Tuesday, November 15, 2011

The Dead Couple by Jason Krumbine - Interview : Pump Up Your Book Tour Stop

Jason Krumbine is the author behind the pulse pounding, wisecracking Alex Cheradon Series, the dead soul hunting Grym Brothers Series (including Two and a Half Dead Men, The Dead Couple and Better Off Dead), and the tongue-in-cheek paranormal romance “A Graveyard Romance.”

You can visit his website at www.jasonkrumbine.com or visit him at Twitter at www.twitter.com/jasonkrumbine and Facebook at www.facebook.com/jmkwriter.
You can also email him at onestrayword@gmail.com.

I'm excited to host Jason Krumbine and the 2nd book in his Grym Brothers Series on this tour stop.


Jack and Cindy were a happily married couple. She was an elementary school teacher. He was an aspiring children’s book author. They had the perfect life together, until the day they decided to kill themselves.

Suicides, by their very nature, tend to head directly into the afterlife.
Jack and Cindy’s souls never arrived.

Grim Reapers are real. They are governed by the Council of Reapers. Reapers are responsible for the capture and containment of dead souls that refuse to or cannot move on to the afterlife.

Thane and Mort Grym are two such reapers.


It’s two in the afternoon. The Grym brothers have been sitting in this pastel waiting room for the better part of forty minutes. There’s a black man across from them that keeps giving them a suspicious look, like they were going to jump up and steal his cane.

“So, you’re trapped on an island,” Mort starts again. He pauses and sneaks a glance at his brother.
“I’m not saying a thing,” Thane comments, watching him out of the corner of his eye.
“I just don’t want to get interrupted again,” Mort explains.
“And yet, here you are, interrupting yourself,” Thane points out.
Mort turns back to the magazine. “You’re trapped on an island and you’re allowed three things: one luxury item, one necessity item and one person,” he looks at his brother.
Thane takes a sip from his takeout cup, watching as two female assistants come back from their lunch break. They’re giggling about some silly story. They step through the door next to the reception window.
“Well?” Mort prompts.
“Well what?” Thane asks. “You didn’t ask a question.”
“It was a implied,” Mort says.
“Implied my ass.”
Mort sighs loudly. “Okay. Fine. You’re stranded on an island-”
“I’m pretty sure you can stop repeating the concept,” Thane interrupts. “I’ve got it by now.”
“I wasn’t sure,” Mort says. “Honestly, you seem like you’re more interested in the strangers walking around here than talking.”
“Yeah, sorry about that,” Thane says. “I shouldn’t let work come between us.”
“How would Stacy feel about you looking at all these women?” Mort asks.
“All what women?” Thane looks at him. “In the last forty minutes those were the first two women we’ve seen,” he points to where the assistants had gone.
“I’m pretty sure she wouldn’t be cool with you keeping count.”
Thane just looks at his brother for a second.
“Do you have any idea what we’re doing here?” he asks.
“Wasting my time?” Mort suggests.
Thane reaches over and flicks his brother’s ear.
“Ow,” Mort holds a hand against his bruised ear.
“A dying man asked us to find his daughter,” Thane says.
“Because you,” Mort pokes his brother in the chest, “asked him if there was anything we could do before he shuffled free of this mortal coil. So, as far as last requests go, doesn’t hold a lot of weight when you go fishing for one.”


How did you start your writing career?

Long ago, in a galaxy far, far away, I began my writing career when I was but a wee lad with following sentence:

“I do not want to write this sentence.”

Sometime between my 13th and 14th birthday I got over myself and discovered the joy of making things up! My first full-length novel, Fruitbasket From Hell, was written shortly after my 18th birthday. Up until then it was mostly short stories or serialized stories. I set myself a challenge to see if I could write a full-length novel and low and behold, I did. And I haven’t stopped since. With Better Off Dead I have now written 12 complete novels.

Tell us about your current release.

Better Off Dead is the third in the Grym Brothers series, preceded by Two And A Half Dead Men and The Dead Couple. It’s the halfway point in the series and the first time where I really break formula a bit. In the previous books the brothers dealt specifically with grabbing renegade dead souls. But with Better Off Dead, I wanted to focus on the macro-story of the series a bit and play around with bringing the problems to the brothers, rather than the brothers going to the problems.

