NEW YORK — Seth Grahame-Smith’s life could be described as a mash-up.
He’s the author of the best-seller “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter,” and the follow-up, “The Last American Vampire,” is now in stores.
Grahame-Smith is also busy with a number of other projects, including his directorial debut on the film “Something Wicked This Way Comes,” writing and co-producing the sequel to “Beetlejuice,” writing two “Lego” movies and writing a pilot for CBS.
He’s also on the writing team for this year’s Academy Awards.
In a recent interview, Grahame-Smith said the Oscars have always been “a big deal in the Grahame-Smith household” and that he usually throws viewing parties when the awards are presented. This year, he’ll be “in a tux, backstage. That’ll be fun.”
The 39-year-old Grahame-Smith talked about his new book, juggling projects and teaching through entertainment in a recent interview.
Q: Should you get credit for creating the mash-up?
A: I don’t think that “Pride and Prejudice and Zombies” or “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter” created the mash-up, I just think that they popularized it. I think that there were mash-ups before, and I think that there were certainly people blending genres and writers way better than me and far longer ago who were playing with the idea of mixing fantasy and horror or mixing science-fiction with romance. I think that I just happen to do it in a very loud and obnoxious way and was lucky enough to do it a time when people were receptive to it.
Q: Yes, you write about historical figures and vampires and zombies, but you do a lot of research for your books. There are facts in these stories.
A: I give you some medicine with your sugar. I give you a little bit of real history, just enough so that you know something about that time period so that you can discuss it at a dinner party, and as long as you don’t go further than that and add the part where vampires start cutting each other’s heads off and everything.
Q: How do you keep track of your projects?
A: A typical day now might be: I work on some “Lego” movie stuff, I work on some “Beetle Juice” stuff and then I jump over here and work on Oscars, and then I jump back and I work on who knows what else, but it’s great!
I love being busy. I love the challenge of it, I love the engagement of it. ... At some point all of this goes away and you know you get bounced out of the writing business or bounced out of Hollywood one way or another eventually. Almost everybody does. So, I’m just trying to enjoy it while it lasts.
Q: Do you ever procrastinate when you’re supposed to be writing?
A: I procrastinate all day. In 12 hours of sitting at the computer desk every day, I probably do two and a half hours of writing if I’m being generous. Because there are other things going on. There are phone calls to be returned, there are meetings to be had, lunches to go to, there are emails to browse through and then ... who doesn’t love Twitter or Facebook or Reddit or Gawker or Gizmoto or Huffington Post or any of the 2,000 sites I read religiously every day, all day? You need to keep the writing muscles in shape.