Thursday, January 16, 2014

The SJWG's Steampunk Granny

Presenting the next in a series spotlighting various members of the South Jersey Writers' Group - today's guest blog is by Marie Gilbert.

When Glenn Walker, AKA the Patron Saint of Blogging, asked me to be a guest on the SJWG blog, I said sure, I would love to talk about my writing. I love being part of this awesome group of talented people and I’ve learned so much since joining. But, saying yes to the post was the easy part, explaining why I like to write horror stories; not so much. The advice most often given to writers is to write what you know. Good advice, but what if your writing takes you down a path that is often scary?

Write what you know! I write about my family, ghosts, zombies, and aliens. Have I ever met an alien? Well… there are a few members of my family that I do wonder about, but basically, I research the information done by NASA and astro-biologists who study life forms that can exist in extreme conditions here on earth. I then try to imagine what life forms might be found on other planets. Using this method, I come up with some pretty neat aliens and landscapes.

Have I ever met a zombie? No, but I do have teenage grandchildren, nieces and nephews who seem to go brain dead as soon as they sit in front of their computers. I know it’s not the same, but when you’ve tried on multiple times to get someone’s attention and they don’t see or hear you because they’re playing Assassin's Creed; they’re zombies.

All kidding aside, I’ve done plenty of research on the subject and feel that a zombie apocalypse, complete with pesky little flesh eaters, is possible. In my stories this apocalypse happens because of mutating prions, genetic and biological warfare, and my favorite; genetically modified foods.

When it comes to ghost stories, I’m definitely writing about something I know. I’ve been seeing the dearly, and not so dearly, departed since early childhood. Inheriting this trait from my grandmother and mother, I have a healthy supply of spooky material for my stories. I plan to write a story on a particularly nasty spirit that I had encountered on one of my teams ghost hunting investigations. Right now, I’m doing the research on the series of events that led to a child’s death by said nasty spirit.

Not all my stories are about the paranormal. I also write about my family. In a large Italian family, there is always something going on that I can write about on my blog. I love writing about my family and their adventures, about going to steampunk events, and ghost hunting investigations.

I’ve been posting a weekly episode called "Life with Fred & Lucy." These episodes, which are subtitled "Surviving your Gene Pool" tells about my siblings and me growing up with two dysfunctional parents and working in the family business that was located in South Philadelphia. Wait… maybe this is a paranormal story.

When not writing about ghost, zombies and aliens, or doing interviews on published authors, film directors, actors and producers, I enjoy writing for Biff Bam Pop!, which is a pop culture website and writing a monthly post for Janet Garraty’s online magazine, Go Jane News.

So, now you know what I write about, but I haven’t told you why I write. I can’t help it! This need to tell a story is hardwired into me; into all of us. I love listening to stories and I love telling them. Stories for me, is a means of transporting history, hopes and dreams. Stories are, in essence, a time machine for humanity, which stretches from the past, present, future and beyond and starts with “Once upon a time.”

About today's guest-blogger:

Marie Gilbert is a multi-dimensional super-heroine with more adventures than a comic book museum, stuck in a grandmother’s body. Retired from the Academy of Natural Sciences, Marie finally has time for her first love; writing. She writes primarily paranormal and science fiction stories. Her popular blog, Gilbert Curiosities, chronicles her adventures with her nine grandchildren, her ghost hunting investigations and her love of steampunk and zombies. Marie is also a staff writer for Biff Bam Pop! and a contributing writer for Go Jane News.

Marie served as co-editor of the SJWG short story anthology,
Tall Tales and Short Stories from South Jersey. Marie and Dawn Byrne, fellow member of the South Jersey Writers' Group are known as Super G & Super D, and you will find them at many of the coffee shops and bookstores around New Jersey promoting the anthology for the group. Marie’s stories “Night of the Attack” and “Where Are You Zeppie” appeared in the collection.

1 comment:

  1. Love the first photo, Marie. I'm afraid to look at the second. As I've said to you before, I hate seeing someone I care about look as though she were involved in a violent murder. I'm so proud of your popularity online. I agree. You are a heroine of many adventures.


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