I first encountered Martin Lastrapes a long while ago, just as he was launching his truly excellent debut novel Inside the Outside. He was doing some posts and features to drum up awareness, and he’d written The Indie Author’s Manifesto, originally called “A Self-Publisher’s Manifesto” for a site called Self-Publishing Review — I’m a bigger fan of the update, mainly because I continue to loathe the term, but that’s an entirely other discussion altogether.
I read and enjoyed Martin’s post, and left a comment on the original. He noticed I maintained a site myself (I think I’d just published Meets Girl, and asked if I’d be interested in interviewing him.
It scared the shit out of me, because I didn’t know! I didn’t know Martin from anyone, and I’ll be candid, I’m not interested in associating with authors I don’t think are utterly amazing, and who would be among my favorites.
So I checked out Martin’s novel. It was a few dollars, and I bought it and read it over a weekend.
And I was so relieved I was blown away!
Inside the Outside is a classic of modern horror literature and easily earns a spot among works by King, Benchley, and Levin. It is a ridiculously controlled and assured debut novel with workings as fine and intricate as in a luxury watch. It is pure terror distilled in words, and it’s wonderful.
I agreed to do an interview, and as I started to develop Exciting Press, Martin and I spoke more about business and publishing, and we both wanted to work together. We weren’t sure how or when, but then Martin mentioned short stories, and I was like, let’s give it a go.
So we did. We published several as singles, and they were received well. Martin went on to publish his The Vampire & the Hunter trilogy (which is also truly excellent).
And now there’s Dolph the Unicorn Killer & other stories. I encourage you to check out anything by Martin; it’s all spectacular.