Sunday, September 29, 2013

Diamonds and Death, Jackie Uhrmacher stops by

One of my favorite book bloggers in the whole bloggity world is Jackie Uhrmacher. In the most secretive of ways she wrote and released a book. She has blogged for Bitten by Books, and now makes her bloggy home now at Wicked Little Pixie. I'm so excited and pleased to welcome Jackie Uhrmacher to Tombstone Tails.
Hey Jackie thanks for stopping by! Congratulations on the book.

So tell us how did Love you to Death come to be? How did you keep it such a secret? Amazing ninja powers? 
Love You to Death was created during a horrible, horrible divorce. I was young and dumb and I’d just turned 21 (I think Garbage wrote a song about me). My friend, Rachel, convinced me to vent my frustrations but coming up with as many ways as humanly possible to kill a husband. We had shark attacks, nuns with guns – if it was twisted, it was on the list. After a few weeks, the story changed from, “Kill them! Kill them all!” to “Hmm…what if one of these psychotic ladies actually fell for her prey??”

This is going to age me, but those first gruesome, bloody, soul-freeing deaths occurred almost nine years ago. E-publishers and self-publishing existed, but they were relatively unknown avenues for me to travel down. I thought the only way to publish a novel was the traditional way – query – so, right after I wrote it, I did the normal author thing – I shopped it and shopped it and shopped it. At a con, I even got a bite from an agent. He loved it, but said it needed about 40,000 more words. Love You to Death would have, well, died under that word count. It’s not meant to be a full-blooded novel. It’s a short, but fantastic, trip into the psyches of the Modern Bride – young and snarky with a smile that slices into the very heart of you.

It was only a secret because it’s so damn old, LOL. I’d like to say the secrecy was due to an inherent ability to cloud the possibilities from the human eye, but really, it’s a case of a zombified book that has risen from the grave freshly edited and hungry for flesh.

Is there a little bit of Jackie hidden deep within the the book? Any wishful thinking?
Only the bad parts.  I have two ex-husbands who, on several occasions, I’ve thought about helping shuffle off this mortal coil, but alas, one went underground and the other is the father of the best thing to ever happen to me.

Where do you draw your inspiration from? 
In the beginning it was rage and pain. You can tell because the first part of the book, while laced with humor, has a much more sinister feel than the end. My inspiration to resurrect the book was my mom. She was one of the most hard-headed, you-will-do-things-my-way-or-else, caring and funny individuals I’ve ever met. When I first wrote Love You to Death, she was still able to hold objects long enough to enjoy it and she pushed, constantly, for me to publish it. She couldn’t understand why I couldn’t just do it myself. She made me promise her that I’d “get off my ass and publish the damn thing” so I did on her one year death-versary.  

What kind of music do you listen to while writing? What does your playlist look like?
My playlist looks like a schizophrenic wrote it. There’s Otep, Florence and the Machine, Awolnation, Toadies, Garbage, Everclear, Middle Class Rut, Type O, Ministry, My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult, Camille Saint-Saens, Kings of Leon, Sia, Massive Attack…basically I like to be lulled into a calm state then jarred out of it by the deep tenor of hard rock.

I'm guessing the title is no accident. Are you a Type O Negative fan?
“…They say the beast inside of me’s gonna get ya, get ya, get…
Black lipstick stains her glass of red wine
I am your servant, may I light your cigarette?...”
Mmm…yes…Peter Steele was, and always will be, a god amongst men. The song was meant to represent this book. Jill, the protagonist, is a dominant through and through but with Marcus, there’s that lying fear…am I good enough for you?

How do you squeeze writing in with a full time job and a son to raise?
Insanity. No lie. I’m also a full-time student. Huzzah! Pass the booze!

Was there a specific book you read as a youth that made you say " I want to do this"? 
Oh so so many. Christopher Pike and RL Stine or to blame for me actually doing it though. I started reading them in elementary school and had to write stories like them.

Lightning round

What are you reading right now? Soul Kissed by Erin Kellison – AMAZING!

What are you listening to? Django Unchained Soundtrack

Favorite male fronted band? Prior to seeing them in concert: Everclear. Now: Awolnation

Favorite female fronted band? Prior to their last album: Garbage. Now: Halestorm

Vodka or whiskey? Vodka straight up with a beer chaser

Coke or Pepsi ? Coke for decorations and Pepsi to drink

Tattoos or no tattoos? Tattoos! I got my first one at the age of fifteen. Mom was LIVID!

What's next for Jackie? 
I need to find my own Pinkie so I can take over the world!!
Bookwise I have a few things in the works. I have a novella written in the same world as Love You to Death I’m editing and one partially-finished about a woman who has to eat souls to survive.

