Ask any boy toy who’s been treated by an experienced woman, and he’ll tell you where the good lovin’ is.

Interview by Dave

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Great interview! But aren't male "cougers" called "silver foxes"?