Big beasties fascinate me.
Some of that fascination stems from early film viewing. I remember being taken to the cinema to see The Blob. I couldn't have been more than seven or eight, and it scared the crap out of me. The original incarnation of Kong has been with me since around the same time.
Similarly, I remember the BBC showing re-runs of classic creature features late on Friday nights, and THEM! in particular left a mark on my psyche.
I've also got a Biological Sciences degree, and even while watching said movies, I'm usually trying to figure out how the creature would actually work in nature - what would it eat? How would it procreate? What effect would it have on the environment around it?
On top of that, I have an interest in cryptozoology, of creatures that live just out of sight of humankind, and of the myriad possibilities that nature, and man's dabbling with it, can throw up.
Back at the movies again, another early influence was the Kirk Douglas / Tony Curtis movie THE VIKINGS. There's that, and when I was very young I would be taken ten miles over the hill to the shore at Largs on the Ayrshire coast. There's a memorial there to The Battle of Largs where Scots fought off Vikings. The story was told to me so often it sunk into my soul, and as kids we spent many a day in pretend swordfights as Vikings (when it wasn't Zorro - but that's another story
All those things were going round in my head when I first sat down to write BERSERKER. And there might be some of THE THIRTEENTH WARRIOR in there too.
For Tor and Skald this is their first viking raid, their minds are full of thoughts of honor and glory. What awaits them are beasts - huge, hairy and fanged, the Alma will not suffer intruders in their domain. When the Vikings slaughter a female Alma they soon find themselves in the middle of a bloody revenge. Now they must stand and be counted, for their destinies await in the mountains, where the hairy ones dance.
I highly recommend Berserker to anyone looking for a fast, fun and exciting horror story that is as well-written as it is original. - SCOTT WHITMORE