Friday, May 17, 2013

Inherently Weird. The puzzling Past of a Horror Writer

I've been attracted to death, ghostly visitors, and paranormal stories for as long as I can remember. Where does this fascination come, I have no idea, but while other kids played on their bikes or read funny comics, I was obsessed with witchcraft and read scary stories. The only way to entice me to read was to dangle in front of me stories of the sort, and so my mom introduced me to A CHRISTMAS CARROL and ghostly mystery stories for kids. 

Yeah, I know, I was weird. But before all that, my most distant memory and the way I was possibly introduced to the concept of horror was through a series of nightmares. I must have been about seven and had experienced nightmares before. This, however, was a totally different thing. Now, I know what you'll say, but my parents were not divorcing, I had no reason to feel stressed, and people didn't talk about horror themes with any of us children around. So no, there was no reason for my "Nightmare Attack."

It was only one nightmare, but it besieged me for eight months. It always started with me sitting alone in a small boat, drifting through a calm river. The water was so crystalline I could see colorful rocks on the bottom and the landscape was beautiful. But I was afraid, didn't know why, just simply afraid. Without any apparent reason, the water started to turn red, little by little until it was all the color of blood. I looked around for the cause and realized that at the bottom of the river laid severed hands. Completely terrorized, I jumped out of the boat and swam to land, running like crazy until I was facing a hill. I climbed it only to find a Roman soldier on the top that confronted me with a spear, threatening to kill me. The floor was littered with corpses and I knew I could not escape. Then I woke up, screaming and crying. Every night.

You can imagine that after a month, my mother could no longer dismiss the nightmares and became really worried. I don't remember much of what she told to me or the different remedies that we tried. All I know is that about six months in, she started to pray with me every night. The more we did, the calmer I felt when going to sleep, and the more the nightmares drifted away. Until one day, there were nightmares no more.

Now, I'm not saying it was prayer that took them away, at least not per se. I think it was the positive images and reassuring words that finally got to me. What intrigues me really is their origin and why then I became so intrigued by the unearthly. It is a passion that has always tugged on me, sometimes as a positive influence like in my writing, sometimes in a very negative way... but that is material for another post.

So, is it truly genetics all that pushes us? What amazing experiences shape us in all different ways and what brings them in the first place? Do you have one such amazing influence in your life? I can't wait to hear about it.

Enjoy your weekend!


M Pax said...

I had a reocurring nightmare as a kid. I still remember it, too, vividly.

Yolanda Renee said...

I had many nightmares, and repeating dreams as a child. I feared growing old, I saw myself old and wrinkled and dying, repeated over and over again, and I woke crying from it too. No explanation. Another dream was of being beheaded, I slept with the covers pulled up tight, if they couldn't see my neck they would cut my head off. Silly, isn't it, but scared me at the time and sometimes still does. The worst was the monster under the bed, I believed that for years, and still do -- can't sleep with any part of my body hanging over the side, still fear the pull from underneath. Oh dear, now I'm going to have nightmares! :)

Georgina Morales said...

M Pax, it's amazing how we forget why we were going into the kitchen, but things like this get burned in our memories, right?

Yolanda, your dreams sound awful! I have to say I feel relieved knowing I'm not the only one with strange dreams, thanks! Sorry for giving you nightmares, though!

Lexa Cain said...

Wow - your dream sure was scary!

When I was 6 or 7, my parents used to hear me crying in my sleep and come wake me up. I don't remember the dreams, but I think we're all plagued by bad dreams at various stages of our lives.

I started reading scary stories and watching Horror when I was about 11, and I've loved them ever since, although I really only love the ones where the "good guys" win in the end. There are monstrous things in the world, but only in fiction can those things be truly defeated.

Julie Luek said...

When my daughter was little she was very sensitive to the kind of stimuli she absorbed during the day or she'd have horrific nightmares. We had to forbid scary movies or books because we knew she'd regret it at night. She still has a sensitive spirit, but is able to handle it better now.

Georgina Morales said...

@Lexa, it is funny how we look for the fulfillment of different things in our fiction. I personally enjoy happy endings, specially in romance, but my horror I like it hard and gritty with tough endings when they feel appropriate. =)

@Julie, sensitive kids are specially hard to protect because you never know what will affect them. I hope in time your daughter will learn to protect herself from the harsh in life. It always breaks my heart to think of the heartbreak our kids will have to face. But at least they'll have us!

Mina Lobo said...

Dude, what an *awful* nightmare, and to suffer with it for so long! I'm so glad your mother helped you get through it!

A recurring dream I had when I was a kid and a teen, and maybe into my early 20s, before I had my son, was that I was pregnant. Someone once suggested that I was "pregnant" with possibilities, as a writer and singer. I dig that interpretation but am not 100% sure it fits. :-)
Some Dark Romantic

Georgina Morales said...

Mina, I didn't know you were a singer! How cool! You truly are full of talent. I like that interpretation of your dream. Sometimes it's better to go for the easy simple answer. =)

Nicole said...

That would be so scary! Yikes.

Anonymous said...

I just so happen to love the horror genre as well. I'm currently working on rewriting a book called THE MOUNTAIN TOWN which is a horror story set in British India.
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