Have a chilly, scary, rationally-explained Halloween!

Please welcome JJ Dare, friend and fellow Second Wind author. JJ writes thrillers (False Positive and False World), and is one of the collaborators on the Rubicon Ranch serial. Her Rubicon Ranch characters amuse me because they are so unrepentently manipulative and unabashedly malevolent. (How can they not be with such a father as Morris Sinclair?)

Personally, I don’t like to be scared — it’s too . . .  scary — so I invited JJ  to talk what scares us and why we like to be scared:

Along with countless others, I love a good scare and this time of the year is perfect for terror and thrills. Halloween is right around the corner. Ghosts, goblins and zombies reign over the land. Witches, warlocks and evil fairies lurk around sharp corners. That bump-in-the-night sound makes your heart beat faster. The skittering across the floor in a dark room gets the blood pumping. What is that shadow outside flitting across the top of the window?

Why do we love to be scared? It’s a rhetorical question because the answer for one person is probably different for another. For myself, I like the rush of the initial terror followed by a reasonable explanation for the scare. That bump-in-the-night was a cat jumping on a chair that lightly hit the wall. The skittering noise was the dog’s nails clicking on the tile floow when she trotted down the hallway. The shadow was a low-flying owl, circling the window as the two animals took turns taunting him from their inside safety.

It’s a full moon every night for Weredog

Blame the inside animals. That’s what I did the other night. While I like the scares while I’m awake, I’m not so crazy about being abruptly ripped from a deep sleep by noises at night. I don’t like lying in bed for minutes that seem like hours, waiting for that thing under my bed to slowly crawl out and grab me. I don’t dare step onto the floor else I’ll be pulled into the under-the-bed void of my childhood.

As sanity and focus slowly descend, we can laugh at ourselves for our fright. A carryover from childhood, I occasionally have a dream of the purple monster rising in my bedroom window. The fright it gave me at six years old is remarkably the same at my current older age. As it slowly rises up, the malevolence it emanated decades ago is just as strong today. In my nightmares, I know it’s no good but I’m as powerless to stop it now as I was in my single-digit years.

The stories I create in my mind from the scary things happening at night become the roux for some of my written works. While I don’t always keep the story line tight with the dream, I can trace a few of my stories and books to their chilly beginnings from the bumps-in-the-night I experience.

I like to be scared. I love scary movies, thrillers, zombies, flying monkeys, and the like. Shadowy things at night give me delicious chills. The supernatural is delightful – as long as I can explain it away, rationally, in the light of day.

Have a chilly, scary, rationally-explained Halloween!


J J Dare is the author of two published books, several short stories and triple digit works-in-progress.

Current enthusiasm is sharpening intangible knives and co-authoring at Rubicon Ranch


J J Dare is the author of two published books, several short stories and triple digit works-in-progress.

Current enthusiasm is sharpening intangible knives and co-authoring at Rubicon Ranch

Facebook addiction

4 Responses to “Have a chilly, scary, rationally-explained Halloween!”

  1. ROD MARSDEN Says:

    I haven’t been scared by a horror movie in years. I think the last one that frightened me was The Innocents starring Deborah Kerr. I was young at the time and the idea that children might be taken over by ghosts was scary. It was based on a story, The Turn of the screw, by Henry James.

    Nowadays I am more frightened by insane government practices and by the notion that one suit fits all that scared the hell out of Franz Kafka many decades ago. This stuff appears in my own fiction though sometimes in a humorous light.

    • Pat Bertram Says:

      Movies don’t scare me, never have, though occasionally they have startled me and made me draw in my breath. The monstrous things life does to people scares more than any fake monster.

      • ROD MARSDEN Says:

        You have a point. I was about nine years old when The Innocents scared me. It wasn’t the viuals. It was the idea of ghosts taking you over. I read The Turn of the Screw in college and found it enjoyable. I write more about the absurdities of life than anything else nowadays.

  2. joylene Says:

    Mind-control movies scare me the worse. I must have an innate fear of losing my mind or control of my body. Have you seen The Skeleton Key? I couldn’t watch the end. Scary is one thing, but unhappy endings is a totally new ballgame.

Please leave a comment. I'd love to hear what you have to say.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: