A friend of mine shared a quote with me that came from George Orwell who said “The further a society drifts from the truth, the more it will hate those who speak it.”
I like that quote, because it’s true.
I dislike that quote, because it’s true.
I like that quote because in a way it calls out everyone who wants to deny certain realities. I hate that quote because it seems that more and more, people want to deny certain realities.
As an author, I am in the business of imparting the truth as I see it to other people, and I do so in my books freely. Oftentimes, I am criticized for my viewpoints. Other times I am praised for having those same viewpoints. Ironically, this has not stopped fans and haters alike from buying my books.
I have been praised and criticized for being a fiscal conservative. (See the economic elements in “Last Stop” in “Deadly Duo: Two Stories of Death and Murder.”)
I have been praised and criticized for being a Christian. (See the Christian themes in “Evil Creeps In: A Tale of Exorcism.”)
I have been praised and criticized for my support of the military and their involvement in Vietnam. (See “The Sand Phantom” in “Gruesome Triad: Three Stories of the Macabre.”)
I have been praised and criticized for being an environmentalist. (See “From Beneath in “Grim Quatrain: Four Tales of Terror” and “The Plague” in “Gruesome Triad.”)
I have been praised and criticized for being pro-life. (See “Last Stop” in “Deadly Duo.”)
Why do people who dislike my views buy my books?
It’s easy enough to understand why people who support my viewpoints would buy them. We see characters who represent the convictions they disagree with get their comeuppance in the end. But the others… Well, maybe I write well, but I’m thinking that people who disagree with my opinions might read them anyway because they are re-examining their own points of view.
I have to admit that for these people, my books put them in a number of “what if” scenarios that make them think.
Let’s say you are a pro-choice atheist and you read “Last Stop.” (One wouldn’t expect that an atheist would even enjoy reading horror books in the first place – most have supernatural elements with theistic implications, but if you did read it…) You’d discover that the main character finds himself on a subway train that takes him to and through various levels of hell where punishments are exacted upon sinners for what they have done while they were still alive. For example, abortionists are chased after by crawling aborted fetuses with scalpels. The fetuses, of course, are not condemned to hell, they are really demons who are just having fun.
Now if the last sentence of the preceding paragraph offends you, keep in mind that there are people in this world who do things that are considered sins by religious people, and illegal by those who make the laws. If those people never get reprimanded for their sins while they are alive, or never get caught for their crimes, they just go about their lives as though they have done nothing “wrong.” They’re just having fun, in other words. So what is wrong about turning the tables on these “evildoers” and having them suffer at the hands of others who commit the very same offenses against them?
At any rate, the truth as I see it, and as I tell it, seems to be something that I as an author am hated for telling, yet to date, no one has suggested boycotting my books, so I am inclined to believe that even people who hate the truth secretly love it.
Thomas D. Taylor