Ginger Nuts of Horror
Ginger Nuts of Horror's Motherhood of the Monstrous continues its celebration of female horror writers of the past present and future. Today we welcome Holland's most famous female horror writer Chantal Noordeloos to talk about the female writers that matter to her.
Chantal Noordeloos (born in the Hague, and not found in a cabbage as some people may suggest) lives in the Netherlands, where she spends her time with her wacky, supportive husband, and outrageously cunning daughter, who is growing up to be a supervillain. When she is not busy exploring interesting new realities, or arguing with characters (aka writing), she likes to dabble in drawing.
In 1999 she graduated from the Norwich School of Art and Design, where she focused mostly on creative writing.
Chantal likes to write for all ages, and storytelling is the element of writing that she enjoys most. “Writing should be an escape from everyday life, and I like to provide people with new places to escape to, and new people to meet.”
Chantal started her career writing short stories for various anthologies, and in 2012 she won an award for ‘Best Original Story’ for her short ‘the Deal’.
*cracks knuckles and hovers fingers over her keyboard*
*looks a little cross eyed*
Eh… right… I need to begin somewhere.
I was asked by the lovely Jim McLeod to write something about two female authors. One who has influenced my writing and the second who is publishing now, and who I feel the world should take notice of. The second question is easy (well, easy-ish); I can think of several. The first question not only made me pause… I actually googled female horror authors to see if there was anyone who fit that bill. That should tell you how much I struggled to answer this question.
Who in the horror world has influenced me? If I am going to be really honest, I only discovered female authors AFTER I started writing horror—and I had to make a conscious effort to seek them out. Only when I dipped my toe into the pool of horror did I discover gems such as Shirley Jackson and Mo Hayder, and I can’t really say that either of them have really influenced my own writing. In all fairness, most of my inspiration for the horror genre comes from movies, urban legends and role play games.
There have been female writers who have had an influence on my writing, of course. Authors like Dorothy Parker, JK Rowling, Alice Walker and Margaret Weiss have all left their mark on how I look at stories, characters or prose in general. But none of those could be considered horror writers.
So I’m going to cheat, and leave it at the people I have mentioned. *throws a match on that bridge until it burns, and runs away to the next question*
So... I have to ‘name a female author you should all take notice of’. *Californian cheerleader voice* OMG you guys, there are just so many….
All kidding aside, there are a lot of female horror authors out there that people should take notice of. In the small press/ indie published horror community more and more women are finding their voice, and their work ranges from dark gothic to extreme horror (and despite contrary belief, when the ladies write extreme horror… they go all out to terrify and even sicken their audience)
My pick is one of the best authors I have come across: Paula Ashe. The first (short) story I have read of her is called Bereft, and it utterly destroyed me. I’m talking ‘ugly crying’ when I read it. The world became a bit darker after reading that particular tale.
Paula’s work is not for the faint hearted, and it’s not the kind of horror that is ‘easy to read’. She taps into topics that make me extremely uncomfortable, and her writing haunts me. Her ‘voice’ is dark, raw and well written. I absolutely believe people should notice Paula Ashe, and I think that anyone who can handle it—trust me, not everyone could—should read Bereft. It was published in an anthology called Songs for the Raven, and I really hope Paula will release a collection of her own work one day.
So there you have it… a rambling incomplete answer to the first question, and a clear to the point answer for the second one. I think one out of two isn’t bad, considering my track record. Now, you there, reader… go read Paula’s work, and while you’re looking, go find some more female horror writers to read. It’s women in horror month after all!
A beautiful house – with a dark and deadly secret.
When Freya inherits her mother's childhood home, she sees it as an opportunity. A chance for a new life with her best friends, as they convert the crumbling mansion into an exclusive hotel.
Instead, they'll be lucky to escape with their lives.
As the first hammers tear through the bricked up entrances, a dark, terrible and ancient evil stirs beneath the house. An evil that has already laid claim to Freya and her companions' souls.
WOMEN IN HORROR MONTH LINKS
THE WOMEN IN HORROR MIXTAPE
INTERVIEW WITH KAYLEIGH MARIE EDWARDS
THE HISTORY OF WOMEN IN HORROR 1: A MAN EXPLAINS
28 Days Of Black Women In Horror
Interview with Lee Murray
Women in Horror Month
The Monstrous Regiment of Women in Horror