Why the beep do people like Horror? By a Horror Writer

What is something you hate? What is something you love?The thing about opinions is that somebody always disagrees with you. There is somebody that loves what you hate and hates what you love.

What does this have to do with the Horror genre? You might have guessed by now. If you hate it, there’s somebody that likes it. If you like it, there’s somebody that absolutely despises it.

So, now that we’ve got that off the table, let’s talk about why some people actually like Horror. There are many misconceptions about the genre, and I’ll do my best to dispel those.

First of all, some people see it as a blood-fest, full of gore and disgusting scenes. While there is a subcategory called Splatterpunk that has lots of… um… splatter. But still, if you read a good book, it’ll have a plot and well fleshed-out characters. It’s not just a compilation of blood and guts.

You’ve seen movies, certainly, that seem to have no plot or little plot, and revolve around the gory details. With films, you can sometimes make that exception and sell a movie based only on that. With books, you can’t. A good book has plot and characters, always.

The second thing about Horror is that people think it’s all about scares and scary scenes. Like I just said above, a good book isn’t reliant on only one detail. There’s many other aspects of the genre.

There are people that say Horror fans are psychopaths, or we love watching people get hurt. Here’s the thing. We don’t read about people getting hurt to enjoy it or feel joy at their suffering. It’s almost the opposite. We read to face the things that frighten us or to get that rush of adrenaline, or just for entertainment. We’re all people. Except for the puppy dogs.

What is good about the genre? There’s a few things. It has the feel of being the “underdog” genre, I guess you could say. When you like it, you feel like you’re in a clique that not many people are familiar with or take part in. So that’s always cool.

There’s always the “facing your fears” aspect that I mentioned earlier. You find as you
write/read about terrifying things, that you aren’t as scared in real life. Because in books and movies, there’s almost always a happy ending, even when situations seem at their bleakest.

And, of course, there’s the scary part of it! I’m gonna chalk this up as saying that it’s fun to be scared and to scare others. I mean, let’s be honest. One way or another, we’re all a bit scary.

Especially us writers!

Why the beep do people like Literary Fiction? by a Literary Fiction Writer

Literary Fiction. It makes up most of the old, “classic” books, as well as some of the newer
reads. It’s a genre that’s so complicated in definition, many times Literary Fiction seems to be an umbrella for every book ever written. So, in the most specific sense, but is this genre exactly?

–deep concepts, very emotional stories.

Well, there seem to be a few common traits among these books. That is, after all, what a genre is. The characteristics that those books share make up the theme of the genre. Agreed? Too bad, we’re moving on.

These traits determined whether somebody likes/reads that genre. So in the case of Literary Fiction, what are some things that both attract certain readers and compel others to run away?

One, as pointed out most aptly by Stephen King, Literary Fiction is all about the characters,

taking normal life and making it unique and crazy and entertaining (more than already.) I don’t remember the exact words, but King said something about normal Fiction having ordinary characters in extraordinary situations and Lit Fic being extraordinary characters in ordinary situations. (I just messed up that perfectly good quote. Forgive me.)

Another difference is that while Fiction is more to entertain, Lit Fic does that in a different way. Most of the time, it teaches life lessons. Those are normally what not to-do’s but still lessons all the same. These morals and the story itself tend to linger on your mind long after, becoming almost as if you’d lived the book’s plot.

There are lots of classic books in this genre. What aren’t there a lot of? Movies. With a quick Google of Literary Fiction movies, the only two after 1990 were Sense and Sensibility, as well as Pride and Prejudice (not with zombies.)

On the flip side of that, Literary Fiction books are totally unpredictable, because there is no
basic plot line that’s been laid out, which is not the case in Mystery books, Horror books, or Fantasy. Most genres have a basic skeleton that everybody follows. Literary Fiction is so
diverse, in length and subject and tone and character, that it’s impossible to know what you’re gonna find.

So, there you have it. Remember what I say, though. No matter what genre, if the author is
good the book will be too! So keep your mind open, keep reading, and don’t forget to breathe most of the time! That’s another key theme in Literary Fiction: breathing.

Thanks to David Kummer for his insights on Horror and Literary Fiction. He is bringing us another article to explain Fantasy and Young Adult later this week.
kummer
David Duane Kummer is a teenager, with several published novels and a collection of short stories.  As Trees Turned Away is his first published work and She, his first published novel. David is an MTW author and has several books available in the MTW Book Cellar.
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