What Kind of Horror: a guest post by Kristopher Rufty

I already wanted to read DESOLATION by Kristopher Rufty before he sent me this essay. So many people whose opinions I trust are talking this book up. And now that I’ve read Kristopher’s article I want to read it even more. Give it a read yourself and I’m guessing you’ll be intrigued. When you finish, scroll down a bit and you’ll find a few giveaway links down there.

What kind of horror?
By Kristopher Rufty, Author

When I admit to someone I’m a writer, I know what their immediate response will be: “What do you write?”

desolationI’ve been asked that question many times, probably well into the hundreds. Each time, my response is the same—a short pause, then I say, “Horror, mostly.”

The reaction I’ll most likely receive will be one of a few I’ve grown used to. Sometimes I’m met with frowns, other times a forced smile and a polite head nod. Or the ever popular: “Oh, like Stephen King?” Then there are the very rare occasions when somebody will respond with enthusiasm. These unique few will even ask me, “What kind of horror do you write?”

That’s where it gets tricky. I grew up on a wide range of influences, and not just horror. Even now as an adult, my influences range from comedies, to sci-fi, to crime fiction, to westerns, and to the bloody, kinky kind of horror that most people won’t admit to reading. I devour it all and take a little something from each one I read.

So this carries over into my own writing. I can’t really classify it. And this makes it difficult to explain what kind of horror I write.

If I’m at a convention and somebody is interested in buying one of my books, I’ll ask this person what type of things he or she likes to read. After listening to the answers, I’ll try my best to recommend something that fits. Sometimes, and quite often, I’ll sadly admit to these people that my books probably aren’t what they’re looking for. It’s happened a lot, and I’m sure it’ll happen again and again.

I’ve written about a large dog, pumped full of experimental drugs, going on a killing spree, a dwindling beach community being terrorized by Bigfoot, tiny creatures inhabiting the cornfields and woods in a Wisconsin farming town, the legendary sicko, Ed Gein, fighting a vampire, and an angel possessing a man so she can gain life.

My latest book, Desolation, is about a man driven to rage by the actions of another. There is nothing supernatural in this story, not even a smidge. Sure, there are demons, but these demons are of haunted minds—memories of remorseless deeds that have left two families in shambles. One man can’t allow himself to forgive and because of this his hatred consumes him, which drives him to unspeakable actions.

This was a very challenging book. I’d never touched on such subjects before—raw emotions driving all the characters, with no bizarre influence anywhere on the pages. It was tough, brutal, with a touch of realism that resulted in an experience I will never forget.

More than once, I tried talking myself into working on something else, something that might be a bit more “fun”, something like popcorn fiction. I love some good popcorn fiction, and when I was writing about a man enacting a ferocious revenge, the temptation to revert back to my happy place of monsters, vampires, and minute creatures was almost too good to resist.

I’m glad I was able to resist, though. Desolation is unlike anything I’ve written. And I doubt anything I write from here on will even be able to compete with the heart-wrenching journey it took me on.

So, what kind of horror is Desolation?

To me, it’s the worst kind, because it’s something that could probably happen, and that scares me more than a secret backwoods nightclub ran by soul-sucking nymphs any day.


Purchase Links



Barnes & Noble




Desolation, Synopsis

Samhain Horror
PAGES: 266
ISBN: 978-1-619233-09-6 Trade Paperback (List: $15.95)

There’s no escaping your past. Especially when it wants revenge.

Grant Marlowe hoped taking his family to their mountain cabin for Christmas would reunite them after his alcoholic past had torn them apart, but it only puts them into a life and death struggle.  On Christmas Eve, a stranger from Grant’s past invades the vacation home and takes his wife and children hostage. His agenda is simple—make Grant suffer the same torment that Grant’s drunken antics have caused him. Now Grant must confront his demons head on and fight for his family’s lives. Because this man has nothing left to lose. The only thing keeping him alive is misery—Grant’s misery.

kristBiography, Kristopher Rufty

Kristopher Rufty lives in North Carolina with his wife, three children, and the zoo they call their pets. He’s written various books, including The Vampire of Plainfield, Jagger, The Lurkers, The Lurking Season, The Skin Show, Pillowface, Proud Parents, and more, plus a slew of horror screenplays. He has also written and directed the independent horror films Psycho Holocaust, Rags, and Wicked Wood. If he goes more than two days without writing, he becomes very irritable and hard to be around, which is why he’s sent to his desk without supper often.

Praise for Kristopher Rufty

“Kristopher Rufty is the demented reincarnation of Richard Laymon!” –Jeff Strand


A Dark Autumn is a wild gender role reversal of ‘I Spit On Your Grave,’ with gonzo nods to Norman Bates and ‘Friday The 13th’ thrown in for good measure. Kristopher Rufty delivers the goods yet again.” –Bryan Smith, author of Kayla Undead and The Late Night Horror Show


“A creepy, gripping tale of horror. And it’s got one of the best death scenes I’ve read in a long time!” –Jeff Strand, author of Pressure and Dweller


“A powerhouse debut novel. Rufty’s prose will suck you in and hold you prisoner!” –Ronald Malfi, author of Floating Staircase and Snow


“An occult thriller with a new twist. Rufty juggles captivating characters, breakneck suspense, and insidious horror in a macabre story that will leave you feeling possessed by the end of it. Next time you think about taking that old Ouija board out…forget it!” –Edward Lee, author of Lucifer’s Lottery and City Infernal


We have a lot of books to giveaway from Krist! We have two audio books, Oak Hollow and Pillowface in one link. In the second link we have a signed print copy of The Lurking Season and two e-books, Vampire of Plainfield and Bigfoot Beach. Winners are chosen random via rafflecopter and are given choice of prize of order pulled. Any questions on raffle, please e-mail Erin Al-Mehairi, publicist, at hookofabook@hotmail.com

Link for audio book giveaway:


Link for print/e-book giveaway:



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