Yeah, I didn't really do that much in the way of writing this weekend. I spent most of my time either hanging out with the children, playing video games, and hanging out on the Twitter.
I did read some more of On Writing Horror. I know I've complained on the blog a couple of times about it, but it really is a good book. I don't love the entirety but there are some really good parts.
Like Chapter 8, by Jack Ketchum, in which he delves into writing technique for scary parts and the importance of rythm. That was very good.
There was also an interview with a guy named Harlan Ellison (IRobot). I like that part of the book mostly because he seemed sort of angry. Let us quote the first line of his first interview question response.
"My feeling about contemporary horror writing is that it suffers from the same malaise that is suffocating most art forms in our time: wide-spread and deep-seated illiteracy on the part of the body politic and a lack of historical memory."
The body politic? Who says that?
I bet Mary Sunshine really gets going after a couple of drinks. I would invite him to a party just to watch.
On Writing Horror is educational and useful, but I think it could use some major updates. For example, more focus on writing techniques instead of multiple lessons in the old ways of publishing. Nowadays for most writers, that system is just one big, repeatedly slamming door.
I opted out before I even gave traditional publishing a real go. Life is short. I have books to write. Query letters and story pitching to people who probably wouldn't give me the time of day is a waste. If they ever want me, they know where to find me. I'm not exactly hiding.
I'm off task. Back to On Writing Horror.
Other useful parts included some examples of what these industry leaders have deemed good horror (I now have a reading list) and some genre history. That was good stuff.
Is the book worth the purchase/read? Yes. However, one should remember that we are all unique. Just because a career path worked out for Stephen King doesn't mean it will work for me or whoever might read this or anyone else. Carrie was published in 1974. The world of publishing is a very different place.
Hey, want some free reading? Check out the fiction freebie page on this very blog!
There you shall find links to two free ebooks on Smashwords and novel excerpts on Scribd.
Other places to find me: