Saturday, October 15, 2011

Interview with Author Kevin Ranson

I'm excited to be interviewing author of The Spooky Chronicles: The Crooked Man, Kevin Ranson.
Author Bio:
Kevin A. Ranson is the creator of as well as the “ghost writer” for the site’s host, Grim D. Reaper. He is a member of the Online Film Critics Society and has film reviews appear weekly on With numerous credits in the role-playing game industry, he has also recently entered the realm of horror fiction with “The Spooky Chronicles” in addition to working on a novel for his “Kindling Moon” fantasy setting. Kevin’s current creations and personal blog are always visible on 
Did you always want to be an author? 
I’ve always wanted to be a lot of things, including a writer. I remember making my own comics as a child, but I also started writing a lot of fiction for extra credit in seventh grade English class. At the same time, I’d already found my mom’s Stephen King paperback collection, so the influences were there.

Tell us a bit about your novel.
The Spooky Chronicles are about a child who comes back to life as a zombie but continues to grow up. Having already overcome personal tragedy in his life, his unique condition also makes
him aware of (and draws him into) a secret underworld he never asked to be a part of.

How did you come up with the idea for your novel? 
A friend and myself created the initial details and idea behind the character as a superhero
in a school that secretly trains children with unique gifts (a la Xavier’s School for the Gifted) for a role-playing game. After it concluded, I wrote a back story from the character’s point of view in a
world of the occult instead of superheroes, and that became the basis of the first book, The Crooked Man.

If you got the chance to spend a day with any character from your books, who would it be and why?  
“Spooky” Spencer himself! There’s a lot of me as a child in the character, something I didn’t realize until after I went back and re-read it later just before deciding I could run with it as a book series. I envision The Spooky Chronicles as a television show, so the books run about the length of an episode in my mind.

What drew you to the YA horror genre? 
Nothing in particular. I didn’t set out to write YA or horror, it’s just the story that came out. I wasn’t
even very familiar with the term “YA” until after I began researching to market this work.

What do you hope readers will obtain from your book? 
I see Spooky as an inspiration and a bit of a role model. Bad things happen to good people, even kids, and overcoming them is part of life. Spooky had a very good, loving home life during his formative years before becoming very ill at the age of six and actually dying on his seventh birthday. He loses someone important to him while the remaining parent becomes distant afterward, but he’s a caring and resourceful young man with a very strong sense of protection for the people he cares about.

Where do you like to do your writing? 
At home, in a corner office. The walls and shelves around my desk are filled with creepy Halloween decorations I’ve collected over the years, from a Hellraiser “lament configuration” puzzle box to a glass “crystal” skull. Some of these items are sneaking their way into the Spooky Chronicles as well.

What are some of your favorite YA books or authors? Non-YA? 
For YA, I’d have to say the Harry Potter books by JK Rowling, although I admit to not being terribly familiar with the peers in my genre. For non-YA, everything from Clive Barker to Stephen King to Edgar Allan Poe.

Are there any books and stories that have influenced or stuck with you from your childhood or young-adulthood?
I recently rediscovered a Scholastic Record series that I remember listening to in kindergarten that stuck with me, with creepy titles like “Mother Ghost Nursery Rhymes” and “Georgie (the Ghost).” I’ve always found creepy to be somewhat cool.

Do you have any other works published and how do they compare genre/style wise with your current work? 
I have run a movie review website for almost fifteen years called where I critique films under the pen name Grim D. Reaper. Many of these reviews are in the horror genre, and the work helped to improve my writing as well as establish a narrative voice that I have used to write fiction with.

Do you have any current writing projects? Can you tell us a bit about them? 
Other than the Spooky Chronicles and, I have been working on a fantasy novel called Kindling Moon for a while as well as other stories in publications that include Savage Insider
magazine (“Crypt of the Crystal Lich” serial) and have flash fiction included in the recently published 66 Tales of Terror.

The Spooky Chronicles official site:

Where can you find Kevin Ranson?
Thank you, Kevin, for stopping by. Look for my review of The Spooky Chronicles: The Crooked Man later today!

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