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“While writing is a solitary business, few writers are solitaries. Most write as members of society and witnesses of the times in which they live. They respond to the heads around them and put their heads together with theirs. If their works seem bizarre to the general reader, it is because they are writing from within a social circle of bizarre heads. (Example: participants in literary movements with or without manifestos.) These are not solitaries, who write from inside their own heads and whose writing cannot be understood solely within the compass of a specific place or by the clock of a specific time.

Solitary writers come out of nowhere and do not belong anywhere. They are not domesticated or socialized, not as writers. Their subject is not the world about them but the one within them. From story to story or poem to poem, they repeat themselves because all they have to work with are themselves and their dreams, which are strange dreams and often bad dreams. As anyone knows, nothing is more troublesome to communicate than yourself and your dreams, the feelings and visions that have molded you into what you are. So solitaries such as Lovecraft and Poe had their work cut out for them . . . and only them.”
Thomas Ligotti - “The Conspiracy Against the Human Race”

Ligotti/TRUE DETECTIVE Discussion, VALHALLA RISING Podcast + Nicolas Refn Interview
Feb 25, 2015 - 11:30 AM - by Dr. Locrian

We have a real treat for you this week. We talk about the cinematic masterpiece Valhalla Rising and also interview the director of the film, Nicolas Winding Refn!

We also have a kickass guest host, Jon Padgett. Jon is a horror writer, voiceover artist, and trusty steward of – a site founded in 1998 dedicated to horror writer Thomas Ligotti (one of the “inspirations” for HBO’s True Detective).
I was brought on as a guest host for this podcast and interview with genius filmmaker, Nicolas Winding Refn. It was such an honor and a delight. (Apologies in advance for my occasional hemmings and hawings)

We talk at length about the Pizzolatto fiasco in the first minutes and then segue into discussion of the brilliant Refn film, VALHALLA RISING. And then the interview with Refn follows, and it's a damn good one. Followed by more Refn analysis and gushing.

Anyway, Click here to listen to the podcast/interview.
6 Replies | 502 Views
"Born to Fear": Slawek's Ligotti interview now available online
Feb 23, 2015 - 8:58 AM - by matt cardin
Many of you are familiar with the Ligotti interview conducted by TLO member Sławomir Wielhorski -- better known to us all as Slawek -- that appears in Born to Fear: Interviews with Thomas Ligotti, and that is in fact the source of the book's title. I'm pleased to announce that this interview is now available online at The Teeming Brain:

"Interview with Thomas Ligotti: Born to Fear"

What's more, the Internet version contains an additional question and answer that don't appear in the book. Gratitude for all of this is due to Slawek, who chose to make the interview freely available, and also to Tom and Subterranean Press for giving their blessing.

FWIW, here's one of my favorite moments:

Sławomir Wielhorski: To what extent do readers’ expectations influence the content of your stories? When writing, do you ever take into account the target audience, or do you only aim at creative self-expression?

Thomas Ligotti: In principle, self-expression is to me paramount in any work of art, particularly literary works. In using the term “self-expression” I’m speaking in a very loose way. No one can actually pinpoint who or what he is in any significant sense, let alone communicate that knowledge to another person, another “self.” Even if you could, there would be no way for anyone to know that this task had been successfully performed. These facts are obvious. But readers quite often do have the feeling that the person who wrote particular works of literature has had the same kind of thoughts and emotions that they have had. It would be strange if this phenomenon didn’t occur, given that whoever you are there are plenty of others who are enough like you to appreciate the kind of thing you write, especially if you are working with your personal experience as the central subject.

When I first began writing fiction, I realized that I knew very little about the world and that all I had to work with was me -- that my only source of material was my own life and that any attempt to do something else would be not only fraudulent but lame and unsuccessful as art or as expression. In Catcher in the Rye, the protagonist Holden Caulfield mentions reading books that make him wish he could be friends with the author and be able to call him on the phone and so forth. I would consider a literary work that made someone feel this way a success. Furthermore, it’s the only kind of success in literature that means anything to me.
3 Replies | 624 Views
Thomas Ligotti Online - Seventeenth Anniversary
Feb 06, 2015 - 7:59 PM - by Dr. Bantham
On February 4th, 1998, Jon Padgett (aka Dr. Locrian) unleashed a horrific vision upon this world. THOMAS LIGOTTI ONLINE was created to champion the greatest living horror/weird fiction writer. Many thanks must be extended to Jon for his initiative and effort to bring the Ligottian world to those receptive - yet hidden within the mindless masses. He has undoubtedly introduced countless readers to Tom's work and hand laid the foundations for the community herein. A tip of the surgeon's cap to you, Jon!
12 Replies | 1,148 Views
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