10 QUESTIONS WITH AUTHOR LYLE BLACKBURN
Lyle Blackburn is the author of The Beast of Boggy Creek: The True Story of The Fouke Monster; and Lizardman: The True Story of the Bishopville Monster. Having recently read The Beast of Boggy Creek, I decided to look Lyle up to find out if I could get a little Q and A time; of which he graciously accepted. I talked with Lyle about the book, about the Fouke monster and about his band, Ghoultown. Here now is 10 Questions with Lyle Blackburn.
My mother used to take me to the Disney ‘outdoor adventure’ films that were popular in the 1970’s. Before one particular feature there was a documentary on Bigfoot that showed the footage from the Patterson-Gimlin film. After that, I was hooked. Do you remember your first foray into the world of cryptozoology?
I can remember watching shows in the 1970s like In Search of… where I saw glimpses of the Patterson-Gimlin film. I also got a few “Strange but True” kind of books in elementary school which had stories of Bigfoot, Yeti, and the Loch Ness Monster. That was my earliest encounters with cryptids.
Did you ever imagine that the legend of the Fouke monster would go beyond the 1970’s and well into the 2000’s like it has done?
I sure didn’t. When I started doing intensive research on the subject several years ago, I was still under the impression that I was going to be writing a book that totally took place in the past. Like many others, I was surprised to find that encounters with the creature had continued all along, but just weren’t made accessible to the general public or to fans of The Legend of Boggy Creek movie.
I remember having a conversation with a co-worker a couple of years ago about the Fouke monster and he was adamant to the point of nearly starting a fight that it or any other form of Bigfoot does not exist. Have you ever met with that kind of hostility from non-believers or even believers for that matter?
Surprisingly, I’ve never had single person show hostility or even make fun of my interest in the subject; at least not to my face, anyway.
What was the reaction from your friends and family when you told them you were writing a book about the Fouke monster?
None of my friends were that surprised. Everyone that knows me, knows that I’ve always been into monsters, whether it’s the kind from horror movies or the kind that stalks our forests and waterways. My family has never been able to relate to what I do, so to them it’s just another form of weirdness like being in a rock band for so many years.
Speaking of being in a band, it says in the ‘About the Author’ section of the book that your band, Ghoultown, has appeared on several horror film soundtracks; which ones?
American Nightmare, Hallows End, and most recently, Bone Boys, which was produced by Kim Henkel, creator of the original The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Also, our song “Mistress of the Dark” was featured on Elvira’s Gravest Hits CD and the video was part of her Movie Macabre DVD series.
In the film The Legend of Boggy Creek the creature is depicted as menacing and aggressive; there have been sightings that have supported this nature and also sightings that depict the Fouke monster as an elusive being that prefers to be left alone. If you could hazard a guess what would you say is the true nature of the beast?
I know the Fouke Monster gets a bad rap for being aggressive at times, but I don’t think it’s all these creatures are capable of. Like you say, there’ve been plenty of sightings that show them as being reclusive and non-hostile. So I suppose they would be like any other animal. If they feel provoked or threatened in some way, they might show aggression. But mostly they are just trying to steer clear of humans, which is probably a wise thing to do.
In your book The Beast of Boggy Creek you write that you have never seen the creature despite having visited many of the locations where sightings have occurred. Supposing you did see it; what would you do?
I always joke and say that I would run up and hug the creature. But in reality, it’s hard to say what I would do. After talking to so many witnesses, I know that it’s one of those experiences that you can’t really predict how you will react until that moment. I’m generally not afraid of anything in the woods, since I consider myself an experienced and well-prepared outdoorsman, but if I were to come face-to-face with a man-like ape that most people say cannot exist, I’m sure it would be a life-changing experience. I guess that’s one reason I go into remote areas in search of these creatures.
Continuing the line of questioning from the last; would you use the experience to prove the existence of the monster; or would you keep it to yourself?
I’m sure I would write about the experience in a future book, so I would make it public. But unless I had some kind of irrefutable hard evidence to back up my sighting, then the description of my visual encounter would merely be another anecdotal account in the long history of Bigfoot.
Do you have plans for future cryptozoological books; are there any creatures besides the Fouke monster that you have your eyes on?
I’m debating several book ideas right now. Some of them are cryptozoology and some of them are not. I’m not sure yet which direction I will go.
Lyle, I appreciate you taking the time to do this. Is there anything you’d like to say to the folks out there before we wrap up?
Thanks for the great feedback and support. It’s fun to research and write books about mysterious monsters, so it’s a real bonus when I know that people out there are enjoying them.
You can purchase The Beast of Boggy Creek and/or Lizardman at Lyle Blackburn: Author, Cryptozoologist, Musician You can also visit Fouke Monster: The Beast and Legend of Boggy Creek.
Lyle will be appearing December 14 at Weird West Fest in Giddings, Texas.
- This Week On ‘Beyond The Edge’ Radio: Lyle Blackburn – Cryptozoologist / Author ‘Lizard Man: The True Story of the Bishopville Monster’ (alternativenewsalert.com)
- FINDING BIGFOOT Leaves Boggy Creek Fouke Monster a Legend (tvruckus.com)
- Lyle Blackburn – ‘Lizard Man: The True Story of the Bishopville Monster’ (alternativenewsalert.com)
- Chronicle of the Lizard Man (Book Review) (idoubtit.wordpress.com)
- Lyle Blackburn on ‘Finding Bigfoot’ (disinfo.com)
- Lyle Blackburn on ‘Finding Bigfoot’ (rinf.com)
- Animal Planet’s “Finding Bigfoot” returns to Fouke (arktimes.com)
- FINDING BIGFOOT Searches for Yeti, Yeren in China, Nepal This Season! (tvruckus.com)
- FINDING BIGFOOT Launches New Season with All-Day Marathon Today! (tvruckus.com)
- Childhood Fears (cagraham68.wordpress.com)