Top Five List of Things I Fear
Written by Glenn Rolfe
My new novella is titled, Things We Fear. I thought it would be appropriate for me to make a top five list of things that I fear and the movies or books that represent them. In no particular order:
I hate spiders. Seriously, they freak me out and make me scream like Jamie Lee Curtis. Once, my wife called to me from the bathroom. My stomach filled with icy critters slithering in a frenzy. Sure enough, I round the corner, enter the room, and there on the side of the vanity is the biggest spider I've ever gazed upon. I was paralyzed. Terrified!
My wife convinced me to watch Arachnophobia (I lived most of my life refusing to see it). Yep, terrifying. John Everson got under my sweatshirt even worse with his novelette prequel to his novel Violet Eyes.... Check out the short, creepy piece, Violet Lagoon.
As a child, I spent too many Friday nights up late watching 20/20 with my mom. They showed all kinds of frightening reports. Missing children was always one that creeped me out. I used to be on the lookout constantly when walking my neighborhood or riding my bike with my buddies to the store. Now, as a parent with three kids, that fear goes much deeper.
Numerous episodes of Criminal Minds poke at this. The movie The Prisoner (with Hugh Jackman) nailed me, and even more recently, Room, messed with me big-time!
This is one of the fear I touch on in Things We Fear. Mine goes back to not being able to swim, travelling icy roads that are way too close to frozen rivers, and not being able to breath under water.... What? No one can do that?
The first movie that comes to mind? Titanic. As a kid, I was constantly taking out the National Geographic magazine that featured pictures of the Titanic as it rests now under the sea. The pictures are fascinating and haunting. When the ship raises up in the movie and people are falling into the freezing waters below.... Yeah, that pulls at that old fear.
This one has been with me ever since the mid-eighties when I watched the ABC movie, The Day After. I guess schools encouraged parents to let their kids watch this. I'd like to strangle those suggestive jerks! I prayed every night before bed for like four years that no one would launch any Nukes. All the talk of nuclear power plants and melt downs in the eighties piled it on, too.
The Day After is available on DVD. You have been warned! Also, Stephen King's The Tommyknockers touches on a lot of this stuff beneath all the alien business (at least in the book).
I believe in God and the devil. I believe in possession. This makes a ton of horror more terrifying for me. We had HBO when I was five. My mom used to sit out in the kitchen drinking tea and knitting. As kids we would be out in the living room watching movies.... well, one time, I was out there by myself and I turned this movie on. I watched a good chunk of some of the scariest scenes. My mother came out into the living room and found me crying. For the next year, I would take the couch cushions and make a bed on the floor next to her bed. If I stayed in my room and closed my eyes, I saw her face.
The Exorcist still gives me the creeps and messes me up at bedtime after I watch it. Pretty much every possession film created since is just a bad copy of the original. I did enjoy The Possession from a couple years ago, and I liked The Last Exorcism. For books, check out A Head Full of Ghosts by Paul Tremblay as it is pretty awesome and addresses some of those generic copycat issues in films.
That's what scares me. How about you?
Glenn Rolfe is an author, singer, songwriter and all around fun loving guy from the haunted woods of New England. He has studied Creative Writing at Southern New Hampshire University, and continues his education in the world of horror by devouring the novels of Stephen King and Richard Laymon.
He and his wife, Meghan, have three children, Ruby, Ramona, and Axl. He is grateful to be loved despite his weirdness.
He is the author the novellas, Abram's Bridge, Boom Town, and his latest, Things We Fear (March, 2016), the short fiction collection, Slush, and the novels The Haunted Halls and Blood and Rain (October 2015). His first novella collection, Where Nightmares Begin, will also be released in March 2016. His next book, Chasing Ghosts, will be coming by 2017.
HorrorTalk would like to thank Glenn for stopping by on his publicity tour. You can pick up his latest novella, Things We Fear, by clicking one of the links below!
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