Posts Tagged ‘horror’

horrorghoul

I, myself, am strange and unusual.” – Lydia Deetz (Beetlejuice)

For as long as I can remember, I’ve loved monsters. My mom proudly tells people the stories: I cut teeth watching the Universal Monsters. I had a treasured Wolfman I carried around named Wolfy. One of her favorite stories involves me sitting outside with a black pot making “potions” while our new neighbors moved in. I idolized Elvira instead of pop stars. I grew up with a special place in my heart for Frankenstein’s monster and hunted for ghosts. The same year I got my first cellphone, I got my first Ouija board. It’s safe to say I started out a weirdo.

By the time I was 13, I was obsessed with slasher movies. I had pictures of Freddy Krueger, Michael Myers, and Jason Voorhees hanging in my locker. My older brother Ben took me to see Freddy VS Jason in theaters as my 13th birthday present. This was the point in my life it moved into obsession. I read horror. I watched horror. It started coming through in my art, in how I dressed, etc. Most importantly, I started writing horror.

For those who have never heard the story: When I was in the 8th grade, I had a nightmare, and this nightmare was so intense, I had to write it down just to cope with it. A few months later, in my Adavnced English class, we were assigned a project. We had to write a short story of oh-so-many pages or more. I was probably the most excited kid in the class. This was my chance to really prove myself. And the first thing that came to my mind was my nightmare. Which, luckily, I had written down.

So, I poured my heart into it. I made myself relive the awful nightmare, and then amplified it. It was already scary, and then I transformed it into something more, something that really made people uncomfortable. By the time it was finished, I was afraid to turn it in to my teacher. What if it backfired and I ended up in counseling? What if I ended up in trouble? Or she thought it was awful? I turned it in anyway along with the rest of my class and put it out of my mind.

Then next day, when I was in line for lunch, my teacher found me and pulled me aside, only telling me she needed to talk to me about my story. I knew this was it, and I was in trouble. But instead of being scolded, or finding out I was going to see the counselor instead of getting lunch, she told me that she loved my story. She had apparently been reading and grading our stories before she went to bed the night before, and had gotten through a few before she came to mine. After getting completely hooked into the story, once she was finished, she had to step outside for a few moments afterward to calm down. I was maybe 14 or 15, and I had done something pretty amazing for my age.

And then, she asked if she could let the other teachers read it, as well as read it to my class. I was shocked, but agreed. She said she’d read it to the other kids without naming who I was until it was finished.

This, my friends… This is the catalyst to my life. This is what took me from writing stories to keep my brain sane, to writing stories to keep my brain sane with the intent of making a career from them. I was so anxious waiting for her to read it, I didn’t think it could get worse. Until it did, the moment she started. I watched, fascinated, as my classmates reacted to my words. Kids that hated me and my own friends all on the edge of their seats. For something I had written.

I remember the overwhelmed feeling the minute she revealed I had written the story. For a brief moment, I was the talk of the school. They said I’d be the next Stephen King. I was on top of the world. She even kept the paper to read to her future classes.

To this day, it’s still one of the most unsettling stories I’ve written. I don’t want to give much away about it because I’d eventually like to rewrite it into something great.

horrorshelf

A few things in my horror collection.

I wrote, and wrote, and wrote. I filled notebook after notebook. Printed hundreds and thousands of sheets of paper containing me words. I expanded my horror movies I watched, hunting desperately for something new at Movie Gallery. I worked in a haunted house as a scareactor. I bought books on writing. I studied it. I learned from people who understood the business better than I did. I kept at it and kept at it. I became involved with Ax Wound. 

Then, my life changed. I went to college. I got a real job. I got sick. I spent less time on writing, and even less time than that dedicated to my horror. And while losing myself because I wasn’t writing was bad enough, I think I lost just as much when horror got pushed aside.

I watched horror movies occasionally: sick days, sleepless nights, Halloween time, hanging out with like-minded friends. But nothing like I had done before. I spent a long time trying to figure out what was wrong with me, and then last year it really sunk in:

I had gotten into writing through horror. It had given me some of my passion. And when I got myself back to writing regularly, I hadn’t gotten myself back into horror as much. And there was a problem there. Something was missing there.

