Interview – J.C. Weatherby
The Hungry Monster was given the chance to interview JC Weatherby, author of Evocronik 1.0 and talk to him about the flavorful taste of his book.
The cover for your book is striking. Where did you get the idea for the cover and how did that come together for you?
“The story for Evocronik has been in development since the late nineties. It started out as a screenplay, when I was living in Hollywood, and has evolved steadily for many years. I attempted a couple of times to do it as a graphic novel. And I’ve had friends who were artists come up with different character sketches along the way. I knew I wanted a photographic treatment for the cover, something that looked more like key art for a movie than the typical illustration you would see for a book.” “I spent some time on the different photo sites and found this great series with this model and thought, wow,” “So I brought her into Photoshop and made her bald and worked through a bunch of design ideas until I got to the cover.”
In Evocronik the main character of Nina has a very tragic life with some disturbing events that change her for the worse. What was your inspiration for that character?
“Y’know I look back and so much has influenced me; Monty Python, the films of David Lynch and John Waters, horror films, and writers from William Faulkner to the Marquis de Sade. It sounds funny, and I hope not too narcissistic – but the actual inspiration comes from my own life. I had a rough childhood – not as rough as somebody in the war-torn Middle East or a kid growing up in an urban ghetto. But I saw a lot – men particularly – struggling with alcoholism and drugs and behaving abominably. So I’m pretty well acquainted with human weakness. My fiance and I have discussed the graphic stuff in – not only this novel, but Outland Hotel – y’know… is it too much, too off-putting, is it gimmicky? And the answer is it’s coming from a very dark rich vein of experience in my own life. So I hope people will find something truthful and possibly even redeeming about it.”
What was the hardest part in the book to write?
“The hardest part has been figuring out what story to tell, and how to make it engaging for an audience. So at every point in the past where I’ve had to go back to the drawing board to redesign the narrative, those have been the hardest I guess – but also the most enjoyable. Sometimes coming up with the story elements is like cracking a code. I remember a weekend in 2003 after I’d had feedback from a movie producer about the story – she really made me think. So I spent the whole weekend with my brain on fire and that’s where I figured out the DNA piece and began to get a handle on the whole eugenics subplot.”
You mentioned that that you were working with a movie producer in 2003. So, is there a movie in the works?
“In 2003 a low budget movie was being planned, but it fell through. Trying to get anything done in Hollywood is very very difficult.”
The book portrays some very dark social changes like forced abortions and sterilization and just the general downfall of the lower class of society. What were your inspirations for depicting this type of future and how likely do you think this kind of a future is?
“I really pay attention to news. That and I’ve had friends who are hard-core conspiracy-nut left wingers in California who pointed me to the work of different investigative journalists like Greg Palast who blew the lid on the whole Bush election fiasco in 2000. So I have that working in the background. “Crossing the Rubicon” by Michael C. Rupert – who was an LA cop makes some outrageous statements about 911, and flat out says that world powers know that the human population needs to be reduced by half. Then there are actual government reports like the ‘Global 2000’ report commissioned by the Carter administration in the late 70’s, and even a more recent report from the Office of National Intelligence that corroborate a lot of the predictions with regard to overpopulation and economic strife. But I look around and there’s just as much cause to be hopeful. There’s so much enthusiasm in the technology field nowadays. People are really working on solutions to the world’s problems. So I hope I’m turning out pure entertainment and not some dire prediction.”
The book ends on a cliffhanger. Where do you plan on taking the book series in the future?
“Yes, I’m working on 2.0 now. I have plans for two more story arcs with these characters. And I have a branching story I’m developing with new characters and situations that dovetail into the whole Evocronik narrative. So yes, big plans. All I can say right now is that Nina and Reg are heading for a day of reckoning with Quin and with each other.”
You can get more info on JC Weatherby on his Good Reads page.