JC Martinez writes fantasy, science fiction and, of course, horror. An author still living his dream of telling stories as best as he can, JC Martínez will try his hardest to make your skin crawl, give you delightful nightmares, and take your breath away.
1) How old were you when you first discovered horror?
Honestly, too young to remember how old I was. This past December, while I was cleanin’ out my closet, I found some short stories I wrote when I was less than ten years old, and even though they don’t scare me right now, they were a way to express that feeling of nervousness that horror had created in me. Sometimes, I think I’ve always had a fascination with the unknown, with the things that lurk in the dark. I like that uneasy feeling that makes your spine tingle. It tickles pleasantly.
2) Who is your favorite author? Who has influenced you?
Ray Bradbury. He, of course, has been an influence, and all the other authors and artists that I like have been essential for my development as a writer. It’s impossible for me to build a list of every single person that has made me the man I am today, so let’s just say I am grateful I can experience the works of the countless masters that have shaped my taste in art.
3) What inspired you to write your piece?
My feelings. I have a certain disaffinity to tongues and saliva in general. They make me feel uncomfortable, the traces of a viscous liquid left by a damp limb as they slowly enter your body through your pores. Yeesh. Most of my writings stem from what I find unagreeable, but taken to a dreadful extreme.
4) How much control do you exert over your characters? Do they have free will?
I can’t help but think that this one is a trick question. On the one hand, my characters only exist because I create them. On the other, most of the times, I don’t know what they’ll do until I make them do it. For me, that counts as free will, but not for the characters. That makes it sound as if I had a god complex, but I really don’t. It’s just that my brain, even when I don’t actively acknowledge it, will always continue the process of creating worlds and giving the characters the most appropriate actions under any given circumstance. The only thing they can do is fall to command.
5) What did you learn from participating in the contest?
Many things. Mostly, how to deal with emotions and that the only thing a writer can do is to make the best they can with the ideas they find interesting.
6) Would you do it again? What would you do differently?
Sure. Probably. If I got in again with a good 100-word story. I don’t know what I’d do differently. Speculation has never been my strong suit outside fiction. They say humans are like rivers, in that they change through time. Under a different perspective, and amidst other circumstances, I really don’t know how I’d behave.
7) What is your favorite horror novel?
I don’t have one. The Martian Chronicles is hands down my favorite book, and while it has some scary bits, it’s not a horror novel. I’m fond of way too many stories, styles and ideas to have just one favorite. I like John Ajvide Lindqvist’s Let the Right One In, and Bram Stoker’s portrayal of a genuinely monstrous Dracula. I like Richard Matheson’s I Am Legend and the transgressive fiction that is Chuck Palahniuk’s Haunted. I’m fond of the funnies that are David Wong’s John Dies at the End and Joe R. Landsdale’s Bubba Ho-Tep.
8) Favorite horror movie?
I don’t have one either. There are just too many sub genres that it’s impossible to pick a single movie. Alien, The Omen, The Exorcist, Halloween, Fright Night, 28 Days Later, Constantine.
9.) Favorite horror television show?
10) What does the future hold for you? What do we have to look forward to?
All I can say is that from now and until I leave this mortal coil, I’ll continue to deliver the best stories I can come up with.