I am Kyla Lee Ward. I live most of the time in Sydney, Australia, with my partner and co-conspirator on Tabula Rasa, a flerken (suspected) and a familiar (absolutely). I do a lot of strange things. Most of it's writing, of one form or another. But I have also been known to act, to draw and paint, produce short films, to run role-playing games and indulge in costuming. I used to construct monster costumes and wear them in the local bush reserve, allowing myself to be bashed with rubber weapons. Oddly enough, my present day job involves handling metal weapons, as James Adams Historic Enterprises brings the joy of medieval combat and culture to school children.
I like swords and fencing, frock coats and cravats, gargoyles and stained glass. Also caves and bats. Musically, I incline towards Dead Can Dance, The Tea Party and Nick Cave, with a chasing of opera. Reading is one of my great delights, and my favourite authors include Tanith Lee, R.W. Chambers, C. L. Moore, the Comte de Lautréamont, Shirley Jackson and Umberto Eco. I love cinema, and have been in the background of several films. But most of my acting has been on the stage—so long as you count Deadhouse: Tales from Sydney Morgue...
I have been privileged to travel, and I inevitably end up in the hotel next to the Pere Lachaise cemetery. Or go for a stroll in Prague and stumble upon the Speculum Alchemiae museum. Or witness a funeral in Venice. Perhaps my attraction to darkness and what can be found there is just a matter of having good night sight, and thereby noticing things other people don't.
When the inestimable Robert Hood interviewed me for the HWA newsletter (January 2016 Vol 26 #186), he accused me of being gothic, mythic and esoteric. I replied "if by gothic you mean the seductive qualities of darkness as well as its terror, and if by esoterica you mean the vast complexity of the world as compared to the simplicities accepted by most, then yes, we can talk." Against the mythic, I have no defence.
By now, I suspect, you have an idea of what you might be in for if you read something by me. So welcome to my little corner of the realm and I do hope you feel at home.