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Old 01.22.2018, 10:09 PM   #4921
demonrail666
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evollove
I'm curious: does horror really scare? I mean, are there really stories/novels that actually freak you out as much as a movie can?

Personally yes, some really do. But it's a different kind of scary to what I get from a film. Funnily enough I'd put Pet Semetary in the category of horror stories that I find genuinely frightening. But then, whatever else people might say about Stephen King, he's a horror writer that I'd say does scary better than almost anyone. Peter Straub's another one. On the other hand Poe's brilliant but I don't find his stories remotely frightening.
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Old 01.22.2018, 10:11 PM   #4922
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evollove
I think I read Pet Semetary in grade school because I liked the movie, but I'm too much of a snob to know what you guys are talking about.

But I'm curious: does horror really scare? I mean, are there really stories/novels that actually freak you out as much as a movie can?

I remember In Cold Blood scaring me when I read it in high school, so I know the written word can provoke fear, but I think Capote's book is far removed from the current discussion.

In Cold Blood is terrifying. Lovecraft is not *always* truly terrifying, and definitely never in the same way as ICB, but it’s possible to acknowledge that both are bloody terrifying.

So is, like “Wait until Dark”

Quote:
Originally Posted by evollove
Well, I didn't mean to disparage anyone who is scared by giant tentacles. I was just genuinely and non-judgmentally curious to know if that was really possible.


No, giant tentacles” don’t scare me. But Lovecraft isn’t “giant tentacles.”
He wrote a lot of stories that have nothing to do with the Ancient Ones or the Cthuhlu mythos.

But, a lot of his stories deal with madness in various forms, and what causes it and how it descends upon someone (usually for goddamn good reasons, considering the circumstances)

The idea that humans are pawns in a scheme of beings that are malevolence incarnate, so beyond our capacity to imagine that mere knowledge of their existence is enough to drive us to suicide or worse, is scary to me.

Giant cosmic demons the size of small planets lurking under the sea, waiting for society’s collective anxiety to feed them and bring about an era of pure hatred and holocaust... that, in the right hands, is some scary shit. To me anyway.

Of course, every horror book you’ve ever read is a copy of a copy of a Lovecraft idea, so I’d understand if it didn’t work for everyone. Some people think Stephen King is terrifying. Do talking cars terrify you? King, like Gaiman, took pieces of Lovecraft and built his own style around it, in a different, far less literary, direction than Gaiman.

Either way, Horror is whatever scares you.
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Old 01.22.2018, 10:25 PM   #4923
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^^ in other words, fear/paranoia/anxiety scares me.

The idea of fear/paranoia/anxiety are not simply a BAD perspective on a beutral reality, but are actually the most ACCURATE, and ultimately MERCIFUL of mindsets, because these feelings suggest that you are at least partially aware of a “real” reality so horrifying it can’t be perceived.... that idea scares me.

Scares the fuck out of me.
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Old 01.22.2018, 10:34 PM   #4924
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Quote:
Originally Posted by !@#$%!
ambrose bierce was the first one to come up with carcosa. then one robert chambers and lovecraft himself ripped off the name. the chambers dude added the yellow king. no—the king in yellow.

bierce also came up (thanks wikipedia!) with the monster that ends up as cthulhu’s half brother. h— something.

you ever read ambrose bierce? i’ve only read his devil’s dictionary and it’s hilarious.

“an inhabitant of carcosa” is in this book: https://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/4366

which i’m tempted to read now

—-

i was just browsing inside the book and hastur is “god of shepherds” not a monster (yet).


Yeah, devil’s dictionary and perhaps some short stories? Name very familiar. On bookcase somewhere. Will solve mystery.

But no, clearly I’m not a devotee. Read Devil’s Dictionary and a few others maybe.
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Old 01.22.2018, 11:31 PM   #4925
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devils dictionary used to sell as those $1 dover thrift editions and had a red cover and you could pick up anywhere. the internet i think killed that business model.

anyway i agree with you that horror is whatever scares you but i have a bone to pick with the notion that hatecraft is at the root of every horror story one has ever read. i mean this statement:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Severian
Of course, every horror book you’ve ever read is a copy of a copy of a Lovecraft idea,

we’ve had stories and myths of ghosts and demons and monsters and evil gods and witches and fairytales and scary religions since the dawn of time.

hatecraft himself cites poe and some bulwer dude i had never heard of, then invokes polyphemus and used the world cyclopean because obvious cyclops. and that’s just on page one.

regarding modern fiction, books like frankenstein and dracula were way before and vampires are now everywhere.

i mean even wuthering heights is a fucking work of horror. come on.

but before?

