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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Wednesday's Writer - Su Halfwerk

What could be more fitting on All Hallows' Eve than to welcome a writer of truly terrifying horror stories?And what's more, today you get two blog posts for the price of one because, having recently read and thoroughly enjoyed Su Halfwerk's impressive collection Hellbound, I'm reviewing that, immediately after this post from its incredibly talented author.  For now, though, it's over to Su.

Why Write Horror? 

The short and simple answer is: Why not?

Horror—defined as an overwhelming and painful feeling caused by something frightfully shocking, terrifying, or revolting; a shuddering fear—is a genre that has been frowned upon for a long time. It used to be hidden in the darkest corners of a bookshop or video rental outlet, right next to pornography. That's when I discovered it (horror, not pornography) and started reading, watching, and finally writing it.

It was forbidden, therefore, a must-do.

I'm a stubborn rebel. When I was younger, I wanted to be different, to stand out, and to make a difference. Upon reading The Shining by Stephen King—my first horror book—I felt...enlightened. I'm still stubborn (a bit) and a rebel (sometimes), however, now I do it with style.

Scaring is caring.

People have personal demons, even the homey-looking grandmother knitting in the corner. Each comes up with their own methods to cope with or eradicate these fears/demons/obsessions. I uproot mine by writing the ideas lurking in my mind and add a twist of lemon, a dollop of vinegar, and a dash of garlic to flavor them and then share the outcome with anyone willing to read. Imagination can be merciless at times, however, it's what authors count on. Not their imagination, but the readers'.

Fear fascinates.

The investigation of a weird sound in the cemetery, late at night, and on your own, is not a smart move, but let's face it; deep inside, we're all happy that someone else is swaddled with the task of looking into it. I took it upon myself to be the one giving others, from the safety of their sofas or beds, a peek at what could be out there.

They say misery loves does fear, I believe. When I share my fears with you, dear reader, I hope you take it as I present it; an opportunity to connect with the things dwelling in the dark. In me.

About Sue Halfwerk:

Su Halfwerk writes in the horror and paranormal romance genres. From a tender age, the written word left a strong impression on her, later on terrifying, blood-chilling books became the object of her interest. Su’s style in horror combines shuddery terror with elements of surprise; some would even call it an enigmatic twist. In the world of paranormal romance, she transforms the desire to scare into a quest to seduce and tantalize.

Other books by Su Halfwerk

When not writing, Su is designing book trailers and cover art for herself and other authors.

You can find Su online here: Website  |  Blog  |  Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Novel Prevue

Hellbound - Manic Scribbler's Review

It's been a long time since I've read any really dark horror stories (my tastes must have mellowed with age) but I was drawn to the cover of Hellbound from the first time I saw it and knew I had to read it. 

What an amazing mind this author must have.  She seems to have plucked characters from her worst nightmares and breathed life into them as she weaves incredible stories around them.  Around Bart, the greedy morgue attendant in The Deadening and the sinister Pain-letter; around Stan, the phony medium in The Substitute, suddenly blessed with second sight; and around Troy whose lust for Jenna brings out his true nature.  Each story is layered with complexity to be unpeeled like a toxic, eye-stinging onion.

Su Halfwerk builds up the atmosphere with the horror and just when you think you've reached the peak (or should I say nadir?) in each story, she plunges you deeper still until, like so many of the characters, you get a true taste of Hell.

Thanks, Su Halfwerk - I've no idea how I'm going to sleep after reading this!!  It definitely deserves my five cute cats award!


ManicScribbler said...

Su, may I just say what a huge pleasure it's been for me to interview you along with Jenny Twist and Tara Fox Hall over the past couple of weeks and how much I appreciate you rounding off this little exploration of the horror genre.

When I first read Hellbound I had no idea that I would enjoy it so much and actually find it quite inspirational. You are a hugely talented writer and I feel privileged to know you.

Su Halfwerk said...

The feeling is mutual, Lyn. I'm eternally grateful that our paths crossed and I had the opportunity to find an author I admire and a friend I cherish in you.
Thanks for having me :-)

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