Terrifyingly Frightening Horror

15 03 2014

What makes you afraid?

The dark? Closets? THE DARKNESS IN CLOSETS?!

I remember one of my classes sophomore year of college touched on fear on our desire to explore it. It was literary theory, criticism, or philosophy. It was one of my history courses; The Rise of the Nazis.

Yeah you heard me.

Nazis.

Weird right?

Well aside from the fact that Nazis are kind of terrifying if you really think about it, there was a lot going on in Europe that contributed to the horror mindset. During the years prior to Nazis being any sort of a thing, Germany was in rough shape. Living there post WWI was a nightmare in and of itself.

Hyperinflation destroyed the mark, which made it good for fire kindling and not a whole hell of a lot else. The government was about as unstable as it gets and unemployment was spiraling out of control. The government released cookbooks on how to use sawdust to make your bread go farther for gods sakes.  

And yet, with its growing list of ailments, Germany flourished in a creative sense. Horror was on the rise. We saw scary movies the likes of Nosferatu and The Cabinet of Doctor Caligari.

My take away from that class was the idea that as a nation’s poverty and economic turmoil grew so did the propensity to explore the Macabre. People turn to it in some depression-fueled reaction. Is that why we like horror stories?

It’s illogical. It’s primal. Somewhere in the dark and wacky recesses of your brain, where the primal urges and cautions lurk, you want to see this stuff. Your animal brain wants you to feel like that animal again. It wants you to be that primitive creature you once were that needed it so much.

Or maybe it doesn’t. I’m just rambling at this point.

This post is inspired once again by my tandem-writing project. I won’t give you details as we are still figuring it out ourselves, but we have arrived at a place that has me…stumped? I don’t think that’s the right thing to say. I know where I want to go with it.

Here’s the thing.

Where the story has left off, I have been presented with the opportunity to introduce something frightening. I have the lobby of a ruined skyscraper, a naked girl, and a shotgun-toting mountain of a man to assault here.

I need something that lurks in the dark burned out places in the world waiting to snatch you into the black ala Darkness Falls. Remember that movie? It sported a tooth fairy-esque-witch-monster-thing. Yeah.

 

So that’s what I’m thinking about; creature creation. How shall I go about building something original and suitably terrifying?

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3 responses

15 03 2014
thehellblazer

you want scary monsters to inspire you? Read Perdido Street Station by China Mieville

15 03 2014
Kyllan Brindle

I had never heard of this book, but after reading a synopsis it sounds like something I’d throw on my bookshelf. Seems perfectly gritty. Will most certainly be checking it out. Thank you for the recommendation kind sir.

15 03 2014
thehellblazer

always happy to spread the word 🙂

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