Pub Writes

About the publishing Industry, editorials, and reviews

Horror Books and Scenes

Posted by Caitie F on March 19, 2010

It is a beautiful day out today – in the mid sixties and sunny. I can’t wait to go to the park when my husband gets home! So let’s talk about horror scenes.

I was reading a manuscript at my internship a couple days ago and there was a scene that made me shudder. I mad me gag. I made me feel a little queasy. It was amazing. It is a manuscript that I am still unsure about, but that scene convinced me that this person IS a good writer.

Very few writers can makes me have reactions to what they written, especially when it is scary or gross. A couple examples that have are (spoiler alert to Eclipse and Deathly Hollows) when the snake came out of the woman’s neck and when Edward ripped Victoria to shreds.

Stephen King is a master at giving me a reaction to horror scenes. I can’t read his books at night because they scare me so much. But again, I love his writing and his story telling ability (other than Cujo, if you haven’t read any Stephen King, don’t start with that one!).

People who know me would find it strange that I love scary books or scenes. When it comes to horror movies, I am a wuss. I don’t watch them at all. The scariest movie I have seen is probably The Shining. I loved the book but the movies scared the crap out of me. There is something about the movies that I cannot handle. Maybe it is things jumping out at you or how they interpret the stories.

With books, I can bring my own images, which I often think are scarier than movies, but they are my own and in my head, so they don’t freak me out as much and they are more fun than scary.

All of the specific authors or scenes I talked about earlier, especially the on from the manuscript I am reading are great for one reason more than any other. They are not gratuitous. Characters grow from the scenes, they bring the plot forward, and they fit the rest of the book. When someone throws in violence or torture and it does nothing, I get very frustrated. Everything needs a purpose. If it doesn’t have a purpose, it is not very good.

Do you like scary or horror books? Do you have any specific scenes that you love? Let me know in the comments! I am always looking for new things to explore!


3 Responses to “Horror Books and Scenes”

  1. Jason said

    One of the scariest scenes I’ve ever read was in “Stir of Echoes” by Richard Matheson. I read it late at night (big mistake) and had nightmares for days.

    We may have a copy laying around somewhere…

  2. I avoid horror books because they keep me from sleeping!

  3. Jenners said

    Stephen King scared me more times than I can count. And I think it is true that the images your create in your own head are worse than what any movie could do. Here’s a scary book for you … “The Hot Zone” by Richard Preston. And the twist? It is non-fiction!!!

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