Big Time Books is the brainchild of Eric Miller, who along with a loose conglomeration of show biz professionals gathers at night in sinister places (okay, hot dog and pizza joints) to weave tales of fear and dread. Most of these stories are about the horrors of being forced to do free script rewrites, but sometimes the chronicles drift to darker, more terrifying subjects. The best of these tales are being collected into Big Time Books for your reading pleasure.
“We plan to harness the writing talent of our creative network to produce new and exciting books, stories, and audio books,” says Eric Miller. “Currently we are working on two short story anthologies, and hope to branch into novels and movie adaptions if we don’t screw up too bad.”
Miller has worked in independent film for over twenty years as a Screenwriter, Head of Production, Director of Development, Producer, Production Manager, and other exciting, fun filled, low stress jobs.
His screenplay credits include Night Skies, The Shadow Men, Mask Maker and Swamp Shark, as well as the Sy Fy Channel epic movie Ice Spiders which was said by the Hollywood Reporter to be “…first rate Entertainment” and by Dread Central horror web site to “spin a web of mirth and mayhem,” as well as prompting a monologue and parody skit on The Late Show With Craig Ferguson. He also has a few scripts lurking “in development,” and has done uncredited rewrites on other produced films.
He has a lifelong passion for books and reading, and has been dreaming of starting a small press for many years. Technology has finally made the dream possible, and though it could turn into a nightmare, at least he will have material for a new story.
[HN]: So you come from a screenwriter background?
[EM]: That’s right. I’m the criminal mastermind/screenwriter behind such movies as Ice Spiders and Mask Maker and a few other Indie horror/sci-fi extravaganzas. I also wrote a few as-yet-unproduced screenplays like Dog Soldiers 2 and have optioned a number of my own spec scripts that are in various states of development. I’ve also been on the other side of the desk as a development and production exec – and have logged over 20 years in movie production – so I’ve pretty much seen screenwriting from every angle.
[HN]: What inspired you to take a run at Big Time Books?
[EM]: All of my writer and director friends had great projects that for one reason or another didn’t make it as movies or TV shows, and I wanted those stories to find an audience and not just die on a shelf. And since I love books and having a small press was an old dream of mine, putting some of those ideas into print just made sense. And the current state of technology was the final key. The E-Book revolution, and Print On Demand publishing enabled me to get the first book off the ground without a million dollars or a 20 year background in typesetting. Since I don’t come from a publishing background I made sure I did a ton of research, and thankfully I had a lot of help from friends who had taken the publishing leap before me.
[HN]: What’s your worst Hollywood experience?
[EM]: Other than doing script rewrites, I would have to say my worst experience was having to fire two well-meaning, hard-working Interns because a producer we were working for blamed them for something they didn’t do and ordered me to do it. I had to crush them on their first movie set, turning the best day of their life into the worst. Welcome to Hollywood.
[HN]: I guess we should try to be even-handed about this. What’s your best Hollywood experience?
[EM]: Hiring those two interns back after the producer came to his senses. Oh, and the insane nightly parties in the Hollywood Hills, non-stop hot babes and booze and racing Ferrari’s up and down Sunset and swimming naked in the pool at the Chateau Marmont after shooting up the bar with Mac-10’s. Hollywood really is ten times more awesome than you can imagine in your wildest dreams – so quit your job, pack up the car and head for the coast. Endless riches await you, all you have to do is show up. Yeah, right.
[HN]: Hell Comes To Hollywood is your first effort with Big Time Books. Tell us about it.
[EM]: Hell Comes To Hollywood is a horror anthology featuring 20 original short stories set in Hollywood and was written by a bunch of screenwriters, directors, producers and other people working in the film biz one way or another. There’s a wide variety of horror in it, from gore-fests to chilling character studies to comedy horror, some pretty wild imagination is going on in each piece. And though it is obviously fiction, the writers’ familiarity with the entertainment industry also gives you a peek behind the scenes of how things work in Hollywood. If you like movies and horror, I think you’ll get a kick out of it.
[HN]: Do you have your next Big Time Books project in motion already?
[EM]: Well, Hollywood loves a sequel, right? I am getting a lot of calls already for Hell Comes To Hollywood II so that is on the table. I’m also gearing up for another anthology called 18 Wheels of Horror which is stories set in the trucking world. Evil Big Rigs. Haunted Trucks Stops. Smokey and the Bandit vs. Beelzebub T. Justice, that kind of thing. Should be fun and scary. And I am planning a couple of non-fiction books too, behind the scenes Hollywood stuff.
[HN]: What about your personal writing? Are you currently working on any screenplays? Or have you branched out into novels?
[EM]: Editing the book has gotten me back into prose writing after many years away, and I am loving the change. I’m revisiting some short stories of my own, and have started turning an unsold – but very well reviewed – screenplay into a novel. On the screenplay front, I am focusing on an epic sci-fi/action script trilogy with my writer friend Kilian Kerwin that will hopefully blow everyone’s socks off when we get it done. I’m also working on a throw-back Haunted House script, an homage to the greats of the genre The Haunting and Hell House. And of course in my spare time I am writing a magic coming-of-age post-apocalyptic erotic vampire bondage novel to jump on the Twilight/Hunger Games/50 Shades/Harry Potter bandwagon.
[HN]: Anything to add?
[EM]: I am just really happy the book turned out so well and is getting lots of attention and good reviews. The writers and the stories deserve the recognition.