Finding others like you is no easy task, especially if you are a writer with a very... different turn of mind. We all know what I write. (Horror! Yeah!!) We know why. What you don't know, is how I got there. Well, now is as good a time as any to tell you.
My mother taught me to read when I was 3. She would read old Louis L'Amour westerns and teach me a bit from each chapter. By the time I was 5, I was not only reading books for myself, but I had started telling people little stories I made up. My parents called them my "tall-tales".
My mom had this book with a shiny silver cover that I wanted to read just oh-so-bad. But she told me no. In fact, she told me if I read it, she's ground me for a month. I was 7 then. She handed me, instead, JRR Tolkien's works, The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings set, and the Silmarillion. My 8th birthday was about two weeks away; she had bought me the books as a gift and told me once I could read those, she'd let me get adult fiction from the library and school. So, I hatched a plan.
I read the books, but by the time I got done with them, summer had arrived and the school library was closed. So I waited. The big library ended up in me not getting the book with the shiny cover--Mom was always with me-- getting it from school was my only chance. That fall, I turned 9 and the Book-Mobile started it's rounds.
It was just too easy. The lady that drove the big van with the books inside simply asked me if I was sure I wanted it. I told her I was absolutely sure. She looked at my card, saw my mother's signature at the bottom of a scribbled permission for higher level reading material and signed the check-out card.
That evening, I went home with Stephen King's The Shining carefully hidden in my book bag. I didn't sleep that night, but not from fear. I gobbled up that book the way a greedy kid would do candy. And I fell in love. Every time the Book-Mobile came around, I checked out another King novel. With my allowances, I bought his books from the Book Exchange, where you can get used hard and paper back books for a couple of bucks.
I'd already been writing for my own amusement. But it wasn't until much later that I actually realized that writing horror was for me. I started writing seriously when I was 12 years old, as some of you may already know. But, I didn't write a single horror story for a long time.
I started writing horror when I was 17. I had been writing for about 5 years, taking stabs at different things to find my literary home. After a YA romance, a western romance novella, and quite a few fantasy attempts, I tried out thrillers. It wasn't so bad. I got mid-way through my new thriller, then I had to stop.
Another story was poking at my brain and, at the time, I hadn't learned to compartmentalize my thoughts so I could keep things in their place. I stopped writing my thriller and started on a novel entitled "Blood and Water". As soon as I began, I felt normal. I felt like I was at home. I knew that this was the place I belonged, a love I'd had since I was 9.
It wasn't a bad novel, considering I was 17, had quit school the year before and was writing on nothing more than passion. Reading it now, I can see the naivete in it, but it's the first horror piece I ever wrote and I love it as much then as I do now.
I've since wrote Science Fiction and other speculative genres, but I am a horror gal. It's what I write, what I love. And believe it or not, it's what I'm good at. Looking at some of my other stuff, I can see for myself that they are no where near as strong as my horror works. But, that's okay.
I'm happy to write horror, happy to be a hound of the macabre. The Absolute Write Horror Hounds have given me a place to feel welcome and I've found others with minds as sick and twisted as mine is. It makes me feel all cold and moldy inside, like we horror people should (That is just a joke... the whole warm and fuzzy thing).
So, my friends... let us get under your skin. Let me and my fellow Horror Hounds tickle the scare gland in your brain. You can find many of them in local bookstores or online (You won't even know it, but they are there, I promise). Let us scare you. It's what we do. Maybe what we were meant to do. You won't be sorry... or who knows? Maybe you will be.
Peace and Love, y'all
This week in books 6/23/17
7 hours ago