Women in Horror 2019: Erin Sweet Al-Mehairi

Erin Sweet Al-Mehairi has Bachelor of Arts degrees in English, Journalism, and History. She has twenty years of experience in the communication and marketing fields and is currently an author, writer, journalist, publicist, and an editor. 

Breathe. Breathe., published by Unnerving in 2017, is her debut collection of dark poetry and short stories and was an Amazon best-selling paid title, debuting at #2 in Hot New Releases in Women’s Poetry and held in the top ten of horror short stories. She has poetry and short stories featured in several other anthologies, magazines, and sites and was the co-curating editor for the gothic anthology Haunted are these Houses. You can e-mail her at hookofabook (at) hotmail (dot) com and find her easily at her website Oh, for the Hook of a Book!Amazon, or GoodReads. You’ll also find her on Facebook, Twitter (@erinalmehairi), and Instagram.

1) what is horror?

Horror to me is not only anything that scares you but that is horrifying in life – domestic, speculative, or fantastic. An abusive marriage can be terrifying and result in revenge with horrifying consequences or people could be chased down the beach by a giant killer crab. Horror is subjective, determined in the mind of each individual, and crosses into many other genres. 

At the core, to me, horror gives us an outlet to work through the questions of humanity, whether writing, reading, or watching. Sometimes real people and real life have the more horrifying stories even than if bigfoot is in your nearby forest (thought that’s fun!). Horror helps us work through our fears, insecurities, and short comings, but it also celebrates perseverance, strength, and confidence. All that, and sometimes, it’s just pure entertainment as well – offering euphoria of adrenaline

2) why horror?

I write horror because it helps me heal from traumas, work through past and current fears, and explore life and others. I’m a huge fan of psychological horror in reading/watching and love to explore the mind through characters I write. I like to read it for the same reasons. I love to people watch through books. I also write horror because it’s fun to bring creatures to life, be creative with story lines, and push boundaries.

3) where do you see horror going?

I think horror, as it touches each and every other genre, and each and every person, is only on the rise to becoming more accepted and a normal thing to find mainstream, especially as more and more becomes harder to explain in the real world. We will dive into horror to learn about others and we will immerse in horror to forget. We will watch and read horror to remember it could be worse in some cases and we will also do it to relate. 

Horror is all encompassing and so I think it will become more accessible to the masses and less judgement will be on those who read or watch it. Horror really does touch every part of each of us. I think with more and more becoming transparent in the world, people will shed off their masks, tell their hidden secrets, and not be ashamed (or be made to feel they should be) for what they like to read and write and watch

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