Meghan: Hey, Scott. Welcome back. It’s always wonderful to have you on the blog, especially at Halloween time. What is your favorite part of Halloween?

Scott: The scary aesthetic. I love the colors and decorations and just the whole feel, with everything being dark and spooky.

Meghan: What is your favorite Halloween tradition?

Scott: Though I don’t do it anymore, I’ve always enjoyed the concept of trick or treating. It’s fun to get candy and to give it and see all the costumes.

Meghan: If Halloween is your favorite holiday (or even second favorite holiday), why?

Scott: It is my favorite. I am into dark, scary aesthetics and all of the gothic feel of Halloween. I enjoy dressing up in a costume and going to parties. It’s very fun for me, and it feels extra special because of the theme and the sense of freedom of being dressed up. It’s almost as if you have one night to be more than yourself.

Meghan: What are you superstitious about?

Scott: Nothing. It’s bad luck to be superstitious

Meghan: What/who is your favorite horror monster or villain?

Scott: Hannibal Lecter. Despite my imagination, I’ve always found human/realistic villains to be scarier than fantasy ones, and of all the fictional predators out there, I find Hannibal to be the most alluring and frightening.

Meghan: Which unsolved murder fascinates you the most?

Scott: The Zodiac killings. I know that’s more than one, but can we lump them all together. I have read books, watched documentaries, films, all sorts of examinations of it. We’ll probably never know the answer now, either.

Meghan: Which urban legend scares you the most?

Scott: None really. When I was younger, I was very scared of the “Bloody Mary” thing you could do in the dark, chanting to a mirror, but now, none of them scare me.

Meghan: Who is your favorite serial killer and why?

Scott: That’s a tough one. I am very interested in serial killers. I considered, for a time, going into a career to try to understand them better and/or capture them, but I figured I wouldn’t be able to handle the pressure and risk. As to my favorite, I’d probably say Jack the Ripper. Probably because we don’t know who he is, and he has been so thoroughly romanticized at this point. The time period, the place, the savagery of what he did, it’s all very tragic and alluring. Then the killings stopped, which makes the mystery all the juicier. Did he die? Did he stop? Was he caught, but the public was not informed? So many interesting mental and imaginative avenues to explore regarding him.

Meghan: How old were you when you saw your first horror movie? How old were you when you read your first horror book?

Scott: I was quite sheltered from horror when growing up. My mother was an adamant gatekeeper about things she felt were “inappropriate” to us, and that definitely included horror. I also was a child before the advent of cable television, so my options were limited.

The first horror movie I can recall was the television edit The Island of Dr. Moreau, which I saw when I was probably around nine. I was totally enthralled by it. They even showed some blood, which really got me. It was as if I knew I loved horror, and seeing this film simply helped the seed to bloom.

As to book, I don’t remember the exact title, but in middle school (so around eleven or twelve), I checked out a book of ghost stories from the school library. They were not very scary, but it was my first exposure to stories specifically written to be scary. I loved them, and of course, it was the first steps down the deep rabbit hole.

Meghan: Which horror novel unsettled you the most?

Scott: It by Stephen King. I have talked about this before, even in posts on my own blog. I’ve read a lot of horror. I couldn’t even tell you how much now, and though I enjoy it, none of it really “scares” me. It managed to scare me on more than one occasion, and it definitely had unsettling parts, several.

Meghan: Which horror movie scarred you for life?

Scott: Dead & Buried. It’s a very graphic horror movie with a pretty cool reveal ending. I saw it on VHS when I was fourteen, and I had not seen many real scary movies, definitely nothing that violent. Wow, it got me.

Meghan: What is your favorite Halloween costume?

Scott: Dressing as a Cardinal – the member of the Catholic clergy, not the bird. I bought the costume many years ago, and I wear it nearly every year. Dressing as a “priest” definitely gets a lot of fun attention at parties.

Meghan: What is your favorite Halloween-themed song?

Scott: “Everyday is Halloween” by Ministry, but you may have seen that coming.

Meghan: What is your favorite Halloween candy or treat? What is your most disappointing?

Scott: I don’t know that I have a particular favorite. As much as I have a sweet tooth, I still don’t go crazy at Halloween. Partaking somewhat in the indulgence is the fun. There are plenty of disappointing ones, amongst those being licorice, circus peanuts, candy corn.

Meghan: Thanks again for joining us today, Scott. Before you go, what are your top two Halloween movies?

Scott: I just considered Halloween-themed movies, not scary or horror movies, so this will be a short list.

It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown – yes, not a scary movie but a Halloween one, and it’s great. I used to watch it every Halloween. It encapsulates the Halloween spirit on a different level than the obvious scares, and I feel it is just as important.

The Nightmare Before Christmas – yes, it has Christmas right there in the title, but it’s a Halloween film, and what a great one. The special effects, the singing, the story, the aesthetics, it’s an all around great film. I had the pleasure of seeing it in the theater when it was first released, and I still find it enjoyable.

Born in Houston, Texas into the temporary care of a bevy of nuns before being delivered to his adopted parents, Scott discovered creative writing at a very young age when asked to write a newspaper from another planet. This exercise awakened a seemingly endless drive, and now, many short stories, poems, plays, and novels (both finished and unfinished) later, his dark urban fantasy trilogy has been published.

Having lived his whole life in the same state, Scott attended the University of Texas at Austin, achieving a degree in philosophy before returning to the Houston area to be closer to family and friends. During this time, he wrote more and even branched out into directing and performance art, though creative writing remains his love.

Butterfly 1: Dance of the Butterfly
A modern dark urban fantasy, telling of two powerful families who uphold a secret duty to protect humanity from a threat it doesn’t know exists. Though sharing a common enemy, the two families form a long-standing rivalry due to their methods and ultimate goals. Forces are coalescing in a prominent Central European city- criminal sex-trafficking, a serial murderer with a savage bent, and other, less tangible influences. Within a prestigious, private university, Lilja, a young librarian charged with protecting a very special book, finds herself suddenly ensconced in this dark, strange world. Originally from Finland, she has her own reason for why she left her home, but she finds the city to be anything but a haven from dangers and secrets. Book One in a planned series.

Butterfly 2: Sword of the Butterfly
The tale continues in Sword of the Butterfly, book two of the series, as Lilja and Skothiam continue to fight demons within and without. The infernal forces make a grand play, hoping to stab the world in its very heart. Casualties mount as further tensions rise in the City, threatening the vigilante with a loss of freedom and life. Children become victims of a madman’s design while the hunt is on for a powerful creature wreaking havoc across parts of the U.S. Lilja begins to question herself and her place in Skothiam’s life even as the very treasure they must protect comes under danger.

Butterfly 3: Soul of the Butterfly
The third Book awaits. The last of them. All holding promises of untold power. Skothiam and Lilja continue their journey as they follow the trail to places unimagined. Strange forces lurk, biding for the moment to strike and exact price. Unexpected allies arise even as others seek to disentangle from the web. Who will gain and who will lose? What shadow waits, eager to consume them all? Find out in the conclusion of the Butterfly trilogy.