Saturday Special Report: 2023 Dark Dozen Interview with Kristopher Rufty
Winding down the Dark Dozen interviews for this fall, we have author Kristopher Rufty. His story, NO SHELTER, will be featured in DARK DISASTERS, which is releasing from Uncomfortably Dark on November 25.
Read on to see how Kristopher takes on the Dark Dozen and be sure to pre-order your copy now.
When did you know you wanted to become an author?
I’d entertained the idea when I was a kid, but it grew to an obsession by the time I was a teenager. I wrote a lot of screenplays and some of them were produced into independent features, but the yearning to write books was still there. I tried a few times and gave up. Then I read Jack Ketchum and Richard Laymon, and my life changed.
If you had three sentences to pitch your work to a new reader, what is your pitch?
What kind of horror do you like to read? Are you a fan of 80s splatter movies? What’s your favorite? Then I’ll have an idea what book of mine might be a good place for the potential reader to begin with.
What is your favorite thing about being in the Horror industry?
Being a part of what I’ve loved for so long—horror. Sometimes, I get to be at horror conventions, surrounded by horror celebrities that I’ve adored all my life. I also get to meet others who’ve loved it for as long as I have. I’ve made some good friends doing this, and I cherish it all.
What’s the one thing that scares you the most in this world and have you ever written about it?
Yeah, I’ve written about it. Desolation was full of my fears, and I assume a lot of others’ fears as well. And I’ve also written about snakes, which I hate with a passion. I know there are a lot of snake lovers out there, and I wish I could join you, but I just can’t.
Tell us about a scene in one of your stories or someone else’s that you would not want to be stuck in, and why? Name the book and author, if not you.
I wouldn’t want to be in Richard Laymon’s In the Dark. It’s a premise that starts off too good to be true, which it is. A mysterious game where you can win a lot of money by following clues from one place to another, games that you have to play. Then the games become dark and twisted, and you can’t quit playing because the Master of Games won’t let you. It’s either play the game that might kill you or die, anyway.
Darkest or most disturbing horror movie ever watched:
The Changeling with George C. Scott disturbed me because I watched it when I was way too young to see something like it. It’s not overly graphic or anything like that. But it has this atmosphere that really messed me up and stayed with me for a long time.
Darkest or most disturbing horror novel ever read:
The Girl Next Door by Jack Ketchum or Survivor by J.F. Gonzalez. Two classic books in the extreme horror world that anyone who’s a fan of the genre needs to read at least once. They’ll also help you decide if you want to continue reading more books like them.
Darkest/ Worst Way to Die:
So many ways, I could never choose one. But a disease that slowly eats away at your mind seems to be up there near the top.
If you had one hour to speak to any living author, who would it be and why?
I’ve been very fortunate in that I’ve been able to speak to a lot of authors. But one I would love to sit down with and talk about writing would be Stephen King. He’s been doing it for so long and each time I read one of his stories, new or old, the same childlike love for writing comes through.
Another one is Bentley Little. I’d love to talk about writing with him as well.
What has been one of the proudest moments of your writing journey?
A lot of the authors that I’ve admired since before I ever came close to being published know who I am. Some are even fans of my books, like I am of theirs. Even some of the legends from the paperback boom of the 80s reach out to me online to talk about writing. The highlight came from something tragic, though. I had a cat named Maddie, who passed away. I posted about it on Facebook, and Gary Brandner sent me a message expressing his sympathy. This was after he’d begun commenting on my posts on Facebook. Gary Brander is one of my favorite writers of all time. That meant a lot to me. He passed away a few months later, but I still have that message and the conversations we had that followed.
Who are you outside of being an author? What makes you tick other than the worlds and stories you create?
I’m a dad and a lover of pets. My family is what makes me tick. They always come first.
What is a piece of advice that you WISH someone had given you early in your career?
Don’t be so critical while writing your first draft. Just write what comes to you. Editing and polishing can come afterward. Also, write what YOU want to read, not what you think others will like or what you think will make you popular. And don’t let what you think family members would think of what you’re writing. Pretend they’d never read it because, most likely, they won’t unless you give them a free copy.
Kristopher Rufty lives in North Carolina with his three children and pets. He’s written over twenty novels, including ALL WILL DIE, THE DEVOURED AND THE DEAD, DESOLATION, THE LURKERS and PILLOWFACE. When he’s not spending time with his family or writing, he’s obsessing over gardening and growing food.
His short story DARLA'S PROBLEM was included in the Splatterpunk Publications anthology FIGHTING BACK, which won the Splatterpunk award for best anthology. THE DEVOURED AND THE DEAD was nominated for a Splatterpunk award.
He can be found on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
For more about Kristopher Rufty, please visit: www.kristopherrufty.com
For signed copies of books, please visit www.kruftybooks.com
Find his work on Amazon at: