Bill Davidson is a Scottish writer of horror and fantasy. In the last few years, he has placed over thirty short stories with publications around the world including with Ellen Datlow’s Best Horror of the Year Anthology and large distribution magazines.
1.) How old were you when you first discovered horror?
I was about 18 when I scared the crap out of myself reading Salem’s Lot. But long before that I was hooked on the old Hammer Horror films, watched them any chance I got–I started at about 12.
2.) What author has influenced you most?
Stephen King and Elmore Leonard. Sorry, that’s two, not counting Neil Gaiman.
3.) What inspired you to write your piece, “Intelligenie?”
The true horror of today is corporate greed-the only sanction the multi-nationals care about is loss of profit and they will see people die and the planet burn if it means they turn a dollar. Then you look at the amount of time, energy and money being spent on developing AI and think, what resource might the multi-national company’s get hold of that will provide the same thing more easily? One thing the world has no shortage of is humans.
Also, at the time of writing, US scientists have just revived part of a dead pig’s brain, which was a major inspiration despite the fact that it hadn’t happened when I wrote my story. Proving that SF authors get inspired by things that haven’t happened yet.
4.) How much control do you exert over your characters? Do they have free will?
I start with an idea of a story, and of the main characters. But, my characters always seem to develop ideas of their own and, frankly, I love it when that happens. That’s where the good stuff comes from. Free will? Not really.
5.) Do you listen to music when you write? Who do you listen to?
I kind of feel I should. I like to imagine myself listening to something highly cultural whilst producing erudite prose. But it just distracts me, so I don’t.
6.) Where do you find inspiration?
Other writers, the news, overheard conversations, things I see on trains.
7.) What is your favorite horror novel?
That’s hard. It’s probably IT, but I recently read Man With No Name by Laird Barron and loved it.
8.) Favorite horror movie?
Even harder. I’m going for the one that really did scare me when I went to see it at the movies-Alien.
9.) Favorite horror television show?
The first few series of True Blood.
10.) What does the future hold for you? What do we have to look forward to?
I’m writing hard! I’ve written three novels and about sixty shorts in the three years since I left my job in local government. It’s hard finding a publisher for my longer stuff, but I’m determined to do it. My horror novel The King of the Crows is properly scary. Really!
Addicts, you can find Bill on Twitter.
Fantastic interview. I agree with the author’s comment about corporate greed.
Good interview. Funny about the music and erudite writing.:-)