To kick off the guest posting for the month, here's Kelly from The Bookscape Report, talking about her love for horror and the macabre!
I want to start by saying thank you to Leighanne for letting me guest post on her blog today. I’m really excited about it. I was thrilled when I saw she’s doing guest posts on the horror genre, because I’ve loved horror for as long as I can remember.
For anyone who doesn’t know me, my name is Kelly and I run The Bookscape Report. I started blogging a little over a year ago, focusing primarily on young adult literature, with the occasional adult title thrown in. The Bookscape Report is not my first YA blog. Prior to starting The Bookscape Report, I had a YA blog called Kelly’s Bookshelf, but I never really did anything with it, so I shut it down and stopped blogging entirely. Eventually, I realized how much I missed blogging, and The Bookscape Report was born.
As I’ve already said, I’ve loved horror for as long as I can remember. My love for the horror genre started out as a combination of watching horror movies and reading Stephen King. The first horror movie I remember seeing was John Carpenter’s Halloween, and the first horror novel I read was Stephen King’s Carrie. From there, things just took off. I started reading Stephen King regularly, though I skipped some of his novels entirely because they didn’t interest me, and I started watching as many slasher movies as I could. Stephen King is definitely my favorite horror writer, though I have to admit that I haven’t read too many other horror authors, except for one John Saul novel and V.C. Andrews’s Flowers in the Attic series. It’s clichéd to say that Stephen King is the master of horror, but it’s also true. I don’t scare very easily, but Stephen King is the one writer who has managed to scare me—not with all of his novels, but with some. IT, Christine, and Duma Key really freaked me out the first time I read them. Christine doesn’t creep me out too much anymore, but IT still does, and I’ve only read Duma Key once, because I’m not quite ready to jump back into that creepiness.
I think people tend to be surprised when they find out I love horror stories. I’m not quite sure why. But to be honest, it surprises me, too, because when I was growing up, I was scared of everything. It’s embarrassing, but I was afraid of E.T, Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy. And now, I’m the complete opposite: I don’t scare easily, and I’m fascinated by the macabre. I can understand why some people might think it’s weird. How many people, after all, are willing to read Helter Skelter four times just because they’re fascinated by Charles Manson? I love real-life horror stories like Helter Skelter just as much as I love Stephen King. I think what I love the most about the horror genre is that it encompasses so much. It’s not just ghost stories. If you’re Stephen King, it’s also about vampires (the creepy kind, not the kind who sparkle, rabid dogs, clowns, aliens, abusive husbands, school shooters, supernatural beings, and mentally ill “number one fans.” It’s not just about being afraid because a serial killer like Michael Myers is after you. It’s about being afraid of things that are real, like Cujo, the rabid dog. So much of horror is scary just because of how psychological it is. The Ring is a fantastic example of psychological horror. I never wanted to admit it, but that movie really creeped me out—so much so that I still haven’t read the book it’s based on, even though I really want to. I’m just too afraid it’ll creep me out too much. (The book is by Koji Suzuki, for anyone who’s interested).
For me, reading horror stories is like walking through a haunted house. Horror stories are haunted houses that we read instead of walk through. I love haunted houses because knowing that I’m going to be scared but not knowing when it’s going to happen is one of the best feelings. I love being deliciously scared in that way, and horror stories do that for me.
Thanks Kelly for sharing your love of horror with the rest of us! Like you, Stephen King is my favorite horror author! And don't feel bad, I had nightmares about ET when I was a kid, and to this day have never seen the entire movie.
Readers, if you want to share your favorite horror authors with us, there's the entire month of October! Just shoot me an email at Leighannes [DOT] Lit [AT] gmail [DOT] com!