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Wednesday, Mar 10, 2010
by PopMatters Staff
by Peter Straub
The Millions (9 March 2010)

“Genre, genre, genre, whole days go by when I am asked of nothing else, especially those moronic questions about horror that should have been swept out of civilized discourse at least thirty years ago: Tell us now, if you can, for we are really terribly curious about this, why is it, do you think, that reasonable people should pay good money to be, well, frightened? What, you know, can the appeal of such… unpleasantness… actually be? And on a more personal note, please, we’re all so curious… if you wouldn’t mind… what scares you? Okay, in reverse order, then: pretty much the same kind of thing that frightens you, what did you think I’d say, giant lizards? And, moving on to the first question: What are you trying to suggest, that you are not, have never been, implicated in this particular transaction? How certain are you, anyhow, that what you call “unpleasantness” is not a necessary, even crucial, part of our experience? Maybe you should lock yourself up in your heart long enough to work out your actual relationship to matters like shame, loss, envy, panic, brutality, greed, insecurity, loneliness, failure, whatever you find particularly unpleasant. Because that, dimwit, is where you live, especially if you really hate the whole idea of familiarity with such crappy, low-rent feeling states.”


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