Although I love to write, especially scary stories, I don’t really like writing about myself. Maybe I just don't scare myself enough. Unless of course I’m the victim of a brutal killing in one of my own horror stories. I haven’t been the hero yet. Might’ve been the killer, but I'd rather not say for which story. But here are a few things about me, just in case you're interested.
I write anything that comes to mind, but for some reason that mainly consists of horror, whether in the form of short stories, novels, comics, plays or movies. There's a movie-in-the-making for one of my short stories, Portico, which is already available in my short story collection, Lost in the Dark.
I was born on the 9th of April 1980 in Walvisbay, Namibia, and grew up with two older sisters.
My parents decided to move to South Africa and we settled in Upington, which is the warmest place south of the Sahara, in my opinion.
To make it short, I moved to Bloemfontein after high school where I got a four year Higher Education Diploma as well as a honors degree in Education Leadership and Management, and I’ve been teaching since 2005. I got married in March 2007 to my friend's sister and we've got two lovely dogs to keep me busy when I’m not writing. I started writing in November 2008 when, amongst many other things, I realized I wasn’t challenging myself anymore. For now I write mainly horror because it really gets me excited; makes me feel alive. Nothing like death to make you appreciate life.
Since then my short stories have been published 57 times by Be-a-better-writer, Twisted Dreams Magazine, The New Flesh, Flashes-in-the-dark, GhastlyDoor, MicroHorror, Pill Hill Press, Dark Minds Press, Machete Moonlight Horror Fiction Magazine, Pages of Stories, Bewildering Stories, Weirdyear, The Fringe Magazine, Flashshot, Postcard Shorts, Morpheus Tales, B-Wasp, Fiction 365, Dark Moon Books, Black Petals, Silver Blade Magazine, Tales of the Zombie War, Danse Macabre, New Contrast, Short-Story.Me, Darker Minds, Indigo Rising Magazine, Fear And Trembling, Rymfire Books, Crystal Lake Publishing, Bloemskryfsels and in three MWC charity anthologies.
I’m a Moderator for the greatest writers' forum around, Mywriterscircle.com. I am also helping out The South African Literary Journal, New Contrast, as an Assistant Submissions Editor since September 2011. As of July 2012, I'm the proud owner of Crystal Lake Publishing, which I hope to turn into a long-running family business. Crystal Lake Publishing publishes horror short story collections and anthologies. The TOC's are filled with some amazing horror authors.
Other than that I’ve jumped off a bridge in Zimbabwe (don’t worry, there was a bungee cord around my leg - it's not like I'm a zombie or something), climbed the highest dunes in the Southern Hemisphere, earned a black belt in Karate, learned how to play guitar and toured across Southern Africa. In my spare time I like to visit haunted places and take pictures for my website. I also blog about my visits to these haunted buildings and cemeteries, as well as the horror writing craft. I also love to research the haunted places I visit, since I'm a big fan of history and old buildings.
The rest you’ll have to stick around and find out for yourself, or ask my wife.
You can also contact me at Joemynhardt@yahoo.com