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Monday, 13 December 2010

The Twelve Deaths of Christmas: The Chainsaw Gang Blog Tour (Verse 8)


On the first day of Christmas, 
my true love sent to me 
A corpse hanging from a pear tree. 

On the second day of Christmas, 
my true love sent to me
Two werewolves howling
And a corpse hanging from a pear tree. 

On the third day of Christmas, 
my true love sent to me
Three zombies snarling
Two werewolves howling
And a corpse hanging from a pear tree. 

On the fourth day of Christmas, 
my true love sent to me
Four Wheezers wheezing
Three zombies snarling
Two werewolves howling 
And a corpse hanging from a pear tree. 

On the fifth day of Christmas, 
my true love sent to me
Five buzzing saws
Four Wheezers wheezing
Three zombies snarling
Two werewolves howling 
And a corpse hanging from a pear tree. 

On the six day of Christmas, 
my true love sent to me
Six yetis freezing
Five buzzing saws
Four Wheezers wheezing
Three zombies snarling
Two werewolves howling 
And a corpse hanging from a pear tree. 

On the seventh day of Christmas, 
my true love sent to me
Seven Templars fighting
Six yetis freezing
Five buzzing saws
Four Wheezers wheezing
Three zombies snarling
Two werewolves howling 
And a corpse hanging from a pear tree. 

On the eighth day of Christmas, 
my true love sent to me
Eight crawlers creeping
Seven Templars fighting
Six yetis freezing
Five buzzing saws
Four Wheezers wheezing
Three zombies snarling
Two werewolves howling 
And a corpse hanging from a pear tree.

As promised on Friday, The Chainsaw Gang are back at The Book Zone for another stop on their blog tour, and this time they have a couple more questions to answer. So without further ado:

If you were to have a Halloween meal with any three people from the glorious history of horror literature and cinema, who would those three people be?

Sam Enthoven: Most of the horror creators I really admire would probably make fairly lousy dinner guests (I can't see H. P. Lovecraft lighting up the room with his great jokes and ribald repartee, can you?) However, I would be honoured to be the Halloween meal of the Alien, the Pale Man from Pan's Labyrinth or even The Tar Man from Return of the Living Dead: "Brains! MORE BRAINS!"

Alexander Gordon Smith: Crikey, there are so many to choose from! Well I’d absolutely love to meet Stephen King, as he’s my hero and he would be a fantastic guy to talk to about writing. M. R. James would probably be in there too as I can’t imagine a better person to have at your dinner party when you’re telling ghost stories over brandy (or in a tent in the back garden, although I’m not sure if they’d be game for that). And maybe Mary Shelley for my final guest, as she’d have some fantastic tales to tell and she was a bit of a party animal!

Stephen Deas: Mary Shelley (author of the original Frankenstein), Mark someone-or-other who wrote House of Leaves and Elvira, Mistress if the Dark.

Alex Bell: Definitely Vincent Price because the man was a legend, with the creepiest voice, and I adore any shlock-horror film that had him in it. Edgar Allan Poe because he seems such a man of contrasts, and it would be great to know what he was really like. And Jack the Ripper so that I could find out the secret of his identity, and sell it to the world for a lot of money.

Sarah Silverwood: Vincent Price (the granddaddy of horror films), Stephen King and Edgar Allan Poe.

Jon Mayhew: MR James because he could smoke a pipe by the fireplace after lunch and tell us a ghost story. Edgar Allen Poe though I suspect it could be rather a quiet. I’d love to meet Christopher Lee or maybe Michael Ripper who was always a supporting actor in many a Hammer film and always ended up getting squished.

William Hussey: Again, only three?! Hmm, I’d be tempted by Edgar Allan Poe and HP Lovecraft, but I’m not sure they’d be very cheery company! Plus, Poe would hog all the wine. I’ve heard many stories about how Vincent Price was a great raconteur, so he’d get an invitation – we could compare notes on Matthew Hopkins, the Witchfinder General! An obvious choice, but Stephen King would have to be there – just so I could sit at the feet of the only god whose existence I acknowledge. And MR James so that, after the meal, we could all retire to his rooms at King’s College and he could read my favourite ghost story to us – Oh, Whistle, And I’ll Come To You, My Lad.

Sarwat Chadda: Bram Stoker because whether you like them or not, he gave us the modern vampire. I’d like to ask him if he ever could have imagined that Dracula would define a entire form of literature.
Edgar Alan Poe. Pretty much for the same reason as Stoker. His stories define what gothic horror is and basically all our work descends from their books, whether we’re aware of it or not. It would be handy to ask him for some writing tips, while we were there.
The German film director Friedrich Murnau would be the third. He gave us Nosferatu and Faust. Nuff said.

David Gatward: Vincent Price (what a voice!), Bruce Campbell (Evil Dead), and Clive Barker (The Hellbound Heart/Hellraiser).

Sam Feasey: Hmmmm. They say that you should never meet your heroes, don’t they? But I’d love to resurrect HP Lovecraft and have a chinwag with him. Stephen King would be a great guest, and I think Anne Rice would be too.

And don't say I never treat you blog readers - I somehow managed to con The Gang out of another set of answers to this third question:

What scares you? Do you ever look to your own fears, phobias or nightmares for subject matter?

Alexander Gordon Smith: Everything scares me. Literally everything. I hate flying, I hate going on the Tube, I get scared at night when I’m on my own, I get nervous when I’m in a crowd, I’m terrified of porcelain dolls and slugs and the witch from the recurring dream I had as a kid who now lives at the bottom of my attic stairs in one of those trolleys legless people sometimes pull themselves around in… 
It’s not as bad as it sounds, but I do have lots of minor phobias. And yes, your own nightmares are the best place to look for inspiration when you’re writing horror. When I do workshops I get the kids to write stories based on their own worst fears, because if you’re writing about something that scares you then readers will pick up on that fear, it will feel real to them, and so much more powerful. With Furnace I set out to do exactly that, writing about the things that scare me most: being accused of a crime I didn’t commit, being buried alive, being hunted, being powerless, being operated on by a mad surgeon, even dogs (ever since I saw a friend of mine get their ear chewed off by an Alsatian). Real fears grow into terrifying stories very easily.

Sarah Silverwood: Everything scares me! Heights, flying, small spaces, bugs etc. The list is endless. I think all horror writers are scared of stuff because we spend so much time coming up with 'worst case scenarios' for our poor characters. For example - I was on a tube in London the other day and it stopped in a tunnel and all the lights went out for a moment. Everyone else just looked bored and fed up when they came back up...I was looking for some crazy red-eyed tube tunnel cannibal who I was sure must have slipped on in that moment and was going to start a bloody massacre on my carriage. Thankfully, he wasn't there.

Jon Mayhew: As a child, the idea of transformation scared me. Werewolf films, The Fly, Jekyll and Hyde even the Nutty Professor (original with Gerry Lewis) scared me. I’ve included a bit in my third book in which a character changes and it made me squirm! The Demon Collector out in March, has some delightful creatures that just steal your face.

Stephen Deas: I worry about existential stuff. And yes, it very much does.

Sam Enthoven: Lots of things scare me, I'm happy to say: when I'm writing stories that are intended to frighten I have a large stock of personal terrors to choose from!

William Hussey: I don’t really have any phobias as such and, since I started writing horror, I rarely have nightmares. I think I channel all my fears into my writing – hey, it’s cheaper than a shrink! Honestly, I think that’s why, contrary to popular belief, horror writers are among the most well-balanced of genre scribes. We get out all our fears onto the page! But what scares me… everything! Disease, bodily mutation, nuclear holocaust, religious fanaticism, intolerance, clowns, herds of little old ladies at the post office… you name it!

Sarwat Chadda: Oh yes, absolutely. Devil’s Kiss was based on the horror of losing one’s children, it’s all about the death of the firstborn child and as a parent, there is no greater terror.
Dark Goddess is slightly different, but still grounded in my own fear. It’s about the damage we’re doing to the planet and our blind refusal to acknowledge how late in the day it already is. It makes me wonder for all the amazing things we’ve done, we’ve grown no wiser. We can understand the make up of the stars but we can’t look after our own garden.

David Gatward: Finding myself in a situation I’m woefully unprepared for. Going to the fridge and discovering someone else ate all the cheese. Never waking up. Losing my family. Rabbits.

Steve Feasey: The dark. That moment when you’re in the house alone and you turn out the light for the last time. You know what I mean. The moment when the inner voice that’s been hiding all day decides to speak up; whispering in your ear about what might be on the other side of the door, or under the bed, or lurking in the wardrobe.
Alone in the darkness. That’s why we invented fire.

Alex Bell: Alzheimer’s scares me, and I used that in Lex Trent, but that’s more real life than horror. I had a nightmare about one of my own characters once (from The Ninth Circle), which was weird.

~~~

My huge thanks to The Chainsaw Gang for the time they spent answering these questions. For their next stop they are visiting Wondrous Reads tomorrow - please click on the link and pop on over and read more answers and also the ninth verse to The Twelve Deaths of Christmas. I will also be posting details tomorrow of how you can win a signed book from each member of The Gang.

1 comment:

  1. this is an interesting post to say the least...I'm loving this tour!

    ReplyDelete