Name Rami Ungar
A little about your self `ie your education Family life etc
I’m a novelist out of Columbus, OH. By day I have a simple day job , but by night I’m conjuring up scary stories to tell the world. I have four books out now and am working on three more. When I’m not writing or working, I’m finding new ways to chill and finding new ideas for stories.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news?
I recently decided to cut back on some unnecessary stuff in my life, like how much YouTube and television I watch each day, as well as how much time I spend blogging. I’m trying to spend more of my free time working on stories, and I don’t have as much free time as I used to. Hopefully this allows me to churn out stories much faster than I am now.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
I was maybe around five or six. I saw the first Harry Potter movie and then read the book, and I was just so inspired. I wanted to create my own Harry Potter worlds, to have these fantastic worlds at the tips of my fingers. So I started writing. First knock-off Harry Potter stories, then original stories. I was a kid, so occasionally my attention would wander and I would try to be a scientist or a rock star. But when I was ten, I realized I wanted to write, and when I was twelve or thirteen I decided to specialize in horror (with the occasional dabbling in science fiction and thriller).
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
Well, I guess that depends on what you mean by first book, because I had several different “first books” that I thought would make me the next literary rock star. My first published book was a collection of original short stories, The Quiet Game, but before that, there was Reborn City, a science fiction story about street gangs in a dystopian future. That one was inspired by the movie Freedom Writers, and its central message of overcoming what others say about you or what you think you’re good for. It made me want to write a story with a similar theme, and I ended up doing so, but from a science-fiction perspective.
Fiona: What books have most influenced your life most? a mentor?
A lot of different books and authors have influenced me over the years. JK Rowling, obviously, but I’d have to say my biggest influences have been Anne Rice and Stephen King. They showed me not only how a story can terrify and excite, but also how deep they can go in touching the human spirit and making you think. I think if you read any of my books, you’ll find some of their DNA in my writing style.
Fiona: Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.
Probably God. I’m pretty spiritual, and feel that there is some sort of overarching power upon the universe that quite possibly interacts with us on a daily basis. Calling that entity God, and seeing it through my Jewish heritage and background just makes it easier to interact back. And I think God has helped me along, bringing me to the right sort of people who’ve helped me grow and attain a growing following of readers.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
Oh, definitely! I mean, it’s also a passion, but along with my government job it’s also something that I have to put a lot of work into, that I need a certain skill set to do well, and that I make a bit of money here and there from. If that’s not the definition of a career, than I don’t know what is!
Fiona: Can you share a little of your current work with us?
Right now I’m working on a novel called Rose, which I wrote about a year ago as my college thesis. It’s the story about a young woman who wakes up to find her body changing in ways that defy imagination. With no memory of how she ended up this way, she has to work through the darkness of her mind while at the same time living with a man who claims they are lovers and that he saved her life, but is hiding many secrets from her.
I’m currently on the third draft, and I’m hoping that after this, I’ll only need to do one more before I start looking to publish it.
Fiona: If any of your books was made into a film who would you like to play the lead?
Well, I’ve a few books that I think would make great movies. For Reborn City and its sequel Video Rage, I think I would like Tyler Posey from Teen Wolf to play male lead Rip, and Samuel L. Jackson to play series antagonist Jason Price. For my thriller novel Snake, I think I would like Dylan O’Brien (also from Teen Wolf) to play the lead, and Molly C. Quinn to play the female lead Allison Langland.
I hope one day I actually get to tell them that, because it would be so awesome to have them play these characters.
Fiona: Do you have any advice for other writers?
I have two pieces of advice that I would like to impart. One is that you should write the stories you wish to read. If you don’t see a story in the bookstores or library that you thin would be great, start writing, and see what results. The other is to try new things as much as possible. Whether it’s taking a class on an unfamiliar subject, or going to a new city, or trying hang-gliding for the first time, just do it. You never know what’ll inspire the next great story.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone and why ?
“He Scared Us All.” For the obvious reasons. I also want a New Orleans style funeral, with music and parades and all that fun stuff. And afterwards, I want to become a ghost and travel the world and see everything I couldn’t see while I was alive. That would be a load of fun.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
I don’t really have a favorite movie, but I do have favorite shows. Lucifer, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, American Horror Story, Sleepy Hollow, Scream, Ghost Adventures, and Doctor Who. They’re fun and exciting shows, usually very scary, and they inspire me as well as help me relax after long days. I also watch anything Marvel, and I’m currently catching up on Supernatural and Penny Dreadful online.
Fiona: If you were not a writer what else would you like to have done?
Tough one. Maybe I would’ve done something in academics. A psychologist, maybe. Or I’d write about spirituality and New Age beliefs. I’ve always been interested in that sort of thing.
Or maybe I’d be a comedian. People have told me I’m occasionally very funny. Though I think most of those people were drunk when they said it, so who knows if I can believe them?
Fiona: Do you have a blog/website? If so what is it?
My blog is Rami Ungar the Writer (https://ramiungarthewriter.wordpress.com/ ). There I post updates on the stories I’m writing, reviews of scary movies or books, and discussions on the writing life. I also have links to my available books there, should anyone be interested.
You can also find me on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/RamiUngarWriter )and Twitter (https://twitter.com/RamiUngarWriter), where I post updates on what I’m doing and links to interesting articles.