Wednesday, April 10, 2019

20Q7A: An interview with Charles Austin Muir

20 Questions, 7 Answers is an interview series for writers of genre fiction. Each author receives the same batch of 20 questions, but they may only answer 7.

This week's guest is Charles Austin Muir.


What's your latest book, and how does it differ from your previous work?

CAM: This is a Horror Book (CLASH Books)—which you were kind enough to blurb! It’s a collection of comedic, raunchy, self-mocking metahorror loaded with chaos magic and pop culture references unlike any other horror fiction I’ve written. My previous horror stories were pretty straightforward and serious. 

If it was socially acceptable to wear anything as clothing, how would you dress?

CAM: I’d dress like Doctor Doom—magic cloak, cape medallions, titanium battle suit with infrared vision. I’d spend all day and night pacing on my battlements. I’d unleash my energy fist on some of my dumb-ass neighbors.
If you could invent a new sport, what would it be like?

CAM: Do you remember the ‘70s TV show, Starsky and Hutch? A friend and I came up with the idea of developing the Starsky and Hutch Fitness Tournament. You’re sprinting up flights of stairs, running zigzag patterns in alleys, jumping down onto the hoods of parked cars and shoving shopping carts at your opponents. Long before CrossFit, Starsky and Hutch performed high-intensity interval workouts in highly unstable, randomly varied urban environments. In tight jeans!

Have you traveled outside your home country, and if so, where? Where would you like to go that you haven't been yet?

CAM: I stayed in Greece with a friend and his family in the summer of 1998. My wife and I went to Belize in 2008. She and I also traveled to Oulu, Finland, for the World Air Guitar Championships in 2015. I want to go to Scotland someday. I want to walk around in a castle. I’ll pretend it’s Doctor Doom’s castle.

If you could survive on one food for the rest of your life with no health repercussions, what would it be?

CAM: It’s a toss-up between Hawaiian-style macaroni salad and a Philly cheese steak hoagie. 

Twilight Zone or Outer Limits?

CAM: Twilight Zone. Although The Outer Limits episode, “The Forms of Things Unknown,” blows me away every time I watch it. And I have a soft spot for “The Zanti Misfits” because it’s one of the influences that inspired my cousin Brian Domonic Muir to write Critters

If you could share a beverage with any fictional character, who would it be, and what would you drink?

CAM: That’s easy! I would finish off a bottle of J & B with MacReady while we watched the camp burn. 


Charles Austin Muir is the author of This is a Horror Book and Bodybuilding Spider Rangers and Other Stories. His short fiction has appeared in anthologies such as 18 Wheels of Horror, Peel Back the Skin and Year’s Best Hardcore Horror Volume 1. Before he became a therapeutic exercise trainer, he worked as a journalist. He has written obituaries, humor columns and fitness articles and preached the health benefits of playing air guitar. He lives with his wife, Kara, who shreds a mean air guitar, pugs and pit lab mix in Portland, Oregon.