A Reintroduction

Hello again. I thought it long overdue that I reintroduce myself to the reading world. Well, where do I begin? I guess I’ll start with my name.

I author books under the moniker, Clarke Collins. Why Clarke Collins? I don’t know. At the time I selected the name I had a reason…not quite sure now. I believe it came from the late great Jackie Collins and a beautiful model I saw one day named Clarke. Either way, it felt right, so I ran with it. But selecting a pen name is not where I began this journey. It started with a crime. The act of plagiarism.

In the third grade, I’d seen the film adaptation of Stephen King’s Christine and I thought to myself, I want to write a story about a bad car. So, I borrowed his idea and wrote a short story called Crash. It wasn’t plagiarism because it wasn’t a word-for-word adaptation (I had yet to read the book). But the storyline was similar. It was also awful. The best that came out of the experience was that it fostered a love of writing within me. Though the story was bloody and horrific, the teacher stapled the notebook pages together and praised it to my mom on parent-teacher conference day. The feeling of accomplishment her praise stoked in me, was another step in my journey to becoming a writer. Today, it’s not movies that inspire me most, it’s life and the variety of art around me.

As a pop culture writer and former film critic, I’ve drawn inspiration from a deep well of influences. As an author, I’ve been inspired by the works of Toi Derricotte, Ai Ogawa, Clive Barker, Toni Morrison, Octavia Butler, Mary Gaitskill, Tama Janowitz, and Gillian Flynn to name a few. Through reading and studying my betters — as well as observing our ever-changing culture and current events — I’ve gained a broad range of tools that have enabled me to define and layer my approach to storytelling. I love writing tales that touch upon the psychological effects of love and relationships. How they shape us for the better and for the worst. As we move forward into the summer, I’m focused on finishing up a short story for a horror anthology and releasing my next romance novella. If all goes well, maybe a full-length novel will be on the horizon as well. Either way, keep an eye on the blog for updated info on my progress. It has been a long journey. Too long. But I’m getting there. I hope you’ll take this ride with me.

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