The Allure of Darkness by L. Bachman


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Being asked what draws me toward the darker side of fiction is like asking me what happens when a bite of steak is digested. I understand the basics, but I am no nutritionist. I have written before about the allure of thrills and fears that we, as a people, are drawn toward. The psychology of fear and all the science that I have learned of it, but why I do many things is very much a mystery to even me. I understand the possibilities, then perhaps, but no definite answers. I will never be able to pinpoint the moment it began or even why.

Perhaps the answers lie in realism. Death has always been a fingertip’s touch away throughout my life. Throughout my life I have had others attempt to kill me or do me grave danger. I grew up hearing about siblings that had passed long before I was even considered an option for my parents. It is possible that the comfort I find in the shadows and writing the way I do comes from the difficult childhood and upbringing I had. It could be because of all the death and damage that has occurred throughout my life, the television putting it right in front of me with the click of a button. From the mid-eighties in which I was born until this very moment of typing I have seen so much death and carnage; abuse and injustices occurring. It is all heartbreaking. It can be overwhelming if I let it be, very easily consuming person.

I have always seen the style I write make my work seem considerably darker, but why I have that style of writing I do not know. Perhaps I read too much Anne Rice as a kid or perhaps it was because I did a book report on Mary Shelly in the fifth grade. I can tell you I am wholeheartedly in love with gothic romance, but why I do not know. I have just always been this way.

I relate more so to dark poetry and the flourishes of the language they contain. It is beautiful. While reading it a scene begins to play in my imagination, a film of sorts, and I am witnessing a marvelous lost play of an ancient period. I have written that I write poetry, but for many years I never considered it dark, I did not even consider myself a poet for a long time, but I have now embraced it fully. I own it. I am in love with words. I am in love with the way a sentence can be written in such a way that the consumer can be completely drowned by it and come up just long enough to breathe before diving back underneath the crashing wave of the next paragraph.

Then again, I may know the answer and have not realized it yet. Before writing this piece, I was looking at art from the medieval period and found myself liking similar styles from different artists. I then realized I am at a crossroads, where sin, the devil, and death all meet to play cards, fight, drink, and discuss the matters of the day. This crossroads seems to be where I have set up a house. This is where the allure of darkness has become my playground.


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