Thursday, October 2, 2014

The Ghost of the Wide-Eyed Hollow

I bet we all share a similar memory from childhood: a dark night, a crackling fire. Maybe it's cold outside and we're in front of the fireplace. Maybe it's a warm and we're under the stars. There is fun and laughter and hopefully some marshmallows or hot dogs a-roasting. We sit with our cousins or siblings or friends from school. Where are our parents? We don't know and we don't care, because all we need is each other.

Then someone says, "Let's tell scary stories!"

And everyone jumps wholeheartedly into the game.

When I was growing up, scary stories were shared mostly among family, siblings and cousins. We told the same stories over and over. No one seemed to get tired of them, or to find a story any less scary the fifth time around. The Ghost of the Wide-Eyed Hollow is a good example. As many times as I heard it, I can't for the life of me remember the plot. But I do remember the unofficial contest we had as to who could say the tag-line the best.

"I am the GHOST of the Wide-Eyed Holloooooooooow!"

What is it about the dark side that fascinates us from the very earliest years?

My own journey with the dark side has been on-and-off. I loved scary stories and Grimm's Fairy Tales when I was a child. I read almost all of Anne Rice's vampire novels in high school and college. I, too, am an admirer the master Stephen King, though I'm not as faithful a follower as other readers I know.

Sometime after college, I drifted away from horror. Maybe the mainstream got too gory and violent for me. Maybe I had overdosed on vampires and such in my youth. Whatever the reason, I stopped reading horror. When I became an author, I was not interested in writing it.

Or so I thought.

Then a couple months back, a reader on Goodreads wrote in a review of High Maga that she could not finish the novel because of a horrific human sacrifice scene in one of the early chapters.

That was when it dawned on me that human sacrifice is kind of....well, dark. 

So I guess that High Maga has put me squarely in the realm of dark fantasy, though I would still insist that compared to other authors I've read, my stories are a lighter shade of gray.

If you are at all faint of heart, averse to the dark side, tired of the twisted, or otherwise not in the mood for scary, then now is the time to warn you to stay away from Heroines of Fantasy during the month of October.


Because FRIGHT FEST is coming!

At least twice a week we will feature twisted tales by our reviewers and contributors. We start this Friday with a story of possession by Terri-Lynne DeFino. From there, it will get spookier and ever more unsettling.

Not a problem, you say? You're up for a walk on the dark side?

Then welcome, my friend. Help yourself to the. . .[ahem] refreshments on the table. Claim a seat - Wait, not that one! It's alive. Ah yes, the couch will do just fine. Brush the cobwebs away if they're a bother.

Settled in? Good. Don't fall asleep! The shadows are on their way.

If  you survive our virtual haunted house during the weeks to come, then you simply must participate in the grand finale on October 31st, when we will gather one last time to build an original scary story of horrific proportions. Everyone is invited. Join us if you dare.

Of course, if you prefer to hide, that's okay. We just might find you anyway.



Terri-Lynne said...

I totally missed this post! That's fantastic. I'm sensing a theme for next year's fright fest!!!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for coming back to have a look at this post, Terri. :)