I’ve been trying to devote more time to myself and what I want and need in various aspects of my life lately. And horror is one of those things. It sounds so silly to some people – “You’re upset because you don’t spend so much time watching scary movies?” But when you don’t know the whole story, you don’t always understand.

Monsters and slashers and blood and gore, those are all part of me. This are all parts of who I am, and what I do as a writer. Sure, everything I write isn’t a horror story. But sometimes they could use a good dash of horror or darkness.

I’ve realized that if I’m going forward with this career, then I will need to go back  to the basics, for the love of horror.

~Angel

We used to play pretend, give each other different names,
We would build a rocket ship and then we’d fly it far away,
Used to dream of outer space but now they’re laughing at our face,
Saying, “wake up, you need to make money.”

Whenever I travel and find myself inspired on my journey, it does two things. Obviously, one thing it does is strike me with a desire to create and work harder. But an unfortunate counter to that inspiration, is a terrible reminder in the back of my mind, gnawing at me despite how desperately I try to block it out, that I am not where I want to be in life, and that in itself can kill the positive aspects of travel.

This is my post-travel depression. Every time I come home, I don’t feel at home. I feel lost. It’s like I come back to normal life, and I don’t remember who I am. I lose the connection I had to my happiest self, and during this disconnection, I return to the girl I have to be. The girl putting everyone and everything else first.

Granted, I have continued working on this problem, as promised. This has helped my stress not be as stressful. But I’m still a little off.

But, I have to continue forward. I’m still giving myself the freedom to love what I love. To enjoy the things that spark my creativity and make me want to do more. It’s been interesting seeing how helpful reintegrating horror back in as a regular staple has been. By the time I got to Halloween Horror Nights at Universal last Friday, I was ready to take in everything around me and not only enjoy it for what it was, but to use it as a source of inspiration. I felt excited and happy and ready to create.

Now I’m back to real life, and I’m trying to hold on to the motivation. I started doodling and sketching last night. I want to write when I get a chance. I’m trying to work on ideas for some different projects. I’ve been planning out posts for Wandering NerdGirl based off of my trip. I can do this. I know I can. I can work hard and get somewhere.

dontgiveup

Let’s see what I can do now, shall we?

~Angel

writing

Sometimes, when I’m working on a single project, I can focus solely on that one project and block out every other idea bouncing about in my head. Lately, however, I’ve been lacking the focus to get everything done I need to with one project from start to finish, because I get distracted by new ideas, and then my brain cannot focus on the project at hand.

That’s where I’m at right now. I need to focus on revision edits and things, buuuuuuut this idea keeps popping into my head. So, I decided to give in and let it have some of my attention, hoping that if I could appease it by writing down my ideas, it would settle down. Nope. Ideas abundant.

But, hey – who am I to complain? Writing is writing. At this point, any writing I can get done is good. Even if it isn’t a priority project.

I’m slowly but surely making myself a main focus, as selfish as that sounds. I spend so much time devoted to work or family or friends, that I don’t save time for Angel. Not that work/friends/family shouldn’t be counted as important. But a girl has to have her time to herself, you know? My projects, my relaxing time, my time to do whatever I need or want. Sometimes I just want to watch a movie by myself while I clean my room. Most of the time I’m around other people. I’m an introvert – I need recharge time, away from people.

Not just that, though – I need to give my health priority over everything else. I need a healthier lifestyle, but the more stressed I get, the more I crave comfort foods and soda. That’s not what my body needs, and I need to focus on that more.

Something big, though it sounds odd to say, that I’ve been reintegrating back into my regular life is horror. I used to watch horror movies all the time. I read horror. I was obsessed with it. I originally really got into writing through my love of horror – that’s what my first real stories were. I started thinking about it and realized that maybe part of my slump, as strange as it sounds, could have something to do with that.

It seems to be helping thus far. I feel better and more like myself. It’s such a simple and weird solution, to just watch some horror movies and read some creepy books. But whatever it takes to make me feel better, you know?

