An Unlikely Mini Interview with Virginia M. Mohlere
Do you find clowns to be a) creepy b) downright terrifying c) mildly amusing d) laugh out loud funny e) some combination of the above or f) none of the above (please supply your own alternate adjective/description)?
It depends completely on the clown. I find the more-human-looking clowns of, say, Big Apple Circus much less creepy than Ronald McDonald. Bozo? Forget about it: terrifying.
On a related note, what is you earliest clown-related memory, and how did it scar you and or shape your view of clowns?
I had a clown puppet given to me when I was in the hospital as a very small child -- an almost Pierrot-looking clown with a sad expression. She was my faithful companion for many years. It definitely gave me a soft spot for the sad doll characters of folktales, like the Nutcracker, Petrushka (my love of ballet might be showing here) and the Steadfast Tin Soldier.
A funnier clown memory was my “brilliant” idea for my sister and I to take the clown dolls our grandmother made us and chase my little brother around the house with them … right after having watched “Killer Klowns from Outer Space.” Elder siblings: terrorizing the young and innocent since time out of mind.
What lead you to take the particular approach to clowns you used in your story, A Million Tiny Ropes?
The Roberts started with that whisper, “we’ll always catch you.” I definitely creeped myself out right from the beginning, writing that one. From there it was just a pile-on of things I personally find uncomfortable: things looking the same that shouldn’t, people staring out you in places they shouldn’t, and that pervasive feeling of not being able to get away. *shudder*
Unrelated to clowns (or not, as the case may be), what else are you working on/have you published recently/have upcoming that you’d like people to know about?
I recently went through that uncomfortable phase of realizing I had leveled up, so it was best to just trunk a bunch of stories and hope they never see the light of day. It’s a clean slate for me! I’d better get busy.
STEP RIGHT UP! GET YER CLOWNS HERE!
Clowns: The Unlikely Coulrophobia Remix is hot off the presses! So get your hot, pressed clowns today! Or if you prefer your clowns cold-pressed, never fear. A clown is nothing if not adaptable.
22 tales to horrify and delight, by authors Derek Manuel, T. Jane Berry, J.H. Pell, Jeff Wolf, Kristen Roupenian, Carolyn M. Yoachim, Mari Ness, Evan Dicken, Carlie St. George, Line Henriksen, Virginia M. Mohlere, Dayle A. Dermatis, Jason Arias, Joe Nazarre, Karlo Yeager-Rodruigez, Sara K. McNeilly, Chris Kuriata, Cassandra Khaw, Cate Gardner, Charles Payseur, Chillbear Latrigue, and Holly Schofield, with an introduction by Robin Blyn and illustrations by Bryan Prindiville.