Interview with Rafael Guerra, Author of The Code Within

23 Jan 2024

What’s the story behind the story? What inspired you to write The Code Within?

Truth be told, the story germinated long before I put pen to paper. Back in 2010, a documentary about ruthless GMO giants and their insatiable greed for power caught my attention. That planted the seed for a tale where corporate ambition collided with humanity’s very essence. Then, a late-night brainstorm sprouted a chilling twist: zombies! Suddenly, the narrative blossomed into a thrilling blend of social commentary and flesh-hungry fun. So, you can say this book was a decade-long journey from seed to bloody harvest!

If you had to pick theme songs for the main characters of The Code Within, what would they be?

For Richard, the soundtrack to his soul echoes with the introspective fury of Linkin Park’s ‘What I’ve Done.’ Haunted by the weight of unknown actions, he navigates a world ravaged by his own potential culpability. Yet, beneath the ashes of doubt burns an unyielding resolve. Like the song’s defiant chorus, Richard vows to face the truth, whatever the cost, and reclaim the lost melody of his life.

What’s your favorite genre to read? Is it the same as your favorite genre to write?

When I curl up with a book, I crave the adrenaline rush of a crime thriller or the thought-provoking chills of dystopian sci-fi. And when I put pen to paper, those same genres ignite my own spark of creativity. There’s nothing quite like weaving a mystery that keeps readers guessing or building a world where reality twists and bends.

What books are on your TBR pile right now?

My TBR is a smorgasbord of suspense, with two chilling treats at the top of the menu. ‘Cold People’ by Tom Rob Smith and for a sci-fi blast into the unknown, I have ‘The Cold Light of Stars’ (The Icarus Code) by Rysa Walker.

What scene in your book was your favorite to write?

The opening scene wasn’t just a set piece; it was a manifesto for my story’s themes. The decay, the abandonment, the gnawing hunger – they all echoed the characters’ struggles, the loss of hope, the fight for survival. In painting that desolate picture of San Antonio, I was setting the stage for a journey of resilience, a testament to the human spirit’s ability to flicker even in the darkest corners. That sense of purpose, of weaving a world that resonated beyond the burnt-out cars and overgrown streets, is what made that scene so exhilarating to write.

Do you have any quirky writing habits? (lucky mugs, cats on laps, etc.)

Some authors lock themselves away in silent monasteries to write. Me? I thrive in the cacophony. The flickering TV screen, the muffled chatter, the rumble of the washing machine – it all becomes a symphony to my fingers, each sound fueling a different sentence, a different character’s voice.

Do you have a motto, quote, or philosophy you live by?

The biggest regret is the chance you didn’t take.

If you could choose one thing for readers to remember after reading your book, what would it be?

The cost of unchecked ambition.


Rafael Guerra is the author of the new book The Code Within

Connect with Rafael Guerra

Author Site


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