Author Interview: Margaret L. Carter

Another fellow DC Area Storyteller joins my interviewees.

The Basics
Margaret L. Carter
Brand – Explore love among the monsters!
Genre(s) – Horror, paranormal romance, erotic paranormal romance, fantasy
Current Publisher(s) – Hard Shell Word Factory, Amber Quill Press, Ellora’s Cave, Cerridwen Press

To Other Authors
What are the three MOST important pieces of advice you would give to a brand new author?

  • Read constantly, inside and outside your genre.
  • Find a good critique partner or group, one that understands the genre you write.
  • Keep submitting your work; never give up.

What’s your favorite way to advertise?

  • Book reviews

What hard-knock lesson did the publishing world teach you (can be your own experience or someone else’s that you learned from)?

  • Research a publisher carefully before submitting. Don’t jump at the first one that offers a contract regardless of potential pitfalls. My first nonfiction book, a history of vampirism in literature from the early nineteenth century to the 1970s (following two paperback horror anthologies I edited), was published by a small press in a very plain offset-print edition but priced like the average academic press release—exorbitantly. Nobody but libraries and the most dedicated vampire fans would have been able to afford it, and what they got for all that money was a cheap-looking product. Moreover, after the first few years the publisher stopped sending royalty statements, something a publisher should always do on the contracted schedule even if there’s no money to be paid out. And when I got a lawyer friend to write a stern letter, sure enough, several years of royalties (not a large sum, of course, but still, money) suddenly appeared. I’ve never heard from that company since, although the book was still listed as in print for a long time afterward.

For the Readers
What are you reading, if anything, at the moment?

  • I’m always reading several books at once. I’ve just finished THE YEAR OF DISAPPEARANCES, a vampire novel by Susan Hubbard. Presently, CRY WOLF by Patricia Briggs is at the top of the stack.

Do you prefer ebooks or print for your reading pleasure?

  • Even though I’m an e-book author, on the whole I prefer print books, since they are more portable. (The only hand-held reader I own is the Gemstar, formerly the Rocket, on which I haven’t loaded any new books for a long time because I can no longer get the computer to recognize the device. I hope to get a Kindle sometime soon.) I do occasionally buy short e-books, however, and novels that are available only as e-books.

Name three of your all-time-favorite, read-them-over-and-over books.

  • THE VAMPIRE TAPESTRY, by Suzy McKee Charnas
  • THE SCREWTAPE LETTERS, by C. S. Lewis (and almost anything else he wrote)
  • GAUDY NIGHT, by Dorothy Sayers

Idle Curiosity Compels Me to Ask
– What inspired you to be a writer?

  • Ultimately, reading DRACULA at the age of twelve. It enthralled me and inspired me to become interested in a wide range of horror, fantasy, and SF. Because I couldn’t find the type of vampire fiction I wanted to read at the library or in paperbacks, I started writing it. I wanted stories from the viewpoint of the “monster” (very rare in the 1960s compared to now), and I wanted relationships between human and nonhuman characters. I anticipated paranormal romance long before the publishing industry invented it.

– What do you do immediately after finishing a manuscript?

  • Sigh with relief and settle down to relax with a novel and chocolate.

– Do you talk to your characters or your muse or both?

  • No, maybe I should try that!

Promo Section

~ Most Recent Release ~

Midnight Treat Anthology

: 978-1416577232
Publisher: Ellora’s Cave

Three erotic paranormal novellas from Ellora’s Cave authors: In addition to a gargoyle and a ghostly werewolf in tales by Sally Painter and Shelley Munro, meet a vampire from Margaret L. Carter’s “Vanishing Breed” series in “Tall, Dark, and Deadly.” Horror writer Eloise Kern persuades her favorite actor, Claude Darvell, to produce and star in her adaptation of a Victorian vampire novel. Claude, however is a real vampire using his horror roles as camouflage, and an old rival of his plans to use Eloise to take revenge on Claude.

~ Coming Soon ~

I’m working on several projects, including a Lovecraftian story for the Jewels of the Quill Halloween 2010 anthology (Whiskey Creek Press) and some entries for an Encyclopedia of the Vampire edited by horror scholar S. T. Joshi (Greenwood Press), but neither is close enough to publication to have that information available yet.

Learn More
– Website – Carter’s Crypt
– MySpace –
– Blog – Alien Romance group author blog
– Yahoo Group/Newsletter – News from the Crypt

Thanks so much, Margaret!

Join me next week when I interview Shiela Stewart.

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