Or, to be more accurate, why my wife forbids me from writing horror. The reason for this is that apparently yesterday I hit, ever so briefly, the top 100 horror authors on Amazon. This amuses me, since Ancient Ruins was given the categories of Dark Fantasy and Lesbian Romance by me. Apparently, if you put a book in Dark Fantasy, Amazon often categorizes it as horror anyway. I mentioned this to my wife, and she approximately said: “Hun, I love you, but if you write actual horror? I’m not reading it.”
The reason for this goes back many years. *sits back in chair for story-time*
About… seven years ago, at a guess, I was part of a text-based online roleplaying group. We were playing Old World of Darkness (revised). For those who just gave me a blank look, think of it as one of those modern-day games with vampires, mages, and the sort in the shadows of society. We had a game master who ran scenes for vampire and werewolf characters to play in, but my attempt to play a mage in it fell flat because he wasn’t interested in running Mage. So, with determination in mind, I rolled up my sleeves and did it instead, running Mage for about 4 sessions in total.
I started by horribly murdering my old character as part of a murder-mystery to build up interest by the players. This led to the players then finding a horribly mutated woman who wanted nothing more than to die, which horrified them (not giving details… it was bad). It then led them to finding out who was responsible. This next part requires a tiny bit of understanding of the game mechanics, so let me explain.
In Mage: The Ascension, mages can’t cast spells in public easily because people believe magic isn’t real, and it makes it really hard to, oh, throw a fireball down the street. The exception to this are the Marauders. These individuals are insane, and project a space around them where their worldview is effectively reality. So if one believed superheroes were real, they could literally manifest Thor or Spider Man nearby and everyone would think that it was normal until they left the field. Problem is, things destroyed are still destroyed. It’s a mess. Worse are the Nephandi. These are mages corrupted to evil, and whose goal seems to be nothing less than the destruction of reality. Good times.
Anyway, they find out that the villain behind this is H. P. Lovecraft. He’s a Nephandi Marauder, so all of Lovecraft’s psychosis’ are made real nearby him. Even worse, he has a shard realm, a small… bubble of reality where all of his delusions are completely real. So the tentacle horrors from the great beyond started attacking the players.
Again, I’m not going into details. But this was the least bad of what I subjected my players to. My wife was utterly horrified by the ‘necromancer’s forest’ in another game, which will not be described. This is the reason I don’t write horror. Mostly because there are certain things that I don’t like letting out of the dark places of my mind.