Interview with Peter Topside
I’m excited to share this brief interview with horror author Peter Topside, who has just released his second book in the Preternatural trilogy!!
In the first book readers are introduced to the town of Meadowsville, the home of the most popular urban myth, Mr. Smith. This vicious, vampire-like entity rules over this booming town by any means necessary, slaughtering its citizens, and upholding a long-standing tradition. Several residents form an unlikely alliance to combat the common threat of this dangerous monster and embark on an undertaking that will change each of
them and their town forever.
In April of 2021, horror aficionado and author, Peter Topside, released the eagerly-awaited second installment, Preternatural: Evolution, a fast-paced psychological horror that is equal parts grisly and thought-provoking, leaving readers to question right from wrong.
Set fifteen years after the vampire Blackheart was defeated, Meadowsville is left desolate and broken. Alexandra has returned to take over her father’s church but is struggling to find her true purpose. Torn by her shaky loyalty to Christian Reed—the unstable town antihero who vanquished Blackheart years ago—and increasing efforts at seduction and manipulation from Blackheart himself, she is forced to face her deepest traumas and insecurities. As the town’s only hope, Alexandra must gather her strength to transcend her terror. Will she defeat adversity or will her failure lose the very soul of Meadowsville?
Question: What inspired you to write the Preternatural series?
Peter Topside: I have always had a passion for writing and publishing my stories has been a lifelong goal. I spent my entire life being a fan of horror, and through my own personal experiences, developed characters and a story that were a really unique blend.
Q: What sets Preternatural apart from other horror books?
PT: I have never read a book like Preternatural. Each book, while strongly linked to one another, has its own specific tone and story. I’ve read many horror books and felt that they sometimes become too complicated and overdetailed, and you lose track of the characters and plot. That was something I worked hard to avoid. So my books are easy reads, and can either be read ‘surface-level’ for the basic story and be purely entertainment, or they can be analyzed and picked apart to see the deeper themes, patterns, and other dynamics happening on each page.
Q: What do you hope readers will take away from the series?
PT: I hope that my readers walk away thinking to themselves, “Wow, that was an interesting experience.” And honestly, I am just thrilled to have people read something that I’ve worked so long and hard to achieve. The trilogy is very much a definitive horror story, but I hope it inspires people to combat their fears, insecurities, and traumas, and ultimately, never losing hope in themselves.
Q: There is a thought-provoking religious experience detailed in the series. Are you a person of faith? What type of religious experience should readers expect to read about?
PT: I was raised in the church, but after many awful experiences in several different churches, I left religion altogether and was very jaded for many years. It took a lot of soul-searching and further difficult experiences that caused me to develop a very unique relationship with God that reinvigorated my spirituality. So in a way, no, I am not religious, but I am very much spiritual. I respect and appreciate everyone’s different beliefs, whether conforming to a specific religion,
developing their own methods, or not believing in anything at all.
Q: How did you develop your characters? And which of them do you have the most connection with?
PT: I have a strong connection with all of my characters. I originally started off with the basic premise, and then wrote down emotions and developed characters based off those feelings. I wanted to be genuine in how these people would react under the, sometimes very difficult and extreme, circumstances of the story. And the only way that I could do that, is to experience it all myself and/or watch others around me closely over long periods. Once I got my characters established and put in the same story together, the books practically wrote themselves. I worked very hard to make
sure they felt organic and not forced.
About the Author
Peter Topside is an accomplished chef and baker, movie fanatic, a proud father and husband, and a Clinical Exercise Physiologist by trade. His books are the culmination of his own personal, life-changing journey of triumphing over the PTSD of his traumatic upbringing. He hopes to inspire readers to bravely fight their own battles with anxiety and depression.