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Adam Interviews...Kayla Matt!


Welcome to the FINAL Monday of January!

Where did that month go?

Oh yeah.


Today, we're starting off with K. Matt. K. Matt is an author/illustrator living in upstate New York. A fan of coffee, animals, comics, and horror, she likes bringing her unique brand of weird to whoever's willing to read it. Some of her stuff is disturbing, some ridiculous. Either way, she has fun with it and hopes you do too.



DCU or MCU?


I’m more of an MCU fan. DCU is getting a bit better, but it was taking itself a bit too seriously for my tastes.


Coffee, tea, or cacao?

Coffee, definitely! Though I will sometimes mix some cocoa with my coffee and make it a mocha.


When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?

I’ve always loved books and stories and was one of those kids that could read before getting good at speaking. Somewhere along the line I found myself wanting to start creating some of my own.



Where do you get your information or ideas for your books?

Most of my research is done online. As for ideas, I tend to get inspiration from all sorts of places. I’ve had a character (and a few comics about this character) spring up due to multiple rejections from jobs (and student loan problems). Or a horror movie can make me start thinking: “Hey, what if…?”.


When did you write your first book and how old were you?

I can’t remember the first one overall, but the first one I actually published was in 2014. It was “Visions”, and I was 26 years old.


What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

When not writing, I’m usually drawing something. Sometimes it’s relevant to the writing (character designs, comic pages, covers), other times it’s the illustration work for a friend’s series.



What does your family think of your writing?

Well, I know that my mom tends to avoid reading my stuff. She’s a fan of romance. I’ve written stuff involving homicidal hair, localized apocalypse shenanigans, and genetic experiments. And most of my family hasn’t really read my work. The few that have either liked it, or were too nice to say that they hated it.


What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books?

That formatting a combination of regular prose and comic pages is way more difficult than formatting either a comic or just a regular prose piece. Sure, it seems sort of obvious in retrospect, but it sure as hell surprised me at first.



How many books have you written? Which is your favorite?

I would say...about 13 actual books, and I can’t count how many short stories. But I have kind of a soft spot for “Transformations”. Yes, it was a slog to write and it took me a good 8-10 years to get it done, but I’m ultimately proud of it.


As a child, what did you want to do when you grew up?

That’s definitely shifted over time...I started off wanting to be a vet, then animal trainer, then animator, then went on to study illustration in college. That’s made its way into my writing career, as well.


Does a big ego help or hurt writers?

I feel like it could help to an extent. If someone’s great at bragging about themselves, it can be seen as confidence in their own work. But if it goes too far, it becomes obnoxious.


What is your writing Kryptonite?

Romance. It’s very much not my strong point and is one of those things I’ve never really wrapped my head around.



Do you want each book to stand on its own, or are you building a body of work with connections between each book?

Pretty much all of it’s connected. I’d had one short story establish the presence of a multiverse sort of deal with my stuff, so even if it’s not all in the same world, it’s still all connected.


If you could tell your younger writing self anything, what would it be?

“Kid, you’re probably never going to be super-mainstream. But there are people that appreciate weird. Lean into that.”


Do you write novels, novellas, short stories, episodic fiction, poems, screenplays, or something else? What is your preferred format?

Let’s see...my main series is made up of 12 novella/graphic novel hybrids. There’s a prequel to this series made up of 12 novellas in 1 volume. I have 8 short stories that’ve been published in anthologies, 1 comic that’s been published in a different anthology...So I’d say my preferences would be novellas, short stories, and comics.


Are you traditionally or self published? Or both? Do you feel there are advantages to one over the other?

I’m mostly self-pubbed, but the 9 that I hadn’t just put out there myself were picked up by smaller presses. While traditional publishing has the possibility of giving someone a bit more clout in the writing world, I’m proud to be self-published because it gives me a bit more creative control.


What is the answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything?

42



What do you have coming next?

I’m in the process of adapting the various short stories I’ve had published in anthologies into comics. I’ll also be adding some comics to Webtoonz to see if I can’t get some more eyes on my work. I’m also working on a post-apocalyptic AU of my main Hell Bent series. No release date available as of yet, as it’s something of a backburner project at this point.


AND NOW AN EXCERPT!


Excerpt: (From "Here Comes Trouble", as found in "The Devil You Know" from Fiction-Atlas Press):

He couldn’t argue that point. Though, he did still have some questions. The man sat on the floor, given that his couch was taken. There was an assassin on either end of it, and a highly noticeable amount of cat hair in the middle (now whose could that possibly be).

