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Sam Wilson

@ Sunday Times Books LIVE

Genre Remix: Horror

Genre Stories Horror Word Cloud

Jeff Noon has been experimenting with what he calls “Dub Fiction”: Using online text randomisers to scramble text, and finding new and surprising images in the results. His idea is to create something like a remix b-side that can be presented next to the original work. He demonstrates his technique here.

I wanted to try it out and remix some of my @Genrestories, so I started with all the horrors. The originals were:

Horror: “You’ll sleep like babies,” said the innkeeper. Which was true. They spent half the night screaming, and the other half throwing up.

Horror: The outbreak of vampirism amongst the walruses went completely unnoticed by everybody.

Horror: My soul haunts the spot I died, cursing those who enter the building. But someone turned it into a Home Affairs, so no one notices.

Mild Horror: Biologists studied the outbreak of zombiedom in the turtle population with interest, but not alarm.

Horror: “Bind Them Forever!” chanted the eyeless ones, holding a rusted needle. And the couple began to regret having a themed wedding.

Horor: “Fish Fingers tonight!” said New Mommy. Jimmy looked at his plate. Scales. Knuckles. They weren’t what Jimmy expected. Not at all.

Horror: “Wear this ring,” said the shopkeeper, “and all your dreams will come true.” They did. Even the one with the teeth.

Horror: Lovecraft stared at the page. During the fever he’d channeled a phantasmagorical tale of sentient beasts, and signed it “B. POTTER.”

Horror Metafiction: Vampire romances suck the life out of all new young adult novels. They turn every new book into a vampire romance.

Horror Movie Trailer: 140 IS THE NEW 666. This summer, Follow the warnings. Follow your instinct. Just don’t follow… DeathTweet.

Horror: “You used to love this before the accident. Now open wide,” said his daughter patiently, holding up a spoonful of crushed eyeballs.

Psychological Horror: She stroked his cat. A seam burst, and sawdust poured out. “I can’t let go of anything I love,” he said.

Erotic Horror: Fingertips touched the nape of her neck, stroked her shoulder, and brushed down her body, envious of its completeness.

Horror: The stone suit pinched his skin until he bled. It wouldn’t stop until he picked up the tools to carve more of them, for his family.

I remixed them, stripped out the nonsense, and polished them up. Here are the results:

“The tale begins tonight,” said DeathTweet. “There is no time for eyeless love.”

Jimmy hoped the teeth would go unnoticed amongst his knuckles. But everyone noticed. Biologists studied them. Lovecraft stared at their truth; their fever spot.

With interest and a needle, I fixed a burst seam, and pinched it closed with summer.

“Follow,” he said, and fingertips poured out of his hand, every one a sentient beast.

He held her neck open with a spoonful of vampirism. She regretted having him as a shopkeeper.

“Don’t follow… crushed eyeballs!”

The vampire’s outbreak was romantic. Envious, the zombie wouldn’t stroke his cat.

I can’t be a vampire if I follow your adult novels.

140 is new, young and true.


Recent comments:

  • Ben - Editor
    Ben - Editor
    February 27th, 2012 @08:23 #

    Very cool stuff here.

  • <a href="" rel="nofollow">Helen</a>
    February 28th, 2012 @23:03 #

    Wow. Shiversome and fascinating at the same time.

  • Ben - Editor
    Ben - Editor
    February 29th, 2012 @19:57 #

    Shiversome - good word, that :)

  • <a href="" rel="nofollow">Lauren Beukes</a>
    Lauren Beukes
    March 2nd, 2012 @10:42 #

    These made me grin in delight. The remixes are awesomely strange and disturbing. That Noon guy may be on to something.


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