So I began a draft of this post leading into what really scares the pee out of which is self-doubt. Because what author isn't at times attacked by the self-doubt monster which drags us into the Fire Swamp with the Rodents of Unusual Size? (reference to ROUS courtesy of Princess Bride)
But whatever. Sometimes I feel like a fraud and then I have to keep writing until it passes. End of story.
Better to tell you about my favorite horror movies and the monstrous stuff in them. Because who doesn't like a good horror movie, right? Actually just saw THE MARTIAN with Matt Damon (not a horror movie unless getting stranded on Mars and having to grow potatoes fertilized with your own poop terrifies you) and there was a trailer for Crimson Peak, which looks quite awesome in terms of cinematography and the presence of Tom Hiddleston, but then the girl in the huge ass creepy mansion is told, "Don't go below this level" and I burst out laughing because seriously? Can we not think of a more stereotypical line? And what if she says, "Okay. Good idea. I will stay up here with you creepy people and I won't go down there. And then the skeleton monsters won't attack me. K?"
So maybe I won't be seeing that one. Or maybe I will because I have a soft spot for goofy monster movies, including but not limited to: Night of the Lepus (giant bunnies), Willard (rats and Michael Jackson singing the theme song, Ben, which--this is really true-- was a top song for awhile. Yup. Look it up, darlings.) Attack of the Killer Tomatoes. (not George Clooney's finest moment, but whatever.) The Day of the Triffids (I think this one was attacking plants?) The Blob (not Steve McQueen's finest moment. And I don't remember what the blob was made of.)
I have seen almost every zombie iteration and every Frankenstein iteration (including the genius Young Frankenstein) and definitely every vampire iteration because there is just something about vampires, you know? But if you know me even at all, you know my favorite vampire tales are those told by THE GOD KNOWN AS JOSS WHEDON. Because in monster-land there is no moment better than the moment than when Buffy the vampire slayer falls for Angel the vampire who has been re-souled by the gypsies as punishment so he can live in angsty, sexy guilt for all he has done, and they consummate the relationship which triggers Angel to revert to soulless demon and go around killing everyone she loves. Which is we all know is the perfect metaphor for the worst break up ever. Followed by the BEST MOMENT EVER, when Willow figures out how to re-soul Angel but he's already awoken the demon Acathala who is about to destroy the world and so Buffy has to kill Angel and send him to hell so as to avoid the impending apocalypse. End season 2.
But as much as I love that season and those moments, when I re-watch it now almost 20 years later. (Really? Yes!), it all seems sort of innocent. And I don't know what scares me as much these days as checking my news feeds and seeing what awful damage someone has wrought. Yes, I know we've always been tucking our monster sides into hide-y holes and pretending we're all shiny and bright. (and I'm not talking about Twilight sparkle, which I assume you realize.) I mean, I know. But even so.
I guess this is why I write, or at least part of it. Because as Lois Lowry observed at the Children's Breakfast at BEA 2012 (that year I was lucky enough to get asked to come!), I write to figure out the things I don't understand.