Are you single? Is that really on the questionnaire? Let me see that. Okay, fine. To be honest, I’m not good at relationships (or so I’ve been told) so I’m usually single. And no, I’m not looking. I’m painfully shy, probably from some form of social anxiety disorder, and I’m almost physically incapable of approaching any woman I might be interested in. I also require a lot of solitude and I’ve found it’s not something most women appreciate. I’m kind of like a puppy that keeps running under the sofa when you try to pet it, but keeps crawling back for you to try again.

I’d like to pet you. What did you say?

Er…I said let’s get through this next question. What’s your sign? Capricorn. Are any of these questions going to be about my writing?

We’ll get to that soon enough. So, any celebrity crushes we should know about? Celebrity crushes? I wouldn’t say I’m attracted to any celebrities in the sense that I’d desire a relationship with them. Obviously, I can appreciate a beautiful woman, but only with the greatest of respect. Since I’m 99.99% sure that no-one they know will ever read this, I can admit that Necar Zadegan and Zoie Palmer appeal to my sense of aesthetics.

Interesting. You have good taste. So what do you do for a living? Right now I’m working for the government. No, there’s nothing hush-hush or exciting about it. Just mountains of paperwork. I’ve had a couple of jobs over the years, but my real aim is having my own business. For the moment, any spare time I have is spent focusing my energy on my writing.

This may be a bit clichéd but why do you write? I write to keep my sanity. It really is as simple as that. The fact is, I’m not a very emotional person. Or rather, I feel more but I show less. Certain circumstances in my early life have left me unable to deal with strong emotions on a personal level. Writing is my outlet. It helps keep me away from more destructive behaviors.

About that. You’ve never shied away from the fact that you used to indulge in self-harm? Why shy away from it? I had a very difficult childhood, from an emotional point of view, and that’s something I never learnt how to process properly. Since I wasn’t capable of dealing with emotional pain, I channeled it into physical pain instead. I’m not ashamed of that. I learnt how to deal with it. It’s still a struggle, especially when I’m very stressed, but I keep busy and it’s been years since I’ve allowed myself into that place. If my talking about it can help someone else get over the stigma then why not?

I understand. So, how long have you been writing? I started writing poetry around 14 or 15. I dabbled with short stories for a while but didn’t get into writing them seriously until I was in my early twenties.

Which do you prefer? The stories or the poetry? Hmm. You know, they’re almost worlds apart. The short stories I write are a chance to transform into someone else, whether it’s the average person getting lucky in love or a mythical creature. To do it well, I have to put myself into their shoes. The poetry is more…well…me. It’s an outpouring of whatever emotion I’m feeling at that moment.

What’s the difference between the Stories and Homages on your website? The pieces in the ‘Stories’ section are originals in the truest sense. Those in the ‘Homages’ section typically have original characters but they’ve been inspired by some of the greatest writers of all time, such as H.P. Lovecraft, Agatha Christie, and J. Sheridan Le Fanu.

I have to ask this. Where do you get your inspiration? From my life, mostly. Obviously my works are fiction though. I’d hate to have people thinking I’m running around with delusions of being a vampire. I often have to rely on a vivid imagination, but there’s still a tiny grain of reality in there. For example, Feeding Time came about as a result of my frustration with people, and I use the term loosely, who victimize others. Wouldn’t it be fun if these monsters ran into something much worse than themselves? I will admit that there’s a little bit of me in most of my main characters. How much depends on the story-line. You can read more at http://rdwylder.com/inspiration/

Even in the steamy ones? Steamy ones? I wouldn’t say that I’ve ever written anything overly explicit and…why are you looking at me like that? I’m a tad bit shy when it comes to some things and I have to say that I’ve always believed a little mystery is much more alluring. Even when I go further, I still stay within my own boundaries. I am beginning to challenge those a little, especially with stories such as In The Shadows. I’ve even submitted a few erotica pieces here and there, with varying success. And yes, I have written erotic poetry.

Erotica? I may faint…oh, I didn’t say anything. Um, are there any contemporary writers who have inspired you? Definitely. While I will admit to not being a fan of her more recent works, I love Patricia Cornwell’s first few books in her Kay Scarpetta series. I admire Caleb Carr’s writing style, and I have to say that Radclyffe has been a huge influence. Anyone who can make a scene come alive in front of me has my utmost admiration. In fact, her website was my introduction to lesbian fiction, and I still say that Love’s Melody Lost is a masterpiece.

I love that one too. You wouldn’t happen to be working on anything right now, would you? I’m always working on something. I’ve dabbled with getting some of my work published and I’ve had a tiny bit of success. I’m not sure if I’m going to keep at it right now though. My dream was always to see my name published in a book, and I’ve achieved that with my short stories. I have great respect for anyone who can sit and create a novel, much less have it be well written. That takes a whole lot of talent and discipline. I like to think I have some small amount of talent, but definitely not the discipline. I may take a shot at writing a novel when there are fewer demands on my time, For now though, my writing is mainly about keeping myself sane, and if I happen to touch a few lives in the process, that’s great.

Do you have anything going on other than writing? Most definitely. I’m a huge horror fan and I’m working on my own paranormal website at the moment. That’s www.eeriewhispers.com by the way. I also have a bunch of other domains that I’m slowly but surely developing.

Alright, we’re almost done (damn it). Last Question. If you had to choose, what would you say are the words you live by? Be true to yourself. Sometimes that’s hard to do but always listen to the little voice in the back of your head that says “This is who I am. I am happy with myself and that’s something worth fighting for”.

*Swoon*