Author Interview: Krystal Garrett

Krystal Garrett is one of the writers whose stories are featured in the soon-to-be-published anthology The Haunted Train: Creepy Tales from the Railways.  Here she answers our questions about trains, personal fears and Gothic literature.
– Psst! She’s also in one of my writing groups.

What fascinates you about trains?

Their journey. Where are they going? Where have they been? What dark, creepy secrets are they hiding?

Do you remember your first ever train journey?  What was it like?

My first train journey was an incredible, joyful experience.  I was an adult, travelling with my husband and children. We experienced the Polar Express, with plenty of hot chocolate, cookies, and Santa. The train ride was slow and a little bumpy, but thankfully there were no ghosts or werewolves lurking in the shadows.

What are trains like in the Midwest Region of the USA where you live?

Most of the trains in the Midwest are freight trains carrying goods to other areas. The freight trains are usually long and slow. It’s very common to get stuck waiting for one to pass.  Amtrak is the train we use for travel. My first long distance train ride was with Amtrak down to New Orleans. The tracks were bumpy, but other than that it was a pleasant travelling experience.

What are train stations like there?

The train stations are nice with wooden benches and tons of windows. I live in a small town, so there aren’t any staff that work there. We took a trip and we were to catch our train late at night. We were the only ones there for a while and the silence was creepy.

What were trains like in your childhood days?

 They were exactly the same as the ones now, but when  I as a child, they seemed larger and more intimidating. The whistle was deafening. The wheels were stronger as it felt like the ground shook when they rushed by. The sound as a child for a train was chug-a-chug-a choo-choo.

What scares you?

Spiders. Just the name sends shivers down my spine and raises the hairs on my arm. I’m terrified whether they are small or gargantuan. Spiders are leggy, hairy, frightful monsters.

What scared you when you were a child?

Dolls scared me as a child. Not just any dolls, but porcelain dolls with their perfect hair, perfect makeup, and perfect clothes. Their tiny hands capable of holding sharp objects and their steps so light they could slaughter you in your sleep.

What do you like about the Gothic Horror genre?

The atmosphere comes alive and engages all our senses.

Who is your favourite Gothic author? Why?

Rayne Hall introduced me to Gothic Horror during a writing class. I enjoy her writing because she truly has a passion for it and is able to bring the reader into the scene with the details.

Describe your writing voice. My writing voice is dark and creepy. It is a bit disturbing and twisted, with a slice of hopefulness.

Krystal Garrett, Author


Krystal is a paramedic by day and a writer by night. She lives in Midwest USA with her husband and three daughters. Her love affair with horror began as a child when the good guy doll, Chucky, graced her TV screen. She loves all things horror. 


Come on board for a Gothic journey in a funicular railway in Victorian England, a freight train in the Carpathian mountains, a high tech sky train in Bangkok, an underground railway in Tokyo. Visit stations which lure with the promise of safe shelter but harbour unexpected dangers. Meet the people who work on the tracks – stationmasters, porters, signal-men – and those who travel – commuters, tourists, dead bodies, murderers and ghosts.

In this volume, editor Rayne Hall has collected twenty of the finest– and creepiest – railway tales. The book features the works of established writers, classic authors and fresh voices. Some stories are spooky, some downright scary, while others pose a puzzling mystery.

Are you prepared to come on board this train? Already, the steam engine is huffing in impatience. Listen to the chuff-chuff-chuff from the locomotive and tarattata-tarattata of the giant wheels. Press your face against the dust-streaked window, inhale the smells of coal smoke and old textiles, watch the landscape whoosh past as you leave the familiar behind and journey into the unknown.

But be careful: you can’t know the train’s real destination, nor your fellow travellers’ intentions. Once you’ve closed that door behind you and the wheels start rolling, you may not be able to get out.

The ebook is available for pre-order from Amazon at the special offer price of 99 cents until 31 January 2023. (After that date, the price will go up.) .

The paperback edition will be available soon.

27 thoughts on “Author Interview: Krystal Garrett

  1. Fabulous interview, Krystal and Cage! I like spiders myself (they’re so INTERESTING!), but I can totally understand how they can appear creepy and jumpy and fierce. I’m looking forward to reading the train anthology!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. It’s interesting to learn about other people’s phobias.
    When I was quite young, I used to play with some spiders, those daddy-longlegs. (admitedly, was not very nice to them all the time).
    Nowadays, same as cage, I don’t mind one or two in the house. Unless they decide to drop exactly over my head while sleeping…. then it’s “slipper time”

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  3. Being stuck on a train full of spiders and murderous dolls sounds like the stuff of nightmares. It might not be the plot of your story, but it definitely deserves writing *winkwink*

    Liked by 1 person

  4. My experiences on trains mostly consist of too hot or too cold cars, screaming children, and sometimes even spiders (really!). The festive train journey you had with your family sounds so enviable compared to my last train journey, where I pushed a tiny spider down to the floor and then it climbed back to my seat.

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    • Other people’s children can be a nightmare. Screaming, whining, touching everything with sticky fingers, leaving their stuff everywhere… Often, they’re not the most enjoyable of travelling companions. I’d prefer sharing my train compartment with nice quiet ghosts. 😉

      Liked by 2 people

  5. With that dull expression on their faces, those human-like dolls will never stop giving me the creeps. Spiders, on the other hand, are things that I am (sadly) disgusted by rather than really afraid of and I almost feel guilty about it 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Even though I haven’t been on a train before, I also agree that ‘Polar Express’ is what first comes into mind when I think of trains–I relate it pretty much to snow, hot mugs, and comfiness. Would love to have my first train experience soon, hopefully it’s a wonderful experience and not something scary as the ones in the anthology.

    Liked by 1 person

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