Speaking of – my Batman collection has been getting a lot of nurturing lately, and it’s growing into something I’m really proud of and want to showcase. I’d like to do more pictures and updates on it, maybe a monthly haul post? I’m not sure yet. If you’re interested, definitely let me know!

Anyway, here I go, doing my thing: writing and watching scary movies and working and hoarding Batman stuff.

~Angel

Please Note: All photos in this post are mine, and I haven’t had time to properly watermark any. Don’t take any without my consent or proper credit, please.

On that note, prepare for A LOT of photos.

I’ve been going to Orlando once a year for the past three years now, since I first started to get sick. It’s been my happy little escape from the chaos of the world I normally inhabit. But, I normally go in late Spring or Summer, so this was my first trip down when the Halloween festivities are taking place at Universal Studios and Walt Disney World.

I’m going to break this up into at least two posts, starting now with Universal Studios (which was the beginning of and best part of the entire trip.)

So, let’s begin, shall we?

I cannot talk about going to Universal in fall 2014 without mentioning that I FINALLY GOT TO SEE DIAGON ALLEY! And it was breathtaking.

King’s Cross Station, which is where you could board the Hogwarts Express to Hogsmeade.

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If you look around in London, whether you’re a fan of the books or films, you can find a certain grumpy house elf peaking out of one of the windows. This was one of my favorite little details. You had to know he was there to look for him.

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It’s a dream come true to get to ride the Hogwarts Express finally. It’s a different experience depending if you ride it to Hogsmeade or to London. To Hogsmeade was probably my favorite.

Then, there is Diagon Alley itself:

IT MAKES THE SOUND OF THE BRICKS MOVING LIKE IN THE MOVIE AND IT MAKES ALL THE GEEKY OVERLOAD JOY HAPPEN.

IT MAKES THE SOUND OF THE BRICKS MOVING LIKE IN THE MOVIE AND IT MAKES ALL THE GEEKY OVERLOAD JOY HAPPEN.

I don't think I've seen a picture yet that truly does justice to that dragon. Wherever you stand, you think that could be a real dragon. The detail is mind-blowing.

I don’t think I’ve seen a picture yet that truly does justice to that dragon. Wherever you stand, you think that could be a real dragon. The detail is mind-blowing.

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I absolutely loved the Escape from Gringotts ride. I was lucky, because it was dead when I went to ride for the first time, and I was able to pretty much just walk straight onto the ride. And it was a great ride, from the line getting you into the story to the ride itself. I've heard mixed opinions. But I adored it.

I absolutely loved the Escape from Gringotts ride. I was lucky, because it was dead when I went to ride for the first time, and I was able to pretty much just walk straight onto the ride. And it was a great ride, from the line getting you into the story to the ride itself. I’ve heard mixed opinions. But I adored it.

Now, Universal Studios does something at their parks in September and October called Halloween Horror Nights. It’s basically where they set up somewhere around eight houses and, this year, four scare zones. They also have a few shows special for the night. And I was lucky enough to have a VIP pass to get into three of this years houses before the event itself. The houses I visited: Halloween, Dollhouse of the Damned, and From Dusk Till Dawn.

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Halloween: This is, indeed, based off oh John Carpenter’s horror movie, Halloween, about Michael Myers. It’s specifically focused on the first film, though there are nods to the other movies in the series – including Halloween 3, surprisingly enough.

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This seems like a random weird image, but it's from a section of the house that makes you feel like you're in the closet being attacked by Myers, and there are two shirts hanging in the closet paying homage to two former Halloween Horror Nights houses: Freddy Krueger's sweater, and to the right of that, Leatherface's white shirt.

This seems like a random weird image, but it’s from a section of the house that makes you feel like you’re in the closet being attacked by Myers, and there are two shirts hanging in the closet paying homage to two former Halloween Horror Nights houses: Freddy Krueger’s sweater, and to the right of that, Leatherface’s white shirt.

I was having a horror-movie-junkie fan girl moment in the entire Halloween house, but the next house – Dollhouse of the Damned – was probably my favorite house, because it was so visually stimulating. This house was a concept house rather than a house based off of a film.

