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December 2022 4th Circle Interview with ALICIA HILTON


DESI D: What is your favorite supernatural creature? And why?


ALICIA HILTON: Ghosts. I was raised in a haunted house and encountered a ghost when I was a child. Ever since, I’ve been fascinated by the supernatural.


I’m particularly intrigued by ghosts. I wonder why they exist in limbo between the living and the dead. Do they want to haunt us? Or are they trapped? What are their motivations? Why are some spirits malevolent? Do they lash out because they resent the living? Or do they inflict torment for other reasons? Are some spirits benevolent because they want to protect or warn someone? Do they communicate with the living because they are lonely?


DESI D: As a writer, how does your experience in law enforcement influence your fiction? And would you describe your writing process?


ALICIA HILTON: My background as a former FBI Special Agent and my knowledge of the criminal justice system helps me to craft riveting crime fiction. I’ve written about murders and other crimes, and investigative techniques such as searches, surveillances, arrests, and interrogations. My characters who work in law enforcement aren’t always human. I like to blend crime fiction with horror, science fiction, and fantasy.


I usually write about five days a week, but I don’t have a regular schedule. When I sit down to write, I set a goal for myself, e.g., edit and submit a story, write a new scene, write a new poem, etc. On some days, I’ll write for more than eight hours. On other days, only for a few minutes. I tend to be most productive when I write at night. Sometimes I stay up past 3:00 AM to write.


DESI D: Name one horror author you admire and explain how they helped you become a better writer.


ALICIA HILTON: I’m an avid reader and admire many authors in the horror community. One of the authors whose writing has influenced me the most is Joe R. Lansdale because I love the way he blends genres. Joe’s writing can be gritty, suspenseful, and horrific. He’s also written stories that are so wonderfully bizarre, they made me laugh. And he creates fascinating, quirky characters. I love the way Joe’s writing crosses boundaries—he’s great at writing weird fiction.


DESI D: What is it about the art of storytelling that excites you? And of course, what is the next story we can look forward to reading?


ALICIA HILTON: Crafting fiction and poetry energizes me. I love to create characters who have complicated lives and put them in situations where they battle their demons—whether those demons are literal, other supernatural creatures, extraterrestrials, monstrous humans, or the characters’ own insecurities—sometimes we are our own worst enemies. I also enjoy world-building—crafting vivid settings. Making a story come to life and sharing it with readers is exciting!

“Welcome to the Organ Extraction Emporium: Become Extraterrestrial and Embrace a Better Life” in DARKNESS BLOOMS, one of several pieces that will be published in early 2023. For more information about my other upcoming publications and to subscribe to my newsletter, visit https://www.aliciahilton.com

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