Author Talk

Clarissa Johal: Why Gothic Horror and Paranormal Genre?

I have some pretty cool writing buddies. Clarissa Johal is one of them. We often discuss our writing projects with one another.  When she told me she had not one, but two new books, I had to share the news. Available now, Voices  – check out the cool cover. And coming August 5, 2015, The Island.


Clarissa Johal’s stories are definitely for the paranormal and gothic horror lovers out there (Amazon Author Page), and she explains why a little spooky,always seems to creep into her books.

Why Paranormal and Gothic Horror?

By Clarissa Johal

People often ask why I write paranormal and gothic horror. I’m not brooding, scary or running off to join the latest séance. I don’t drive a hearse, wear a black cloak, or haunt the local cemeteries. Those details aside, the conversation then usually turns to, “Where do your ideas come from?” (Characters come to me and tell me their stories) and “Have you ever seen a ghost?” (Hmm…how much disclosure can I get away with before this person thinks I’m bonkers?)

The topic of paranormal has always interested me. I moved a lot as a kid, and we always ended up in older houses. With those older houses, came a ghost or two. Did they scare me? No. I was a sensitive kid and learned to co-exist. Ghosts were people. People with issues, people without issues. People who want to move on, and some who don’t. I have yet to understand “other” paranormal entities (non-ghosts, if you will) but again, they are what they are.

I know what you’re probably going to ask me. Do I write of my experiences or make stuff up? I’m a writer–I write fiction. But the best fiction is when writers “write what they know,” and a little of what I know, creeps into my novels. I hope you will enjoy reading them.


Excerpt from VOICES:

“Good morning!” the blue-uniformed nurse chirped. “How are we feeling today, Moira?”

“Like this!” Isabella stuck out her tongue and pulled a face.

Moira frowned at her. “Stop it.”

“Stop what, dear?” Nurse Sheila slid the breakfast tray onto the side table.

Isabella giggled and pirouetted around the room, her faded dress drifting about her knees like a memory.

“Nothing.” Moira knew her nurse couldn’t see Isabella. That’s what she said anyways. That’s what her doctor said too. Actually, what he said was that she had experienced some trauma they had yet to uncover. They.

VOICES Buy Links:


Barnes and Noble



Coming August 5, 2015 from Booktrope, Forsaken Imprint


Exploring a remote island can sometimes get you into trouble.

Especially when you stumble upon a cave and awaken two demons.

Emma Keller’s estranged grandmother has been missing for seven years. Emma journeys to her grandmother’s private island with the task of readying it for sale. Local rumors say it’s cursed, but she dismisses them as superstition. While there, she unearths a hidden cave, and is visited by two men soon after. Itu is well-spoken, though he hides his face in shadow. The other is more of a worry, with skin of alabaster, Thim’s feral presence sets her on edge. With the help of Nathanial, a local fisherman, Emma discovers the island’s dark past. The two men aren’t human, but awakened demons…and they have their sights set on her.

Author Bio:

Clarissa Johal headshot

Clarissa Johal has worked as a veterinary assistant, zoo-keeper aide and vegetarian chef. Writing has always been her passion. When she’s not listening to the ghosts in her head, she’s dancing or taking photographs of gargoyles. She shares her life with her husband, two daughters and every stray animal that darkens the doorstep. One day, she expects that a wayward troll will wander into her yard, but that hasn’t happened yet.

*Member of the Horror Writers Association

Find Clarissa Online:

Author Website





Amazon Author Page

Barnes and Noble Author Page









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