Casey Hamilton is a talented author who's rich, dark tale "The Wages of Sin" is part of the Dapper Press Haunted Lounge October event. We asked her three questions about fear, writing, and a bit about herself. Her answers are below!
The October Lounge stories are all about fear. What are you afraid of? Where does your fear stem from?
This question is so hard to answer, because what don’t I fear? There is plenty to choose from: Spiders? The water bill? Obsolescence? The thoughts that keep me awake at night, though, are about how short life is. Maybe I am screwing it all up. There are no second chances, and everything, from lifestyle to life itself, is fragile. That is the thing that I can’t get over. What if I’m doing everything wrong?
What inspired you to write this particular short story?
I discovered Fear Brewster’s name when I was about 18 (the same age she is in the story) in a historical archive online. In a time when people named their children Oceanus and Remember, perhaps her name isn’t so unusual. Except that people were often named for the circumstance of their birth back then, or for qualities that were revered. Fear is neither of those.
The pilgrims were known for trying to shape the new world with militaristic and rigid policies. Here, Fear’s story is that of a girl trying to shape her world and failing because of human desire. Mix that all up with Salem and the forest-lore that will come in later generations, and “The Wages of Sin” is what I ended up with.
What's next for you? What writing projects do you currently have up your sleeve?
I am hard at work on my first novel, a young adult fantasy titled Blue Gentian. It’s about a gypsy-ish girl named Salya who finds an unknown boy bleeding into the bushes from his stab wounds. Salya, her grandmother, and the community of traders they live with take him in, but his story changes Salya’s world. He is a spy with information about an assassination plot on the queen, and he is too injured to take the warning alone. Salya must choose: stay with her grandmother and let the kingdom fall, or travel with a broken boy across the mountains and hope they both live long enough to save the day.