I was talking with a very nice woman during the signing, who told me that she was an aspiring writer. We talked a little bit about writing, and the process, and then she asked me what kind of stories I wrote.
“Horror,” I said, to which her face became surprised and maybe even a little bit confused, and that’s when I saw it coming, and only a few seconds too soon:
The question that so. many. people. will ask you when they find out you write horror.
“But how do horror writers think of such terrible, dark things? You know, like Stephen King? What exactly does that say about him, if you know what I mean? It must take some kind of person to imagine—”
I’ll just stop there because I’m sure you get the drift. The question, for the record, is of course well-meaning. Sometimes it truly baffles people who don’t write horror how or why we come up with our stories, and therefore, the fact that we do must mean that we’re wrong in some deliciously dark, twisted way. That we’re freaks, or weirdos, or (fill in the blank as you see fit.)
The truth of the matter is this: like any genre, horror is not for everybody. The misconceptions about people who love all things scary can run from eye-roll-worthy to flat out offensive, and more than once you may find yourself facing somebody who believes that you must be a sick individual.— Amy Lukavics | “Writing Horror: Some Inevitable Misconceptions” on YA Highway