Today's Author Spotlight is horror author Loren Rhoads! Read on for the full interview.

Author Spotlight || Loren Rhoads

Today's Author Spotlight is horror author Loren Rhoads!

Read on for the full interview.

What's your latest release? 

Unsafe Words, a collection of horror, dark fantasy, and science fiction stories

Can you start out by telling us a little about your latest work? 

Here's the back cover text: In the first full-length collection of her edgy, award-winning short stories, Loren Rhoads punctures the boundaries between horror, dark fantasy, and science fiction in a maelstrom of sex, drugs, and rock-n-roll.

Ghosts, succubi, naiads, vampires, the Wild Hunt, and the worst predator in the woods stalk these pages, alongside human monsters who follow their cravings past sanity or sense.

When you developed the characters, did you already know who they were before you began writing or did they develop organically?

I usually start off with the setting and just begin to write. I love to discover the characters and the story as I go.

Which of your characters was your favorite to write and why?

The succubus Lorelei starred in two of my novels, so I wrote a short story about her called "Never Bargained for You." She is so much fun to write.  Since she's so much older than the people she seduces, she has a surprising amount of sympathy for them. I really enjoyed writing from the point of view of a very sexy "older" woman.

What was more important to you when you were writing: character development or plot?

Oh, characters by far! I am most interested in people. The plots grow out of their self-delusions and changes.

What was one of the most surprising things you learned (about your story, about yourself, etc.) while writing?

Lisa Morton said the nicest thing in her introduction to the book. She said, "Loren’s women may be put through tense and even horrific situations, but they are never victims. If things go badly for them, they find alternate solutions; they do it naturally, with a resolution and strength that is too seldom recognized in genre fiction." I hadn't realized I was doing that, but I'm glad I did.

Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with good/bad ones?

I love to read reviews. I treasure the good ones. Usually, I feel that the bad ones say more about the reviewers than about my books. It helps if I can find something to laugh at in them.

A lot of authors have a soundtrack while writing. Are there are songs you had on repeat?

A lot of stories in the book were either inspired by songs or take their titles from songs. I sat down after the book was at the printer and made a playlist. It came together incredibly fast. It roams from Nirvana to Babymetal to Halsey to a lot of Bowie. It's on Spotify, if you're curious:

Are you on social media and can your readers interact with you? What are your links?

Do you have a WIP? If so, can you tell us anything about it?

One of the characters in Unsafe Words is a witch who travels the world helping humans who are beset by supernatural monsters -- and vice versa. I'm working on a book now that is her origin story. I can't wait to discover it myself!

Loren Rhoads is the author of a space opera trilogy, a duet about a succubus who falls in love with an angel, and a nonfiction travel guide called 199 Cemeteries to See Before You Die. Her newest book is Unsafe Words, a collection of horror/dark fantasy/science fiction stories that has been called “a lyrical kaleidoscope of a collection."

Loren, thank you so much for being a guest on Cats Luv Coffee Book Reviews!