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Scott Sigler: Failed Pimp and Horror Author

Scott Sigler is a small, angry, balding man with ambitions to take over the world and rule as the one and only Future Dark Overlord. This is no joke: he states his goals in almost every episode of his podcast novels constantly in the pages of his online community website, www.scottsigler.com.

Scott is one of the founding fathers of podiobooks, and is still one of the leading members of the podcasting community. It all started when Scott decided to release his novel EarthCore as a free downloadable audio recording. People could listen to each chapter of the gripping book as Scott recorded and released them over the Internet, and he quickly gathered a loyal following of over 10,000 subscribers. He plowed on, releasing Ancestor and then Infected, which snagged him a three-book deal with Crown Publishing. Scott now has over 40,000 subscribers and has released several other horror novels through podcasting, including his current novel Nocturnal.

While I wasn’t able to get an audio interview with Scott, He did answer my questions:

– Why do you podcast?
Because if I kill people for real, they will put me in jail.

– Why did you decide to start podcasting?
Because it was new, and I realized I could be a first-move and develop an audience.

– How do you approach podcasting?
It’s a performance unto itself. I make it as over-the-top and fun as possible.

– Did you decide to create a character for yourself to show to the podcasting community?
Nope, what you hear is plain old me.

– What type of audience are you trying to reach?
People who want to hear great stories that really show the wrench-time. I work hard to make a great story and I hope it shows.

– How are you appealing to these audiences?
By writing great stories and delivering them consistently.

– How are you trying to target different audiences to bring in new listeners/readers?
Mostly through word-of-mouth. You never know who is going to like certain kinds of fiction, so mostly it’s up to people to pass it on to their friends.

– How are you including the audience in your podcast?
Emails, voicemails, social media, IMs, pub-crawls.

– What decisions do you make in the presentation/rhetoric of your podcasting?
[I’m] just trying to make sure some action or key plot development happens each episode. 30 minutes of back-story or character development, that makes for boring listening. I really can’t control the new listener angle, which could be good or bad. [I] just have to keep going with the same approach that got me here.

– When writing, do you write with the podcast in mind?
No.

– When producing/recording your novel, what decisions do you make in the presentation of the text?
The only differences are in attribution. If I’m doing character voices, I don’t need to put in “Bob said with a gruff voice,” for example, because I say it with a gruff voice and the listener already knows what Bob sounds like. Other than that, it’s the straight story.

– When promoting your podcast(s), what kind of approach do you take?
I use any tool that’s available. Mostly asking audiences to spread the word.

Scott’s innovative use of podcasting has gained him a decent amount of exposure in several newspapers and magazines, including The New York Times and Entertainment weekly. He also claims that he can juggle 4 kittens while standing on one leg for 10 minutes, and that he invented the Internet, the Internal Combustion Engine, and trees, although these statements should not be taken seriously de to the fact that Scott’s ego is larger than the planet earth.

His new hardcover thriller novel CONTAGIOUS, is available on Dec. 30 from Crown Publishing or pre-order now at scottsigler.com.

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December 10, 2008 - Posted by | discusion, interview

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