WickedChannel had the opportunity to interview Benjamin Kauffman about his new horror novel A Silent Noise. The book is slowly gaining popularity through word of mouth amongst horror fans and many are looking forward to the next installment.
Ben welcome to WickedChannel. Tell our readers about your first novel A Silent Noise.
The story follows a journalist/aspiring novelist on the path of some unusual attacks.Â The attacks include a charred body found in rural field, an auto mechanic, a communications mogul, a male prostitute, and others.Â She learns of a vengeful spirit called â€œThe Quietmanâ€, which threatens everyone she cares about.
I am also working on a continuation of the story and am looking to have finished by the end of 2013.Â No details that I am ready to talk about regarding it.
So it sounds like this is a perfect novel for horror fans. Do you find yourself leaning towards one genre of writing or another?
My roots are in horror, but I have ideas that linger more toward modern serial science fiction along the lines of say the recent Battlestar Galactica, which focused more on drama, and less on special effects and action.Â Ultimately I will likely stay in the horror genre for selfish reasons as I enjoy writing horror.
Self publishing seems to be the way to go for first time authors these days. What are some of the pros and cons?
For starters, it gives writers an opportunity to get their work out to the public without having to go through traditional publishing houses that may lack the resources to thoroughly produce it.Â Publishers receive thousands of manuscripts, and can only promote very few of them, and often would rather expend their resources on established talent rather than cultivate new and unproven talent.Â It is understandable to take this approach because publishing is a business like any other, and publishers need to make money.
What were your major literary influences growing up that made you want to be a writer?
The first influence was not a writer, but rather my 10th grade English teacher.Â He encouraged me to write short stories, and I produced several that stood out.Â I may revisit them and release them at some point.Â As far as writers are concerned, a lot of influence comes from people like Rod Serling and Alfred Hitchcock, two masters of building suspense and the inevitable sucker punch ending.Â A more modern influence is Joe Hill, a master of characterization that knows how to forge a relationship between the characters and the reader.Â Another is David Moody in as much for his work and his general encouragement.Â He began through self publishing and actually gave away his first novel titled Autumn.Â He has since released four more Autumn novels and a movie by the same title which are in essence zombie stories, but in five books has never used the word â€œzombieâ€.
I know you are a long time comic book fan. Do you find they have influenced your writing? Who/what are your favorite comics/creators?
Any conversation about my comic book influence begins with Alan Moore.Â He is the master of the intricate plot and a pioneer in bringing comics into the modern day with Swampthing and Watchmen.Â Neil Gaiman is another influence that was vital in taking the handcuffs off writers and brings drama over action with Sandman.Â William Gaines was the first to popularize horror in comics with the EC line, wouldnâ€™t really be here with his contributions.Â I could go on for hours, but Iâ€™ll give you one more and that is Art Spiegelman with Maus.Â This was a story that kind of hit close to home as it was a very personal journey for the writer depicting his fatherâ€™s experience during his stay in Auschwitz and his survival.Â And while I am of the Jewish faith and was fortunate enough not to have had family members in Poland during that time, it is still a part of my heritage.
Will you be attending any horror/comic cons to promote your novel A Silent Noise in 2013? Where can our readers keep tabs on you and your novels/appearances?
No immediate plans to attend any horror or comic cons, because the book is only available as an eBook, but that could easily change.Â For now I have started a blog on blogger.com and have a Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/asilentnoise1.1) set up for A Silent Noise and will be using them to keep readers up to date on any news regarding future works and any appearances.