The History of Horror

Sometimes, we just love to be scared. Especially this time of year, when Halloween has us ready to meet some monsters and explore that flimsy boundary between life and death. But fear is only fun when you’re not in any real danger. That’s why horror fiction is so popular and enduring. But how did this tradition start? Today, I want to take you through the history of the horror genre.

Photo by Rosie Fraser on Unsplash

Continue reading The History of Horror

Review of Haunted Nights—A Halloween Collection

I’ve got another new Halloween book for you! Haunted Nights, a Horror Writers Association anthology edited by Ellen Datlow and Lisa Morton just came out two weeks ago, on October 3rd. The anthology collects sixteen never-before-published short stories by major authors including Garth Nix, Seanan McGuire, and Kelly Armstrong all revolving around the central theme of Halloween. Continue reading Review of Haunted Nights—A Halloween Collection

Halloween in Literature

The day has finally come! Here at The Gothic Library, I’ve been celebrating all month—taking my faithful readers through a tour of ghost stories, horror films, and haunted houses. Today I want to explore some of the literature surrounding the holiday itself. Below are a few works from the past three centuries that celebrate or take place during this spookiest of nights: Continue reading Halloween in Literature

Haunted Houses in Literature

With Halloween only a week away, it’s time to really start bringing out the spooks and scares. If you’re wondering how to celebrate this spooky season, The Gothic Library already has you covered with ghost stories to read and scary movies to marathon. Another traditional Halloween activity is visiting haunted houses. This week I’d like to take you on a tour through some of my favorite haunted houses in literature: Continue reading Haunted Houses in Literature

10 Literary Horror Films to Watch This Halloween

Halloween is looming closer and closer, which mean it’s time to start prepping your Netflix queue for a spooky movie marathon! Of course there are the fun classics like Hocus Pocus, Halloweentown, and The Nightmare Before Christmas (which has a few literary references of its own). But if you really want to get in the mood, you might want to opt for something a bit darker. Grab some popcorn, a buddy, and nightlight because I’ve compiled a list of book-based horror films that will make you scared to close your eyes at night! Continue reading 10 Literary Horror Films to Watch This Halloween

Ghost Stories to Get You in the “Spirit” for Halloween

Now that summer is officially over, do you know what season it is? It’s Halloween season! I’m a firm believer in beginning my celebrations of the greatest holiday of the year at least a month in advance. You may be mourning the end of summer or feeling distracted by a new school year, but that’s no reason you can’t start getting excited for the night when the veil between the worlds is thinnest! To that end, I’ve complied a list of ghost stories below that will help get you into the “spirit” for Halloween. (See what I did there?)


Continue reading Ghost Stories to Get You in the “Spirit” for Halloween

All Hallow’s Read: Neil Gaiman’s Halloween Tradition (Plus a Giveaway!)

Several years ago, one of gothdom’s most reverend authors decided to start a new Halloween tradition. We love books. We love Halloween. Why not combine them? Thus, Neil Gaiman created All Hallow’s Read. Celebrating All Hallow’s Read is simple—just give someone a scary book either on Halloween or during the week leading up to the holiday. To learn more about the tradition and its origins, check out the All Hallow’s Read website. Not sure what books to give? Lists of suggestions abound, but below are some of my favorite spooky stories to share with family, friends, or strangers of all ages.

Also, in the spirit of this tradition, I’ll be giving away a spooky book myself! Read through to the bottom to find out how you can enter to win the horror/humor collection Blood Lite II: Overbite.

Continue reading All Hallow’s Read: Neil Gaiman’s Halloween Tradition (Plus a Giveaway!)

Literary Influences on The Nightmare Before Christmas

Nightmare Before ChristmasHalloween is just around the corner, and you know what that means—time for one of your bi-annual viewings of The Nightmare Before Christmas! Wow, I can’t believe we’ve gotten this far into October, and I haven’t even mentioned Halloween on the site. But The Gothic Library is kind of like Halloweentown—every day is Halloween, here! It was hard to think of how to do something different to commemorate my favorite holiday. But today I’ve decided to explore the literary roots in one of my favorite movies, Tim Burton’s spooky Halloween classic. Some of the allusions are obvious, like the one in the title, but as I began digging, I realized that The Nightmare Before Christmas has a much greater literary wealth than I would have imagined. Read on to learn about the five major literary influences I noticed in Jack Skellington’s story: Continue reading Literary Influences on The Nightmare Before Christmas