Saturday, March 24, 2012

Guest Post by Carole Gill: Romance & Horror

Hi, my pretties. I've got a treat for you! My good friend from across the pond, Carole Gill, author of House on Blackstone Moor has agreed to stop in and do a guest post for us.

After the post we will get to know Carole, and hear about her novels and short works as well, because I plan on having her back soon!

So, take it away, Carole!

Romance & Horror: The Ultimate Conflicts!

Do they go together? Didn't you almost die when Dracula told Mina (film version) "I would cross oceans of time for you"?

I did!

From the first moment he saw her he thought of Elizabetha. After she knows the terrible truth, she hates him for killing Lucy, but well--! The girl can't help it!

Is Dracula horror? No, you don't have to answer that.

The talented and marvelous lorelei Bell asked me to guest post on her blog and I'm delighted to do it!

This post reflects one of my own:
Can Real Horror Have Romance In it?
Sure! What are greater conflicts than danger and desire?

Paraphrasing from my favorite play Streetcar Named Desire, horror is riding on the ultimate streetcar. Sometimes it's too dangerous to get off! We can see the danger. We can feel the threat down to her fingertips. But we get off, usually before the end of the line too.

We have to! Something calls to us, something we are unable to ignore!


So we leave the safety of our streetcar and find ourselves exposed, looking for that which called to us.


But there could be danger?

Danger AND desire, what better mix for horror?!

Someone happened to say real horror could not have romance in it.

I didn't agree.

I did post and I inclcuded this quote from a horror fan, Rick Youmans:
"It is one of the two motivational forces behind the horror genre. Either the return of unrequited love (the other being vengeance for a wrong). Any construct of horror that denies this has no understanding of its real power in the present sense. The abstract nature of vengeance, against society et al, is the predominate foci depicted in the visual mediums, while the search for love in a cruel world is the foci of the written medium... for the most part..."
Thank you Rick!

I mentioned Dracula (Bram Stoker's film version earlier). Now, I'd like to say this: although the novel, Dracula, and the films differ on this issue, I still feel there is an undercurrent of sexuality in the novel. I think Bram Stoker is clearly writing about female sexuality in the character of Lucy and Mina.

I also feel that Dracula's action with regard to over powering Mina (novel) and forcing her to feed on him is sexual. It is sexual abuse, really, when he restrains her.

Naturally, he's not her knight in shining armor and she's not wanting to have his babies exactly. But it is sexual, albeit darkly so. Can't this be twisted 'love'?

Is sick love some sort of pathological 'love'?Yes?

Well, if that is so then it's sick love or dark romance: sick or not.

With regard to the film (my favorite by Coppola) I think it is quite clear that there is quite a bit of sexual longing and tension present. Mina and the Count want to go steady and right away! That's pretty obvious. It also makes for some great scenes!

We watch it and are fascinated but do we ever doubt for one second that we are watching a HORROR film? NO!

With regard to horror fiction in general, there is what I term 'dude horror' which is often horror written mainly by men for men. The women depicted in this sort of fiction tend to be victims. There is, in my opinion, little or no 'romance'. There may be sex but candlelight dinners and violins, no.

I wonder, though, if sexual longing and desire along with genuine love cannot be present in dark horror.

I wirte Gothic romance, but my fiction is very different from what is commonly termed Gothic romance. This is not paranormal romance. It is darkest horror with some romance in it (sometimes).

The question is can dark Gothic romantic horror be considered horror?

Life has horror in it. And supernatural horror with the worst evil imaginable might have a thread of longing that is a kind of love.

Why can't the worst demonic being have loved once, whether briefly or for a micro second?

Why narrow the field?

Why define horror with restrictions?

If paranormal romance isn't horror, can darkest Gothic romance be considered to be horror?

Many writers writing today think it can. What do you think?

About Carole

This has been an interesting journey for me. I went back to writing about ten years ago. Life had gotten in the way and I finally had the opportunity to write once again.

I joined a local workshop. Somehow I found myself selected by North West Playwrights of England for further development! It was an invaluable experience but I preferred writing fiction.

Currently, I am published in a number of horror and sci-fi anthologies. I also have many short story collections up on Amazon.

I hope you check them out, some are pretty dark.

I enjoy writing dark horror however my greatest love of all, genre-wise, is writing dark Gothic romantic fiction.

My novel, The House on Blackstone Moor is being re-released shortly. Please stay tuned for updates!

The novel is quite dark:as a matter of fact it is darkest gothic horro and romance combined. The themes are vampirism, madness, obession and devil worship. It is recommended for readers over 18.

