343: Writing in the Dark: How to Write Horror – Interview with Tim Waggoner

Today, I have the pleasure of interviewing Tim Waggoner.

Tim is a critically-acclaimed author of over fifty novels and seven short story collections. He writes original dark fantasy and horror, as well as media tie-ins. He’s also the author of a comprehensive book on writing horror called Writing in the Dark.

His novels include Like Death, which is considered a modern classic in the horror genre, and the popular Nekropolis series of urban fantasy novels. He’s written tie-in fiction for Supernatural, Grimm, the X-Files, Doctor Who, A Nightmare on Elm Street, Alien, and Transformers, among other properties, and he’s written novelizations for films such as Kingsman: the Golden Circle and Resident Evil: the Final Chapter. His articles on writing have appeared in Writer’s Digest, The Writer, Writer’s Journal, Writer’s Workshop of Horror, and Where Nightmares Come From.

In 2017 he received the Bram Stoker Award for Superior Achievement in Long Fiction, and he’s been a finalist for the Shirley Jackson Award, the Scribe Award, and the Splatterpunk Award. His fiction has appeared several times in the Year’s Best Hardcore Horror, and he’s received numerous Honorable Mentions in volumes of Best Horror of the Year. In 2016, the Horror Writers Association honored him with the Mentor of the Year Award. In addition to writing, he’s also a full-time tenured professor who teaches creative writing and composition at Sinclair College in Dayton, Ohio.


In this episode Tim and I discuss:

  • Where different kinds of horror writing fit in relation to other speculative genres.
  • How psychology plays into the crafting of a horror story.
  • Why horror is not just plot and what it’s really about instead.

Plus, his #1 tip for writers.

For more info and show notes: diymfa.com/343

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