the myth of orpheus is fucking horror.

the book of revelation is a work of horror.

the book of job, where satan and god make bets on the life of some dude. talk about out of control cosmic shit.

the twelve stations of the cross, horror

the snake in the garden of eden

little red riding hood

the divine comedy

the punishments of the titans defeated by the olympian gods

the myth of ragnarok

the popol vuh

etc etc etc

(existence itself is a work of horror, and we’ve been telling stories about that since forever)

however influential the guy might be today (e.g. he’s clearly a big influence on joss whedon) he didn’t come up with his shit from the vacuum. if anything it’s a pastiche of previous attractions. huge demons from under teh sea—hello, leviathan? the kraken? captain nemo fighting a giant plate of calamari? (ha ha). sailors since time immemorial have been terrified of giant underwater creatures which have accrued layers and layers of significance in their evolution. oh, the mesopotamian goddess tiamat is the oldest i know of.

the more i read about this the more i see demonyo’s point. looks like he was a kind of seed for a very large fictional universe like the one tolkien begat in the fantasy genre. (but tolkien also borrowed from earlier mythologies and sagas and a lot more). and it’s become large and coherent in a way he never intended. but to paraphrase obama, he didnt do that.

anyway seems like lovecraft has had a lot of homages and imitators in our day, but he himself was paying homage and imitating his predecessors. who are legion.

which, you know, is perfectly fine, because it’s what literature always does anyway.

i understand that he can be an important nexus in the genre, but that’s not the same as him having invented everything.
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Old 01.23.2018, 09:07 AM   #4926
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evollove

But I'm curious: does horror really scare? I mean, are there really stories/novels that actually freak you out as much as a movie can?

movies give you jump scares. cheap. easy. predictable.

scary books, the real scary ones, create a world that is so real in your head that you experience the terror as if it was happening to you. This happened to me with several Stephen King books in my teens. It also happened with clive barker's first books of blood short stories. when I got older I read HOUSE by Mark Danielewski and, while not horror per se, that book scared the shit out of my inner mind. books freak you out for far longer than a film can.
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Old 01.23.2018, 09:16 AM   #4927
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some writers are important because their use of the language is second to none. (Most of these writers I could give a fuck about. fuck your use of language. I hate florid shit. I want to read a story, not a fucking dipshit showing off how many gerunds he can disseminate)

some writers are important because the subjects and themes they write about had never been done that way before. (Lovecraft is this way. so is Twain, so is conan doyle. Lovecraft was not a good prose writer. no one claims that. his work is more like reading a news account of horrible shit happening. Conan Doyle had very utilitarian prose, but he created the form of the detective novel as we know it. Twain was the best writer of the lot I mention by FAR, but even he is not praised for his prose as much as he is for his ideas, humor, and observation of human nature)

Poe was both. he crafted precision in his stories, but he also created whole genres out of thin air.
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Old 01.23.2018, 09:30 AM   #4928
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poe was the king of the cats
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Old 01.23.2018, 09:39 AM   #4929
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One of my all time favorite creepy books is Wild Palms by Wm Faulkner.
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Old 01.23.2018, 10:15 AM   #4930
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Oh! "That Evening Sun."

Black washerwoman Nancy Mannigoe fears that her common-law husband Jesus is seeking to murder her because she is pregnant with a white man's child. Her employers, The Compsons, are mostly indifferent. 75% scary, 25% really sad.
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Old 01.23.2018, 10:39 AM   #4931
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Quote:
Originally Posted by !@#$%!
devils dictionary used to sell as those $1 dover thrift editions and had a red cover and you could pick up anywhere. the internet i think killed that business model.

anyway i agree with you that horror is whatever scares you but i have a bone to pick with the notion that hatecraft is at the root of every horror story one has ever read. i mean this statement:



we’ve had stories and myths of ghosts and demons and monsters and evil gods and witches and fairytales and scary religions since the dawn of time.

hatecraft himself cites poe and some bulwer dude i had never heard of, then invokes polyphemus and used the world cyclopean because obvious cyclops. and that’s just on page one.

regarding modern fiction, books like frankenstein and dracula were way before and vampires are now everywhere.

i mean even wuthering heights is a fucking work of horror. come on.

but before?

the myth of orpheus is fucking horror.

the book of revelation is a work of horror.

the book of job, where satan and god make bets on the life of some dude. talk about out of control cosmic shit.

