Friday, December 02, 2005

Glen Hirshberg on horror and catharsis

Glen Hirshberg has reprinted the introduction to his story Mr. Dark's Carnival on his blog. The post expounds on his love of haunted houses and goes into why he doesn't read or write horror for catharsis. It's a thoughtful post, I'd quote some here, but I'd think you'd get more out of it if you read the whole thing. The story, Mr. Dark's Carnival (sorry, no link), is great, as are Hirshberg's other stories.
I tend to agree with Hirshberg on that subject. The best horror stories don't end with the closing of the covers, they linger in the mind and make you think or just simply haunt you. Think of the fiction of H.P. Lovecraft or Thomas Ligotti: Those stories explicitly leave the reader thinking about a world larger and more dangerous than most people have ever imagined. A scary monster that jumps off the page and says boo! can be fun (god knows I like them), but it's not the best horror can do.

No comments: