Why Deb Eleanor Should Not Read Scary Books

I am easily spooked, so it makes absolutely no sense that I love  scary books and movies as much as I do.  With a book like The Ruins or Heart-Shaped Box, I’ll be curled up in bed (feet covered, because the monsters like toes, don’t you know) until the wee hours, too terrified to turn the page, too terrified not to.

The Ruins, by Scott SmithHeart-Shaped Box, Joe Hill

With a scary movie, a really good one like The Others or White Noise 2 (how creepy is EVP?  Yikes!), we’ll turn off the lights and curl up together on the sofa, where I’ll spend half the time shrieking at every surprise and the other half covering my eyes. The Others Movie

White Noise 2

Here’s the real problem with letting myself get scared – when I get nervous or scared, I have to pee frequently.  But because there may potentially be monsters hiding in the bathroom, I can’t go in alone.  So when I’m good and terrified, despite the fact that I am thirty-something years old, J.C. has to go into the bathroom first, turn on all the lights, check behind the shower curtain, and then stay in the bathroom while I pee.

And, God love him, he does it.

Why do I do this to myself?  Why do we love spooky books and movies – even people like me, who fall apart at the first strains of ominous music?

What is it, exactly, about a good scare?

18 Replies to “Why Deb Eleanor Should Not Read Scary Books”

  1. Ha ha! I think the scariest thing on the page here is Nicole Kidman’s face. I couldn’t walk into my kitchen after dark for decades thinking Mr. Barlow was going to materialize up out of the floor or Danny Glick would float zombie vampire like in front of the window. Funny how scares stick with us – and well, flow out out of us, I guess!

    1. ExACTly. I want to KNOW. The worst was The Ruins – no chapters, so I was up half the night before I figured out there was going to be no natural stopping point…it just keeps going and going.

  2. OMG, I’m cracking up about the peeing thing. Don’t laugh, when I get spooked like that, I’ll occasionally give in to the irrational fear that something might crawl up out of the toilet and get me. What? It could happen.


    1. I am TOTALLY with you. Related – the only urban legend I totally believe is that if you flush the toilet when you are sitting on it, it can suck out your inside bits.

  3. Here’s a spooky Halloween thing. I wrote a comment on this first thing this morning, and when I checked in this afternoon… IT WAS GONE!!!!!

    Stephen King is totally behind it.

  4. Hilarious! I don’t know the last time I watched a scary movie or read a scary book. But I do enjoy watching those documentaries on TLC about haunted houses. Now I’m convinced there is a ghost in my apartment. Fortunately, he lives in the bookcase and not the bathroom. It just means I pull books off the shelf really quickly and run away.

  5. I think Stephen King’s It was the only book I’ve actually had to stop reading until the sun came up. “They ALL float down here.” Scariest line in print. Although, Graham Masterton’s Mirror actually gave me nightmares. There’s no rush like making it through a terrifying book! Happy Halloween!

Comments are closed.