1) Tell us a little bit about yourself. How did you get into writing?
I’ve always enjoyed stories. As a child I enjoyed drawing pictures or my own comic books but I didn’t particularly enjoy writing – it felt like work.
In high school I had the fateful assignment to write a combined ten short stories in a single week for two separate classes. I freaked out and cheated – I recruited someone to help me write the lion’s share of the stories. One of my teachers called me up to see him. He did worse than catch me. He complimented me. I will always remember his burning commendation.
“You are light years ahead of the rest of the people in this class.”
That summer I wrote my first short story for fun. It was pretty bad. But I kept tweaking it. Then I wrote another. And another. Trying to be worthy of those words until I was doing it for the joy of writing and creating.
2) What inspired you to write your book?
A sentence, really. What if a man woke up in hell and didn’t know how he got there. That starting conceit is a long way from where I ended up, but it’s still there.
It took me ten years and well-over ten drafts to complete the book. In fact, it wasn’t until I discovered Azrael Abaddon and made him my protagonist that the book really started rolling. His voice perfectly matched the story I was telling and eventually, discovering more about him led me to the startling revelations found at the end of the book.
Sometimes all it takes is the right main character.
3) What theme or message do you hope readers will take away from your book?
Messages of forgiveness are important to me. It’s critical for us as people to understand as long as we’re willing to change, we are never too far gone.
4) What drew you into this particular genre?
The trappings of noir were attractive to me even at a young age – even before I really understood its meaning. What kid doesn’t enjoy the idea of putting on a fedora? But noir kept interesting me at different stages in life – showcasing itself as a valid expression for life’s ineffable mysteries and moral struggles.
Noir is less about the mystery than the morality. While there is still truth to uncover, the mystery never outweighs the melodrama. It became natural in my mind to tie it to the afterlife and even traditional Western theology to see what the result would be. One is obsessed with damnation, the other salvation. There had to be a story that answered both.
5) If you could sit down with any character in your book, what would you ask them and why?
I’d like to think I have the good sense to stay away from most of the characters in ‘Godthread.’ Azrael, Morningstar and Bethesda would get me in trouble in a hurry and I don’t think I could bring myself to look Krysis in his many eyes.
The Almighty, perhaps. Though I don’t know what it is I’d ask Him. I think it would be peaceful just to sit with Him. I think we could have a good conversation without saying anything at all.
6) What social media site has been the most helpful in developing your readership?
I’m not as active on social media as I’d like to be. Still, I have had some success with Instagram.
7) What advice would you give to aspiring or just starting authors out there?
Write the book. Write it and rewrite it. Don’t ever be afraid to start over from scratch.
8) What does the future hold in store for you? Any new books/projects on the horizon?
Lately I’ve been working on a murder mystery set in Victorian London.
About the Author
Caleb Brabham is an editor, journalist and photographer currently living in New Orleans. His first book, Apocalypse of Bob, was published in 2010 by Charisma Media.