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Sunday, 13 October 2013

I write horror... am I warped?

Edwin Stark

This is a question that every horror writer must face sooner or later. People will always wonder at someone's fascination towards all that darkness, gore and creepy things that horror movies and horror literature represent... even more so if that someone loves to write about all these odd happenings. It's bad enough when they ask you if you are a writer; it gets worse when they find out that you're a horror writer. People you meet in parties get that strange, shifty look in their eyes as if they're half-expecting you to leap at them, scalpel in hand, yelling: "Blood! Blood! Blood!"

The truth is rather disappointing; the horror writer (including myself, altough 90% of my entire body of work hardly falls in this genre) is just a regular fellow like you and me... (now, that got me wondering about YOU). I like to cook, hike, ride a bike, rake the leaves in the garden, grow my own tomatoes, read the newspapers and, if I were married, I'd be bringing my significant other some flowers I picked on my way home and perhaps tell the kids a story before bedtime.

And then... why write about horror? Aren’t there plenty of nice things to write about? Am I warped or what?

Just another old-time favorite question in parties, mind you.

Edwin Stark

Well, the horror writer, even though he or she is a normal human being, writes about horrible events exactly because he or she is one (a normal human being, I mean). He (or she) conjures normal worlds where something has gone terribly awry all of a sudden, and then he or she releases a few monsters here and there to wreak some additional havoc. He isn’t writing about this because he or she revels in death, mayhem and destruction. The horror writer is writing this because he or she is celebrating life… by showing us how things can go incredibly wrong in a moment’s notice.

Just like real life, isn’t it?

And here is where the really good horror writer excels. A second-rate horror writer is just happy to let the monster loose on a terrifying rampage, leaving behind an awful amount of destruction in its way; a true master of horror knows that he must properly straighten up the playground after he or she had fun by either destroying the monster or finding a way to lock it back into its cage. He or she will learn how to restore the balance.

So, I guess that the answer to the "are you warped?" question is: "Nope, I'm not warped... I guess I'm just a little bent around the edges."

Edwin Stark
Signing Off



A doomed vampire hunter. 
A kid trapped in the sewers with an undead thing. 
A town that could be yours… but hides a terrible, dark secret. 
A scary cosmic balance. 
A dead brother and his revenge beyond the grave. 
An unspeakable future and three eerie girls.

All these elements lurk within Cuentos, this collection of eight short stories and two short novellas that may make you reconsider how you contemplate darkness… after you’re finished reading it.


Carole Anne Carr said...

Never could write horror, but do admire people who have the courage to write it.

Patsy said...

Maybe we shouldn't be surprised that people make assumptions about us based on what we write. Instead we should ask what they read, or which films they watch and then treat them as though they were a character from one of them?

Louise Wise said...

That's a good point Patsy.

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