RQOH: Let's start with the basics, Mr. Doupe´ how did you get started in the horror genre?
TD: I started a website called Fun With Horror as a hobby. I was really impressed with Real Queen of Horror when I stumbled upon it one day and liked what you were doing. I wanted a place where I could share my thoughts on genre film. I didn’t really expect it to catch on. I did it more for myself, but it began to draw in readers and I started to take it more seriously.
A couple of months after starting my website, Ryan Turek at Shock Till You Drop sent out a tweet about needing interns. I jumped at the opportunity and submitted for the position. Lucky for me, he thought I was a fit for the site and I am still writing for Shock now as a contributing writer. Writing for Shock led to opportunities with FEARnet, Fandango, Fangoria, and more!
RQOH: You have become well known to horror fans; especially, the horror fans that look for honest, no non-sense reviews and views on the horror genre. You are someone who doesn't play favorites and honestly LOVES the genre. It's beyond obvious to me and to many others, that you absolutely adore the genre and have plenty of knowledge to share. How did you come to fall in love with the world of horror? And what inspired you to share your knowledge?
TD: I think I fell in love with horror when my parents tried to forbid me from watching it as a young kid. The horror genre became much more interesting when it was slightly out of reach. When I was a in high school, I worked in a video store and loved re-shelving the horror section as well as taking titles home to check out. My fascination with horror has steadily grown in to more of an obsession.
RQOH: What would you say is your hope for the horror genre?
TD: I would love to see some of the outstanding independent filmmakers get some mainstream exposure. I absolutely love filmmakers like Dave Parker, Todd E. Freeman, and Steven C. Miller, but they don’t always receive the recognition they deserve. It would be great if viewers were able to find their work by means other than word of mouth or viral marketing. It’s frustrating to see mainstream films that are not necessarily of superior quality granted marketing budgets larger than that of an entire indie production.
RQOH: I'm sure people ask you this questions thousands of times but, what is your favorite horror movie or book?
TD: I have so many that I’m not sure I can pick one. So, I’ll give you my top five. Granted, it’s always changing, but as of this moment, it is:
Suspiria, Halloween, A Nightmare on Elm Street, April Fool’s Day, and Videodrome.
RQOH: I need to know! What type of horror do you find the most frightening? Is there a certain type you find the most disturbing? And! If you have one, what film scares you the most?
TD: Well, since you need to know… (Laughs). I probably find home invasion films the most terrifying. I think they really hits home because home invasion films are as realistic as horror films get. The perpetrator(s) are not superhuman or invincible, so it’s more believable. It’s also frightening because we think of our home as a sacred and safe place, so to have someone take that from you and hold your hostage in your own home is despicable and terrifying.
I don’t usually get particularly scared in films, but I found The Strangers pretty frightening. The ‘invaders’ were so relentless and there were ample jump scares and legitimate scares alike.
And there's Coco Letigra with Tyler...she's his hat. She's so fashionable!
RQOH: You should have seen this one coming but is there a movie that is your least favorite? As in, you absolutely disliked it and really do not want your eyes to suffer any more?
TD: I don’t know if you saw my review, but I really hated ATM. I thought that the acting, the script, the direction, and the dialogue were atrocious. I really thought casting that guy from Drake and Josh was idiotic and I seem to remember that there was a lot of frat boy humor that was offensive to a variety of minority groups.
RQOH: How does it feel that you're working for one of the oldest and top horror magazines, Fangoria? And how did it come about for you?
TD: I love writing for Fangoria. Being a contributing writer is such an outstanding experience. I would love to continue to write for them for as long as they will have me.
I wrote for a variety of online outlets before I approached Fangoria. They like to see writers build up an established work sample before they will look at your work. I’ve had three pieces featured in the mag and look forward to getting to work with them further.
I also have a piece in development with Rue Morgue that will be feature in an upcoming issue!
RQOH: I''m looking forward to checking out your feature in Rue Morgue! Was working at Fangoria always dream of yours?
TD: It has been a dream for a long time. Ever since I started to get serious about writing, I began setting my sites of Fang and Rue Morgue. I actually have my first piece for Fang framed above my desk in my office.
It’s an interview with my friend Lori Lethin, who played the final girl in Bloody Birthday.
RQOH: I know that you also write for FEARnet! How exciting? How did that come about for you? What inspired you to work for FEARnet?
