The Scariest Horror Novels



okay hi mrs. Strobridge I'm gonna start off by showing you a series of pictures and I want to ask you whether you think it's scarier or not ready here's the first one it's got some children second one this one's quite a bit spooky er huh now are you ready for the last one huh um not very scary is it the first three trips were from different movies and films glass trip will for example was from a movie called horror Obama and this photo here was an excerpt from Frankenstein by Mary Shelley and to be completely completely honest at a glance is not very scary at all so if horror literature looks like a joke in comparison to movies and films which possessed ability to force Trump's carries on its audience with flashy visuals and ominous music then what attributes makes it so successful how is the horror genre able to stay so popular the general public why is the horror genre the fifth most lucrative literature genre out there at 80 million dollars a year right below science and fiction well the key reason behind the craze of horror literature is purely chemical reread horror stories to release two specific chemicals into our bodies for specific desirable physical response the first is dopamine a neurotransmitter transmitter that generates mood motion in our ability to deal with anxiety reading scary stories gives us a natural high we not only feel more alive but also a numbing pleasure because of how little because of those little thrills and chills that we get while reading that sensation is because that's our body away body's way of combating fear through a large release of dopamine into our systems the second chemical is adrenaline when your plug is pumping and heart starts pounding as read horror novels that's our bodies leaping into fight-or-flight mode we receive an influx of energy to deal with a predator that in this case doesn't actually exist surprisingly no these are the same two chemicals released in our modern-day drugs meth adderall ecstasy all stimulate the adrenal gland which it releases adrenaline while opiates alcohol and nicotine and cocaine are pure dopamine you see what I'm getting here horror novels are an addiction and I'm going to explain to you the central principle behind successful for a novel and when I say successful I mean novel that makes you intimately taste here step 1 the monster every horror novel has a central antagonist that radiates terror now these monsters cannot be all sorts of creations but they need to accent one of these three categories instinctual fear collapse of logic or societal tensions instinctual fears and sexual fears are exactly what they sound like basic fears like darkness height snakes spiders very common and rooted in instinct a good horror novel will take these views to the extreme constantly reminding the audience that these fears play their daily life a good example of this is American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis in this novel we follow a perspective of a young investment banker Patrick Bateman an Athens to be also a serial killer about the novel catalogues Patrick's decline into violence and the sanity he goes from a basic murderer to someone who commits a lot of rape torture mutilation and necrophilia leaving readers terrorized with a day with the idea of a killer without motive and as the reader progresses throughout the novel they can't help but see every passing stranger in the streets as in the next Ellis the second category of fear deals with the class of logic monsters like vampires werewolves ghosts and demons shake of this category because although we know that they aren't real we can't help but imagine because the monsters in this category aren't given an explicit form the reader subconsciously develops and molds these monsters to mimic their worst fears the goal of authors of this category is to create a narrative that encourages and provokes the reader's imagination leaving out as many details as possible about the monster ironically leads to a scarier monster Pennywise the dancing clown from it by Stephen King is the perfect example the genius concept of that takes the form of your worst nightmares and then attacks you in the safety of your own homes Pennywise in a novel takes on many more forms shown in the film many more forms than shown in the film adaptations including forms like werewolves bats features and even sharks and the last category of monsters is none other than ourselves a recent trend in horror has been stabbing at underlying set of societal tensions and making a monster out of it the majority of the time that monster ends up being human the lottery by Shirley Jackson starts off in Hindi picture of a perfectly normal town in preparation for an annual tradition to guarantee a good harvest soon enough the reader horrified finds out that winning the lottery might not really be the best thing there are no vampires demons or roll Wolf's in this and this work but it sure is scary you know the monster is definitely important but the way the author creates fear is equally important and I found that to successfully create this complex emotion you need to touch on three sub categories of fear thriller which is the psychological feeling of forthcoming is fortune gore the physical depictions of vilas violence and terror the feeling of downright dread gore is the easiest to create the goal here is to appeal to the readers imagination again to make the reader able to recreate and see the scene directly in their minds vivid depictions taking in even the most random details of a scene leads to directly directly leads to better and citation of abyss imagination the atmosphere of thriller and terror are related and are much more difficult to create one commonality in texts that are successful in this aspect was that they were hadley heavily employed the idea of suspense and they didn't just use suspense at the climax of the novel but sustained it throughout here is the first paragraph from the haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson right from the get-go Jackson establishes this ominous mood that really only gets darker as a book book progressive progresses and by the time Jackson reveals to actual monsters of the novel the readers are already completely submerged in the text the right combination of atmosphere and monster as a surefire way of gifting the wonderful feelings of fear that we subconsciously yearn for and are otherwise boring daily lives thank you

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