"A Candle Loses Nothing By Lighting Another Candle" - Father James Keller

Monday, July 11, 2011


Kiki: What is your favorite genre to read in, and what is it about that genre that attracts you to it? (If you like a specific mix of genres, please state that particular combination.) I always find it interesting to see how much authors read the genres they write in.

Chrystian: My favorite genre to read in is horror/suspense. I guess I was drawn toward it because of the first short story I ever read, which was Stephen King’s Autopsy Room Four. I found it so easily to delve into the story and feel what the character was feeling, and I was completely blown away by the end. Fear is the biggest universal emotion, one that we all understand and experience, and that’s what makes it so appealing to me. 

Kiki: What is your favorite author to read in that genre, and why? Also, please tell me a little about the best book by that author you have read.

Chrystian: Every aspiring writer has a special author whom he looks up to for guidance and inspiration, and Stephen King is that author for me. And the reason for that is quite simple, actually. I only look for one thing in every book I read: realism. It doesn’t matter if a book deals with supernatural themes or other impossible subjects, there is always something in every book that people can relate to and comprehend on a deeper level, and that is what makes a book worth reading -- that sense of realism. And that’s how it feels like with every book written by Stephen King. He brings his characters to life in a way that very few people manage to do, and that’s why he’s my favorite author. And as for his best work, I’d say The Green Mile. It’s the best example of a book containing lots of supernatural themes, but done in such a way that it makes it believable and realistic to the reader.      

Kiki: Do you have a Favorite Book of All Time? Of course, please tell us what about that book makes it your favorite.

Chrystian: Bag of Bones. It may not be the best book ever written, but I guess I read it on a very important time in my life and it helped me go through some very hard personal experiences. The book deals with the loss of a loved one, and how it can completely change your life. Again, there’s nothing extremely special about that book . . . it’s just a matter of personal interpretation. 

Kiki: What is the best book you read last month, and would you recommend it to a friend?

Chrystian: Last month I read Dearly Devoted Dexter by Jeff Lindsay, and I would gladly recommend it to people who like good, suspenseful novels.

Kiki: What are your reading habits like? For example, how many books do you read on average in a week, what format do you prefer to read in, what time of day do you read, and what setting is ideal for you to get lost in that book?

Chrystian: I can’t say I have any particular reading habits at the time. I write on a pretty tight schedule and it takes up a lot of my time, but I can never go more than two weeks without reading a book in its entirety. Writing a novel is like going on a road trip. Every now and then you have to make a stop and fill up the gas tank, otherwise the car will simply stop running. And my fuel is reading. The more I read, the more (and the better) I can write. I usually read late in the afternoon, at home, behind my writing desk. And if you add a glass of wine on the side and the faint sound rain on the background, I’m a happy guy.

Kiki: How do you become inspired to write? And, if you are willing to share, writing a horror story, where do your ideas come from?

Chrystian: It’s very hard to describe. It always starts with a simple thought -- a fragmented image of a bizarre scene that plays on in my mind hopes to be acknowledged. For example, my inspiration for Danvers Asylum came from looking at a picture of the building itself. I saw two guards dragging a helpless man along a dark, narrow corridor. The man seemed innocent and quite sane to me, but the guards didn’t seem to care at all. And I wanted to find out what the hell was going on! That’s how I get inspired most of the time -- I see enough of a story in my mind, and eventually I want to see the rest of it. And so I have to write.  

Kiki: What part of the story do you think is your strength to write?

Chrystian: The first three or five pages of every book are the ones that require my greatest skill and strength, because they have to set the tone of the story and spike the reader’s interest to the maximum. I usually have no idea what the book will be about or where the story’s going by the time I start, but it really makes no difference to me. As long as the beginning is strong and explosive and engaging, the rest comes naturally to write; and exciting to read!

Kiki: Please share with ABA readers something I did not think to ask you about.

Chrystian: Well, even though people think I only write horror/suspense novels, I’ve found it quite liberating to branch out and try different genres every now and then. Last year I wrote a novel that can be considered somewhat romantic and emotional, which is a very strange thing for me to write. But I had fun, and that’s what it’s all about!

Blurb From Danver’s Asylum by  Chrystian Marrero:

Welcome to Danvers State Insane Asylum, home to some of the most demented men and women in the country. Doctor Eugene Charles - head of the asylum and manager of its inner workings - has seen his share of insanity in the eyes of every patient residing behind the walls of his asylum. But the newest addition to his facility will redefine the meaning of insanity once and for all.

John Stephenson, an American writer of horror/fiction, is about to publish his latest creation and the haunting, subliminal messages that go along with them. His books are the works of a madman and the hidden verses within them will change the lives of whoever reads them . . . including yours.

1 comment:

  1. Kiki, wonderful questions, simply wonderful.
    Chrystian your answers were absolutely delightful and insightful to read.
    I feel like I have been allowed to creep into your mind and get to see things through your eyes from your answers.

    *bites n kisses*


In accordance with the new FTC Guidelines for blogging and endorsements, Kiki Howell of An Author's Musings, would like to advise that in addition to purchasing my own books to review, I also receive books, and/or promotional materials, free of charge in return for an honest review, as do any guest reviewers.