Pardon me, would you care for a bit of ‘Fresh Meat’?
Oh goodie, a snack!
The next fiendishly delightful demon to slither his way down our walkway of The Damned is Jon Olson, a.k.a. ‘Fresh Meat’. Sporting the latest in couture Security Checkpoint wear. Let’s see what Jon has hidden under that skirt of his, shall we???
Fresh Meat Comin’ in Hot!
It kind of reads like an epitaph, doesn’t it?
Yes, I am all of these things and am proud as hell of each one of them, especially being a father. That being said, it doesn’t really paint the whole picture of just who ‘Fresh Meat’ is. So for the next few hundred words, while not trying to bore you to death, I’ll open up a little bit more.
To begin with my name is Jon “Fresh Meat” Olson. I’m married with a six month old daughter and we live in Eastern Passage, Nova Scotia, Canada. We share our home with 4 cats that at times are lucky to be alive. I work full time at the Halifax Robert L. Stanfield International Airport as a Security Checkpoint Coordinator. It can be a stressful job but constantly meeting and interacting with airport staff and the travelling public has definitely helped to fuel the creative juices. I also graduated from Saint Francis Xavier University (St. FX) with a BA in History.
While I do follow a number of sports (rugby, hockey, football), the one sport that I love is baseball. The Toronto Blue Jays are my team, as frustrating as it has been in the last twenty years, and I’ve been a fan since I was seven. During a trip down to the United States to visit family in 1995, my relatives managed to get tickets to a Milwaukee Brewers game. Somehow, it worked out that the Blue Jays were in town! My then-favorite pitcher, Pat Hengten, was pitching and the Blue Jays won 8-4! It was a great time. After that I made it a goal of mine to see them play live in the Sky dome (or Rogers Center as it is called now) and last summer I finally made it there. Three games against the Tampa Bay Rays and although they lost all three games, I got to see my current favorite pitcher RA Dickey in action. Great times.
I’m sure most of us get asked, why do you write horror?
For the most part, it’s fun. Coming up with characters that seem real and throwing them into terrifying situations with horrible antagonists is fun. Granted, creating all of the necessary background information to make it seem real can be tedious and difficult, but once that is sorted out, it’s amazing to watch it all unfold as you type or scrawl each word onto a blank page. If you’re the type that doesn’t like to plan a lot of the actual story, there’s a thrill in seeing how your characters react to the situations you place them in, how they get out of it, and quite often, the characters will even surprise you, taking your story in an entirely different direction that you originally thought.
I have Attention Deficit Disorder which makes writing quite challenging. Even though I take medication for it, it still takes a lot of focus just to be able to sit down for any length of time and write. As a result, I’m a slow writer. My daily word count isn’t very high, only 500 words, and that’s for a reason. Initially I had the goal of writing 2,000 words a day but there had been many days where I just couldn’t concentrate enough to write and frustration would set in. It became apparent that 2,000 words just wasn’t a realistic daily goal, and with even less time after the birth of my daughter, I knew I had to cut down. This has worked out quite well and as a result, I have had no problems meeting my goal.
So far in my writing career, short stories and flash fiction have been my main focus in terms of published work. I’m still working at becoming proficient in these areas and am enjoying it so far. I’ve written two novellas but they will most likely remain unpublished, at least for now, and are sitting in a drawer. The ADD I mentioned earlier made writing both of them very slow going and I found that it was actually counterproductive. I just didn’t have the focus or time to work on those while still writing and submitting short stories for publication. I do have plans to write and publish novellas/novels in the not-so-distant future but for now, I’m sticking with shorter pieces.
Another area I hope to branch off into is writing comics and graphic novels. Growing up, I was a huge comic fan and even self-published some shitty black and white photocopied comics of my own. At that time though, I was more into drawing than writing/plotting a coherent storyline. Collecting comics eventually got away from me once I hit junior high and high school, but now I’m back into the game and loving it. Comics have had such an impact on me that if you were to ask me who my favorite and most influential writers are, comic writers would out number fiction writers.
Well, I think that gives you a little more insight into who I am. Writing this was actually one of the most difficult things I’ve written in a long time. It was challenging even though it shouldn’t have been. There’s that little piece of advice that’s often thrown around that says write something that you’d want to read. This was no different. What was hard was the notion that I had to take what I already knew about myself and write it in a way that would make me want to read it, let alone somebody else. With that in mind, I hope you’re not snoring. .
Thanks for taking the time to read, guys!
About Jon Olson: On top of working full time as a Security Checkpoint Coordinator at the Halifax Robert L. Stanfield International Airport and still learning the ropes of being a father, Jon is also a writer of horror and dark fiction. While he writes predominantly about the dark and horrible, he will step out into other areas if the interest is there. He finds enjoyment in expressing his creativity through fiction, poetry, songwriting, painting and thrashing the crap out of his bass guitar.
Feel free to connect with him on Twitter: @jonolsonauthor; follow his blog ‘Monster Lane’; and of course at Pen of the Damned where you can also follow the rest of the talented, dark and demented souls!
Read Jon’s Latest Post on Pen of the Damned
I hit the ground just like they taught us and immediately go to work separating from the parachute. Echoes of machine gun fire and distant explosions rattle my nerves.
I hope to God they dropped us in the right place. Scanning my surroundings, nothing looks familiar.
Waist-high grass provides me with enough cover as long as I remain crouched. I wish I hadn’t lost my equipment satchel during the jump; all I have is my combat knife.
Although it is dark, I see a tree line not too far from my location and bolt for it. Running, while trying to remain as low as I can, I fully expect machine gun fire to open up on me but thankfully it doesn’t.
As soon as I’m in the cover of the tree line, I get down on one knee and try to get my bearings as well as my breath.
Through thick branches on the other side, I see lights.
Edging closer, I see that it is a small German outpost. A small descending trench system leads into a wider dugout with a camouflage canopy over top. Voices are murmuring to one another and I think there are at least two German soldiers in there. I bet I could…
“What are you doing here?” a man asks in German.
I slowly turn my head and make out the distinctive black uniform of an SS officer.
Without hesitating, I pull out my knife and leap onto him, my blade finding its mark in his throat. Blood comes gurgling out from the wound as I cover his mouth with my other hand; he quickly dies.