Everyone Secretly Loves Horror

Laura Zats is a literary agent at Red Sofa Literary. She gives great information on what she sees in publishing (follow her!). It’s also important to note the part about Christian ideology–perhaps those creatures in another cultural framework would fare better (free idea, everyone!). The previous week, she posted a similar response about zombies. I was partially bummed, but not surprised–especially about zombies. I am a zombie hipster. I liked zombies way before it was cool to like zombies. But publishing doesn’t care so much about that.

The other creatures I watched for while walking through a bookstore this weekend, and Holy Toledo Zats is right. The glut of angels and demons is here and swelling. Ghosts are trickier for me, because they are a horror institution. Try telling anyone working in the horror industry that ghosts are a hard sell right now. The genre is ghosts…and vampires and killers and demons and monsters like zombies

Here’s the thing: Zats reps romance, YA, MG, contemporary women’s fiction, SF, fantasy, erotica, and NA. Not horror/thriller. So who’s been taking my bad guys?

Quadruple ugh! Herein lies the tension: should I be happy that these creatures have become so mainstream or should I be frustrated that in many respects they’ve been captured from the wild and emasculated? Edward Cullen sparkles. The Walking Dead is just a drama. People write from the monster’s perspective to show how it’s just misunderstood.

If we let it become part of the greater conversation about why we are fascinated with the other, we can still take heart, horror/thriller writers! We have been part of this conversation for much longer. We can still contribute a unique viewpoint, and those in the field will be thankful.

Do you think the pervasiveness of horror icons is good for the genre?

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