My husband’s first question to me today, after he read On the trail of the cryptid known as the Linwood Woolly Beast, was: “So. Did you make that one up?”
No. I actually found references to the creature on a couple of websites when I Googled Minnesota paranormal. (Though I must admit I was several pages deep into the results by the time it came up.) Despite sounding so irked last night, it turns out that I’m glad I learned of the legend. My boy and I had a lovely time looking for the thing as we drove into town.
As long as the question came up, I want to promise you I will never confuse my personal fiction with my paranormal studies. Even if I could craft a better story. Which I could.
(That’s a clumsy segue into the subject of my fiction.)
My book is in review at a critiquing community. I’m pretty sure I’m not supposed to boast about nice things people say, but I’m making an exception for the critique I found in my email tonight. Because it literally made me tear up. Because I’ve been hoping to hear something like this for a long time:
“While reading it, I was thinking that your writing style is much more similar to literary fiction than to a typical horror/mystery genre novel. … So, people have probably been saying “go faster! go faster!” but now I am not sure how much faster you really need to go. There are definitely areas that can be trimmed, but this is going to be a slower-pace, more internalized novel. And it is really working. Such an interesting combination…the pretty words slowly telling this intriguing ghost story. I like it.”
Don’t get me wrong. I WANT to be a genre writer. I read and love horror. (Albeit old-school horror like King and Rice and McCammon and Simmons.) I know I have to ruthlessly cut what I’ve written. But it was awfully good to read that someone, somewhere gets what I’m trying to do.
I didn’t intend to post of any of that. I came downstairs to satisfy my quota for NaBloPoMo by simply sharing my thoughts about the movie I watched tonight: Carnival of Souls (1962)
This movie was shot in 3 weeks, on a tight budget, and it shows. (Not always in a bad way.) The editing leaves something to be desired, and the soundtrack started to give me a headache after a while, but I’m glad I stuck with it. In the latter half of the film, there are some wonderfully creepy, surreal images which I fear I will see again in future nightmares. Even the makeup, which looks too thick in stills from the movie, is effective in the context of the story. (The smeary-lipped, rictus grins will stay with me for a long time.) It’s a contender for the 13 Creepiest Horror Films list that I’m still working on.