Tuesday, June 30, 2020

Sugar Rush (July 2020)—Respected Genre Critic and Author Mark Sieber discusses his new collection He Who Types Between the Rows: A Decade of Horror Drive-in with C@M’s Josh Jabcuga

(The following interview was conducted via email from June 15-26, 2020.)

Josh Jabcuga: Last year here at Cereal At Midnight I named your book, He Who Types Between the Rows: A Decade of Horror Drive-in, as my personal favorite of 2019 (Click here to read Josh’s review). I said the book deserved to be ranked up there with The Psychotronic Video Guide to Film, Nightmare USA, and Paperbacks from Hell.

Whelp, here we are at the halfway point of 2020, and I've still got your book on my mind! I've been following your work for quite awhile actually, but for those who may not be familiar with you, would you mind telling readers a bit about yourself and He Who Types Between The Rows?

Mark Sieber: Thanks, Josh. I really appreciate this.

I've been a horror fan all my life. I've watched thousands of movies and I've read thousands of books in the genre. I had some success as a moderator of message boards. This was before the onslaught of social media. I was writing at the board for around eight years, and thought it was time to launch my own place.

I started Horror Drive-In in 2006. It was a website that would host a message board and an outlet for me to write reviews. Looking back, it was crazy. I was reading like a maniac, watching at least a movie a night, working a full time job, managing a busy message board, and somehow I found the time to write a whole bunch of reviews and essays. I was running on autopilot, and when I went back to see what I had done, I literally had no memory of writing a lot of it. It was stream of consciousness stuff. I was reviewing books and movies, commenting on the genre and the then-current trends, and putting myself and my life in the middle of it all.

The book is a collection of these pieces. I guess you could call them blog entries. I'd been doing them for a decade and I thought about putting together a book. I was editing them up, and fixing a lot of errors and clumsy writing. I had the book almost done, artwork and all, when Norman Prentiss, of Cemetery Dance Publications, offered to pick it up and publish it. I already had a longtime association with them, and it was a perfect fit.