Also: enjoy Universal's dumpsters.

Also: enjoy Universal’s trash cans.

 

This is probably my favorite picture I took on the entire trip.

This is probably my favorite picture I took on the entire trip.

 

I should probably take a moment to acknowledge my awesome guides through the houses: Alex (left) and Kyle (right). I adored these two, and it was such a blast to wander around behind the scenes with them. I wanna write their bosses and tell them they did a fabulous job.

I should probably take a moment to acknowledge my awesome guides through the houses: Alex (left) and Kyle (right). I adored these two, and it was such a blast to wander around behind the scenes with them. I wanna write their bosses and tell them they did a fabulous job.

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Alex and Kyle demonstrating a scare.

Alex and Kyle demonstrating a scare.

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There was another special guest from a former Halloween Horror Nights house hidden in Dollhouse of the Damned. Chucky from Child's Play.

There was another special guest from a former Halloween Horror Nights house hidden in Dollhouse of the Damned. Chucky from Child’s Play.

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The last house we visited behind-the-scenes that day was From Dusk Till Dawn, based off of both the original movie, but also very heavily inspired by the newer TV series. While it was a very cool house, it was probably my least favorite of the three.

Obviously, the bar was a bit censored from the original name.

Obviously, the bar was a bit censored from the original name.

I have less blurry pictures of her, but for some reason I really like the slightly blurry feel of this.

I have less blurry pictures of her, but for some reason I really like the slightly blurry feel of this.

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Someone isn't having a good birthday.

Someone isn’t having a good birthday.

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So, that night, after all the house photo-taking goodness, my mother and I got to attend Halloween Horror Nights 24. There are two shows, one is a Bill & Ted Halloween show, which we didn’t attend. But I did go to the Rocky Horror Picture Show live, and it was AMAZING. I love RHPS and the show was incredible. Probably one of my all time favorites I’ve seen.

Not the most incredible shot on my part, but I was way too distracted by the awesome.

Not the most incredible shot on my part, but I was way too distracted by the awesome.

There were also the four scare zones set up in the streets:

The Purge

The Purge zone

The Purge zone

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The Bayou of Blood:

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FACE OFF: In The Flesh (Make-up looks from the show, recreated by some of the artists from the show!)

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One of my favorite parts of Halloween Horror Nights was the MASKerade: Unstitched zone.

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I think it’s super underrated, because a lot of people were claiming it was boring. But I loved it. Yeah, I wasn’t shaking in my Stormtrooper Vans over people in gowns, on stilts, wearing masks. BUT it was so beautiful and eerie at night in such a fantastic way. It sent my artsy brain into overdrive. I was sketching a day or two later when I was doing laundry:

This will eventually be a super awesome spooky painting.

This will eventually be a super awesome spooky painting.

 

So, there you have it. The epic wonderful highlights of my two days at Universal. I will have a post in a few days about Disney World itself. Plus, lots of health updates – not the best of them, either. So stay tuned.

~Angel

whoatherefriend

“I like beautiful melodies telling me terrible things.” – Tom Waits.

My butt is appropriately kicked into writing gear. This could be the result of a few things:

+ Best Friend is making me give her new chapters every week or a new short story or something to actually PROVE I’m writing (and making me stick to a deadline).

+ Making my brain think for the interview, as well as blogging a bit more, and finally getting Hail to the Geek, Baby up and running, has all given me the proper brain-button protocol to make writing easier and not so foggy.

+ I’m upset a lot lately, with a growing mountain of stress, and I hide from it all with words.

So yeah. Words have been my friend lately. They may not be the best words ever, but I’m working on it. I’m moving forward. I’m writing my little black heart out; pouring all my troubles out of my and into the ink.

Actually, I’ve finally started figuring out where I want to go with this BM revision. I understand my problem with it: it isn’t dark enough. That may sound weird to some, but to me it makes perfect sense. I’ve been trying to write it in a way that it shouldn’t be. It’s a borderline horror and dark comedy if anything, and I haven’t been treating it that way. I wrote it too lightly. It’s time I let the darkness have a turn with it.

