Gary A. Braunbeck

Of Subtext, Subtlety, and Coming In After The Fact

I’m kind of a snob when it comes to fiction — horror or otherwise — and don’t mind admitting it. This gets me into a lot of trouble when it comes to reading for pleasure, something I have less and less time for these days. I often make the mistake of applying (sometimes consciously, mostly not) my own storytelling standards to the work of those I read, and that’s just silly (as well as being a habit I am fighting to break); if everyone wrote the same kind of stuff I do, and wrote it the same way I do, “variety” would be the stuff of fairy tales. And everyone would be depressed and grumpy all the time.

But every once in a while I start to ask questions about the fiction being produced in the horror field, simply because I’m still stubborn enough to want to see the field expand beyond its popular definition.