When I was a kid, I thought a cafe was what you called a diner when it was on television. Characters on PBS went to the cafe. Characters on The Twilight Zone went to the cafe. Heck, Robert Englund—my favorite monster-man, and my favorite lizard from space, so you can imagine he was doubly awesome in my eyes—even ran a cafe, on the short-lived but absolutely insanely fabulous Wes Craven TV show, Nightmare Cafe. Cafes were these wonderful, incredible, totally imaginary places where fantastic things happened, and where they also happened to serve a really kick-ass hot fudge sundae.
Experience has done nothing to prove me wrong.
I first heard about the Bookview Cafe when I was recording an album at Mystic Fig Studios, aka, “Jeff and Maya Bohnhoff’s garage.” Maya was all a-buzz about this incredible new project that she was going to be a part of, one that would not only open doors for the authors involved, but which would make their work available to a wider online audience. This naturally piqued my interest. I was a kid whose library card was more precious than gold. Like so many geeky little girls, I said I was going to read my entire city library. Unlike the majority of them, who took up sports, got boyfriends, or otherwise became distracted, I succeeded. Without free, easy access to literature, I would have gone crazy … and here’s a project dedicated to making that access free and easy for everybody. AWESOMESAUCE.
Of course, at the time, I didn’t qualify as a Book View Cafe author, because I hadn’t actually sold a book. Oopsie. I won’t say that “gosh, I want to make a reservation” was the final motivating factor in finishing my series, finding an agent, and finally getting myself onto shelves … but it was definitely in the back of my mind. Much like the lottery winner who thinks “I can totally afford all this cheese,” part of me was thinking “I can totally afford my hot fudge and literature sundae.”
What am I bringing to the menu? Well, I’m an old-school horror girl—my first idols included Marilyn Munster, Vincent Price, Stephen King, and the ever-charming Robert Englund in his star turn as Freddy “bastard son of a hundred maniacs” Kreuger—with a real fondness for the macabre details that really bring the terrors out from underneath your bed. I’m an urban fantasy author whose love for the genre came about the long way: by reading Grimm and Briggs and Child and Lang until I developed a phobia of red shoes and a compulsion to help old women unexpectedly encountered in deep, dark woods. I’m a poet, a lyricist, a cartoonist, and the sort of girl who regularly needs to be fished out of swamps, probably while caroling gleefully on about the bullfrogs I’ve shoved into my pockets.
I study folklore, epidemiology, horror movies, and comic books with equal degrees of Very Serious Scholarship, because I consider them all equally important, in their own unique ways. My favorite authors, at least right now, are Stephen King, James Tiptree Jr., Kelley Armstrong, Terry Pratchett, and Warren Ellis. I have two blue cats, one Siamese, one Maine Coon, who are conspiring to overthrow the monkeys and take this petty planet as their own, because then I won’t go to work anymore, and they’ll be able to keep me in bed all day. I am very, very glad to be here.
I hope you enjoy what I have to offer, and I look forward to being a part of this grand experiment, with some of the best authors (and nicest people) it’s been my pleasure to meet. Thank you so much for saving me a table.
Want a bite of my sundae?