Friday, October 20, 2017


Well now, look how lucky we are to have Jim Haridson here today for a chat.

SC: Tell me a little bit about your main character of this book.

JRRR:  There are actually two main characters in Demon Freaks. Bing and Ron Slaughter are the identical twin main characters. Where they’re concerned, however, identical is a strictly scientific classification. They try very hard to look nothing alike, not because they dislike each other any more than is usual for brothers but because they share a deep feeling that twins who dress and act identically are “mutant cutesy geeks whose prime talent is provoking others to vomit.”
 That’s Bing’s phrase. Named for Bing Crosby, Bing Slaughter considers himself the deeper, more poetic, and more studious of the Slaughter brothers. He fronts the band they both play in and writes most of their songs. Ron, named for Ronald McDonald, sings backup while he plays bass. Today, their band is called the Ephits. Yesterday, it was called the Angry Red Welts. A week ago, it was the Croutons.

If you didn’t know, you might not guess that Bing and Ron are related to each other, let alone that they’re identical twins. Bing looks a bit scrawny, like a punk-rocking, gluten-intolerant vegetarian. His friends’ mothers are always telling him to eat more and trying to make him drink milk. Ron, on the other hand, affects more of a surfer look. He is heavier by fifteen pounds and younger by thirteen minutes.

SC: Do you believe in the paranormal and if so, do you have an experience you can share?

JRRR:  I don’t NOT believe in it (in fact, I consider myself eager to believe in the paranormal) but I’ve also not seen enough evidence to fully believe in it either. I’ve had the odd experience here and there, but never anything definitive. Here’s an example. My wife, Maria, says that she is “mildly psychic”. What that means is that she occasionally has premonitions about things that aren’t very important. One time, before we were married, she’d been asked to house sit a friend’s apartment for a week. Because we were in college at the time, that apartment (which was nicer than any of our places) became the spot where a small group of us all hung out. We watched a lot of movies and ordered a lot of pizza and didn’t clean anything up after ourselves because we kept saying, “Well, we still have X number of days left before the friend comes back.” Even as X went from 6 days to 2 days, we still couldn’t muster the energy to clean and assumed we’d just pick everything up in the last few hours before the friend was supposed to return. But the second to last night, about 7:00 PM, Maria suddenly jumped up from the couch, shut off the movie and said, “We have to get this place cleaned up!” We all thought she had just gotten fed up with the mess, and that she was being a kill joy, but she was adamant about it, so we fell in line. It took us about three hours to get everything back to normal. I did the last run of pizza boxes and other wreckage out to the garbage at 10:05, as Maria shoed the rest of our friends out the back with me. And when I came back into the apartment, the friend was in the process of walking in the front door. She hugged Maria and explained that she’d had to cut her trip short by a day. After we left, I was laughing about what a close call we’d had and Maria said that she’d just had a sudden feeling that she needed to get the place cleaned up and get everyone out of there. See? Mildly psychic.  

SC: Midleyis perhaps better than full blown. What titles are you working on now that you can tell us about?

 JRRR: Right now I’m busily writing the sequel to my epically silly epic fantasy novel, Fish Wielder. It’s the second book of the trilogy and I’m about 30,000 words into it. I am, unfortunately, running a little behind schedule—which is just par for the course with me.

Demon Freaks
J.R.R.R. (Jim) Hardison

Publisher: Fiery Seas Publishing

Release Date: October 3, 2017

Genre: YA Horror/Comedy

Book Description:

It’s the night before the SAT test. The forces of darkness are stirring.

Twin brothers, Bing and Ron Slaughter, know they’ve got to cram like their lives depend on it because their college plans sure do. If they don’t ace the test, they’ll be doomed to spend the rest of their days flipping burgers at the McDonald’s their parents run. That’s why they hatch a plan to meet up with the members of their punk band, the Ephits, spend the night studying at a secluded cabin in the woods, and maybe squeeze in a little jamming. What could go wrong with a brilliant plan like that? 

Ancient evil. That’s what.

As a cataclysmic lightning storm rolls in, Bing, Ron and the rest of the Ephits find themselves tangled in a sinister plot to summon a demon. Yes, demons are real. To survive the night, the band must find a malevolent artifact, battle bloodthirsty monsters and stand against the most dangerous and powerful foe humanity has ever faced…the Golfer’s Association.

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“Wait, wait, wait,” Ron interrupted. “The Golfers Association? Don’t you mean insane cultists or Satan worshipers or evil wizards or something?”

“Insane cultists, Satan worshipers and evil wizards are like elderly nuns compared to the Golfers’ Association,” their prisoner responded. “You’d be much better off if it were something that simple. These guys are demon freaks.”

“Demon freaks,” Bing repeated in a whisper. “That sounds…bad.”

“Oh, it’s bad alright,” the prisoner shuddered. “You have no idea.”

About the Author:

Fish Wielder is J.R.R.R. (Jim) Hardison's first novel novel (He wrote a graphic novel, The Helm, for Dark Horse Comics). Jim has worked as a writer, screen writer, animator and film director. He started his professional career by producing a low-budget direct-to-video feature film, The Creature From Lake Michigan. Making a bad movie can be a crash course in the essential elements of good character and story, and The Creature From Lake Michigan was a tremendously bad movie. Shifting his focus entirely to animation, Jim joined Will Vinton Studios where he directed animated commercials for M&M’s and on the stop-motion TV series Gary and Mike. While working at Vinton, he also co-wrote the television special Popeye's Voyage: The Quest for Pappy with actor Paul Reiser.

Jim has appeared on NBC's The Apprentice as an expert advisor on brand characters, developed characters and wrote the pilot episode for the PBS children's television series SeeMore's Playhouse and authored the previously mentioned graphic novel, The Helm, named one of 2010's top ten Great Graphic Novels for Teens by YALSA, a branch of the American Library Association. These days, Jim is the creative director and co-owner of Character LLC, a company that does story-analysis for brands and entertainment properties. He lives in Portland, Oregon with his lovely wife, two amazing kids, one smart dog and one stupid dog.

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