Tell us about your next release.

Dead City is up next. It’s book four in the Grym Brothers series. A lot of the dangling plot threads come to a head in this book as I set the stage for the finale in books 5 and 6. This is also the first book where we’ll really get into the mythology of the Grim Reapers and explore some of the inner workings of the system.

What is the hardest part of writing your books?

Starting. There’s nothing more intimidating than a blank page or screen. Sometimes lightning will strike and I’ll great idea for a new book quickly. Everything will be awesome and fantastic and wonderful, but it’s still a long road from a general idea to words on the page.

Plotter or Pantser? Why?

I used to be a by-the-seat-of-your-pants kind of guy. Up until Two And A Half Dead Men I just sat down with my notepad and pen(I used to also write all my first drafts by hand), took my idea and ran with it. Sometimes I would have the last page written, but beyond that I wrote the book as it came to me.

When I started Two And A Half Dead Men my wife and I worked out a publishing plan that had me writing and publishing a book a month. To meet that deadline I had to start outlining my books beforehand.

On the upside, by outlining I don't run into as many plot problems, such as getting to the end of the book and having no answer to who the bad guy was or how everything tied together(that happened twice, once with Fruitbasket From Hell and then again with the sequel A Is For Amnesia, B Is For Bullet. Nothing like forgetting to add the bad guy to the book. Awkward...). But nothing beats the exhilarating rush of just figuring out the book on the go. Outlining kind of makes it feel like a "real job" because it actually involves working beforehand. But I can't argue with the results.

What books have most influenced your life?

Not many books have specifically influenced me. It’s been more the writers. Stephen King, Michael Crichton, Joss Whedon, Aaron Sorkin, Brian Michael Bendis and Grant Morrison are some of my favorite writers. I find myself drawing more from screenwriters or comic book writers for inspiration and influence mostly because they use sets of tools that you don’t normally see utilized in prose fiction.

What are your favorite TV shows?

Let’s see. Joss Whedon’s Angel and Firefly. Aaron Sorkin’s West Wing(only the first 4 seasons) Sports Night and Studio 60. Doctor Who. I have fondness in my heart for all things Star Trek thanks to an early indoctrination by my father. As for stuff that’s currently on the air, I love Community and Psych. My wife and I are also really enjoying Up All Night.

Where do you come up with your titles?

Usually I title my books by coming up with the most interesting combination of words possible. Sometimes this leads to a winner, Outlawed Love(which is really my wife’s title), sometimes it leads to a stinker, Reflections Of The Pink Elephant(later re-titled to Just Dial 911 For Assistance).

For the Grym Brothers my wife and I were talking one night about Charlie Sheen’s public breakdown (this was a few months ago) and we were kind of bummed that there wasn’t a way to tie into some of his current popularity. I was plotting out the first Grym book at the same time and everything started to line up. After Two And A Half Dead Men I had the brilliant idea of naming all of the Grym Brothers books after popular sitcoms. The Dead Couple is, of course, The Odd Couple. Better Off Dead is take off of Better Of Ted, which itself is a take off of the phrase “better off dead.” And the newest one, Dead City, is Spin City.

That night my wife and I came up with a long list potential titles, almost 30, so the Grym Brothers probably won’t be going anywhere any time soon.



Wednesday, November 15
Guest blogging at Literarily Speaking

Thursday, November 17
Interviewed at As the Pages Turn

Friday, November 18
Chat with Jason at:

Join Jason Krumbine at the Pump Up Your Book Live! November Author Chat / Book Giveaway Party on Friday, November 18 starting at 8 p.m. eastern!

Jason will be giving away three e-copies of his books in The Grym Brothers Series!  You could win a copy of Two and a Half Dead, The Dead Couple and Better Off Dead simply by attending the  chat and asking Jason a question.  All there is to it!

For details on chat, visit the official chat page for the November authors at Pump Up Your Book Live!



Shah Wharton said...

I love the blog look! Makes me feel all seasonal :D. Another excellent tour stop/interview. May have to head over to check it out. :D X

Jason Krumbine said...

Thanks for hosting me today. I do love talking about myself :) Anyway, it was a great interview, thanks!