The Ghastly Horrors

Braedon Riddick
Braedon Riddick Author Interview

Ungodly follows the horrible occurrences that plague the campus of Calisade Mountain College. What was the inspiration for the idea behind this story?

The entire story sprouted from one single seed: when Amanda sees the silhouette in the red room. One night, (I don’t believe it was dark and stormy) that visual came to me as nothing more than a standalone image. It truly intrigued me . . . and also creeped me out in just the right way to take my curiosity to the next level. I was compelled to learn more about the reasons behind the silhouette in the red room and, make no mistake about it, I discovered way more than I had bargained for, leading to a slew of sleepless nights, and many questionable looks from my wife that suggested she was no longer sure of her husband’s sanity.

The book is filled with many great characters. Who was your favorite character to write for?

I met a lot of interesting characters during my time on Calisade Mountain — some wildly different than others, as alluded to in your review — but I connected with none more than Amanda. Her spirit expressed itself very early on, and I just couldn’t get enough of it. Obviously, life deals us all hardships; the variables are the nature, number, and difficulty of the hardships we face, and how we choose to respond to them. How Amanda handles hers really speaks to me. Her resilience and sense of resolve in the face of adversity were contagions that infected me quickly and, ultimately, ended up being the driving force behind the novel. Honestly, were it not for her perseverance and strong personality, I might have lacked the courage to write about the ghastly horrors experienced on Calisade Mountain. So, indeed, I consider Amanda a dear friend.

What were some themes that you wanted to explore in this book?

With any horror tale, there’s usually a discernible dose of Good vs Evil. While the candidates on either side of the equation can have countless faces and may not be as easily identifiable as prior candidates, both parties should be represented well in order to create a compelling case. Although it is quite clear early on that there’s an evil force at work in Ungodly, its face is blurry, its nature unknown . . . which presents the underlying theme of the novel: Fear of the Unknown. As a lifelong fan of horror films and fiction, nothing moves my needle more than exploring the eerie extents of the unknown. Within that scary exploration, however, is where I seek out the beautiful, overarching theme of life: Survival. The undeniable instinct to survive at whatever cost, no matter the obstacles. The human spirit has always fascinated me in this way. No matter how bad or scary things may get, I’ll not bet against the collective human spirit to overcome the odds — even when certain sacrifices are required.

What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?

I’ve got a few concepts in the works at the moment, moving each forward with organic progression. Being a methodical writer who enjoys constructing complex pieces, both structurally and conceptually, I tend to work judiciously, opting to err on the side of unpredictability, otherwise I’ll lose interest. In essence, if I can too easily predict a story’s ending when the pawns are in place, it’s not unlike me to abandon the tale and move along to another project. If I feel the story doesn’t allow for enough character freedom, if their actions seem too constrained, I’ll send it to the scrap yard for parts. Perhaps an analogy for my aversion to writing pedestrian, predictable fiction would be my inability to cook something commonplace. Let me clarify: I rarely cook, but when I do, according to my wife, I typically choose some exotic recipe that no one’s heard of or tried to make. Apparently, I strive for the culinary creations that require code deciphering to acquire a cryptic map to find the hidden recipe, and the ingredients for which can only be found with the guidance of a Sherpa and a mountain goat . . .

As for when to expect what’s next . . . well, much like how it’s said succinctly more than once in the novel: Soon.

Author Links: GoodReads | Twitter | Facebook

Wicked phenomena strike the isolated campus of Calisade Mountain College. A homeless man sees his dead son in an abandoned dormitory, pursues the boy inside, and meets his demise. In the dark of night, a student witnesses a man plummet from a high-rise — a surefire suicide — but the detectives find no body. A campus police officer suddenly develops a taste for rape — and a homicidal hunger. The townspeople always sensed an intangible wrongness on the mountain . . . even before the evil enigma was afoot.

About Literary Titan

The Literary Titan is an organization of professional editors, writers, and professors that have a passion for the written word. We review fiction and non-fiction books in many different genres, as well as conduct author interviews, and recognize talented authors with our Literary Book Award. We are privileged to work with so many creative authors around the globe.

Posted on January 29, 2021, in Interviews and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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