When i first used to write stories and hide them away in my desk…i used to think that no one had ever been so lonely as i was and i used to write about people all alone. . . . i thought i was insane and i would write about how the only sane people are the ones who are condemned as mad and how the whole world is cruel and foolish and afraid of people who are different.
– Shirley Jackson
All writers have their influences. Mine is Shirley Jackson. Best known for her short story The Lottery, Jackson’s works of every day horror are a major influence on my writing. I love how she took the mundane and made it terrifying.
Imagine a pristine white room. Jackson is the one who sees the tiniest black smudge on a far baseboard and knows that it is not a smudge, but is, in fact, a portal to a dimension of monsters so foul they would frighten Lovecraft.
If you haven’t read her, fix that and pick up one of her books now. I recommend The Haunting of Hill House. So does Stephen King in his Danse Macabre. I also recommend We Have Always Lived in the Castle.
FYI: Don’t read them at night.