In the beginning

Dear Reader:

What in the heck was I thinking, writing a book?

Hello! Thanks for checking in with me. This site exists primarily to promote my new book Lost in the Dark: A World History of Horror Film. It comes out on May 17, 2021. I hope you will read it, enjoy it, buy multiple copies of it, and distribute them freely among your friends and neighbors.

Meanwhile, I wanted to use this blog to introduce myself, chronicle the publishing process, and discuss new projects and ideas, and whatever else pops up along the way.

So why did I write a book? Would I recommend the experience to others? It helped immensely that I didn’t know what I was doing. If I had any idea what writing a book entailed, I never would have attempted it. It’s just one of the many things I’ve found myself just up and doing over the years.

Growing up, I wanted to be a rocket scientist, then a minister, and somehow got to the point where I wanted to be an actor. After a year of college acting, I didn’t know what I wanted to be. I didn’t know who I was or what the hell I was doing. I dropped out. I worked odd jobs, fathered a child. Then I discovered comedy.

Soon I was performing as a standup and, much more happily, as an improviser. It was the ‘80s, and there were gigs aplenty. But I never went beyond regional notice. After 15 years on stage, I gave it up.

Still, I needed to create, I needed to do something. I started writing. Soon I was freelancing for a number of publications, focusing on arts and entertainment. I was doing something right. I started getting published in Europe, in Australia as well. From there I fell into daily journalism, which consumed me for a number of years until the great wave of layoffs began. I and most of my friends were out of the newsgathering business.

I returned to freelancing, but it was unsatisfying. I was tired of pitching stories. My frequent attempts to find a group, a cause, an organization that I could belong to, work for, and derive satisfaction from came up empty. What else could I work on? How about a book?

I looked at years of stories I’d written, searching for leads. Oddly, I had written more about horror film than any other topic. Very well, then. Could I write a book on that? I went to the library in the search of a comprehensive history of the genre worldwide. And I searched. And I searched, ransacking shelves across the region. And wouldn’t you know it, there wasn’t one. So why couldn’t I write that?

HAH! Easy for me to say.

Next time: Writing and selling my book

Published by bradweismann

Brad Weismann is an award-winning writer and editor. His work has appeared in such publications as Senses of Cinema, Film International, Backstage, Muso, Parterre, 5280, and Boulder Magazine. His first book, Lost in the Dark: A World History of Horror Film was recently published by the University Press of Mississippi. He contributed to the critical collection 100 Years of Soviet Cinema, and he was chosen by the Library of Congress to contribute explanatory essays to its National Recording Registry.

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