Today I’d like to introduce you to another author making his debut with Bad Moon Rising! His featured book is a fascinating blend of historical fiction with a two millenia old curse tossed into the mix. As an adult, he attempted a rewatch of the movie that kept him up at night as a child – read on to find out what happened. Welcome John Hazen!
Would you rather sleep in a coffin for one night or spend the night in a haunted house?
If it’s an open coffin, I’d take that. They look rather comfy. But if it’s a closed one, I couldn’t take the claustrophobia and I’d opt for the haunted house. The house I grew up in wasn’t haunted (as far as I know anyway) but it was built in the 1850s so there was a fair amount of creaking and drafts. I wouldn’t imagine a haunted house would be too much different, except for the haunting, of course.
Has a movie or book scared you so much you couldn’t sleep? Which one?
The first movie I remember doing this was The Blob, the 1958 version with Steve McQueen. I couldn’t have been more than ten years old at the time. I would watch it for a little while but then get so frightened I’d have to run out of the room. Then I’d come back for a few more minutes and then run out again. It must have been very annoying to my brother and sister. I then remember having trouble sleeping and waking up with nightmares. I was flipping through channels not long ago and came upon The Blob. I could only watch for a short amount of time because it was so bad, but it sure enthralled me when I was a kid.
If you were in a horror movie, would you rather have a loaded gun or a car that wouldn’t break down?
I’m most definitely in the ‘he who turns and runs away lives to fight another day’ camp, so I’d definitely want a car that doesn’t break down. In addition, I’ve seen too many horror and sci-fi flics where bullets are useless. The assailant comes out of nowhere and the person is caught off-guard. He or she is either not able to get a shot off or shoots wildly. Either that or the attacker is immune to bullets. So, give me that reliable car. Oh, I’d like a full tank of gas, too.
What was the hardest scene to write in your featured book?
I think it was the scene in which Anna, the wife who is trying to save her husband, Tim, from being lost forever. Tim is on life support and is fading away but the doctors cannot figure out why. She is at her wit’s end and thinks she is going mad because she becomes convinced he is afflicted by a curse. She figures the only way to get answers is to enter into Tim’s dream world to talk with him directly. If she doesn’t act, she fears not only that he will die but that his soul will be forever lost to the netherworld she is about to enter. It was a hard scene to construct because I wanted to present this as a dream sequence that had characters in it from across the centuries but at the same time I wanted to make her real, believable and sympathetic.
Which comes first for you – plot or characters?
My books always start with an overall idea but that’s about it. In the case of Aceldama, the idea was of a two millennia old curse that is in a pitched battle with the intense love that a wife has for her husband. With this idea planted in my mind, I just start writing. Both the plot and the characters develop and evolve at the same time. One of my favorite things in writing is when I introduce a character for a specific reason in the plot but then the character grows into a major character as I write the book. It’s like they tell me they have more to say. Sister Catherine is a prime example in Aceldama. She was a wealthy French aristocrat in the late 18th Century who renounced her wealth to become a nun dedicated to helping the poor and downtrodden in Paris. I wrote about her originally solely as a person who had come under the influence of the same curse that Tim was now battling. However, she was such a fascinating character that she speaks across the centuries to help solve the mystery.
What are you working on now?
I’ve got a new book, Beyond Revelation, coming out on December 30 and I’m gearing up to promote this book (my least favorite part of this business). This is the third in my Vega Investigative Thriller series. In this book, NYC Reporter Francine Vega must battle a secretive, unscrupulous cult to avert a national calamity. I’m also working on writing a new book (my favorite part of this business), The Correction, set to come out next June. This novel is about members of a family who have the ability to allow people to go back and correct one mistake they made at some point in their lives. An ill-advised comment that a man makes that results in him speaking to his father for decades or a decision to head out to a party on an icy day that results in a horrendous accident, these are the types of mistakes people are allowed to go back in time and correct. What could go wrong?
A coin. A curse. A murder. The apocalypse.
Modern medicine can find neither cause nor cure for an affliction that is slowly sapping life away from Tim Harrington. As clues fall into place, Tim’s wife, Anna, begins to believe that an ancient curse is killing her husband. Anna’s quest to uncover the truth and save his life pits her against formidable foes: logic, history and even the Catholic Church. As Anna follows her instincts and her heart to find the answers in time, she risks unwittingly unleashing an awesome, terrible power from which the world will never recover.
Available at: http://amzn.to/1sr15Uq
About the Author
John Hazen came to writing novels relatively late in life, but once he started he hasn’t looked back. Inspired by Lynn, his wife of forty years, he pursued the dream of becoming an established author and has written six suspense thrillers: Dear Dad (2012), Fava (2014), Journey of an American Son (2015), Aceldama (2016), Zyklon (2018) and Beyond Revelation (2020). John and Lynn live in Florida. They love to travel, and the experiences of those travels, and things he learned from degrees from Rutgers, The New School and NYU buttressed by a lifelong passion for learning and a love of history, find their way into his writing. John’s reading tastes are eclectic, ranging from histories to classic novels to an occasional piece of modern trash. His absolute “must reads” are Stephen King’s The Shining, Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird, J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series and Doris Kearns Goodwin’s No Ordinary Time.
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