TD: FEARnet was the second outlet I began writing for. I had written for Shock for about a year and wasn’t able to make a living solely from freelancing for one outlet. I still had a day job at that point and wanted to try writing full time. I began to look for more opportunities. I contacted Lawrence, my current editor at FEARnet, and to my surprise, he was actually familiar with my work for Shock. It’s been a great time working with FEARnet. I love the team there and they have given me a lot of great opportunities.
Thanks to FEARnet, Shock, Fandango, and some of the other outlets I contribute to, I have had the extraordinary opportunity to write full time!
RQOH: You're truly living the dream! Before becoming a writer for in this awesome genre, what was your "job title"?
TD: I was a retail store manager for T-Mobile and then I went on to work in management at Starbucks.
RQOH: Was there ever a time that you had to balance perhaps your "day job" to "dream job" as a horror writer?
TD: Absolutely. I was working full time, running my blog, and writing for Shock – as an intern - when I first started out! It was absolutely crazy. I didn’t have a life. I barely saw daylight. But I wouldn’t change a thing. That time period was a little hectic, but it led to some phenomenal opportunities.
It sounds obvious, but the more you put in, the more you get out of it.
RQOH: It's a dream of mine to visit New Zealand, so of course I'm curious! What was it like going to Auckland, New Zealand to visit the Evil Dead set?
TD: It was amazing. Oh my gosh. It was fantastic. Getting to meet the cast, the FX team, Fede Alvarez – the director, and tour the set was such an incredible experience. New Zealand is beautiful.
I would love to go back with a little more free time to see the country and do some tourism activities. Watching the movie is really surreal because I was there while it was being made!
RQOH: What other sets have you visited?
TD: I have visited the set of the upcoming Child’s Play film (Curse of Chucky), the set of Dead in Tombstone, and the set of the NBC Television series Grimm. I also had the chance to go to Romania for the production of a film called Dead in Tombstone, which was awesome.
One day, I woke up to an email from Ryan at Shock saying, “Hey, want to go to Romania?” Three weeks later, I was in Europe for the first time!
RQOH: Ever since you became a writer, who are some of the incredible people you’ve met?
TD: Wow! There have been a lot. I have had the opportunity to do phoners with Malcolm McDowell and Vincent D’Onofrio. Both have worked with Stanley Kubrick who was one of my most favorite directors. I have met Dina Meyer (Starship Troopers), Anthony Michael Hall (Steven King’s The Dead Zone TV Series), Reggie Lee (Drag Me to Hell), Lou Taylor Pucci (Evil Dead), Jeffrey Dean Morgan (Watchmen), James Duvall (Donnie Darko), Adam Green (Holliston), Brad Dourif (Child’s Play), and more.
I feel so fortunate to get to chat with people that I have long admired and looked up to.
RQOH: Out of all the people you met, was there anyone you found the most inspiring or perhaps even your favorite? Your favorite as in you'd love to bake cookies with him/her or even go to Starbucks.
TD: I would love to bake cookies and go to Starbucks with Laura Ortiz. I ran in to her at a sushi bar at Comic-Con last year. She was there with a friend and I approached her to tell her how much I adore her. She was absolutely darling and the kind of person I would definitely gravitate towards. I am dying to interview her so I can gush some more. (Laughs).
RQOH: You're amazingly successful and such an influence to many people who are interested in or would love to ultimately become a part of the horror journalism community. What advice do you have for those people?
TD: Wow. Thank you! Flattery will get you everywhere. I think that the best thing people can do to succeed is to simply stay motivated. It sounds obvious, but a lot of people don’t necessarily want to buckle down and put in the time. Blogging and YouTube are great ways to get your name out there and build a work sample. I used to update my blog daily when I was first starting out. That type of discipline lets prospective employers know that you have a certain degree of determination. Then, when I first started with Shock, I would always turn in assignments early and ask for extra opportunities. I was fortunate in that Ryan trusted me and continued to give me more and more work.
It’s such a competitive industry that if you don’t market yourself and show that you can do the job better than the countless people that would love to be in your position, then you run the risk of being replaced.
RQOH: And lastly, what can we all look forward from you next, Mr. Doupe´?
TD: I mentioned it earlier, but I have piece coming out in Rue Morgue. I would also love to do some work for men’s lifestyle mags like GQ and Esquire. My heart will always be in horror and I will always stay true to that, but I would like to expand and increase my work sample.
RQOH: Thank you for taking the time to do this interview. I'm thankful and completely honored. I wish you nothing but great success! Continue to be awesome!
TD: Thanks for talking with me. I certainly appreciate it!! You are a star, Zena.
RQOH: (Laughs). Well! You know, I try!
For more information on the talented very magical Tyler Doupe':