Guest Post: Witches of Wildwood by Mark W. Curran @MarkWesleyCurr1

Monsters In The Closet and Why I Love Them
by Mark W. Curran

Thank you for having me as a guest blogger! I am a great fan of all things horror, which led me to
writing horror fiction. I'm primarily a filmmaker, and have written and produced a few short subject
scary films. Several years ago I wrote, produced and directed my first full length feature, a horror-
suspense-thriller called 'Abandoned Dead.'

Abandoned Dead is a psychological story about a young girl who is terrified of being left alone. She's
got a lot of monsters hiding in her closet, for her past is a dark sad tale of sexual abuse. She's kept all
those memories completely buried and when she's left alone for extended periods of time, these
memories start to surface.

So I think a lot of horror that appeals to me, and influences the stuff I write, is sort of variation on that
theme, which I call 'monsters in the closet.' 

One thing I've learned about myself as a horror fan is that I love and appreciate suspense-horror much
more than the gory stuff. For me, psychological terror that involves a protagonist who is battling
opposing forces that could be both real and imagined intrigue me most. I am moved by the scare more
than the squirm.

An example of this kind of horror are movies like Jacob's Ladder, a film written by Bruce Joel Rubin
and starring Tim Roth. Jacob is an Everyman, an average guy just trying to get by. But he is also a
Vietnam vet trying to put the horrors of his past behind him and they are starting to emerge in
frightening and threatening ways. There are multiple layers to this film.

Hitchcock explored these themes as well in some of his films, touching on the power of the
subconscious. When neither the antagonist nor the reader/audience knows what is reality and what is
fantasy - a trick of the mind - well, to me that is the ultimate storytelling frame. 

What horror does is forces us to face our monsters in the closet. Often this is metaphorical, for as
humans we all have monsters lurking in the dusty attics of our subconscious. Horror personsifies the
evil we all know exists, and pits a morally challenged protagonist to face his/her fears and weaknesses forcing them to step up to the plate and battle both the demons within and the morally corrupt
villain/monster without.        

That's why I love horror - the monsters in the closet that beckon, threaten, taunt and titillate us to
heroic action.

Good horror stories teach us to rise above the fears and insecurities that exist within us all - to overcome  life's adversities and to emerge the triumphant victors of lives well led. 

Witches of Wildwood: Cape May Horror Stories and Other Scary Tales from the Jersey Shore 

A Collection of Contemporary Horror Fiction

Mark W. Curran 

Genre: Horror/Speculative Fiction

Publisher: NMD Books

Date of Publication: Sept 15, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-936828-51-7

Number of pages: 300
Word Count: 83,365

Cover Artist:  Robert Gonzales

Book Description:

Werewolves... vampires... swamp beasts... zombies... even a Jersey Devil... all of these chilling creatures and more await you in this haunting collection of 11 contemporary horror fiction stories by Mark Wesley Curran.

Uniquely set 'down the shore' in South Jersey's Cape May County, these scary tales are sure to terrify and entertain both adult readers as well as young adults.


There was no doubt among the sisters that the murders were increasing their power. Each felt the surge of energy that coursed through them with each kill.
“I feel so alive!” Zoey exclaimed on the morning after they’d tied Harlan Clemmons to a chair and stabbed him multiple times through the heart, “like I’m 
plugged into some bitchin’ electrical source!” she marveled.

The other girls felt it too. Both Jaz and Ali would lay awake at night and feel it running through them - bringing them even more vitality and strength than even their young ages provided. 

About the Author:

Mark Wesley Curran is a writer of contemporary fiction, specializing in the horror and suspense genre. Born and raised in Suburban Philadelphia, he spent many summers living and working in Wildwood, New Jersey during its heyday. He now resides in Los Angeles where he enjoys creative pursuits as a writer, filmmaker and musician.   

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