I had the distinct pleasure to interview smut peddler and internet sensation Chuck Tingle, who recently signed with Tor for two books: Camp Damascus (2023–pre-orders are live here!) and Bury Your Gays (2024).
This interview contains #nsfw language and content, so if that’s not your thing, feel free to move along!
Thank you for joining me! I’d like to start with the most important question: How is your mental health these days?
DANG i do not think chuck has ever started interview this way but this is a kind question that cuts to the heart of all our trots i suppose so thats nice. i would say my way is particularly good as man name of chuck i have found ways to balance myself and maintain gratitude, which seems to be a key for my trot. fortunately that comes easy to chuck for some reason i have always been able to find perspective in dire times. but also it is difficult to complain when you get to spend your days making art and proving love and just writing joyful stories. really cant complain about that buckaroo
Do you remember the first piece of erotica that you read, and what the experience of reading it was like?
no i do not remember this but honestly chuck does not read very much at all. did a little when younger but not much but now i have recently started to listen to audiobooks which is nice. i would say chucks medium of consumption is FILM this is where i learned about things like story structure and characters and all that. also most of my time is taken up by WRITING i write all day and night so theres not much time left over to read. anyway long story short i dont remember reading first erotica because i do not have THAT many memories about reading anything.
When did you first start writing erotica, and how long did it take before you became comfortable publishing it?
as man name of chuck i have been interested in sexuality in art as long as i can think of MAKING art because i have always been interested in taboo trots and things that have a mysterious social presence where they are always here but tucked away as if they are NOT HERE. also always enjoyed things that pushed the boundaries of any one medium to say ‘i am going to redefine this in my own way and let the viewer or reader question is THIS the art or is THAT the art?’ and so i think questions about what is ‘pornography’ are going to be part of that because legal definition of pornography in united states according to supreme court is something without ‘artistic value’ which is just ABSURD to chuck. i do not think such a thing exists. anyway just exploring these realms has always been a comfortable place for me. reason i did not publish what i was writing is because i just didnt think of it, until a bud came along and suggested it.
In addition to being a beloved author, you are a popular social media presence. How much enjoyment do you get out of the social media game?
well speaking of WHAT IS ART i very strongly believe that social media and online communication is also art. i understand why some buckaroos do not enjoy this way but chuck has always thought of art as not just what is in the book or painting or song but the things that swirl around it, so i would say i very much enjoy social media. also in PRACTICAL way just good way to connect with buckaroos all over the world and cant really complain about that, that just makes it easier to prove love is real
Since it’s spooky season, I’d like to ask about your Halloween tingles like The Sentient Physical Manifestation of Halloween Eats Me Out, The Handsome Physical Manifestation Of Autumn Turns Me Gay, and Scary Stories to Tingle Your Butt. What is it about Halloween that makes us want to fuck it/be fucked by it/eat it out/be eaten out by it, etc. more than the other holidays?
this is interesting question because there are actually plenty of holiday tinglers there is hanukkah and christmas and july 4th and valentines day books HOWEVER you are correct i think there is probably disproportionate amount of halloween tinglers out there. answer becomes clear when you consider that chuck is releasing horror novels with nightfire now and answer is: old chuck just really enjoys writing about spooky things. have always liked horror and maybe that goes with what i was saying earlier about enjoying taboo art that pushes boundaries, sexual art does this but so does frightening art.
People love to guess as to your “real identity.” While we can all agree that this method of envisioning reality is deeply flawed on an epistemological level, what is your favorite theory you’ve read about who you “really” are?
yes you are correct i have torn relationship with this as the idea of OUTING is very bad, but i also understand this physiological drive deep down in buds in a PLAYFUL way, where they do not really want to know but actually would just like to GUESS. i suppose this fun all depends on whether or not worlds greatest author chuck is even KNOWN without my dang mask on and i can say that i am IN FACT known in some ways. chuck did a lot of trotting around before settling in billings and now city of devils and during that time i have become known enough outside of my masked way that im sure one or two buds would say THATS HECKIN CHUCK WOW DANG. so i can confirm this fact for buckaroos and hopefully this truth at least lets them know there is small answer to this question that is more than just ‘oh thats just some dang guy down the street’. but all that being said it is not really kind question to get too SERIOUSLY wrapped up in, as you have said. i think all guesses i have seen are pretty fun there have been one or two where chuck knows BEHIND THE SCENES this person is a scoundrel so i do not really like if buds think i am those ones. but i will say FAVORITE theory is probably chris pine theory because it is correct OR IS IT just kidding OR AM I?
If you could recommend just one tingler and one novel of yours as a primer to your larger œuvre, what would you recommend, and why?
get asked this a lot and honestly would say best tingler is one that strikes your interest. they are very diverse and feature buds from across the queer spectrum. maybe since it is spooky season would recommend HORROR NOVELLA name of STRAIGHT or if you want to prepare for spooky season next year you can preorder CAMP DAMASCUS
You have recently signed with Tor for several books, including Camp Damascus in 2023 and Bury Your Gays in 2024. What differences might readers find between these upcoming books and your previously published work?
well biggest difference between CAMP DAMASCUS or BURY YOUR GAYS and other chuck books is that these are horror and i think most buckaroos know my work as erotica writer. but really core of everything chuck makes is to PROVE LOVE IS REAL and write from a place of love when exploring these ideas. i think if this resonates with you then you will find something that you will very much enjoy in chucks horror writing. also there is THROUGHLINE where across any genre i am often exploring queer themes and queer issues, so that is something that is also similar. CAMP DAMASCUS will also be first HARDCOVER book i have released so that is pretty dang cool, it is out for preorder and it is a dang BEAUTIFUL hardcover book so if you enjoy my way and would like to support chuck that is great way to do it.
What are you reading right now and how spicy is it?
as mentioned chuck does not read very much but TRYING to get some of that reading in. so i am not reading anything at moment but did just finish NIGHTMARE FUEL by nina nesseth and i enjoyed reading this very much but i would say not spicy more sciencey thats okay sometimes too