Living in Germany poses some interesting problems for an American author. My German is pretty good. By that I mean it’s good enough to get my point across and not offend too many people with my crappy German. I was able to hold a conversation the other day with the ADAC (European AAA) about why my car wouldn’t start and we brought it to a successful conclusion.
But finding out you need a new battery is different than trying to have a meaningful conversation with someone about why they chose a book. So whenever I have the chance to talk with someone reading an English book, I make sure I’m the guy who bothers them while they are trying to read. I always ask them why they chose to read the book they are reading. I, naturally, plug my own book, No Name. Find it on Amazon!
What they tell me is fascinating. People love to read ‘dark fantasy’ but if you ask them if they read horror they look at you like they just realized they’re sitting across the isle from a traveling insurance salesman or one of those crazy people who sing Christmas carols in June.
I try to politely point out that horror is sometimes called dark fantasy and the line between the two is really quite blurry. But they still sit across from me, terror struck, while trying to surreptitiously find another place to sit on the train.
Often times I get the whole, “Oh, I never read horror,” comment. But after I ask them about the book, I usually find it’s borderline horror. One man’s ship is another man’s dinghy I suppose. Perception is often times more important than reality.
My point is this, don’t be such a prude. If you don’t like something that’s fine, but don’t give up on something because you are deeply convinced you’re not going to like it. Try it. Granted, this advice does not go for drugs and binge drinking. So, pick up a copy of No Name. You may find out that your version of horror is dark fantasy or your dark fantasy is horror. Either way, you might just enjoy it.