Rocky Wood, co-author of the Bram Stoker Award-winning graphic novel Witch Hunts: A Graphic History of the Burning Times, and President of the Horror Writers Association, has been interviewed by Dark Media about the perception of female horror authors for Women In Horror Recognition Month.
Here is a sample from the interview:
DM: I read the Roundtable shortly after it was posted and there are some excellent points explored. It’s a great read for anyone wanting to see what the differing perspectives on sexism within the horror genre. Do you think women have a harder time gaining the same level of notoriety in the genre? If so, why do you think that is?
Rocky: Yes. I suspect there are a number of reasons which may be sourced back to reader perception, and through that to societal perception. In other words ‘equal rights’ has not fully reached the reader’s view of our genre. Many readers will simply skip up over a female name in a selection of horror works. I suspect that percentage is lessening somewhat as time passes but it is still a reality. Of course, many readers don’t care a whit about the gender of the author. Why do they do this? Because of the aforementioned perception that men write scary, and women write romantic (which is a crock, of course). Because many publishers understand this reader bias they will subconsciously or intentionally select more stories by men, in the hope of better sales. We also know that women submit their novels and shorter fiction in percentages way less than 50% of all submissions, more likely in the 15-25% range, so editors and publishers have less to choose from. That said, I believe most editors and publishers are acting ethically, I doubt there are large numbers of top notch novels and short stories by women that cannot find a home. We need more women writing in the genre, more submissions from them; and a more liberated and pro-active attitude from publishers and editors. I know both publishers and editors who seek out the best material from women, publish it, and get great sales.
You can read the rest of the interview HERE
Lisa Morton who also co-authored Witch Hunts is a multi-award winning author of horror. You can find out more about her work via her website – http://www.lisamorton.com