the twelve stations of the cross, horror

the snake in the garden of eden

little red riding hood

the divine comedy

the punishments of the titans defeated by the olympian gods

the myth of ragnarok

the popol vuh

etc etc etc

(existence itself is a work of horror, and we’ve been telling stories about that since forever)

however influential the guy might be today (e.g. he’s clearly a big influence on joss whedon) he didn’t come up with his shit from the vacuum. if anything it’s a pastiche of previous attractions. huge demons from under teh sea—hello, leviathan? the kraken? captain nemo fighting a giant plate of calamari? (ha ha). sailors since time immemorial have been terrified of giant underwater creatures which have accrued layers and layers of significance in their evolution. oh, the mesopotamian goddess tiamat is the oldest i know of.

the more i read about this the more i see demonyo’s point. looks like he was a kind of seed for a very large fictional universe like the one tolkien begat in the fantasy genre. (but tolkien also borrowed from earlier mythologies and sagas and a lot more). and it’s become large and coherent in a way he never intended. but to paraphrase obama, he didnt do that.

anyway seems like lovecraft has had a lot of homages and imitators in our day, but he himself was paying homage and imitating his predecessors. who are legion.

which, you know, is perfectly fine, because it’s what literature always does anyway.

i understand that he can be an important nexus in the genre, but that’s not the same as him having invented everything.


Ok ok, I was exaggerating for effect. What I really meant was modern horror owes a lot to Lovecraft. Stephen King, Clive Barker, who’s the other one? The other “big” one? Whatever... anyway, all of them just worship on the altar of Lovecraft. But of course not all horror is influenced by him, because he was not the first horror writer (or anywhere near the first).

If he actually *pioneered* anything it was the Weird genre, along with Mervyn Peake (in a much different way), and some others who have really excellent anthology SF/horror stories from the 20s-50s whose names escape me at the moment.

I exaggerated. Sorry. Blah.
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Old 01.23.2018, 10:42 AM   #4932
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One of the scariest stories I’ve ever read is “The Foghorn” by good old Ray Bradbury. There’s a definite element of Lovecraft in that ending (won’t ruin it for anyone who hasn’t read it). Not really *scary* in the way that makes you check your windows, but tense and thrilling and larger than life and kind of apocalypticly awesome.
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Old 01.24.2018, 08:55 AM   #4933
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Severian
Ok ok, I was exaggerating for effect. What I really meant was modern horror owes a lot to Lovecraft. Stephen King, Clive Barker, who’s the other one? The other “big” one? Whatever... anyway, all of them just worship on the altar of Lovecraft. But of course not all horror is influenced by him, because he was not the first horror writer (or anywhere near the first).

If he actually *pioneered* anything it was the Weird genre, along with Mervyn Peake (in a much different way), and some others who have really excellent anthology SF/horror stories from the 20s-50s whose names escape me at the moment.

I exaggerated. Sorry. Blah.
oh ha ha ha ok i believe you now.

i got the ambrose bierce ebook off gutenberg the other day and gonna read those stories and see what’s up

had a superlong day on the road yesterday and i need a break. fiction for breakfast is a good thing.
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Old 01.24.2018, 09:02 AM   #4934
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ambrose's stories are not my fave, b ut his devil's dictionary is the epitome of SNARK!
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Old 01.24.2018, 11:58 AM   #4935
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob Instigator
ambrose's stories are not my fave, b ut his devil's dictionary is the epitome of SNARK!

I’m honestly not sure I’ve ever read anything else.

EDIT: OCCURRENCE AT OWL CREEK! Definitely read that one. Probably some others, but yeah. Good story.
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Old 01.24.2018, 12:02 PM   #4936
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oh ha ha ha ok i believe you now.

i got the ambrose bierce ebook off gutenberg the other day and gonna read those stories and see what’s up

had a superlong day on the road yesterday and i need a break. fiction for breakfast is a good thing.

I’ve been reading Neil Gaiman’s “Sandman” comics, which are really almost more novel than comic. I never read the full series before, and still haven’t, because why would I read a *comic* by an author I love when I could read a *book?* (No, not even I am that nerdy, though I do love me some comics).

But I think it’s on par with some of his novels. Definitely top-notch for comics. I’d place it next to Watchmen or MAUS in the pantheon of comic books that deserve to be called “books.”
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Old 01.24.2018, 12:10 PM   #4937
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sandman rules.
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Old 01.24.2018, 03:43 PM   #4938
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jeezus crackers sandman is the best fucking comic on the planet

if anything ever convinced me comics were worth a second look after childhood, it was that glorious masterpiece

just fucking brilliant

way better than maus. i mean, maus was a heavy subject but not a great plot. just very serious for a comic. i’d rather read viktor frankl or primo levi on the subject

i didn’t like watchmen because i had read borges first and that ruined the suprise of the literary devices they use in it. and i don’t know, i didn’t like the characters either or maybe the capes turned me off. dunno.

but sandman. holy shit. hoooo-leeeeee-shitttttttt. sandman!!!!