Where can we find your book? 
It’s available in print and as a Kindle copy from Amazon and it’s available as a Nook copy from Barnes and Noble.

This was pretty awesome, Jackie thought my sig line was a question and answered it. I have decided to include it and also do so in future interviews. Thanks Jackie.
What kindness does not risk destruction? 
The retracting of the cat’s claws against your neck while you sleep.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Throw a WRENCH in it.

Hailing originally from Brooklyn, New York, Robert "Toxic Bob" Deacy has rubbed shoulders with some of the greats in metal. Found now behind a guitar in an apparently reformed band called simply WRENCH, Bob has quite a hectic schedule. I managed to chase him down to catch the latest news and background on this Brooklyn group.

Hi Bob thanks for coming by to answer some questions..

First off, tell us a little about yourself and your band Wrench.

Hi Synde. Thanks for taking the time to contact me. As for myself, I am just another schmo from Brooklyn- the same part of it that spawned a lot of great heavy bands, like Carnivore, Type O, Biohazard, Life of Agony and more- must be something in the water here… . WRENCH is a “Sludge Metal” band (though I recently saw us reviewed as “Doom Core”!) from Brooklyn. Originally formed in the early 90’s. After a great run and touring and shows with Type O, Life of Agony, Biohazard, Gwar and COC, the band- on the verge of signing a record contract- broke up. Now, years later (older and wiser!) the band has a line-up that is not geared to self-destruct and have just done our first full length album, Dry Heaves And Tears. It is currently being shopped while we spread the word with live shows and social media.

When writing music, is it a collaborative process or does one person do it all?

 When we write, it is an amazing process! Either John (singer/2nd guitarist) or I bring a riff to the studio and just start jamming on it with the other guys, and the songs amazingly write themselves! We just gel like that- I’ve never had anything like is pretty hardcore,where do you find your inspiration for the themes in your m And the musical influences that helped shape the band’s sound as it is today?

Your music is pretty hardcore, where do you find your inspiration for the themes in your music?
And the musical influences that helped shape the band’s sound as it is today?

I think that all people have a tortured place inside them that they live with and for the most part remains buried. With us it is exposed, like a raw nerve and we can’t help but let it come exploding violently out of us in our music- it's therapeutic!

What instruments do you play?

I play guitar and bass mostly- though I fiddle with everything from the harmonica to piano. In Wrench I play only guitar though.

Any favorite live music venues?

Yes! Sadly, the long closed original L’Amour in Brooklyn. It was an institution that everybody from Iron Maiden to Metallica passed through. We may never see its like again… but there still are a lot of great places to play.

What is a typical week for the band?

Lol- that's a tough one! NOTHING is typical about us! We just had a great week on the road with Biohazard and typically tried to torture each other as much as possible! : )

Tell us about your connection with Type O Negative.

That is a difficult subject. Peter was a dear friend, and I remain friends with the rest of the band and do my best to support all their endeavors. Very early on, I played in my first signed band with Sal Abruscato (Type O/ Life of Agony/ A Pale Horse Named Death) called Toximia. We did a lot of shows with Peter’s old band, Carnivore. When Carnivore came to an end, I started playing with Pete and we wanted to something different- slower- heavier- more industrial. Initially, it was Peter, Sal and myself. Soon, as happens in music- especially when you play with friends, we began to drift apart. I went my own way and soon after, Josh and Kenny completed the line-up. It was just one of those things- I had a different path. I remain friends with all involved and eventually (Thank god!) returned to music myself!

Do you have a band that really inspired you as a kid and made you say, “I want to do that"?

Yes! Without question- BLACK SABBATH!!! Of course, there are many influences- Jimi Hendrix, Judas Priest, Deep Purple, to name a few. I was a huge Randy Rhoads fan also!

What books inspired you as a child? 

Hmmm… I loved Poe from an early age (disturbingly early, probably!) I also discovered Dante’s Inferno at about 10 years old which had a profound effect on me!

Lighting round

Horror movies or comedies?- Horror!

Whiskey or Vodka?- Whiskey (used to be! I no longer drink.)

Favorite male fronted band?- Black Sabbath

Favorite female fronted band?- Fleetwood Mac

Favorite guitarist?- Tommi Iommi

Favorite vocalist?- Ozzy!

Favorite lyric written by someone else?- Hand Of Doom by Black Sabbath!

What CD are you listening to that you absolutely love?- Dopethrone by Electric Wizard!

Pepsi or Coke?- Coke!

What's next for Toxic Bob and Wrench?

 For me? Recovering from falling off a building at Ground Zero!
 For Wrench? WORLD DOMINATION! : )

Where can people find your music? 

You can find our 4 song EP on iTunes or other on-line sources. For the full length, you can order a free copy at !

WRENCH on facebook