Conquering fear of fear itself
When I was in high school, I read Stephen King’s classic novel It.
For years I had seen it sitting on my parent’s bookshelf and I used to pick it up and AEip through it. I knew it would be a scary read because even the cover was creepy. Plus, Mum told me it was about a clown and clowns really freak me out.
Reading It probably didn’t help me overcome my fear of clowns, but it did expose me to a classic horror novel.
I was impressed that I Ånished reading the book, not because it was more than 1000 pages, but because I had been too frightened to read any Goosebumps novels in primary school.
The closest I got was borrowing one, opening it and reading a couple of pages until I decided it wasn’t worth getting scared.
But the thing with It was I didn’t Ånd it a very frightening read. Disturbing, yes, but scary, no.
What King managed to do in It was make the back stories of his characters more horrifying than the creature itself.
It was when I was learning about the things the children had witnessed or experienced that I felt scared.
Sure, Pennywise the clown had his creepy scenes — I will never forget Georgie looking into the drain after he loses his boat — but there was other stuff in the book that was much worse. I’m not going to mention it in case you want to read the book. It’s important to note that this stuff doesn’t appear in the latest It movie and there’s probably a very good reason it wasn’t included.
So for those of you who are too scared to pick up a horror book, just remember that it often isn’t the creature that is scary but the characters themselves.
It is certainly a book that has stuck in my mind for the past decade and I doubt I’ll ever forget it.
For those of you who have found this column a bit scary, don’t worry, the rest of
Weekend Life certainly won’t frighten you. We have some great content in this issue which I hope you will enjoy!