Where Writers And Authors Meet Interviews:
Jason Lewis was our Featured Spotlight author last week and vistors were encouraged to ask Jason some of their own questions! Here is a link to that Spotlight! Feel free to ask more questions, and we might just be able to get Jason back for a follow up interview!
1. You’re obviously a creative person by nature. What made you take the shift from tattoo and art to writing? [Asked by Jo Linsdell (http://www.jolinsdell.com/)%5D
I never gave up on any one thing. When I learned how to do tattoos, I was still in my early teens. I had been drawing my entire life so it came pretty easily. I started writing and getting into good books when I was about the same age, and at the same time that was going on, I was also learning how to cook. I picked up many of these skills early on in my life and somehow managed to combine them all into daily life.
When I started writing, I kept it from everyone for a long time. When I finally wrote something and a few people had a positive reaction, it kept me going. A few years later, I wrote another story, and kept going from there. So far, to date, I have a total of eight novels written. Several were published by PublishAmerica once upon a time, but that all is another story in itself. So far, many of the people I know of that have read the books have enjoyed them, so I keep writing.
I have somehow managed to get all this done in a matter of four years. I still tattooed, which for me is like drawing. I cook every night, on top of holding down a normal job…cooking. I sit and draw when I can find time, but I never stop creating things.
Questions by Jo Robinson (http://africolonialstories.wordpress.com/)
2. It’s amazing that you manage to fit so much into your life. Do you have any pics of tattoos that you’ve done?
3. Are you into cooking “posh” food, and do you think you’ll ever write a recipe book?
4. How long did it take you to write your first book?
5. Do you stick to one genre with your writing. How would you describe your writing style?
6. Does your love of tattooing and cooking seep into your books.
7. What are you working on now?
If you get into my Facebook profile and go into the pictures I have posted there, I have an album of work I’ve done in the last several years. I don’t have a ton of pictures of the tattoos I’ve done, but there’s about 35-40. I’m not into what some would say to be *posh* food(s). My dad started teaching me how to cook old school Southern foods when I was about seven, then my mother went through culinary school when I was about ten or so. I saw some of the gourmet foods her classes prepared and to be honest, some of it is sickening. I’m more of a home-style chef; I’ll make it at home first then try it in a commercial kitchen whereas most cooks/chefs do the opposite. If I can get it to taste right in a commercial setting, perfect. If not, it belongs in my home kitchen. Some of the recipes I’ve come up with have made it onto menus of different restaurants I’ve worked in, and I probably have enough recipes I’ve come up with on my own to do a cookbook, but I’d have to put the story about how it came to be with the recipe itself. I don’t plan on it happening, but you never know.
My first project I ever wrote while I was in school took me a month. The first novel I composed on my own after I graduated took me approximately four months. I wrote it long hand then typed it once it was done. I did some minor revisions as I typed it, and that was the first story I let anyone I knew read. After three people that didn’t know each other read it and had the same reaction, I knew I was on to something. My last project, The Eidolon Tempest, is by and far the quickest I have EVER cranked out a novel. I had the idea in my head for a while, but once I finally sat down and got started, it was a total of five weeks from start to finish, including editing and revisions. I wouldn’t say I stick with any one genre since each of the novels I have done is completely different. The two that I believe are the best ones, however, would easily fall into the horror genre, if only due to their subjects.
There is one of my novels that my knowledge as a chef seeped into without me really realizing it. As I wrote it, I wanted the main character to be a chef as well, and many of the things he talks about are centered around food at first. The book quickly takes some naughty turns, and the main character is taught new tricks from one of his coworkers. In another, one of the main characters is a tattoo artist, but he never says anything about tattooing or having any. It’s just a blip on the screen that the reader knows he is a tattooist, and nothing else is said about it.
Right now the project I’m working on is still in the rough draft stage. I’m taking a chance in doing this, but I’m bringing back three characters from The Eidolon Tempest and hoping to start a series with them.Those three are a group of ghost hunters that travel to different locations, much like what is on television. Everyone that read the first one said the characters were too good not to have another investigation somewhere, so this time, instead of being in an abandoned hospital, they are going to an amusement park resort. I haven’t had much time to work on it with working full time and having some computer issues lately, but I’ll have it done in the next six months. I’m curious myself what they will come across and how they will react to it, and hopefully the reader(s) will want more of them again.
