RYAN LEARMOUTH moved between New York, Chicago, and Washington, DC, writing and editing for websites and non-profits before his interest in arranging and interpreting information took a more conceptual turn, leading to a career in IT analysis. Meanwhile, he attended culinary school, with the aid of a James Beard scholarship, and the University of Alabama's MFA program, where he received Truman Capote, Buford Boone, and other writing fellowships. He lives in Maryland with his wife and young daughter.
He is currently writing a supernatural horror novel, following a woman, Frances, who's recruited by a tech behemoth's mysterious subsidiary, a kind of digital-age Pinkerton Agency called Crypsis. The agency is interested in her line of business: As her wealthy tech clients float senseless in an isolation tank, she leads them through a series of guided meditations structured around the concept of a phantasmic Visitor, which emerges from the shadows of a person's unconscious to whisper impossible knowledge. What she's never told anyone is that the Visitor is real, that she's known it since a youthful encounter with pure evil, when it seemed to save her from a horrible fate. At least, it had seemed real, until she learned to understand the Visitor as merely the personified projection of her own intuition. Crypsis puts Frances in charge of an upscale rural retreat called Remedy Ridge, a honey trap where the agency hopes to learn its influential guests' remaining non-digitized secrets. There, she encounters a figure from her past, the same pure evil she once escaped, someone she knows only as the Mud Man. This isn't a coincidence, but her first big assignment from Crypsis: Bring the Mud Man's secrets to light, prove his evil to the world. To do this, Frances must rely on every bit of her intuition -- but is it enough? Or will she need to newly acknowledge the Visitor's reality, and enlist its help?