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ANDREW KINCAID – STRANGE WORLD

In crime on January 18, 2012 at 12:38 pm
Buddhist, horror and fantasy writer, Andrew Kincaid is this week’s interviewee. He has a passion for the odd, scary, Stephen King and his awesome blog, Lucid Dreams and Saturn Skies the life (and writing) of Andrew Kincaid http://authorandrewkincaid.com/tag/blog/. Here’s Andrew to introduce himself and tell us more about his posts on serial killers.
How about we start off with you telling the readers a bit about
yourself?
Sure! My name is Andrew Kincaid, and I am a horror and fantasy author. I’m also currently an unemployed, poor college kid in his senior year pursuing a double major in Biology and Business. I write about weird stuff, philosophy, spirituality, and I also review movies and books on my blog. I’m pretty much a huge nerd who has always been fascinated with the strange.
Where does your interest in horror come from?
Being a scaredy cat. Seriously…I was something of a wuss when I was little. But isn’t it odd how the things that we fear the most also fascinate us? I didn’t start reading/watching horror until later in high school – you  might say my first love was fantasy. Although the love of the horrific was always there – I was fascinated by the paranormal as a kid, and I liked books about mummies and other such weird stuff. I was sick a lot, so I had plenty of time to absorb all of it. Plus, my dad was (and still is) big into horror/sci fi/ fantasy. I think I got a lot of it from him.
One of your most recent posts on your excellent blog, Lucid Dreams and Saturn Skies the life (and writing) of Andrew Kincaid http://authorandrewkincaid.com/tag/blog/ was about Elizabeth Bathory who you identify as the Queen of Serial Killers. First of all, I’d like to ask you why write a post about it, what is it that really caught your attention?
Three things caught my attention about this case.  The first being the fact that the perpetrator was a woman.  Here in the US, we don’t seem to think that females are capable of the kind of brutality a male is.  And often that’s true…but not as often as we think.  The second being the sheer scale of the crime.  Most sources that I saw agreed that she was responsible for the deaths of up to 650 people, although she was only charged with the deaths of about 80 or so.  That is killing on a mind boggling scale – the only time one person might be responsible for that many deaths would be if they were a soldier during a time of war, and even then that is highly unlikely.  The third thing that caught my attention was the brutality of the crime.  She has to be among the most sadistic killers I’ve ever read about, second possibly to the monster, Albert Fish.
As for why I did a post about her, well, I’d meant to for awhile I just hadn’t gotten to it.  I suppose that doesn’t answer why though.  I wrote about her because she is morbidly fascinating.  She represents all that is awful about people, and she represents what happens when one person is above the law.

My second question is where does your interest in serial killers come from?
I’m often asked questions like this.  Why do you write horror? Why do you write about terrible things like killers and the paranormal, etc? I’m especially asked these questions because in reality I’m the most mild person you could ever meet. Also, because I’m Buddhist and we aren’t exactly known for our predilection toward morbid and violent things. But then that isn’t entirely true, because you see the darkness is a part of all of us. The First Noble Truth  is that “all life is suffering.” The darkness in our world, I believe, begins and ends in suffering one way or another. We cannot turn our eyes from the darkness – that is denial, and that is not the way to peace. We must embrace the darkness in ourselves and in the world around us, and understand it on a deep level if we are to have any hope of bringing peace.
With that in mind, I’m thinking my interest in serial killers comes from the fact that they are the darkest reaches of the human psyche incarnate. They are a human, stripped of humanity. They are the dark monsters that, if circumstances
had been a bit different, any one of us could have become.

You have two books out. Tell us about them. First off, On Dark Paths. Where does it come from? What made you decide to write a collection of short stories “about this unholy interaction of the mundane and the world beyond”?

The book came from a lot of failure and frustration and not a small bit of desperation. You see, I’ve been a frustrated would be fantasy novelist for years now. Frustrated in that the novels just never seemed to work out – I could never finish one. So I decided to try something different – short stories. I’d read a story in the 2nd person perspective for a literature class I had to take, and I wondered how a horror story would work in that format. I wrote a bunch of those, I think about six of which actually made it into the book. I found I liked writing short horror – it was fun and refreshing.

 As for the “interaction of the mundane and the world beyond” business, I find that I like stories where there is a bit of magic in the modern world, where just average folks come across things they can’t comprehend and are forced to deal with them. The theme was also heavily influenced by the works of H.P. Lovecraft, who wrote cosmic horror where his hapless characters came across evidence of a vast world beyond our own, ruled by giant inhuman monsters, and subsequently lost their minds. It’s about playing with people’s heads, really. And it is pretty fun to do!
It sounds very much like an intro to a Twilight episode. Are you a big fan of the show?
I don’t know if I’d say I was a big fan of the show, but I do really enjoy it. They had some really interesting stories that really make you think. I’m a big fan of an author who seemed to be heavily influenced by the show though – Stephen King. My works, on some level at least, imitate his just as he was influenced by H.P. Lovecraft.

Your second book is Strange World, ….about monsters (..er) in wait?!
The second book is basically an off shoot of the first. It plays with the same kinds of themes, those of a world beyond sight that interacts with our own, although it’s grittier and more gory. You have to understand too that the world as I conceived of it for these books was originally designed with a kind of dark urban fantasy in mind, where people could use magic to fend off these critters. I might eventually explore that aspect of things, but not for a good while I think. I’ll save the sword and sorcery for my fantasy work. Come to think of it though, the magic aspect is explored a bit in the only zombie story in the piece, “Zombies, Magic, and High Explosives.”

It seems the site is very important to you with nicely thought out and well-written posts. You even have a post schedule! Monday, review day. ‘Whatever’ Wednesday. Freaky Fridays. Why is your blog so important to you?  
My blog is a showcase of my writing. It is part of how I market my name, and naturally I don’t want a wreck  associated with my name. Plus, I just enjoy doing it. And if you’re doing something, it’s worth doing right.
Where can our readers find more about you and your books?
They can start at my blog http://authorandrewkincaid.com/ and they can check me out on Facebook and Twitter
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