Questions Asked by Edward Frank:
8. What color is this green rock?
This is a tough one. Since there is no indication of the shade of green the rock is, I would have to say either emerald or jade. Sounds good. The green rock is emerald.
9. In what genre do you tend to write? and do you plan to explore others in the future or stick with your current genre preference?
I find that the genre I tend to write in most often would likely fall into horror. The stories I’ve done all have some element of horror in them, whether it be a ghost making people hallucinate or a loved one being killed in an accident. I don’t plan on changing my prose in any way, but should something come out slightly different than I’m used to I wouldn’t mind. I’d be as surprised as everyone else.
10. Some fantasy stories have tattoos that come to life, others have magicians whose magic it keyed to their tattoos. Have you ever tried to integrate your tattoo interests into your stories?
Fantasy is one genre I don’t do. While I’m all for watching a good fantasy movie, I’ve never really gotten into that style of writing. I’m not much into sci-fi either, although there are some awesome novels floating around out there. I haven’t tried yet to integrate tattooing or tattoos into any of the projects I’ve done but it is something I plan on doing. I’d like to try writing a piece about an artist whose work doesn’t necessarily come to life but moves about on the persons body…
Questions from Stuart R West:
11. Jason! Tell us what the “ghost mill” is?
Stuart – Awesome questions here!
First, The Ghost Mill is the name of a paranormal investigation team I thought up that sounded cool. I’ve always had an interest in paranormal events, and love anything that has to do with creepy things that can’t be explained. After doing some research for another project titled Someone Save Me, about three roommates in a state mental hospital, I found out that the place I based my story on is really haunted. Once I got that project done, I decided I wanted to take the readers back there, this time with a new group of people. I did more research on Pennhurst State School in Pennsylvania and watched a good number of shows getting my plot and story in line. I wanted two of the three people in the group to be identical twins, and the story starts out with the brothers Garland and Gary Hansen going to an abandoned hospital in their hometown when they are still kids. The story fast forwards ten years and they have met another young lady that is also an amateur paranormal investigator, so the three of them form Ghost Mill Investigations.
12. Do you believe in the paranormal? If so, I wanna’ hear of an encounter!
When I was a kid, I had my first of many paranormal experiences at my grandmother’s home. My dad and I would spend a lot of time there, mainly on weekends, and the house was out in the sticks and sat on six acres of land. My first experience was when I was about ten years old. I remember lying in bed one night, and in the hallway of the upstairs, I could see something. There was no light that came from downstairs when it was late, so I knew it wasn’t my cousin who lived with my grandmother. I knew my cousin didn’t glow, so to speak, and the figure I was watching come floating toward the bedroom door was giving off light somehow. Fast forward several years, and again, at my grandmother’s house, I was upstairs in the bathroom and heard/felt a heavy breath (almost a sigh) right behind my ear and on my neck. Needless to say, all the hairs on my neck stood up straight and I froze. About ten years ago, I was at my dad’s house and had some really freaky things occur that can only be chalked up to paranormal. My stereo one night went from barely audible to sounding like I was at a concert and it was clear on the other side of the room. Not long after that, my best friend came for a visit, and the second night he was there he had something push down on the foot of the bed, making him think someone was sitting on it with him. Later on, he and I were alone in the house and the faucet in the kitchen turned on by itself for a second, then several antique medicine bottles fell from the kitchen window into the sink – and none of them broke. I have believed in the paranormal for a long time, and tell anyone and everyone that the first time you see a ghost you’ll remember it as vividly as if it had just happened for the rest of your life. Another of the experiences I had was at my dad’s house as well. My best friend and I were sitting in his dining room one afternoon and the phone rang once, held off a beat and rang a second time. He and I looked at each other and froze up since at the time my dad didn’t have a home phone line in the house. He carried a cell phone everywhere instead.
13. Gumbo or jambalya?
I’ll take a good bowl or gumbo with andouille sausages and shrimp over rice.
From the Admin: Thank you for sharing your answers with us Jason! To our guest questioners- AWESOME insightful questions!
You can find Jason Lewis’ Book‘s on Amazon here: