GtPGKogPYT4p61R1biicqBXsUzo" /> Google+ Interview: Horror author M. Regan Genre + giveaway | I Smell Sheep

Thursday, August 12, 2021

Interview: Horror author M. Regan Genre + giveaway

What inspired you to write this book?
An explicit answer to this question would, unfortunately, be full of spoilers! But I will say that 21 Grams was originally conceived as a single novelette, rather than the “three novelettes in a trench coat” that it became. I wrote part one back in 2017, when I first began turning around ideas of gender identity, and what they might mean in relation to the soul. That was all I intended to tackle, but the Operator continued to haunt my mind. I wondered about the stories of other customers who had strapped themselves into the Godwin. Ultimately, those ponderings resulted in parts two and three.

Can you tell us a little bit about the characters in 21 Grams?
Manon Bramley, Zel Perrimon, and Pastor Douglas Elliot are vastly different characters who have led vastly different lives in vastly different time periods. And yet, they all end up in the Operator’s funerary parlor, willing to exchange their souls in the hopes of resurrecting the dead. I think that’s all I can say without giving away major plot elements!

Where did you come up with the names in the story?
After deciding on a character’s “core trait,” as it were, I searched the internet for names with that particular meaning.

What did you enjoy most about writing this book?
The combination of challenges and freedom that its format provided. Each segment stands alone, connected only by the Operator and their resurrection machine, the Godwin. This afforded me the opportunity to attack an assortment of divergent ideas, and I’d like to think I took full advantage of that. However, I was also very cognizant of the fact that I would be forced to answer questions that I didn’t want to if each story followed the same arc. (Not to mention how boring that would be.) I decided I’d counter that issue by never allowing the Godwin to work the same way twice. It took a decent amount of brainstorming to figure out how to manage that, but it was fun! And I’m pleased with the results.

Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?
I learned a lot about myself. As I mentioned before, the first part of the book deals explicitly with gender identity and dysphoria, and writing it played an integral part in my own journey of self-discovery.

How did you come up with the name of this book?
In 1907, a physician named Duncan MacDougall published a study entitled “the 21 gram experiment.” In it, he postulated that the human soul weighs roughly 21 grams, based on the changes in body mass that he recorded before and after six of his patients died. While the study was rejected by the scientific community at large, the idea of a 21 gram soul has lingered in pop culture, and serves as one of the foundational bits of lore on which the whole of my book was built.

If you could spend time with a character from your book, who would it be? And what would you do during that day?
The Operator. We have similar tastes in music, so we’d probably jam out. Take tea. Maybe I could convince them to tell me a story or two of their own.

Do your characters seem to hijack the story, or do you feel like you have the reigns?
My characters tend to be the hijacking sort. Which is just as well, since they often have a better idea of where the story is going than I do.

Convince us your book is a must read.
Hey, you! Yes, you! Do you like gothic literature? Do you want more queer characters on your shelves? Do you enjoy mentally grappling with the moral and the metaphysical, while having more questions asked than answered? Do you really, really love quotations? Then boy howdy, have I got a book for you!

Have you written any other books that are not published?
A few, yes. I do hope they’ll see the light of day.

If your book had a candle, what scent would it be?
It would smell very subtly of white stargazer lily.

21 Grams
by M. Regan
July 13, 2021
Genre: Horror
In the bowels of an unassuming, ever-moving funerary parlor, a mortician known as the Operator hides a fearsome machine called the Godwin, rumored to have the ability to resurrect the dead. It runs, like a soul does, on logos: on words. And in exchange for those words—for a client’s life story—the corpse of their choosing might yet walk again. Careful, though. Words bear weight, so one must choose them wisely. Author M. Regan delivers a harrowing and beautiful glimpse into a world filled with desire, darkness, love, and loss.

About the Author

"The time has come," the Writer said, "To read of many things:
Of sheers and souls and sealing spells, of poisoned herbal tea."

M. Regan has been writing in various capacities for over a decade, with credits ranging from localization work to scholarly reviews, advice columns to short stories. Particularly fascinated by those fears and maladies personified by monsters, she enjoys composing dark fiction and studying supernatural creatures.

$20 Amazon
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