Friday, May 25, 2012
Bigfoot's Ghost Writer, Rusty Wilson!
Today I have a very special guest! Please welcome Rusty Wilson, author of the Bigfoot Campfire Stories. I met Rusty while talking about cryptids on an online author board and then read his books. If Bigfoot were to hire a ghost writer to tell his stories, he'd choose Rusty Wilson or maybe he HAS chosen Rusty and Rusty just doesn't know it. Since reading his real life encounters of Sasquatch, I'm more intrigued than ever before. Do yourself a favor and get just one of his books...but I have to warn you, they're like French Fries, you can't eat just one! You'll keep coming back for more until you gobble every single one of them up. I've never read a series that was so completely addictive! I guess the fact that the stories are true accounts told to Rusty around a campfire expanded the thrill factor a million times over! Summer is here! Perfect timing for some spooky stories told around the campfire while making smores! Zip up those tents tight!
Alisha: Please tell us about yourself, Rusty. When did you become a flyfishing guide? Where are some of your favorite places to fish and camp?
Rusty: I grew up out in the outback of the state of Washington, and my parents instilled a deep love of nature in me. After college at Evergreen State, I tried to work traditional jobs in the wildlife field, but I hated paperwork and having someone tell me what to do, so I would spend my spare time flyfishing to de-stress from it all.
I finally found myself fishing on the job a lot, which I figured wasn’t the coolest thing to do, but I couldn’t help myself. I just wanted to be way out nowhere alone, it’s kind of in my genes, I guess. A friend told me I could make a living as a guide, so I went to Montana and learned the ropes working there at a guide service on the Yellowstone River. That graduated to working on the Gallitin and Jefferson Rivers, and then I finally moved down to Colorado and joined a company there. After I met my wife, Sarah, we decided to start our own business, which has been ongoing now for some 15 years. She’s a geologist, so helps out when she’s not working in her own field. We’re based in Steamboat Springs, Colorado.
Alisha: I love Steamboat! Best snow skiing in the world! When did you decide to start putting your Bigfoot stories down on paper?
Rusty: I started putting these stories down on paper since the day I heard the first one out as a guide. I remember it well—I had heard plenty of Bigfoot stories while in Washington, but hadn’t paid much attention. But one night, sitting around a campfire up by the Yellowstone River, an old fellow told a story that made my hair stand on end. I couldn’t sleep at all that night, and the next day I asked him more questions to try to see if he were just spinning a yarn or if it were true. He convinced me it was true. I spent an hour or two writing it all down from memory.
From then on, I would encourage people to tell me their stories, whether Bigfoot, UFO, whatever, and I would write them down. I sometimes would record them on my little pocket recorder also, but only with their permission. And I always change something in the stories so nobody’s identity is compromised, since sometimes such things can lead to ridicule.
Alisha: Can you tell us which Bigfoot story is your favorite and why?
Rusty: I really don’t have one single favorite per se, but I do have favorites. I love the story of the handicapped girl on the boardwalk, as well as the one about the homeless woman camping by a golf course. I don’t know, there are some real scary ones I like, too, like the one called Rock Hounding with Uncle Hairy and also Bigfoot Bone Games, that one creeped me out. There are some I actually dislike, like the one about the farmers up in Montana where the Bigfoot actually comes into the house to steal the little girl, it’s called House Arrest, I think. I don’t like to think about that one. Actually, I don’t like to think about a number of them as they scare the pants off me. The tornado story set in Nebraska is one of those.
Alisha: I particularly liked the Nebraska story, though it was sad. That one story blew my mind more than most of them. You told me you had an encounter with Bigfoot. Please, please share!!!
Rusty: I’ve actually had a number of encounters. Each one affirms my belief in them even more. I’ve had one parallel me on the trail in the Flattops WIlderness Area in Colorado, which was pretty creepy once I figured out what it was. Walking right through thick underbrush alongside me on a trail. I would stop, it would stop. It started making a strange half-coughing noise and I would respond, then it would respond, almost like talking to each other. Something very large and on two legs, not a bear.
I was deep in a canyon once and heard one screaming from the rim. That’s a sound I’ll never forget. But my most up close and personal encounter was when I was sitting around a campfire alone up in Montana, not far from the town of Bozeman, up in the Bridgers. All of a sudden, for no reason, the hair on my neck stood straight up. That’s an automatic response from the days we had hair, an attempt to make ourselves look larger when in danger. I was suddenly afraid to even turn around, as I knew there was something straight behind me. I was terrified.
