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Re: Less Familiar Weird Literature
Posted by: jdworth (IP Logged)
Date: 6 July, 2014 02:29PM
Not entirely unavailable... just seldom handled with any great skill. Of course, J. Vernon Shea's "The Haunter of the Graveyard" has this element; Howardian fantasy (usually pastiche) has some of it as well; but as a whole I think most writers have preferred a less overtly repulsive scenario simply because the whole thing relies as much (or actually more with the readers' reactions) on repulsion and physical fear as on the more elusive "spiritual" or psychological fear of the unknown and uncanny. True, a living-dead corpse is an unnatural thing, but the terrors of the violation of natural law here are far overshadowed by the physical repulsion of rotting flesh, the stench of decay (particularly if the person has ever had the experience of being around less-than-fresh corpses), and the fear of the physical harm such a concrete being can do.

To truly handle this sort of theme without lapsing too far into that takes enormous skill and restraint, or the ability to give such physical loathing and horror that extra dimension of genuine terror of the genuinely supernatural....

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