I’m pleased to welcome author Seth Adams to the blog today as one of the stops on the If You Go Down To The Woods book tour. Here’s a little about the book, followed by a Question & Answer round with the author which I’m sure you don’t want to miss.
We were so young when it all happened. Just 13-years-old, making the most of the long, hot, lazy days of summer, thinking we had the world at our feet. That was us – me, Fat Bobby, Jim and Tara – the four members of the Outsiders’ Club.
The day we found a burnt-out car in the woods was the day everything changed. Cold, hard cash in the front seat, and a body in the trunk… it started out as a mystery we were desperate to solve.
Then, the Collector arrived. He knew we had found his secret. And suddenly, our summer of innocence turned into the stuff of nightmares.
Nothing would ever be the same again…
Why would readers of this blog really need to pick up If You Go Down to the Woods?
If you’re a fan of the classic coming-of-age genre stories—like King’s The Body or It, Bradbury’s Something Wicked This Way Comes, or Robert McCammon’s Boy’s Life—my hope is that I carried on that tradition with honesty and respect for those that have plumbed those thematic depths before, while also providing something new. My goal was to write a stripped down, non-politically correct story, that looked at rural, working class life honestly, and to depict such a world with earnest passion. Terrible things happen to good people every day, and though sometimes these things are done to people, sometimes they also bring some of these things—unwittingly—on themselves. I wanted to—and hopefully succeeded—present a group of “real” kids who get sucked into an adult world they are ill prepared for, as often happens to children across the world for a variety of reasons.
If you hadn’t become an author, what would you have done instead as a creative outlet?
Writing was really ever the only option for me. I’ve been writing since I was 16-17 years old (though I wasn’t very good at the time, and wouldn’t be for a while yet!), and I suffered through many dead-end, as least-stressful-as-can-be jobs, all for the purpose of being able to devote as much time and energy to writing as I could. If I hadn’t landed the deal with HarperCollins/Killer Reads, I would have continued to shop my writing around, and possibly looked into other forms of writing, like academic or scholarly works.
I understand that you wanted to become a writer since a very young age. Did you want to become the new Stephen King then? Do you still aspire to be the new Stephen King now?
Trying to “become” the new Stephen King—or plug in any other accomplished writer—is the wrong way to go about writing, and I’d guess, any creative pursuit, be it painting, music, etc. This isn’t to say you shouldn’t admire those that have come before you in your given field, or even adopt to some degree those aspects and qualities of their work that you appreciate. In fact, in regards to King, I do this very thing by focusing most of my stories on “everyday” working and middle class people, as King does. But to try to “be” the next Stephen King would be to only eventually reveal myself as a pale imitation. King is one of the best in the field because he has a very distinctive voice and style. If someone were to try to imitate that, it would be painfully obvious. I aspire to the honesty that King—and others, like Koontz and Cormac McCarthy—displays in his work, but not to “be” him.
What’s a favorite book that you read in your own genre that we’re sure to like too if we enjoy your novel?
If you enjoy my novel, then I would encourage anyone and everyone to read McCammon’s Boy’s Life, Bradbury’s Something Wicked This Way Comes, and King’s It. Something a little more recent to add to this list would also be Joe R. Lansdale’s (author of the Hap and Leonard series of crime books, now adapted into Sundance’s Hap and Leonard television series) The Bottoms.
Do you like other genres as well or do you feel you really found your niche and don’t feel the need for change (as a writer or as a reader)?
I am a fan of many genres, including suspense (Koontz), horror (King, Bentley Little, Richard Laymon, and others), crime (John D. Macdonald, Joe Lansdale), science fiction (Bradbury), and fantasy (Tolkien, George R. R. Martin, Robert Jordan). One of the most joyous periods of my young adulthood was being a manager at Barnes and Noble for several years, during which I got to peruse the shelves on a daily basis, and finding new writers to add to my ever-growing reading list. I have written, and will continue to write, in any genre that my imagination leads me toward.
Tell us something that isn’t in your bio but your readers would love to know.
Because I was “discovered” and published after having struggled as a writer for nearly two decades, I have a hard drive and filing cabinet filled with manuscripts looking to see the light of day. I have a couple more crime novels in mind for HarperCollins/Killer Reads (should If You Go Down to the Woods perform well!), as well as a few suspense/horror novels, and a volume’s worth of short stories that I would like to see published. As far as something that isn’t in my bio, I grew up in the 80s, at the beginning of the video game generation, and am an avid gamer. I have to keep this hobby in moderation, however, lest it interfere with more important things—like writing!
I want to thank Sahina and Kathryn from HarperCollins for the opportunity to take part in this blog tour!
*** Don’t forget to check out the other stops on the tour this week! ***