I don’t tell this story often, as it takes me into a mind space I don’t care for. I sat there, stone scared, and something came up right next to me. I was afraid to even turn my head to look at it, I was literally scared stiff. I felt a hand or something on my shoulder, and it squeezed a bit, then let go. It was a huge hand, and it was almost like a friendly squeeze, but I was too scared to do anything but sit there staring into the fire. I wish now I had turned and acknowledged it, at least, but I didn’t.
It then turned and walked back into the forest, leaving a musky smell behind. By the time I came out of shock, I stood up and turned around, and all I could see was this massive creature walking away from me on two legs. It left me with a feeling of fear and affirmation, and I’m not one for mystical stuff, but it almost seemed like it was telling me I was OK. Or maybe what I was doing, collecting stories about its tribe, that was OK. Or maybe I just projected that, but it really felt that was the message there. Call me nuts if you want, and I’ll probably agree with you.
Alisha: I'd never call you nuts. Those are amazing encounters and the last one really gives me goosebumps! I'd probably have jumped INTO the fire. Wow. Do you have a theory on the big hairy guy? What do you think he is? An undiscovered ape? A prehistoric man who has thrived along with homosapiens? A totally different new species?
Rusty: I’m totally out of my element on this one. Gigantipithecus maybe? Maybe any or all of the above. But I will say this, whatever it is, it has a highly evolved intelligence and level of consciousness. We’re not dealing with some hairy ape here, this is a creature every bit as smart as we humans are. That’s partly what makes it so scary. You can’t outsmart it, and it’s very large and powerful.
Alisha: I think so too. Gigantipithecus and highly evolved, aware that there is technology but prefers to live without it. What's next? Are you writing another Bigfoot book or another ghost story book?
Rusty: Well, I have finally started writing the Bigfoot Runes, after much thought and collecting of facts. That book was on the back burner for a long time, because I couldn’t get in touch with the guy who had the story, in fact, he disappeared. Then he came back and decided it wasn’t his story to tell, even though no one else knew the story except him. He’s now working with me to tell it, and man, it’s a real humdinger. So far, it’s made me cry a bunch, which may sound odd, but if you view our society through the eyes of the Bigfoot, you’d cry, too, as well as the way they’ve been treated. If I can tell it with the dignity and skill it deserves, it will make a lot of people stop and think about these guys. It will be a big challenge, but I’m giving it my best shot.
Alisha: I'll be waiting on the edge of my seat for the Bigfoot Runes to come out, Rusty. I know you realize how HUGE this book is but neither of us can realize how important this book will be until it releases and gets the attention it deserves. Not odd at all to hear that this book made you cry a lot. Just the small story you've told so far about the Bigfoot Runes made me cry too. A lot of your Bigfoot stories made me cry. And they'll make other people cry too and look at the world in a whole new light.
Where can we find you on the internet?
Rusty: My books are all available on Amazon.com, for Kindle and in paperback. Some are available at Barnes and Noble on the internet, as well as the Apple site. I haven’t done much with Apple as they’re difficult. I do have free days on Amazon every once in awhile, or you can check out my blog called RUSTY BIGFOOT.
I do post free stories on there so you can get an idea of what they’re like. I haven’t been updating it much since I have so much else going on. Some of the books are available on Yellowcatbooks.com
I hope to keep the stories coming, as I’ve collected a lot of them through the years. It’s mostly just finding the time to write them down. I am trying to get a Kickstarter project up soon. In any case, it’s an interesting subject to be involved with, and I do think we’re not that far from some kind of scientific verification that these creatures exist. I’ve been asked to interview as a TV show host on Bigfoot and also to be on several radio shows, but I always decline. People don’t understand, but I’m not in this for any kind of personal aggrandization, but rather to help spread the story that these creatures are real and deserve our respect.
Alisha: The big guy is lucky you're out there looking out for his best interest. Plenty of people would treat him like a circus freak and I hope to God that never happens, even if it means we never have full proof. Thanks so much for being my special guest, Rusty. I'd love to have you back when The Bigfoot Runes releases. Have a happy summer!
Rusty: Thanks so much for the interview, Alisha!
Bigfoot Runes Kickstarter Project