Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Horror Month: A Prologue

Okay, so, this is how this is going to work: I'm going to read a bunch of horror fiction and then write about it. If you've read my posts talking about this project, then you already knew that, but, unfortunately, that really is what this is going to be.

I say "unfortunately" because while I acknowledge that it would be nice if I could have some over-arching theme, and in fact I made -- and am even still making -- some attempt to group these stories and novels in a manner that will connect them in more specific ways than the simple fact that they all belong to the same genre, that's going to be nearly impossible, I think. This is due entirely to the fact that I haven't read any of these stories and novels before, and so I don't know what their themes are, or how they historically fit into the horror genre, or anything like that. I can read a bunch of stories written during the same basic time period (which I have done for my first group of selections), or that are part of the same horror sub-genre (for instance, I have a novel and anthology of stories that revolve around movies), or I can pair authors, one of whom has influenced the other. And I'm going to do all of that, but it'll still be a crap-shoot, because I won't really know what I'm getting into from story to story, novel to novel.

So, this might turn out to read more like a journal of my experience, and might even devolve into a rant wherein I moan about how this was a really horrible idea. Because, really, horror -- as much as I sometimes love it -- is a terribly frustrating genre. Its full artistic potential is almost never met; writers are too often influenced by bad movies they grew up with, and labor under the belief that ridiculously graphic violence is the same thing as horror.

I don't mean to sound too negative, though. After all, I did my best to pick novels and stories from my collection that I thought I had a better than fair chance of enjoying (though I did pick some less promising stuff in order to write a whole "state of the genre" thing). But I have a love-hate relationship to this stuff, and I don't really know how this is going to work out for me. So, fingers crossed, everybody, because I begin tomorrow.

Oh, and if anybody can come up with a title for this whole business, let me know, because I got nothin'.

11 comments:

Jonathan Lapper said...

Bill's Journal of Horror? Nah. October's Blog of Horrors? Nah. I'm coming up blank right now too.

Rick Olson said...

"Horror Hotel," "Blog Till You Drop ... Literally", "The Do-Kill Zone", "The Kind of Face You Slash," "Bill's Kills,"

bill r. said...

"The Kind of Face You Slash"...I must say, I do like that one.

Fox said...

I have high hopes for you and Jonathan's blogs starting tomorrow.

I'm trying to think of a title where you could work "spine" into the title.

bill r. said...

"The Kind of Spine You Hate"?

Fox said...

But like the spine of a book? You know? Like, I was trying to think of a dumb pun like "spine-tingling".

Rick Olson said...

"Bill's Spine-al Tap"

Rick Olson said...

Mine goes to eleven, by the way.

Rick Olson said...

Bill said that iffa you don't do as I say I get to breaka' you spine.

Oh, wait ... it's not Godfather month ...

Jonathan "Mad Dog" Lapper said...

No more prologue, it's October.

bill r. said...

I hit a snag in that I wrote a big post for the Palimpsest forums, where these posts will be duplicated, and then I fucking lost it! Look for something here when you get home from work tonight.

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