Badass Bitches In Horror

The month of March is National Womens Month, and today is International Womens Day. And since I’m a woman and a horror writer, I thought, what better time to write a list of my favorite woman horror writers? Here is a list of my top four favorite badass bitches in the horror genre.

Anne Rice

Ann Rice has practically become a household name with her Vampire Chronicles series. The woman not only single-handedly redefined the modern vampire novel, but transformed vampires from scary animated corpses who will kill you to sexy animated corpses who will kill you. If anything, the sexy ones are more frightening.

Octavia Butler

Here’s another vampiric Queen of the Damned. Okay, she’s more known for science fiction than horror. But you can’t write a vampire novel and not call it horror, even if your vampires are genetic mutations rather than supernatural entities. Fledgling, a novel I haven’t yet read, but one that’s been on my list for some time, tackles the issue of race using vampires. It’s a bold move, considering most vampire literature is pretty white-washed (despite the fact that vampires are featured in most human cultures in one form or the other).

Shirley Jackson

Moving away from vampires, let’s talk about one of America’s most celebrated woman writers: Shirley Jackson. Most people have read her work and not even realized it was hers. She’s a master of the mindfuck; her short story “The Lottery” has made high school students wary of small town mob mentality for decades. The Haunting of Hill House inspired two movies (one better than the other) and a Netflix series (though calling it The Haunting of Hill House was probably being a little too generous; the only similarities between the series and the novel are the names of the characters and places, and that Nell dies). We Have Always Live In The Castle is a classic witchy story that everyone should read.

Mary Shelley

And last but not least we have the original goth queen: Mary Shelley. Besides her writing, she is known for losing her virginity on her mother’s grave (maybe not verifiably true, but still a fun story), and keeping her dead husband’s preserved heart in a jar in her writing desk. Even if you haven’t read her work, you’re familiar with it. Dr. Victor Frankenstein and his creature are so ingrained in our culture, you probably knew the characters before you knew the actual story. What’s even more badass about Mary Shelley and her Frankenstein is that it’s the result of a friendly ghost story contest between herself, her husband Percy Shelley, and Lord Byron. I assume she won, considering neither Percy nor Byron ever completed theirs.

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