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Showing posts from May, 2016

ON MUSIC: YOUR NON-FICTION WYTO GUIDE TO SEX, DRUGS, AND MADNESS.

On my way home from work yesterday, I was listening to my Sex, Drugs, and Madness playlist on Spotify, and it got me thinking about how I have certain songs for different moments, events, and emotions in my life. Some of them are serious, some of them make me chuckle, but it’s all there, song by song. I thought it might be fun to list some of the connections I have with certain songs since music plays such a huge and integral part in my creative process. As most of you know, I make playlists for every project that I work on, so while most people think its unhealthy to live in your memories, for me, it’s necessary to make good art. So here is your non-fiction WYTO guide to Sex, Drugs, and Madness , plus a few more for good measure. Sex, Drugs and Madness Playlist: ·          “Little Cream Soda” by The White Stripes : This is my alarm so if this is playing we’re either very fond of each other, living together, or going to be best friends. ·          “Second Chance” by Peter

GET INKED OR DIE NAKED: MY TATTOOS AREN'T FOR YOU

There’s a ton of stuff that I can’t wrap my head around, but the stigma behind tattoos is definitely up there. I mean, I get why people don’t want them---that’s a personal choice to make, just like how it is a personal choice for me to choose to get one—but the stereotyping, shaming, and harassment that comes from having them is just one of the most fucked up things that I’ve experienced as an inked person. So let’s have a conversation folks, because I’m about to get real on a few notes here. ·         My decision to get/have tattoos doesn’t involve you in any way, shape, or form. When I’m going under the needle, you’re not feeling the pain. I’m not asking you to pay for them, I don’t care about your opinion about how their going to look in 50 years, and hell, I’m not even asking you to look at them. Their presence on my body is for me. Strictly and simply for me. If their existence makes you upset...walk. ·         Just because I have tattoos doesn’t mean that I’m a delinquent,

ON VEGAS: PATTI SMITH, POETRY, AND BLACKJACK MARGARITAS

I’m back from Vegas and I’m sleepy, drinking too much coffee, and watching old horror movies in my pajamas while I catch up on some work, but despite having to acclimate to the time change and come to terms with the amount of laundry I have to do, damn was StokerCon16 a blast. This trip came at such an important and necessary time for me, and as a result, I feel renewed, refreshed, and reenergized after spending time with new and old friends, colleagues, and my SHUWPF family.   I got into Vegas Wednesday night and took a cab to The Flamingo Hotel and Casino, where I literally ran to my room for about 30 seconds and then headed out to the strip to meet my girl, Kristin Dearborn (insert official welcome to the RDSP crew here). Her and her lovely aunt and uncle invited me out to dinner with them, and we buffeted at Caesar’s Palace where I think we all got a little too excited and overwhelmed by the food choices (Note: I could eat oysters until I die and I think I tried to). After th

On Teaching Horror in Sin City: Murder, Betrayal, and How to Survive Heartbreak

I’ve been blurbed as “the illegitimate lovechild of Edgar Allan Poe and Sylvia Plath” and referred to as “the bubbliest horror writer in the genre,” and this Wednesday, I’m hopping on a plane to head to Las Vegas where I’m going to teach a classroom of writers about how to murder… Wytovich-style . Talk about dreams coming true… Note: Take that middle school English teacher who sent me to the guidance counselor for my violent, and possibly overly sexual, vampire story. To me, horror is, and has always been, about survival. Yeah, that’s right—I don’t care about the size of your machete, or how you use it; I care about what it’s going to take for me to survive you. See, when I write, a storm is raging in my head as I plan motive, vice, and virtue. I play hour-long games of “what-if” and I pull from memories and personal experiences and then juxtapose them with nightmares and fantasies. I push my characters to the brink of heartbreak and insanity, and then I push them some more

MY CONVERSATION WITH ANDY WARHOL

It rained most of yesterday in Pittsburgh, but I’m actually quite okay with that.   Lately, I’ve been doing a lot of journaling and self-reflection and the overcast day combined with some hot coffee and my novel edits made for a pretty chill Saturday. Plus, I tend to find rain inspiring and calming, and so at some point in the afternoon when I took a break from editing, I put on a sweatshirt and a hat, and I got in my car to go spend some time with Andy Warhol. Yes, most of you are probably aware that The Andy Warhol Museum is in the North Shore, and that it’s an amazing collection dedicated to Warhol’s life, but yesterday wasn’t about that. January was when I went there for the (?) time to take a guided tour and do a screen-printing workshop during residency, and April was when I went there with Heidi and Jason Miller to talk art and writing and sit in The Velvet Underground room and take an active part in the Warhol experience. But yesterday, yeah, yesterday was about walkin