The sequel, which is turning out even darker, is entitled Unholy Testament and will follow.

After that I will be releasing a very special novel, I have already begun to work on. If you like vampires and darkest romance, you will be delighted. And if you ador Dracula, well--!

Meanwhile, you can find me at:
facebook author page:

I also have a Dracula fan page. I mean doesn't the old man deserve it?"

And Twitter:!/carolelynngill

Alright! Thank you Carole for stopping by. I do hope that everyone enjoied this as much as I did. And goes to check her links out. I've just stopped by her Dracula fan page, and found that a fun spot to root around in. I will have Carole back on a regular bases and when she's ready to release her book, we'll have a little book launch for her!


  1. thanks so much for having me on here!
    I love your blog.
    it was a pleasure, Lorelei.

  2. I enjoyed stopping by to check out your post and learn more about your work. I love dark works, and I agree that horror and romance can go hand in hand.

  3. No problem, Carole, I'll have you back soon!

    Val, thank you very much for stopping by and leaving your comment, it means a lot to both of us! Stop by again, I'll have more about Carole and her book in the next few weeks and have a link for it as well!

  4. thanks again Lorelei!
    And yes, Val thank you for that. they surely do go together.
    We are fascinated with the dark.
    i have my demon in the sequel saying: 'evil is its own aphrodisiac' hmm...
    thx you two!

  5. Oh! I remember that line, Carole! That was quite a scene there. Whew!

  6. Hi Carole - welcome to Lorelei's blog. I will be checking out your page shortly. I like horror but nothing that's too gory - I prefer the psychological kind - but I'm still trying to define myself as a writer. Like you, I've recently taken up my pen again and I'm still in the midst of exploring the various genres and where I fit in.

    Sabrina got me hooked on Lorelei's Vampire novels. Prior to that, the only Vampire novel I'd read was Dracula. That goes to show, character trumps all.

    Good luck with your writing and I better get back to mine!

  7. Thoroughly enjoyed Carole's post. Humbly, I don't know the definition of darkest Gothic romance is, to restrict it from being horror. I think the idea of the worst demonic being have loved once would serve as added complexity to a horror, like James Bond surviving a cast away period, tortured in the hands of North Koreans. It made me 'feel' for the protaganist, not just enjoy the bubble-gum-ness of James Bond. Die Another Day was my favorite J.B. movie. Sorry for the non-horror comparison. Anyway, wouldn't demons having loved once induce tension in the reader, feel torn about whether to like or dislike in black-or-white fashion the antagonist, similar to Wuthering Heights?

  8. wow firstly thanks, Dora Dee!
    I like psychological horror too, but I do get really dark if i feel it's right. In other words, i won't pull away with a self-imposed filter.
    I'm very spontaneous in my fiction.
    I don't use an outline.
    i only have an idea of the story, how it's going to end.
    Everything else in between is done by the characters.
    And each thing that happens isn't mapped out by me, it's entirely dependent on the characters' motivation.

    The HOuse on Blackstone Moor is about demonic vampires but it also poses questions--as to being damned through no fault of their own...
    the question of supernatural evil and human evil is also discussed.
    I'll shut up about this now. i only want to say if a demon is evil I feel he has to be shown to be evil and if that means realism, then so be it!
    I never use gratuitous violence tho!
    thx again for your comment!

  9. Hi Freeda!
    thanks for your comment!
    very interesting point.
    I loved this what you said about the demon and the tension aspect.
    Yes, the reader just can't be sure.
    I think a reader not being able to predict the plot is essential for good fiction.
    I know Lorelei writes that way and I love that!
    Neither The House on Blackstone Moor or the sequel is written in such a way as to be predictable.
    Again,motivation is key.
    One character affects another.
    I liked your analogy! i loved that castaway James Bond. Remove Mr. Bond from the setting of his gadgets and he becomes exposed and we see what he's really made of.
    Wutherihg Heights, too! excellent. Yes, Heathcliffe is a tortured hero and we love it!
    btw The House on Blackstone Moor has such a tortured hero. He is demonic but damned through no fault of his own.
    It's being re-released but it was compared in previous reviews to a Byronic hero and to Wuthering Heights!
    oopes better go now. I'm babbling!
    thanks so much, Freeda. That was great.
    I'd love to chat more about this sometime!

  10. Well, I think we got a lot of great dialogue on Carole's thoughts on dark romance/dark Gothic romance/horror, and demons.

    I will have Carole on Lorelei's Muse again soon, so come on back and check in periodically (unless you do so already, of course), and see what's up on the posts.

    My thanks to Carole Gill for her allowing me to bring her over, and for everyone's comments!


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