Transcription

Geoff Bennett: It’s a debut novel that’s garnering attention not only for its suspense, but also for how the authors have found success in publishing. Matt and Harrison Query’s horror thriller is titled “Old Country.” Matt says he follows a young couple who buy the perfect detached house, only to discover the terror within.

Matt Query, author, “Old Country”: They learn in many ways that there is a spirit that inhabits their property and the value in general around their property that presents itself in a new and terrifying way according to each season.

Geoff Bennett: Matt Query wrote entire chapters of the novel on the online discussion site Reddit, in a first-person horror story forum called No Sleep. It wants to become an almost instant sensation, quickly catching the attention of book publishers and Netflix.

I spoke with Matt and Harrison Query last week about their new novel and its impact on book publishing.

Matt Query: I had been reading stories about lack of sleep for about a decade. And I thought eventually I might try to write one of my own, and my wife and I actually did that in real life near a little ranch, kinda in the middle of nowhere. Our property wasn’t haunted like it’s not in the book.

And so I think four or five months after I posted the story, someone contacted me on my Reddit account and introduced themselves as someone in the movie world in Hollywood and asked me if I wanted option, history, and I know nothing about this world. But I have a brother who works in this world. And so, I asked him to step in and hold my hand through the process. And that’s kind of how it went from the news on Reddit to the book and then to the movie.

Geoff Bennett: Harrison, why do you think this story resonates? Why do you think people are so drawn to this book?

Harrison Query, author, “Old Country”: I think it does a few things. I mean, I think it hits kind of classic Stephen King horror thriller notes. I think it’s set in an area of ​​the world that’s getting a lot of interest right now. I think you see it in TV shows like Yellowstone and a lot of other content being created. I think it’s a setting that people really care about that hasn’t been explored so thoroughly in the horror genre. But I think it’s kind of a unique genre and setting chorus that people have a big appetite for right now. And I think that’s the same thing that Hollywood saw too.

Geoff Bennett: Matt, how was the feedback from people in the online community who responded to you by reading what you were posting on Reddit? How did this shape the outcome of the book?

Matt Query:I definitely took some comments to heart in general, who would be the character in the No Sleep audience most interested in learning more and what little facets of lore and backstory people were interested in learning more , which didn’t match the real estate of one of a Reddit post, and so I was able to take direction and generally what people want to do – I wanted to have a little more doubt accordion .

Geoff Bennett: There are, I’m sure, other writers like you who will look at your story and think, how can I do something similar? I mean, what about your experience might be instructive for other people.

Matt Query: I think, you know, it’s a good thing to know that like the content that gets published, if it’s a good candidate, it’s going to get attention. Not always, but it’s, you know, you’re not just throwing something into the abyss. There are, you know, people now fishing for this stuff.

So I don’t think it’s a waste to post something and then go for it. You can absolutely attract attention. And since that project sold out, there have been other projects on Reddit and elsewhere that are very similar and have sold big in both film and TV publishing. So it’s happening more and more. And, you know, I think that kind of opens up access to the business in a really cool way.

Geoff Bennett: Well, Matt and Harrison Query, thank you very much for your time, and congratulations again on the success of this book.

Matt Query: Thank you very much for having us. We appreciate that.

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