Over 30 adult chat

20 Feb

He is the founder of the Writers Coffeehouse, and co-founder of The Liars Club.

Welcome back to SCARY OUT THERE, the Horror Writers Association’s new blog on scary fiction for teens.

My guest this week Darren Shan has published over 30 books for YA and adults, including Cirque Du Freak, The Demonata, The City trilogy, and his new series Zom-B.

Once again, the old rules about eating disorders are no longer useful, but the dominant thinking of both the public and professionals does not reflect current reality.

Western women live in a culture of Body Wars (Maine, 2000) that do not end when they turn 25 or 30.

If I feel I’m going too far with a story, I’ll rein myself in.

If I write something that I would feel uncomfortable reading out live to a group of teens, I go back and re-write.

Jonathan lives in Bucks County, Pennsylvania with his wife, Sara Jo.

When eating disorders or body image conflicts are mentioned, the face we imagine is one of youth.

JONATHAN MABERRY: Horror fiction has been around for a long time. DARREN SHAN: I think horror stories probably played a key role in our evolution towards the thinking, imaginative, creative beings that we are today. DARREN SHAN: My guess is that mankind’s first literary stirrings came on long, dark, cold nights, when humans who knew little of the world sheltered from the dangerous darkness and started wondering about the source of all the noises they could hear.

JONATHAN MABERRY: Riffing off of that, do you think horror gets the respect it deserves?

JONATHAN MABERRY: I’m one of those people who learned to read because of horror and fantasy fiction. DARREN SHAN: Horror is a great way to get children interested in reading, and to point their minds in interesting, questioning directions – for instance, in Zom-B I write very gorily about a zombie invasion, but the books also hopefully encourage readers to think about racism, the abuse of power, the manipulation of the media. We’re creatures of great promise and love, but also great threat and violence, and the best horror stories are those that reflect and help us think about this. DARREN SHAN: Zom-B Underground is the second of a 12 book series about zombies, but it’s a very different type of zombie story – you won’t find a lot of the standard humans vs. The books are short, almost every one ends on a cliffhanger, and they come out at a rate of one every three months. JONATHAN MABERRY: Any plans for teen horror beyond that?