Other than some terrible real life news, though, I had a good weekend for the most part, and I think that’s what helped me to realize my manuscript errors and revision must-haves.

Let’s see how this revision goes, shall we? Maybe we’ll have a book ready to send off to agents soon.

~Angel

“Little Red” – aka Skylar Wendell – is much more than just a pretty face. She’s still in the early stages of her modeling career, but with nearly five years of experience under her belt, she’s off to a decent start. Now she’s been a model for several designers – in fashion shows and online, as well as being featured on a flyer for Women in Horror Month 2011 – which debuted both online and in print. She even has her very first magazine appearance coming up.

Little Red is incredibly talented for her age, and definitely an on-the-rise model. She can pull off any look – from something sweet and dainty, to something alternative and edgy, to retro pin-up, and our favorite – drop dead gore-geous horror model. And while becoming a model had always been an aspiration of hers, she’d never really thought much about seriously doing it – until her friend, and aspiring photographer as well at the time, needed a model and requested Little Red’s help.

Now, I’ve moved on to some bigger and better shoots, and worked with some pretty talented people from all over, but some favorite pictures have always been delivered by Little Red. People love that she offers something new and different, but still incredibly beautiful at the same time.100_8320 (960x1280)

Now… How did she end up settling on the modeling name, “Little Red”?

Back in May 2011, we did a shoot with the stunning Daisy Von Doom, in which the girls modeled together at some kick-ass locations. Skylar was wearing an insanely awesome ring leader costume, which was bright red, as well as rocking some red striped tights and red makeup. Her nicknames on set for the day involved many variations using “red” as a theme, but “Little Red” reoccured a few times. After the pictures hit the internet, people began calling her Little Red. She liked the name and let it stick to her.

So, what’s next for Little Red?

With lots of changes going on in her real life, shooting has been a little slow lately, but that will pick up again soon enough. Not only has she become a main model for Way 52 and for jewelry designer Atlantis Found Jewelry, she’s working on some new projects to expand her modeling reach even further and combine it with other passions. So she’s definitely a woman to keep an eye out for!

You can find her on Facebook here.

~Angel

I HAVE RETURNED, MY LOVELIES! Sorry for my absence, but as you know, I ran away to Orlando for a few days – a MUCH needed vacation that really helped me feel a little better (could be the whole lounging about until 1pm or so before leaving for a couple hours, plus not having any real stress etc to deal with.)

I won’t leave you hanging! I took some pictures, and here’s some great parts of my trip for you:

All packed up to head to the airport.

The hotel I stayed at, The Disney Yacht Club.

My dorky self almost died when I saw Hogwarts. There were several times that I just stopped and stared at it, amazed.

Ate at the Three Broomsticks my first day there AND had my very first (and rather yummy) Butterbeer.

Day two, on a safari ride at Animal Kingdom. There’s nothing between you and the animals. This guy was trying to stick his head in our vehicle.

That evening, we went to Disney Hollywood Studios (aka MGM, but they changed the name it seems since I was last there. Lame.) The Stormtroopers were AMAZING. LET THE DANCING BEGIN!

From Day three, at the Magic Kingdom: My Favorite Disney ride since I was a kiddo – The Haunted Mansion. Rode it three times. 😀

Went back to Universal by day… four I think? Anyway… Beetlejuice AND the classic Universal Monsters?! YES PLEASE!

One of my favorite parts of the trip. The show was great, and the lobby was full of amazingness.

Last place I ate lunch at in Universal, and definitely a favorite. The inside was sectioned into themes based off of awesome old horror movies, and the line to order your food is designed like a mad scientists lab, and there’s busts of Boris Karloff and Bela Lugosi, etc, as their classic monsters on the counter. So. Damn. Amazing. And the bathroom doors – as odd as it is to mention – were really cool. The women’s had the Bride of Frankenstein, and the men’s of course had Frankenstein’s monster.

Last but not least is my faaaavorite ride, The Amazing Adventures of Spiderman. I rode that sucker three times and wish I could’ve gone through more times. A Must-Do if you’re ever in Universal, Orlando’s Island’s of Adventure.

~Angel