Jenny had the chance to sit down with writer Alton Simpson.
Jenny: What made you get into writing ?
Alton: I used to hang out in the library when I was a kid because I loved to read. I always kept a journal of different events of my life in high school. When I formed my media company to make films and commercials I wrote more for specific clients and events. I started working on creating comics based on my scripts as a way to visualize my stories. Now the comics are selling out in some local stores and what I write is in demand for some of the fans. Thanks to the great artist I work with I can reach a new audience with my ideas.
Jenny: What intrigues you about the horror genre?
Alton: Horror is a genre that I have not filmed yet. I have written and produced a crime drama, a comedy, a music doc filmed in the UK, and a collection of 10 years of my short films. They stream on Amazon Prime. I have never done a horror movie but I saw many in the 1980’s when I went to the movies. I saw Scanners, Friday the 13th part 3 in 3d, Nightmare on Elms Street, and a lot of B horror movies. Being scared is a universal shared human experience that nobody can escape. It’s fun to write.
Jenny: What writer influenced you?
Alton: I am very influenced by Stephen King. His stories are iconic and can be told over and over like Shakespeare. I like Stan Lee and the marvel writers in the 1970’s because they gave the characters flaws so we can identify with them and grounded the stories in real places like New York City.
Jenny: Horror comics have gotten a lot of recognition lately. Congratulations on being featured in Kevin Smith’s comic book store!!! What do you hope to get out of the experience?
Alton: I try not to read too many horror comics when I am writing because I don’t want to be influenced too much. I am reading American God’s right now.
Jenny: I consider myself weird. I watched that show and it was WEIRD!
Alton: Kevin Smith’s store called Jay and Silent Bob’s Secret Stash in Red Bank, NJ is featuring my comic and it is so exciting ! A fan near the store asked for the comic to be there. The Comic Book Men there are really great guys! They liked the comic and said they would mention that is was a script concept to the production company that produces the AMC show because they are looking for new ideas to develop. My ideas can work as films or TV series so a development deal would allow the concept to be fully realized and reach a bigger audience.
Jenny: That is amazing I wish you the best of luck!
Jenny: What famous Kevin Smith quote do you like?
Alton: “I didn’t get into film to win Academy Awards. I wanted to have a conversation with the audience.”
Jenny: What do you hope to accomplish during your writing career?
Alton: I love writing comics and I appreciate that comic fans want more issues. This was a script I wrote as a distraction from my more serious writing for my dissertation research study for my PhD. that was recently published also. I write scripts to develop into films eventually and this is another way to get public feedback on an original idea.
Jenny: What has been the most challenging during this process?
Alton: I am not an artist so the most challenging thing has been getting an artist to stick with me. Early on I attracted the attention of Marvel Comics artist Mahathir Buang. He liked my idea and did the initial development of the looks of the characters based on my ideas. He is located in Malaysia and in demand for other projects so I had to switch to a Disney animator makes Conor Cole. He is incredibly busy with his day job during certain times of the year so it is hard getting the product out quickly. I self publish so I am learning the business as I go.
Jenny: What attracts you and your Vampires to New Jersey ?
Alton: I hung out at a alternative music Goth club in the 90’s called Sanctuary in Cherry Hill NJ. I used to meet people who would tell me they were witches or vampires. I would always be fascinated with the idea that this is their belief. Is it a psychosis or are they living the life they say they are. I liked the Sopranos and True Blood so I thought a mob vs. the vampires’ story had a lot of possibilities. I based it here because anything can happen in New Jersey.
Jenny: I miss that club.
Jenny: Where can we see you next?
Alton: I will be at Zolocon, the New Jersey Horror Con, and Monster Mania so far. Probably Wizard World Philly too. Comic book stores want me to do meet and greets . I also have a grounded sci- fi superhero comic called “Blackjack” coming out this month. It’s X-Files meets Unbreakable.
Jenny: My favorite movie is 1985’s The Lost Boys . If Kiefer Sutherland asked you to be one of them would you?
Alton : In 1985 my college roommate looked just like Kiefer Sutherland in Lost Boys. He had the long hair, the trench coat, INXS soundtrack and a bad attitude. So you could say I already joined the Lost Boys back then. We just unfortunately could not fly. I would do it again in a heartbeat.
Thanks for the interview!
Please check out Alton’s work you will not be disappointed!
Until next time
Hugs n Hisses,
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