Today we welcome Melvin Rivers! Besides his featured book, Melvin is also the author of Haven of Evil and Mysterious Darkness: Short Stories.
Late night radio show host, Stan Jones receives a call from a mysterious stranger with a lust for blood and death. The caller warns Stan Jones about the danger the town of Blairfield could face if a certain deal isn’t met. Upon learning the stranger’s identity and seeing a recently dead woman creeping around one night with wolf-like fangs mouth protruding from her mouth, the town’s sheriff teams up with Stan Jones to stop the evil that is now in town.
How long have you been writing horror/thrillers and what drew you to the genre?
Around the age of ten. In other words, more than forty-years ago. I was drawn in by reading horror comics such as “The Witching Hour.” I love the stories and tried to imitate the writers.
How did you come up with the idea for your book?
I have three books and the idea for each one was different, of course. The inspiration for “The Haven of Evil” came from Stephen Kings’ “The Shining” and the “Exorcist” by William Peter Blatty. “The Blairfield Caller” came from being a fan of late night talk radio and vampire stories. For this book I’d decided to combine the two. And “Mysterious Darkness: Short Stories” arose from the short horror stories from horror comics and TV shows such as “The Witching Hour” and “Tales from the Crypt.”
If you could erase one horror cliché, what would it be?
“Cars that won’t start.” This is probably my biggest pet peeve in the horror genre. The monster/stalker/serial killer is chasing the victim. The victim jumps into a car that ran perfectly moments before. But all of a sudden when the monster is at the driver’s side window, the car’s engine is dead.
What are you working on now?
I’m in the early stages of a story about a nosey elderly person whose pastime is looking out of her bedroom window at night. She sits in her chair with the lights off and watches things that happen in the alley. Things like couples arguing, drug deals, prostitution, etc. One night she witnesses a murder. The murderer is a monster. (I haven’t figured out what the monster is yet.) The story is kind of similar to Hitchcocks’ “Rear Window,” but not a knockoff. Things are in the early stages of the story right now.
Favorite horror movie and book?
Oh, boy, I have so many. If I had to pick a favorite movie and book . . . I’ll have to go with Stephen King’s “Salem’s Lot” (Book) and Stanley Kubrick’s “The Shining.” Because the stories were good and creepy.
Melvin Rivers was inspired to write horror by imitating the writers of his favorite horror comics many years ago. As he grew older, the works of Bram Stoker, Edgar Allan Poe, H.P. Lovecraft, and, of course, Stephen King grabbed his attention.
Melvin Rivers was born in the tiny town of Luxora, Arkansas, and grew up in Memphis, Tennessee. He received a degree in Journalism from the University of Iowa. He lives in Cedar Rapids, Iowa with his wife, dog and two cats. When he is not writing or surfing the web, he enjoys having a hot bowl of popcorn while watching his favorite horror flick on TV.
Where to find Melvin: