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Horror 101: The Way Forward Paperback – June 9, 2014
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"Horror 101: The Way Forward - is sharp, savvy and packed with crucial information for anyone who wants to take a real bite out of the horror genre. Two taloned thumbs up!" - Jonathan Maberry, New York Times bestselling author of CODE ZERO and V-WARS.
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I am old enough to be of the classic On Writing Horror school, so much of the advice in here is simply hammered home again, but with updated views and fresh voices. Jack Ketchum, Graham Masterson, and Edward Lee begin the parade of great advice with their own beliefs on the horror genre. Ramsey Campbell gives some great advice on avoiding whats been done before, Steve Rasnic Tem gives a dozen solid tips on making a career, and Rocky Wood invites us to the Horror Writers Association. These well respected, and well known authors give solid advice that is fresh to hear again in their respective voices.
Writing has changed so much since the above mentioned classic that there needed to be something new to answer questions by writers, like me, who are realizing how vital the digital age is to a successful writing career. I am one of those writers who has no problem getting through a draft or two, but I get to the editing part and... oh look a butterfly is dancing around the garden outside my window... I can address my problems as a writer, but I am still fairly new to Facebook and the digital age. After years of telling myself how ridiculous Facebook and Twitter is, I have come to realize how vital it can be if used correctly. Many of the newer authors in this book have been active in the digital age for some time and I have picked up vital advice from authors I was somewhat familiar with, like Shane McKenzie, Michael Arnzen, Lucy Snyder,Tim Waggoner, and Scott Nicholson.
I was also more than pleasantly surprised by the advice from authors like Jasper Bark, Weston Ochse, Blaze McRob, and a few others whose writing was so good for this anthology of advice, that I will surely be looking forward to reading more from them and have already added many of them to my mental list of authors to check out.
As a struggling wannabe writer, I have to applaud and thank Joe Mynhardt, not only for his great advice within the pages of his anthology, but for taking the time to put this book together. The time he must have spent talking to these authors, putting it all together, and editing it must have been exhausting and I'm sure he cussed himself out for beginning such a detailed and extensive project. At the end, he has created a classic that any writer, not just us horror junkies, can call upon for advice and inspiration.
Hearing advice from the experts not only confirms that I am on the right track, but also that I am likely being too hard on myself when I want nothing more than to be a great author right then and there. Truth be known, it can take ten or more years to become a commercial success and this book does a good job reminding the reader of that.
Well written by professionals in the business and expertly edited by Joe Mynhardt and Emma Audsley, these bits of advice and tales range from the silly to the serious. This is a wonderful aspect of this book as it will bring a smile to your face and is not so heavy you will feel like it is constantly pulling you down.
For anyone who is going to be writing in the Horror/Thriller/Suspense genera, I would highly recommend reading this book. In addition to practical advice, it will keep you well grounded in reality and give you the spiritual fortitude you need to just keep writing.