Can you tell our readings what
(and we don't want you to give away the whole story)
Black Light is about?
Black Light is a rock band in L.A., in 1983 and a psychic vampire. It’s also about
that feeling of being in love for the first time, and coming to terms with who you really are.
What does nail polish represent to you in Black Light?
Blue nail polish, to be exact. It was a way to get back into the story, for one thing. 1983 was a long time ago, but I remember my first bottle off blue nail polish, from the drugstore in Ann Arbor. In Black Light, it’s Trace’s color. He wears it instead of the black you would expect. Asia has a memory of Trace, chipping it off his nails while they talk about how to make ends meet. Asia remembers watching ants converge on the flakes of sky blue and carry them off. Trace doesn’t even notice that he’s become like a god in their world. Asia feels the same way; that his feeling for Trace are just as inconsequential. Blue nail polish means memory and connection for me.
Music seems to flow abundantly in this story. Why do you feel that was important to showcase with this story?
I love music, and I always write with it. I make soundtracks for all the characters I write for, in fact. I couldn’t have told the story silently. Trace puts everything he feels into the songs he writes, and then he gives them away. I wanted to show him in the action of doing both those things. And I wanted to try to write about performing. That turned out to be the hardest part of the book.
Why the 1980's?
There’s a short answer and a long answer to that. The short one is simply, David Bowie. While all the Bowie influences in Black Light are from the seventies, 1983 was my introduction to him. The long answer is that the eighties was my twenties. It was a decade that was full of promise turning to disappointment, all hidden behind a mask of neon. The characters in Black Light would have been far different people if they had been set in another time period.
What kind of person do you feel Trace is and how important was that to portray in Black Light?
What a surprisingly hard question to answer. I think Trace is hungry. He’s hungry for fame, for the feel of an audience. He’s willing to go to any extreme to get that. He’s also a trickster, hiding his intentions behind a sharp smile. Asia misjudges him often, and Trace lets him, because it’s easier, on both of them, than pushing Asia into seeing the truth. It’s important to the story because it makes him as guilty of silence as Asia in the end.
People say that writing can sometimes help our confusion, heal our thoughts. How do you feel about that?
I agree. I believe we write our way through the damage, and by putting it on paper, we can give it away. By putting into the hands of other people, I think we can pass the healing along in the words.
Where can our readers buy Black Light?
Can you tell the readers about any future projects coming out for you?
I am working on a Neo-Victorian novel that is called, at the moment, The Night Was Not.
I also have a few short stories involving the characters from Black Light in the works.
Where can readers find you?