Ancel K. Houchen, a writer of horror and Sci-Fi, was born and raised in Brownsville, Brooklyn, NY. Having been raised in an environment that was steeped in Jamaican folklore, tales of Obeah women (witches), duppies (ghosts) and a demon called the “Rolling Calf” are as familiar to him as characters from a Brothers Grimm fairytale. Ancel intertwines history, horror and his “Jamerican” culture into each story making them unique, memorable and most of all chilling.
“As far back as I can remember, I was always armed with a dreadfully healthy imagination. When the sun went down, my mind would populate the darkness outside my window with the nastiest of shaggy, red eyed beasts. As a kid, I used to wonder if given the right circumstances can your mind call out to things and make them real?
Are the ingredients of conjuring, animal entrails, bat’s blood and the “Hand of Glory” all just supernatural placebos? Is it possible that all you need are darkness, isolation and sweaty white knuckled fear to summon some toothy abomination from the abyss, to fill the night with things unclean? What if all the childhood monsters you left behind weren’t imaginary? What if they were just…patient and waiting for you to be weak, frightened and toothless again?
I have always been a story driven writer. Much of the excitement of writing is to watch my stories evolve after they’ve escaped my imagination and are set loose on the page to hopefully frighten and entertain. While all my stories start off with a plan, a.k.a. beginning, middle and end, they also take on a life of their own and will often head in directions even I did not anticipate.
Inspiration can come from many sources. Current events or historical facts can start the kernel of a story but it is my childhood memories of Brooklyn combined with a West Indian upbringing that drives my imagination. Nighttime walks along a shadow filled Livonia Avenue or creepy tales of demons and witches from Jamaican folklore haunt my head.
One of my goals as a writer is to bring those scenes and stories to life for my readers to enjoy. Also, to be quite honest, I want my work to become the source of a few nightmares as well. I don’t want to be the only grownup that still looks under his bed before he turns off the light at night.”
Ancel K. Houchen