This post originally appeared on Quora February 19, 2020.
I have several and have detailed them in other answers. I survived attempted murder when I was eight. That same year, I survived two attempted kidnappings.
The attempted murder was a neighbor who tried to drown me in our backyard pool. The attempted kidnappings happened on my street where I played. I escaped both times.
Some people consider them horror stories. I survived and overcame the trauma that came with it.
I don’t consider them horror stories. They’re victory stories.
And no, they didn’t influence me to become a horror fan or writer, although I do occasionally throw in mundane horror when it serves to drive the story.
Killing children is horrific, and one of my most reviled yet beloved and remarked upon stories contains that very thing. However, it is not helpful or therapeutic to me although some people find it helps.
If horror provides an escape from the real-life horrors a person has suffered, then so much the better.
My favorite type of horror runs along cosmic horror and paranormal activity. Although I do love a good psychological horror story now and then, I prefer to scare my readers with possibilities. Most importantly, it must be well-written. Then I’ll enjoy it pretty much no matter what the sub-genre is.