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BellaOnline's Paranormal Editor

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Interview with Author Randall Dunn


Please tell us a little about yourself.

This September, I値l celebrate 20 years of marriage with my wonderful wife. We have 2 hilarious adopted children, my ten-year old daughter and 6-year old son. I知 fifty years old, but I look like I知 about thirty and I think like I知 16 (especially when I知 driving). I love listening to the latest rock music, though I usually listen to movie soundtrack scores to help me create action scenes for my novels.

I write action thrillers that read more like blockbuster movies than novels. I always strive to make my novels action-packed, fast-paced & fun, with larger than life heroes facing off against diabolical villains and struggling through deep moral dilemmas.


Tell us about your latest book, The Red Rider.

The Red Rider is about Helena Basque, a 16-year old girl living in the French province of La Rue Sauvage. When she was seven years old, she was attacked by a large wolf that killed her Grand樽ere, and left her with triple scars across her face. She also claims the wolf stood and spoke to her, and has recurring nightmares about it.

Her family lives in fear of further attacks from these strange wolves, until Helena insists on being taught how to hunt and to defend herself. When she becomes a teenager and the attacks get worse, she puts on a red hooded cloak, like the one she wore as a child, and arms herself with a repeating crossbow to hunt down the wolves. She soon discovers these wolves are genuine monsters, with plans to take over the province, and she learns how to fight them. Before long, she instigates an all-out war against them, and the fact that she has learned how to kill them strikes fear into their hearts. Her name, Helena Basque, actually is meant to sound something like, 滴ell-in-a-basket which is what she becomes to the wolves. It痴 a play off of the idea of Little Red Riding Hood carrying a basket of goodies, but she痴 carrying something the wolves don稚 want.


Is this your first book to contain paranormal elements? Why did you decide to include paranormal elements in this book?

I致e enjoyed thriller and some horror stories ever since I was cast in a Dracula play in high school. I loved how the vampire story worked, pitting a small band of people against a monster, when they needed an army. They couldn稚 get an army, because hardly anyone would believe them. So this handful of heroes go after a deadly monster, and they become desperate. They値l go to almost any lengths, do almost anything, to destroy the beast. That kind of desperation in heroes, seeing them willingly push themselves beyond their normal limits for a cause, was fascinating to me. I wanted to see heroes like that, who would sacrifice normal and comfortable life in order to defeat a horrific threat and save others. Which is really what the Red Rider does. She becomes a sort of pariah, dressing in trousers like a man and hunting wolves throughout the night, becoming even more of an outcast than she originally was. And she knows she痴 ostracizing herself, but she also knows it must be done.

Horror when it痴 done well is the easiest and most powerful way to reveal someone痴 character. For example, the film Jurassic Park is actually a SF horror story, with dinosaurs as the monsters. When the T-Rex first attacks, the lawyer panics and runs off, revealing his true character of cowardice. It痴 revealed by the threat of a terrifying monster that leaves him with few options, often being fight or flight. Meanwhile, the true character of Dr. Alan Grant is also revealed. Grant clearly despises children and works to avoid spending any time with them. But when the park owner痴 grandchildren are being threatened by the T-Rex, he rushes at the dinosaur to distract him and save their lives, then spends the rest of the movie protecting and nurturing the kids. Although he could never see himself as a fatherly type, the threat of a monster reveals that as his true inner character, which was hidden even from Grant himself. When we see people threatened by supernatural forces in horror stories, we see what they池e really made of, whether it痴 choosing to fight a monster like Dracula or Jaws, or escape a supernatural predicament like those presented in The Twilight Zone. The monster forces a person痴 true self to come to the surface.


Do you plan to write any future books with paranormal elements included?

I知 writing a sequel to The Red Rider, called Red Rider Revolution, which I will publish this June. The third novel will be published in 2018. I also plan to publish a children痴 fantasy thriller by the end of the year, which will involve different creatures from mythology, and I値l write a Twilight Zone type anthology sometime in the next two years.


How did you develop an interest in the paranormal?

I知 always interested in the things that God does. I致e been a Christian since I was seven, so I致e grown up in the church. I think most people, in and outside the church, get stuck thinking they know all they need to know. They assume they致e learned all the answers about the mysteries of life.

A simple example: unicorns. Could they have ever existed? To me, they could have. There are references to unicorns in different texts, including earlier translations of the Bible. Yet most of us would immediately say that unicorns are only a myth. However, those myths came from somewhere, perhaps from something that once existed. When you look at creatures like a starfish or a giraffe, why is a unicorn a horse with a horn on its head so hard to believe in? What is a rhinoceros, if not a fat and rock-hard version of a unicorn, with giant horns on the top of its nose? But most people would refuse to think outside the box and consider that a unicorn might have once existed. They won稚 believe that until some scientist discovers a unicorn fossil and then they値l believe whatever the scientist says, without question. I believe what is said in Hamlet, regarding ghosts: There are more things in heaven and earth than are dreamt of in your philosophy.


Have you had any paranormal events occur in your own life?

If we池e talking about God acting in my life, then yes. I致e had several instances where God helped me, encouraged me, influenced my thinking, through various means. I致e had visions where I was wide awake, but seeing a dream, through which God was communicating to me. I致e given and received prophetic words from God, a spiritual gift that痴 described in the Bible. I also hear from God on a fairly regular basis, not as an audible voice, though I know some Christians have heard God speak but as a thought in my mind. Over time, I have come to distinguish between thoughts that are my own imagination, thoughts that are uniquely God and his way of communicating to me, and the suggestions of evil spirits. I think it痴 important to know whether a spirit is prompting you in the right direction.

Many years ago, a prophetic teacher at my former church said to be smart in discerning spirits and what they tell us to do, because an evil spirit won稚 鍍empt us to do something godly, like go and deliver a message of love or healing to a sick person, or to pray for someone痴 healing in Jesus name. I believe many people in the church hear from God, but they suppress it because they池e afraid or embarrassed to do what God tells them, and so they sometimes convince themselves that the prompting they feel is something evil, and sometimes they go on to presume that God doesn稚 want to speak to anyone today. But why would God send Jesus to die for us, in order to restore our relationship with God, if God didn稚 want to speak to us as his children?


Who are some of your favorite authors?

My favorite author is Ian Fleming. He痴 a master of suspense, and I try to apply some of his techniques in my writing. I also love J.K. Rowling痴 Harry Potter series. (Who doesn稚?) I致e also enjoyed reading and learning from classic authors, like H.G. Wells, Edgar Allen Poe, and others. I like to learn what made a classic story a classic, and I use classic storytelling techniques in my writing, such as symbolism, showing not telling, foreshadowing, and so on.


How can our readers learn more about your books?

You can find my books on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and other online booksellers. You can also follow my Packing Action blog and subscribe to my Packing Action Newsletter Datafile at www.RandallAllenDunn.com.



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Content copyright © 2015 by Deena Budd. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Deena Budd. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Deena Budd for details.

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