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A Chilling Effect

Halloween Hits

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Prolific novelist and short-story writer Joyce Carol Oates (Haunted: Tales of the Grotesque and the new What I Lived For) reflects upon her earliest scare.

”When I was about 8 years old, I was quite haunted by Lewis Carroll’s Through the Looking Glass. I remember being really frightened by the ending. All these creations have turned into different shapes and Alice is maybe going to be eaten alive at a banquet. When you’re a small child there’s nothing more terrifying. Just the thought of familiar things turning on you … It haunted me afterward so much that I wrote about it. You can see the tremendous impression it had on me in my surreal, grotesque fiction.”