Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Author Interview - Rhiannon Hart

Every so often a book comes along that I enjoy so much I can't help but laugh and clap my hands in glee, which does make it hard to keep the book open, but that's the price you pay for delight. 

Earlier this year I was lucky enough to laugh and clap my hands over a book called Blood Song by Rhiannon Hart, an excellent dark fantasy d├ębut from an Australian author, and those who have heard my rant before know how excited I get about Aussie YA authors straying into horror and dark fantasy territory. Of course, I couldn't let such a wonderful brain stay untouched by my lobotomy tools, so here are the inner workings of Rhiannon's mind for you all to enjoy! 


Can you tell us a bit about your latest (published) book?
My debut novel came out this month and it's called Blood Song. It's a YA fantasy novel about a princess who travels to a faraway country, feeling both curiosity about and dread for what she might find there. In doing so she puts her sister in peril and meets an infuriating young man who seems to have all the answers but isn't letting on one single thing.

What would be written on your main character’s gravestone?

Why do you write horror/dark fantasy?
Because there's nothing like a good monster! Blood Song is pretty light-on with horror but there are some monstery-nommy-blooded scenes towards the end. One in particular is a cross between a extreme religious ceremony and a Marilyn Manson concert.

Have you ever had your own spooky experience?
When I saw The Ring at the cinema a few years ago I came out onto Swanston Street in Melbourne from Bourke St and all the trams were lying dead in the middle of the street and the whole place was oddly deserted. I had a mini freak-out that the apocalypse had arrived, but it was just a power failure. (OK, I was a tiny bit disappointed.)

What is your favourite book of the past month? The past year? All time?
I'll have to name horror novels seeing as this is a Spinechills Q&A. The best one I've read in the past year would be The Monstrumologist by Rick Yancey. Holy bejeesus, can you say uber-Victorian Gothic? The monsters, Anthropophagi, are walking chests with teeth and they are NASTY. Recently I've read more fantasy, but I have watched Dead Set, a British zombie mini-series set in the Big Brother house. Fast zombies, fast reanimation, a cast of super-annoying people that get nommed for your gratuitous viewing pleasure. The next horror novel up on my list is The Enemy by Charlie Higson and I have heard such good things about it.

What does your writing space look like?
It's really lame. Either at the dining room table or the desk in my room. When my room is a mess I move to the dining room. (I'm in the dining room right now. It's been a roller coaster of a month...) I do have a nice chair though. When I'm a grown up author I'll get a proper space and keep it tidy. Or something.

What’s the scariest book you’ve ever read?
You know, I can't think of one! I get more wigged out by scary movies. I am busting to see Grave Encounters, a sort of Blair Witch-handycam type movie set in a disused psych ward. No Australian release date just yet though. Curses!

What’s your biggest fear?
Long, dark corridors. I freak the hell out at work when I'm the last person to leave.

What are you working on right now? Or, if you’d prefer not to say, please tell me what’s going on in the Rorschach test.

It's a giant, yeti-footed badger spewing a laser out of its mouth. I mean, surely that's obvious!? I can tell you a little about my other project too. It's two "chapters" of a ghost anthology that four writers are contributing too. Sort of a communal novel. I am thrilled to have been asked and double-thrilled it's ghosties. And YA too, huzzah!

Find out more about Rhiannon Hart's books at

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