Writing Horror Fiction: Or, The Teddy Bear Sucker Dilemma

If I ever get away from writing how-to and about articles, I think the genre of choice is going to be horror fiction. After all, writing teachers tell you to write about what you know. And I do know horror. Growing up with 5 siblings, 2 of whom were boys was bad enough; however, it gets worse. I vaguely remember pics of my uncle and his barbershop quartet friends dressed up as clowns. (Very creepy). Living in an eery old farmhouse. (See This Cali Modern Life) Giving my Miss Muffett ragdoll who was supposed to resemble me a severe military style buzz cut. She looked so disturbing in her new coif that I immediately started screaming. My grandmother sewed new hair on her, but she then resembled a brassy blonde, blue-eyed Raggedy Ann. (Just plain weird.)

But the crowning pinnacle of horror had to be my teddy bear, a hand-me-down from an older sibling. This bear was not Winne the Pooh, a bear of very little brain. However, he ended up as a bear of very little face as it turns out. The night in question was, of course, Halloween. In case you never learned this, there is a reason why you do not eat Halloween candy in bed. Sugar Daddy suckers are especially yummy. They are also especially sticky. The last thing I remember was how yummy that Sugar Daddy sucker was. I woke up the next morning, and saw the sucker stuck squarely on the kisser of my teddy bear. Stuffed animals are pretty resilient — they have to be. I pulled hard on that sucker, thinking the worst thing that would happen is that it would come away covered in fuzz. (I hate fuzzy suckers.) Imagine my horror when the sucker did come away, with the bear’s face attached.

I think this is the real reason why so many horror novels and movies feature kids’ toys: clowns, dolls, bears. Number 1: They can be just plain creepy. Number 2: All those horror writers probably had a Halloween bedtime candy nightmare in their pasts. Although the result for me was a horrifically faceless teddy bear, who knows. Maybe there will be a Bram Stoker or an Edgar in it for me some day…

2 Responses

  1. I think you should start your first novel (if you haven’t already)! It could be a wonderful escape from “How-to” even if no one else ever reads it.

  2. I have some “beginnings” in place; right now, however, the focus needs to be on money generating projects.

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