Please welcome today's guest author, Dan Wells! Dan is the author of the John Cleaver dark urban fantasy series, including the new release THE DEVIL'S ONLY FRIEND.
Q+A with Dan Wells
EJ: When did you begin writing?
Dan: I started writing in elementary school--the stories I remember explicitly were in second grade, but I suppose I may have started as soon as I learned to write. I continued like that all the way up through high school, writing short stories and poems and comicbooks and even some attempts at long novels, but I didn't really take it seriously as a career until college, when a creative writing teacher told me that it was possible to make a living as an artist. No one had ever told me that before, and it changed my life.
EJ: What brought you to the paranormal genre?
Dan: I started writing fantasy because I'd always been a reader of fantasy, so I never seriously considered writing something that didn't have a strong speculative or supernatural aspect to it. After five failed epic fantasy novels--my writing group always liked the writing, but never really dug the stories themselves--I decided to try my hand at a modern mystery about serial killers, because I've always been kind of an armchair expert in the subject, and love studying about them in my spare time. I put a supernatural monster in it because, well, that's what I love. Why wouldn't I put it in there? I don't know exactly what genre the John Cleaver books are--some call them horror, some call them urban fantasy, some call them thrillers, some call them paranormal--but I just write what I love and let other people put a label on it.
EJ: If you could be any paranormal or have any one supernatural talent, what would it be? Why?
Dan: I want to fly. I can think of a dozen or so powers of paranormal categories that would be more useful--how great would it be to read minds, or stop time, or shapeshift?--but flight is just way too cool to not choose. Just launching myself into the sky, free to go anywhere and swoop around and feel the wind rushing past me, that would be the best thing ever.
EJ: Tell us why readers will enjoy your new release.
Dan: My new book is called The Devil's Only Friend, and it's the first in a new trilogy about John Cleaver, a teenage sociopath who hunts demons. There's a previous trilogy about him, starting with a book called I Am Not a Serial Killer, but this one's written so you can jump right in without feeling lost. I like to describe the series as "teenage Dexter in an X-Files episode," and it's a perfect fit for fans of things like Criminal Minds and Supernatural. The basic premise is this: John Cleaver is obsessed with serial killers, and has an innate skill in stalking people and planning how to kill them, and he uses that to help an FBI team hunt demons. The more they learn, though, they realize that some of the demons have noticed they're being hunted, and are starting to fight back....
EJ: If your book were being made into a movie, who would you cast for the leading roles? Why?
Dan: Funny you should ask, because the first book in the series, I Am Not a Serial Killer, was just filmed as a movie this Spring! They're working on editing and final effects right now, and the plan is to have a final edit done this fall, in time to submit to some of the major film festivals like Sundance and SXSW. The lead actors for that story are John, his mom, and his neighbor, who turns out to be the first demon John hunts; the actors are, respectively, Max Records, Laura Fraser, and Christopher Lloyd. If all goes well, we'll impress the festival crowds and get picked up for wide distribution, and be in theaters as early as fall of 2016. Fingers crossed.
Thank you Dan for joining us here today at From the Shadows!
The Devil's Only Friend (John Cleaver #4) by Dan Wells
John Wayne Cleaver hunts demons: they've killed his neighbors, his family, and the girl he loves, but in the end he's always won. Now he works for a secret government kill team, using his gift to hunt and kill as many monsters as he can...
...but the monsters have noticed, and the quiet game of cat and mouse is about to erupt into a full scale supernatural war.
John doesn't want the life he's stuck with. He doesn't want the FBI bossing him around, he doesn't want his only friend imprisoned in a mental ward, and he doesn't want to face the terrifying cannibal who calls himself The Hunter. John doesn't want to kill people. But as the song says, you can't always get what you want. John has learned that the hard way; his clothes have the stains to prove it.
When John again faces evil, he'll know what he has to do.
The Devil's Only Friend is the first book in a brand-new John Wayne Cleaver trilogy by New York Times bestselling author Dan Wells.
Release Date: June 16, 2015
Genre: Horror, Thriller, Urban Fantasy
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To learn more about Dan Wells and his books, please visit his website.