Thursday, January 9, 2014

Lisa Morton Speaks

For nearly three centuries, as the Black Death rampaged through Europe and the Reformation tore the Church apart, tens of thousands were arrested as witches and subjected to trial, torture, and execution, including being burned alive. This graphic novel examines the background; the methods of the witch-hunters; who stood to profit; the brave few who protested; and how the trials finally faded as Enlightenment replaced fear and superstition with reason and science. The book examines famed witch-hunters Heinrich Kramer, architect of the infamous Malleus Maleficarum; Matthew Hopkins, England's notorious "Witch-finder General"; King James I, supposedly the target of assassination by a Scottish coven; the Salem Witch Trials; and the last witch trials and executions in Europe.

Witch Hunts has been nominated for a Bram Stoker Award in the Superior Achievement in a Graphic Novel category. The Awards will be presented at the World Horror Convention in New Orleans on June 15, 2013



Join me as we welcome horror great Lisa Morton to On the Broomstick. Lisa has agreed to answer some questions about her work in the horror field. 

 1. How did you get started writing in the horror genre?

I've always loved the genre (even as a very young child), and it was
just an obvious choice for me. I started as a screenwriter, where I
was a "hired gun" and wrote everything from children's fantasies to
disaster movies, but when I turned to prose, horror was my obvious
first choice.

 2. Tell me about your work on Witch Hunts and how the graphic novel
 came to be.

Rocky Wood created the project and had already brought Greg Chapman in
as the artist when he asked me to co-write. I loved Rocky's take on
it, and I'd always wanted to work in the graphic novel field; plus, my
Halloween research had already given me a good introduction to the
history of the witch persecutions, so it was all a good fit.

 3. Burgers or sushi?

Sushi, no question! I'll start with scallop and smelt egg, and go from there.

 4. Name three things on your desk right now.

My endless to-do list, the "Icky-Sticky" toy I've had since I was
about six years old, and - one of my most recent acquisitions - a
"Hello Kitty" Dia de los Muertos figure.

 5. What is one thing that has helped you as a writer that you would
 pass on to aspiring horror novelists?

Persevere. Unless you're very lucky, it's unlikely that you'll be
successful instantly. The real success stories are the ones who hang
in there and build an audience and never give up.

6. What to you is the difference in pacing between a short story and a novel?

A novel can indulge more freely in description and observation. A
short story needs to focus more on telling a succinct story quickly,
so plot and character development take center field.

7. Is there anything in horror today that you think is overdone? Underdone?

Horror is in interesting state of flux right now. I do think we're
finally seeing more women and writers of color entering the genre, and
the old things I used to complain about - like an over-reliance on
rape and misogynistic content - are fading away. I'm excited about the
genre's future.

 8. Tell us about your newest project.

My newest novel is NETHERWORLD, just released by JournalStone. It's
the first book in a trilogy about a globe-trotting British noblewoman
fighting evil in the nineteenth century...and not all of those evils
are supernatural. It was tremendous fun to write, and I'm excited
about its release.

 9. Do you write to music? If so, what do you listen to?

I used to, but the older I get, the more I need quiet to focus. I will
occasionally put on one of's electronica stations, but I
absolutely can't have anything with lyrics playing.

10. Favorite ice cream flavor.

Baskin-Robbins's Pralines and Cream.

Find out more about Lisa on her site:


  1. Witch Hunts and Netherworld both sound like great reads. Thank you for taking the time and sharing with us. I have added these to my wish list and am looking forward to the journeys :)

  2. What an interesting interview. It was fascinating to learn how Lisa came to work on Witch Hunts. Summer's End has a super creepy cover that has me intrigued. Thanks for sharing! :)