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Fanbase Press Interviews J. Todd Kingrea on the Upcoming Release of His Horror Novel, ‘With a Blighted Touch’

The following is an interview with J. Todd Kingrea regarding the upcoming release of his horror novel, With a Blighted Touch. In this interview, Fanbase Press Editor-in-Chief Barbra Dillon chats with Kingrea about his creative experience in bringing the world and characters to life, the real-life inspiration for the story, and more!

Barbra Dillon, Fanbase Press Editor-in-Chief: Congratulations on the upcoming release of With a Blighted Touch! For those who may be unfamiliar, how would you describe the story’s premise, and what (or who) was its inspiration?

J. Todd Kingrea: The story centers on Christopher “Kit” McNeil, a down-on-his-luck guitarist with a history of bad luck and poor choices, who returns to his small hometown in the Tennessee mountains after 18 years. Kit discovers a connection between himself and the plague of deaths that have devastated nearly half of his high school graduating class. When he becomes a suspect in the death of a police officer, and is stalked by three horrific and unnatural children, Kit realizes that the blighted nature of the town—and his own life—are linked to an ancient, malefic being. She will soon be free to roam the land once more. But can Kit get out of his own way long enough to face down the Mother of a Thousand Wombs? Or will the depraved Dunley family continue their reign of terror over Black Rock by helping to unleashing the thing that the Cherokee once called Uyaga?

The character of Kit is based, in part, on a friend of mine (to whom the book is dedicated). He grew up in a town similar to Black Rock, and an unusually high number of people from his high school days have died, sometimes under peculiar circumstances. We’ve speculated as to the origin of the cursed nature of the area, and I took those conversations and spun them into With A Blighted Touch.

BD: What can you tell us about the creative process of bringing this story to life?

JTK: Lots of conversations with my friend! Seriously, we’ve had many discussions over the years about the subject. The area feels like Derry from Stephen King’s It. It has that same sense of hiding something dark and sinister. Some of Kit’s character comes from my friend but some also comes from me.

BD: At Fanbase Press, our #StoriesMatter initiative endeavors to highlight the impact that stories can have on audiences of various mediums. How do you feel that Kit’s story may connect with and impact readers?

JTK: Kit’s a middle-aged guy with a lot of baggage, something that people can relate to. He’s in a place where he knows he needs to get his life straightened out but really doesn’t have a clue where to start. Coupled with his history of bad luck (which, we discover, is real but not his fault) and some questionable decisions along the way, he’s floundering. He doesn’t have a sense of purpose or direction. The story thrusts him into a horrific situation that preys upon his guilt, depression, and low self-esteem. He must ultimately decide how he’s going to face his own self while trying to keep an ancient evil from being released.

BD: Do you have any plans to expand this story into subsequent novels or other entertainment mediums (if given the opportunity)?

JTK: Well, naturally, I think it would make a great horror movie! Or even a five- or six-episode television mini-series. I’ve toyed with the idea of using Scarburn County (where Black Rock is located) as a southern version of King’s Castle Rock and environs. I don’t have any immediate plans to revisit the area…but you never know!

BD: Are there any upcoming projects on which you are currently working that you would like to share with our readers?

JTK: I’ve got another manuscript in the editing and revision process. It’s called Only Angels Have Blue Eyes and is inspired by a true crime case from the early 2000s. It has elements of horror, suspense, and crime, but I’m not sure what genre it’ll eventually end up in. It’s a story about a single mother and her daughter who’re drawn into a cult and how they find their way out.

BD: Lastly, what is the best way for our readers to find more information about With a Blighted Touch and your other work?

JTK: My website is and has information about all of my books, plus a couple of maps for my epic fantasy series, The Deiparian Saga (also from BHC Press). The publisher’s website ( has my author’s page, as well as links to numerous retailers where the books can be ordered in hardcover, softcover, ebook, and audio. I can be found on social media as @JToddKingrea (Facebook, Instagram, X) and authorjtoddkingrea on TikTok.

Barbra Dillon, Fanbase Press Editor-in-Chief




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