Greetings and Salutations ye double-dealing, drooling draft of maggot breath,
Digger, at ye service. let me just address the elephant in the room. There is no such things as zombies. Much has been made of late about an infestation of the dead rising from the earth to devour the living. The devil with such idle gossip such as wash maidens may fritter on about. Be assured no such thing is likely as long as I’m drawing breath. As to that git Dave’s claims, I say you must consider the source of a fevered brain.
Today we are back at the unconsecrated graveyard to visit with another author. I’ve been hoping for weeks that our next guest would grant us an interview. I am very excited to have him with us.
He is a writer who is widely seen as the most significant 20th century author in Horror Fiction. At the time Weird Tales Magazine was building a reputation, he was a regular contributor, he turned down an offer of the editorship. Some of his most celebrated tales including The Call of Cthulhu, canonical to the Cthulhu Mythos. Horror, fantasy and science fiction author Stephen King called him “the twentieth century’s greatest practitioner of the classic horror tale.” Graham Harman said, “No other writer is so perplexed by the gap between objects and the power of language to describe them, or between objects and the qualities they possess.” So with no further ado, I present, Howard Phillip Lovecraft.
HP; Thank you, I was warned the accommodations were less than ideal, but Robert assured me the warm welcome and the wine of course would make up for it.
GD; You’re referring to Robert Louis Stevensen?
HP; Yes, he convinced me to come. I tried to make it two weeks ago, but something happened on our end and some other guy jumped through ahead of me. A Richard Baitman, or something? He was too big for me to argue with.
GD; Richard Bachman.
HP; That’s it, Bachman. He wasn’t a very nice fellow.
GD; Aye, very unsettling it was. He hasn’t returned neither. I do hope those other fellows Steve Brown, and Stephen King are keeping a weather eye out for him. He made some thinly veiled threats as he left. Enough about him please let’s talk about your influences.
HP; Of course Edgar Allen Poe was very big. As was Arthur Machen’s tales of ancient evil returning to the modern world. Joseph Addison, and Jonathan Swift, and my own vivid nightmares are all contributing factors.
GD; E.A Poe and yourself have many biographical details in common. Like Poe your work was out of step with your time. You both passed on at a young age and you were both penniless when you did so.
HP; The loss of our parents, bouts of deep depression, self-imposed isolation, the list goes on. Eddie and I often commiserate to pass the endless nights that constitute the other side.
GD; You must be happy with the high regard with which you are held today and the endless list of authors you have influenced.
HP; Happiness is not something experienced on the plain where I exist. It would have been nice if all this veneration presented itself in my life time. It does me little good to know that I am appreciated years after I died a painful, lonely, penniless death.
GD; Sorry I brought that up. One of your recurring themes is the mysterious information stumbled on by unsuspecting characters.
HP; Ah yes usually with a Promethean ending. You say unsuspecting character, yet they are driven to learn knowledge that is forbidden them. Their curiosity, ambition, and the temptation of acquiring power compel them to open Pandora’s box and unleash the evils within. They are not naive dupes as you suggest. on the contrary they often make choices without consideration to the consequences. Hence the person who acquires the knowledge is utterly destroyed.
GD; Of course you’re right, but the reader identifies with the character as somehow being coerced or deceived into making those choices.
HP; That would be naiveté on the part of the reader. Just as in the Cthulu stories the antagonist is an alien being who is indifferent to humans at best more often hostile, and yet they are worshipped by clans of humans as Gods. You may see the worshippers as poor savages, Where as my view is they bring this on themselves at the hope of becoming the beneficiary of the god like powers. They are not innocents, they are greedy, manipulating, and selfish. They perpetuate a modern era decadence, and they receive their just deserts.
GD; What of, The Rats In The Walls or The Alchemist, surely you make exceptions where a character gets punished through no fault of their own.
HP; Inherited guilt is something of a paradox. Where the fortunate circumstances of the character are due to the misdeeds of a forebear and yet they themselves are innocent. The piper must be paid, Mr. Digger, better he is paid in this life than in the next.
I see my flame is burning low, so allow me to leave you with one thought. Support living writers and artists now, while they are among you. Do not wait until they have long passed on to acknowledge their commitment to society.
“A foppish exit if ever I witnessed one. I didn’t get to ask him about all the films based on his stories. Oh, well. H. P. Lovecraft was an amazing author, but he would be a dreary dinner guest to be sure.
Let’s close with a quotation from the man himself.
“It is only the inferior thinker who hastens to explain the singular and the complex by the primitive shortcut of supernaturalism.” H.P.Lovecraft.
Thanks for tuning in,