Horror writing is one of my favourite subjects. I'm extraordinary influenced by the writing of Arthur Machen and others. "The Hill of Dreams" by Arthur Machen being my favourite. My own interest in writing came about watching science-fiction films and reading movie scripts. I watched movies like "Alien" and "2001 - A Space Odyssey". Then discovering horror writers by irrationality alone. The book I have the fondest early memories of was Stanislaw Lem's science-fiction novel "Solaris". A novel exploring the question of a failed communication between an alien life-form and humankind. I later got bored by books because they lacked emotional investment. Solaris was the exception of science-fiction books, a writing experiment according to Stanislaw Lem. Building a vision of an alien planet haunting the main character with the appearance of a dead wife. It was a hard read but very rewarding in the end. The problem with science-fiction overall is the tendency to forget emotion in order to investigate ideas, writing bad characters and stale plots, just for the knowledge. It got better when I started to read horror writers like H.P Lovecraft, Richard Matheson and Arthur Machen. These understood character, story and theme. Building worlds from the knowledge of the dark, leaving the conclusion up to the reader.
But the general readers on the net seems to think differently. They are searching for new ideas for their own enlightenment. Finding something noteworthy for their own intellectual development. It's easy to understand. People need to succeed in life and want food for thought forgetting about the cosmetics. But I think these people are searching in the wrong way. The masterworks by my favourite authors, like "At the Mountain of Madness" by H.P Lovecraft and "The Hill of Dreams" by Arthur Machen are emotional in nature but they are not lacking ideas. Emotional writing is just harder to understand. Arthur Machen hinted at truth but didn't write about it upfront, just giving food for thought. These works are a pleasure to read, they are like music, capturing the essence of life and being more honest. Darker, more direct, inventive. It's just that these author's were the opposite to simple minded, hinting at truth.
Horror writing is a favourite of mine because the way good horror writing draws you in. Edgar Allan Poe comes to mind. The horror builds a picture in the reader's mind, hinting at death and violence but growing darker in the mind of the reader, more effective than horror films. It's a revelation coming from the subconscious of the reader. But I'm into this business because of human enlightenment. Arthur Machen was a giant, a great success in the past (Even greater today) but he didn't understand the occult reality. The satanic one. He wrote for the passion, getting stale in parts because he just hinted at another reality. Not giving the truth. The end of "The Hill of Dreams" is part of the evidence.
People want the truth but the truth has to be hidden. A dark emotion coming from the subconscious. This is the essence of a good horror writer. Hinting at the unknown, a territory the author has to know by heart. The reader will not understand it at first. But the craftsmanship of the author will draw the readers in. They will abandon the difficult books, read easier ones only to return in the end. It's about occult knowledge.
This is the essence of my coming novel Alien Forever.