Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Why do you love monsters?

Please welcome guest author, Caridad Pineiro!

He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster.

Friedrich Nietzsche

When I ask myself why I like writing about creatures of the night and other otherworldly beings that some would consider monsters, it always comes back to the same thing for me: That it’s interesting seeing how the humans deal with them.

Will the villagers react in anger and chase after the beast with pitchforks or burn down the old mill with the monster within?

Will compassion slip into the mix and allow the humans to see past the pointy teeth and hair to the heart beating beneath the surface?

Or as Nietzsche so clearly saw, will the humans become scarier than the monsters themselves?

I love juxtaposing those variables in the stories I write and oftentimes, it’s the humans that either start off scarier than the monsters or end up being way more frightening.

I think that’s why we love stories revolving around monsters – because they make us face our fears and force us to understand more about ourselves. When faced with something that has our hearts pounding and palms sweating, will we be like that mindless mob and react without thinking or will we embrace all that is good within us? Will we even go a step further and come to love the beast with the heart of gold beneath the furry face and monstrous paws? (And yes, Disney’s Beauty and the Beast is one of my fave monster movies).

Why do you love monsters? Take a moment to share your thoughts on why they appeal to us so strongly!

Thank you for having me with you today, Katie! I appreciate it.

And thank you Caridad for blogging with me today! Caridad is an incredibly talented and giving author so thank you for stopping by! And in case you don’t know, her book The Lost just released and it looks fantastic! I’d like to offer a digital copy to one commenter for their Nook or Kindle. Please leave your email address with your comment so I have a place to send your gift. And please note you will need either a Barnes & Noble or Amazon account for me to send your gift! Contest open until October 31, 2011 9 AM central time.


Eleri Stone said...

Hi Caridad! I think having characters confront monsters is a way for us to explore our own humanity. Then having that story be a romance and throwing sexual tension into the mix takes it even further.

Eleri Stone said...

And woops, almost forgot. I'm at eleristone @ Lost looks great :)

Anne said...

I've read many great reviews for The Lost. I'd love to get a copy.

GzNKz4evr said...

I agree with Nietzsche - many times humans become far uglier and scarier than a beast. Probably a lot of this is attributed to fear of the unknown. But it sucks to think that we have evolved so far, yet made no progress at all. In a perfect world, beast and man alike would have the same considerations, but this is not reality. In a lot of ways the monsters are the underdogs even when gifted with powerful abilities. I am all for championing the underdog even when a monster; especially when the monster is the "good guy". I also like your point that monsters force us to face/understand more about ourselves. But why I love reading about monsters is all of the different versions of them based on the author's perception. This, to me, is one of the best aspects!

I just read Caridad for the first time in A Vampire for Christmas anthology and enjoyed it. I found out about The Lost on another blog about a week or so ago and so enjoyed the interview that I added it to my "to-read" list that day. Thanks for the giveaway and good luck to all! I look forward to reading this book!


Katie Reus said...

Thanks for joining me today, Caridad! I love Beauty and the Beast too :)

Natalie J. Damschroder said...

I think first impressions have such an impact on us, societally, that we have to continually explore the "monster" mythology to remind ourselves that true monsterhood always comes from within. We'd love to have things simple, and always be able to tell who and what to be afraid of at a glance, but life just isn't that simple. It's a basic truth that lends itself fantastically to all kinds of conflict!

nujii @

Caridad Pineiro said...

Such great comments from all of you. I appreciate you dropping by to share your thoughts. It is true that we need to look within ourselves to battle the monsters that lurk there so as to not allow them to overwhelm us!

Angela Campbell said...

In the great, classic monster films of the 30s -- Frankenstein, Dracula, The Wolf Man -- the monsters were always empathetic creatures. I think we empathize with them because we fear we could become them. Plus I think we like secretly rooting for a monster that causes the destruction that we wish we could wreak.

Mina Khan said...

OOh, good post...thought provoking & perfect for Halloween!