 
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Old 01.24.2018, 08:50 PM   #4939
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Quote:
Originally Posted by !@#$%!
jeezus crackers sandman is the best fucking comic on the planet

if anything ever convinced me comics were worth a second look after childhood, it was that glorious masterpiece

just fucking brilliant

way better than maus. i mean, maus was a heavy subject but not a great plot. just very serious for a comic. i’d rather read viktor frankl or primo levi on the subject

i didn’t like watchmen because i had read borges first and that ruined the suprise of the literary devices they use in it. and i don’t know, i didn’t like the characters either or maybe the capes turned me off. dunno.

but sandman. holy shit. hoooo-leeeeee-shitttttttt. sandman!!!!

 

Sandman definitely > Watchmen, but Watchmen ain’t about capes. I think that book warrants at least two reads.

MAUS is more like Persepolis. Different kind of thing altogether, even from these comics, which are very different kinds of things altogether from regular comics.

Preacher is also some baller ass shit. Not sure if you’ve read that, but it’s worth it. Show’s obviously great, but the book is great in different ways.
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Old 01.24.2018, 09:41 PM   #4940
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Originally Posted by Severian
Sandman definitely > Watchmen, but Watchmen ain’t about capes. I think that book warrants at least two reads.

MAUS is more like Persepolis. Different kind of thing altogether, even from these comics, which are very different kinds of things altogether from regular comics.

Preacher is also some baller ass shit. Not sure if you’ve read that, but it’s worth it. Show’s obviously great, but the book is great in different ways.

i recommend fish. especially small fish at the bottom of the food chain. sardines, herring, anchovies. also apples. also walnuts. all good for memory! also relaxation exercises. reduce stress. clears the head = recollection.

don’t you remember you and i talked about a year ago (maybe less, maybe 6 months ago) about preacher the tv show and you liked tulip and all that? and i told you season 1 was a prequel to the actual comic? ok i won’t get sore. but we talked about it extensively! compared it to the comic! ok.

so, yes, i’ve read fucking preacher and it’s fucking awesome and you’re right it’s fucking great great great.

persepolis vol 1 for my taste beats vol 2 by a million miles. vol 1 is all about escaping and adventure. vol 2 is about, ugh, getting back to prison. a little too bitter for me and lacking structure. but 1 was magick.

the problem with maus for me is that it lacks a compelling plot. this happens, this happens, this happens— it’s a document. it’s an important document no doubt, but it’s a document.

persepolis documents history as well but i has an actual plot—there is tension in the narrative and it moves you forward. the thing that moves you forward in maus is spiegelman’s inherited neurosis. which, i don’t know, he doesn’t really delve into it. he’s a little cold about everything, a little distant. a little too detached, too american.i was disappointed when i read it.

you want to delve into jewish neurosis and historical trauma in the present, read jacobo timerman on the lebanon war. holy mother of fuck. it’s gut-wrenching. he’s argentinian so he doesn’t hold back— he spills his guts in front of you. a brilliant book. a meditation on the horrors of history and about going from victim to perpetrator. deeply, deeply felt.

anyway where was i going with this after 7 vodkas? hm... er... yes! plots. right ways of telling a story. a story says this happened first this happened secod this happened third. a plot tells you the story in a more interesting way.

and sandman— sandman is the mother of all plots. sandman is full of amazing surprises. sandman takes you one way then takes you another way then you arrive to a place and say huh? and wow. it’s just spectacularly well told. seriously. such a well-told story. masterful.

also i know that watchmen is not about capes, it’s about, uh, superheroes being flawed, and borgesian fake documents, and literary devices that were experimental 40 years before the comics. anyway i didn’t like it. i couldn’t like it. so i didn’t like it. and that’s how i didn’t like it. i got it. and still didn’t like it. couldn’t like it. won’t like it. can’t. not interested unfortunately. way the cookie crumbles.

a book that warrants at least 2 reads might be, hm, let’s see, borges’s ficciones. everyone should read that at least once. whatta book.

also, speaking of adult comics, the first several volumes of FABLES were fucking amazing. later it sort of spun off into a bland mess and i stopped buying/reading, kinda like they were milking their earlier success. but fables holy fuck so smart and so epic. the way the characters got reinterpreted into adulthood was a masterstroke. that alone, what it does for the mythical imagination, hasn’t been valued enough yet. sure it has been copied some in some tv shows, like, grimm or something? they attempt something like that? but no. fables. wow. it destroyed my childhood in all the right ways. it said: these characters grew up with you.
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