Zakk presents “Why I Write a Variety of Horror” a guest post by David Bernstein

Why do I read Horror? Because the feelings Horror conjures are primal, they are vicious and viscous. A scene may hit different people on different emotional levels, a beautiful scene will hit the same person on many different emotional levels. I read Horror for the blood, for the shock, for the fear, for the variety. In read Horror for the joy of being scared.

It is my pleasure to present David Bernstein, author of the recently released A Mixed Bag of Blood. Mr. Bernstein is here to share why he writes a variety of Horror.  


Why I Write a Variety of Horror
By David Bernstein, Author of A Mixed Bag of Blood

I am often asked why I like to write a variety of dark fiction/horror or why one book might be so different from another. I don’t have a concrete answer, except to say that I simply love all kinds of horror, whether in book or movie form. I don’t really have a favorite sub-genre to read or write about, but I do love writing scenes involving detailed (often gory) action-kill scenes. You should see my movie, music and television show tastes! When it comes to music, I listen to everything from Slayer and Anthrax, to 80s pop such as “Tears for Fears,” “The Cars,” and “The Breakfast Club” soundtracks. I love Rock N’ Roll, like Tom Petty, “Van Halen,” and “Steve Miller Band.” And I simply can’t get enough classical.

As far as television and movies, I watch everything from comedies to horror to drama. Let’s talk television. The show, “Gossip Girl”… yeah, I watched that. I love police procedural shows too, like “The Shield,” “Elementary,” “Chicago P.D.” and “Blue Bloods.” I watch dramas like “Suits” and “Better Call Saul.” Action shows I like are “Arrow,” “The 100,” “Hell on Wheels” and of course, horror shows like “Supernatural,” “Bates Hotel,” “Scream,” and you get my drift. As for SyFy channel shows, forget it—I think I watch almost all of them (“The Expanse” RULES). This leads to the fact that when it comes to writing I want to write about all these areas too.

My collection “A Mixed Bag of Blood” is a prime example of the range in which I write. It contains stories involving revenge, plushy toys, bugs, samurais, toilets, boogers, monsters, and knives. There are sci-fi, supernatural, apocalyptic, surreal, bizarre, and real world settings. There are a few stories in the collection that I wouldn’t read if you’ve recently eaten.

When I started out writing, I wrote many short stories involving sci-fi elements. I also wrote ghost stories, zombie stories, and gore-filled stories. In addition, I wrote weird-ass stories that didn’t fit anywhere. I didn’t know what kind of writer I wanted to be (and still don’t) so I wrote what came to me. I wrote a zombie book filled with action, gore, and drama. It’s a coming-of-age tale about a 13-year-old girl that has to survive in a world that has fallen. Then, I wrote a novel called “Tears of No Return.” That book involved extraterrestrials and supernatural vampires. However, because of this, I had a lot of publishers tell me they really liked the story and the characters, but couldn’t get past the alien stuff with the supernatural elements. I didn’t want to change anything. I liked it the way it was. Eventually, it all worked out. A small press published it and it seemed readers enjoyed it.

I think it’s great when genres mix. It allows for so much more to be discovered and played with. I think I’d get bored always writing the same type of horror.

I also worried about building a readership. Readers come to expect certain things, like consistency and familiarity. However, I have to do what I love, and I hope people that read my work will enjoy it. I kind of like picking up a book and not knowing what to expect, and I suppose other people do too.


Biography of David Bernstein

David Bernstein is originally from a small town in Upstate New York called Salisbury Mills. He now resides in NYC and misses being surrounded by chainsaw-wielding maniacs and wild backwoods people that like to eat raw human flesh. He’s grown used to the city, though hiding bodies is much harder there. He is the author of Amongst the Dead, Damaged Souls, The Tree Man, Witch Island, Relic of Death, Apartment 7C and the forthcoming Episodes of Violence. David writes all kinds of horror, from hair-raising ghost stories to gore-filled slashers and apocalyptic tales of terror. He loves hearing from his readers. You can reach him on Facebook, at Visit him at his website: email, or on Twitter at @Bernsteinauthor.

Praise for A Mixed Bag of Blood

“Dave Bernstein let his mind wander and his pen write where I know you’ll want to read. With an introduction by Kristopher Rufty, this is a reason to stay at home and read on a pleasant Saturday afternoon like I did.” –Cat After Dark

Praise for David Bernstein

“David Bernstein delivers a fast-moving tale of desire and destruction that gives new meaning to the words, ‘Be careful what you wish for.’ Relic of Death twists reality and will leave you reflecting on your own personal Achilles heel long after you finished reading…” —Allan Leverone, author of Mr. Midnight

“A fascinating, unpredictable, ever-shifting tale of greed and desperation. Highly recommended!” —Jeff Strand, author of Pressure

“Fast-paced, cinematic, and excellent. Horror fans gather around, it’s time for another chilling tale from David Bernstein.” —Keith Deininger, author of Within and Ghosts of Eden

“A harrowing, brutal thriller, Skinner is Bernstein at his best!” —Peter Giglio, author of Shadowshift

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