Chris Haynie seems to be relatively unknown within the music scene but has likely been some way involved with things you’re familiar with, or at least aware of. Haynie is undoubtedly deserving of much more notice and acknowledgment as he’s an author, editor, publisher, and contributor to many important ventures in the indie music and fictional novel scenes.

He has already accomplished numerous achievements and seems to just be getting started. Haynie has plans and plenty of great ideas for further endeavors. UTG had the rare opportunity to speak with Chris Haynie about his feats and future goals. Read on and be enlightened.

UTG: Is The Honey Ditch your only book published as of now?

Yep, I have a short story in the first Revolution on Canvas, but The Honey Ditch is my only published book. “Published” is actually “self-published” by a few friends and me who have done various real and odd jobs in music over the last ten years. A lot of smart, generous people did a lot of dirt-cheap (or free, more often) editing and design work for the book.

UTG: What was your inspiration behind the book?

100 Years of Solitude, Pedro the Lion, my ongoing confusion about religion, the two girls I dated while I wrote it, The Cure, a Diego Rivera exhibit, Salvador Dali, The Art Institute of Chicago, and a river near my aunt and uncle’s house in Pennsylvania Amish country. Mostly, though, it was this image of a deer talking to a wounded hunter that I thought of one night. So I drafted the scene, then ended up building a few hundred more pages around it.

UTG: Are you currently working on any other projects?

I’m working on a collection of sci-fi stories set in a future where Earth’s agricultural systems are failing, and humans are returning to a more primitive state. I was working on an alternate history novel about Hernan Cortez, but got about 70 pages in and realized I needed to go to South America, and read about 6 more books if I was going to make that story happen. So, it’s on hold.

UTG: You were noted as being “The Author” for The Sound of Animals Fighting’s debut Tiger and the Duke. What did that entail exactly?

I wrote the accompanying story inside the CD. I got to sit down with the tracks, and a list of some of the original inspirational material and lyrics, and grow that into a super free-form story. All of The Sound of Animals Fighting’s music has always seemed fable-like to me, so I wanted to mimic that. I was very lucky to have my name anywhere near the other names on that project.

UTG: Did you do any further work with the band?

I wrote the story that goes along with Lover, the Lord Has Left Us. They actually used characters from the story (the wolves) in the album artwork, which was so extremely cool.

UTG: What was your involvement with Revolution on Canvas?

Co-editor, co-publisher, and grateful contributor. Rich Balling brought us the near-complete manuscript, and we helped polish it up, package it, and wrap up the last few contributions. “We” is my good friends Charlie Adams and Nate Israel who did an excellent job getting the project off the ground and into those first few stores.

UTG: Have you done any work with bands other than TSOAF?

Yep, but mostly bios and website copy. I wrote the back of one of Armor for Sleep’s DVDs, which was fun.

UTG: Any goals of yours that you’re yet to accomplish?

Writing something that scares people. Not like ghost / spooky scary, but like, “oh shit, I may not always have the luxuries and the comforts I’m accustomed to” scary. Really creeping someone out and shifting their perspective of reality seems like a good goal to me.

Written and conducted by Brian Lion

James Shotwell
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