This week we welcome author of the paranormal series, This Haunted World, Shani Struthers.

Hi Shani, please tell us a bit about you and your writing

My name is Shani Struthers and I write paranormal thrillers. My books include the popular Psychic Surveys series, centring around a group of freelance psychics in Lewes, East Sussex, who work on various cases, some to do with the spirit world, some dealing with non-spirit too – ie the demonic. I also write books for the This Haunted World series, novels set in and around the world’s most haunted places and combining fact with fiction. All works are inspired by true-life events and personal experiences.

What in your opinion makes good horror?

In horror, less is more – in my opinion anyway! I’m not really into anything gratuitous and, having been bought up by a mother very interested in the spirit world, I’ve got a lot of respect for it. A brilliant example of less is more can be found in Shirley’s Jackson’s The Haunting of Hill House – nothing actually happens in the book, it’s all suggestion, and it’s all the more terrifying than having it spelt out for you as it lets the imagination do the work. Her approach is one I keep in mind when crafting a story.

How do you feel about flash fiction as a medium for horror?

I’ve never written flash fiction (or indeed a short story) but I’ve read plenty and I think it can be very effective. Again, with flash fiction, it’s what is NOT said that can be the most frightening.

What is your favourite horror short story?

Daphne du Maurier’s Don’t Look Now, which is set in Venice – itself one of the most haunted cities in the world and, having visited several times, I can believe it!  

What scares you the most and what is your favourite horror scene/passage/novel?

Not much scares me, when I’m with something that is… on my own, my imagination tends to run riot and I can jump at the slightest thing! My favourite horror, as I’ve mentioned above, is Shirley Jackson’s The Haunting of Hill House. I also love Susan Hill’s The Woman in Black and anything by Stephen King and Dean Koontz. The Turn of the Screw by Henry James is also brilliant. A film I couldn’t get to the end of because I found it too scary is Shrooms – don’t know why, the hallucinations of people in the wood terrified the life out of me!

Please give us a one-sentence horror story!

The door to the empty house slowly began to open.

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