horror: hor-ror (noun)
- An intense feeling of fear, shock, or disgust.
- A thing causing such a feeling.
Do you ever have nightmares after watching a horror flick or reading a horror novel? Maybe just a case of the heebie-jeebies? Do you find yourself making double sure all the doors are locked when you’re home alone at night? Do you check the closets and under the bed? For a split second before you turn on the light in a dark room, do you hesitate, afraid to reveal the monster that might be lurking?
Oh sure, some of you are saying “Suck it up, you big baby. Horror never gives me nightmares.”
To you I say, “You haven’t been working out your imagination enough.”
Okay, okay. So not all horror gives me the willies. Most of the time, I brush it off. Good horror, the kind that does scare the tacos out of us, is hard to come by.
Vast quantities of blood and screaming do not a scary movie make. Nor do creative deaths.
Not by themselves anyway.
When a story is good, it gets me. Often, I’m taken by surprise. I’m prepared to brush off yet another bit of horror fiction but it’s planted its seeds in my mind and my fertile imagination will give it room to grow…and grow…and grow.
That’s when I send up a big cheer.
And sleep with all the lights on.
I have to wonder, if a good horror story works on the reader, does it work on the writer? After all, we readers just visit the world. The writer lives there for as long as it takes to create the finished product. They have to live with the monsters in their head and imagine all the dark scenarios that will wind up in that finished product and many more that do not.
Does it get to them?
Working on my current novel-in-progress, I’m finding myself dreaming about zombies I’m trying to bring to life (*snort*) on the page as well as the less undead monsters. Some nights, I’m slipping into my characters skin (there’s a mental image for you) and running for my life. In short, I am starting to give myself the creeps (I can only hope it translates to my finished product) even though my horror is more dystopian dark fantasy than straight up horror.
What do you think? Do writers like Stephen King, Clive Barker and the American Horror Story scribes give themselves nightmares?
If you do find yourself plagued with nightmares after imbibing some horror fiction, this WikiHow can give you some tips on how to sleep soundly.
Possibly Probably Related articles
- Prepare For A Darker Season….American Horror Story: Asylum (adventureamigos.net)
- History of Horror RPGs (Part Six: 2006-2007) from Age of Ravens (ageofravens.blogspot.com)
- Do Horror Writers Scare Themselves (lynleystace.wordpress.com)