Story is not enough

It’s very hard to write when you are sick at heart.

For me – an American – the events of the past few months have caused a renewal of heartache. My country’s election of a corrupt, cruel, and venomous buffoon to the position of national leader was undeniably a catalyst, but the ache predates even his rise to power. We live a time of almost unbearable strangeness, where one can go with a few clicks from cat videos to pornography to people pratfalling off treadmills. People can live decades with diseases that would have been death sentences a few decades ago, doctors can videoconference to surgery tables, and we can see light-years away with stunning clarity.

These are the days of miracle, to paraphrase Paul Simon, but not of wonder. Continue reading

October Reading: Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

“It was on a dreary night of November that I beheld the accomplishment of my toils. With an anxiety that almost amounted to agony, I collected the instruments of life around me, that I might infuse a spark of being into the lifeless thing that lay at my feet. It was already one in the morning; the rain pattered dismally against the panes, and my candle was nearly burnt out, when by the glimmer of the half-extinguished light, I saw the dull yellow eye of the creature open; it breathed hard, and a convulsive motion agitated its limbs.”

This is one of my favorite books ever. Continue reading

October Reading: Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Raven”

To celebrate the month of October, all the weeks of which are steeped with ghosts and goblins by association, I’ve been delving into my favorite horror reading, and since today is apparently the UK’s National Poetry Day (and the world’s too if Twitter is any indication), today seems like a fitting one to talk about “The Raven,” by Edgar Allan Poe, one of my all-time favorite poems and an exceptionally creepy tale. Continue reading

Why I’m glad I can still be scared by stories

If you follow me on Twitter in any way (I haven’t been terribly active there; working an 8-5 job cut back considerably on my social media time), you might have noticed that I mentioned that I was reading It by Stephen King.

I ended up checking this book out because I was looking for Tony Hillerman novels and happened to stumble across King’s section while in the middle of that search.* Now, I know that this book is regarded as a horror classic, but I knew nothing about it other than that there was an evil clown that had, in the film adaption, been played by Tim Curry.

That was literally all I knew about it.

So I figured that it couldn’t be that bad. Right?

Ha.

Continue reading