“Now, ladies…when you say you’re here on a job…is this something that’s going to bring you into conflict with my line of work? He asked. “Depends,” said Beast, moving to take her designated spot on the couch and crossing one leg over the other. “Been after anyone that’s committed a series of bank robberies recently?” Nick had heard about that happening, but nobody had a solid description of the perpetrator, aside from them being a woman. He hadn’t been assigned to that case, though. They were, thus far, happening in a different part of town. His job was more in the vein of dealing with domestic disputes. And to his credit, it was rare that he ever felt threatened enough to fire. His fellow officers found him a bit odd, but he was more than willing to negotiate when things got rough. “A little,” he said. “What do you know about your target?” Yvette snapped her fingers, and a small folded up paper appeared in her hand, surrounded by a red glow. Unfolding it, she read it over. “Woman by the name of Yolanda Quigg. Long dark auburn hair, olive skin, tentacles for arms, known for her robberies having a ninety-nine percent casualty rate, and she’s been at it for a few years now.” Ivy’s brow furrowed, and she leaned over to look at the paper. She had to lean behind Beast to do so, but she was looking over the paper. “Uh, ‘Vette? That says ‘Yadira,’ not ‘Yolanda,’” she told her, tone flat. The witch scoffed. “Nonsense. I know what it says.” Beast also leaned over, head tilted. “No, she’s right. It does say ‘Yadira.’” Her face flushing, Yvette crossed her arms. “I wrote that down in a hurry!” Nick wasn’t listening to their bickering, however. The description of this woman sounded familiar. It had been a few years back when he first fled Hell Bent for someplace that didn’t have anything to do with human experimentation. He had a girlfriend at the time, and the two were trying to take care of a routine deposit at the bank. As it turned out, a woman with tentacle arms was looking to make a not-so-routine withdrawal and was set to be the only survivor. He wasn’t sure what it was that kept him alive when the bullet had hit him. It had hit his chest, and things were touch and go for a while. But he had survived. The robber, however, was never caught. This incident was what made him want to join the FBI in the first place, and it still haunted the man’s dreams. “Hey, Beast, you might wanna check on your brother,” he heard Ivy say. “Picking up on something from him.” Beast’s ears twitched as she got up, going to hug Nick. “Is everything okay?” she asked him. Nick returned the hug, nodding. “Y-yeah. It’s just that I’ve met this target of yours once. Came really close to killing me.” He yelped as he felt his sister’s grip tighten. “…She did what now?” she asked, the menace clear in her tone. “She, um…she–or rather, the guy she was using as a puppet with her tentacle…I think that’s what she was doing? Anyway, I got shot in the chest. It was her fault…” The rumbling that emanated from her as she continued to hug him felt markedly different from the purring earlier. No, this was an outright growl. Oh, hell, was she just going to find this Quigg woman, tear her to shreds, then bring her head to him like a cat presenting its human with a dead mouse? Cautiously, he reached up and scratched behind her ear, the growl soon easing into a purr. Once they broke the embrace again, Beast smiled at him. “Sorry if I got a little carried away, there,” she said, chipper as could be. “It’s just that this bitch hurt you, and she kinda needs to die for it. Want me to bring you her heart?” Nick paled. Yeah, that would do wonders for his future: a humanoid heart in his fridge, presumably having taken its last few beats in his sister’s big steely hand. That was definitely not a good look for anyone, let alone a guy that wanted to save lives. What was he supposed to do if anyone saw that, claim that he was on some new diet? “N-no. That’s okay…” “You sure?” Beast asked, head tilted with a slight pout. Was she hurt over that? Just what on Earth had the assassin business done to the woman? “I’m just not sure I would know where to put it. I don’t have the space in my fridge, ya know?” She raised an eyebrow. “You sure? Seemed to be plenty of room…” Nick shook his head. “I’d really rather not have a heart in my refrigerator, is all. Or freezer. Or really anywhere that’s not in its host body, ya know?” With a sigh, Beast nodded. “Yeah, yeah, I get it. Offer’s still open if you change your mind, though.” He politely waved her off. “No. Thank you for the thoughts, though,” he said. “I’m just gonna head to bed now. Leave you three to your business. Please make sure there’s no way this can be tracked back to me, all right?” “Got it!” came the three women’s voices.

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