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  • Writer's pictureCandace Nola

Women in Horror Spotlight: Ruth Anna Evans



Today's spotlight is on Ruth Anna Evans, author, anthologist, and cover artist within the horror industry.


Read on to learn more about her and her thoughts on the industry.


Enjoy!



 

What defines “horror” for you?  

That is a really good question, because I don't honestly have an encompassing definition. It's a know-it-when-I-see it situation. It's something that deals with the darker side of life, something with an edge. But horror can also be soft and sometimes even comforting. Not my horror, though. My horror is the opposite of comforting. When I sit down to write horror, it's about putting fear on the page, and making someone else feel my fears, deep down. I will say that if you don't feel something real, it's not good horror. 



What is your personal favorite horror movie or story and why?

I love The Shining, both the book and the movie. Things with kids always get me, and I love the play of real horror and the supernatural. 



What is your favorite thing about being a female author in the horror industry?

I feel like I get to be myself. There are so many fewer gender expectations than in other circles I've been in. I can be any flavor of woman I want. I get to be my most confident self and all I see is support. I feel like in some genres or situations, being as assertive as I am would get me stomped down, but in the horror community I'm allowed to be a boss.

 


What differences do you believe women bring to the table within the horror industry, and why are those differences impactful and important, in your opinion?

That's another question I don't have a solid answer for, really, because individual women bring so many different things. I would say that women bring essential voices, and that without those voices, horror would be far less interesting, just as it would be without any essential part. For me, I bring extreme emotion to my writing, and I may feel free to be that emotional because I am female; I may not feel that freedom if I were a man. I write a lot about parent-child horror, and being a mother definitely informs that. 

 


Have you faced any challenges as a woman in the mostly male-dominated world of horror? If so, what were they and how did you overcome them? 

I've managed to steer clear of most of the assholes out there. There are definitely a few folks who see horror as their turf, but I leave them alone and they leave me alone. If I were to change something, I would say that I want more women publishers. With some fantastic exceptions, the ranks of publishers are male-dominated, and I think horror would be well-served if more women stepped into that ring in a serious way. It's important that we take women just as seriously as we take men, and sometimes when a woman enters a male-dominated field, she isn't taken as seriously, has to do more to prove herself. I think that makes it more intimidating for women to give it a try. So, I love it when I see bomb-ass women pull their skills and their networks together and do amazing things. 



What advice do you have for the next generation of female horror authors? 

Do not be discouraged by low sales. I'll say it again: do not be discouraged by low sales. It takes time and marketing. You may work for a year on a book that sells ten copies. The next book will sell twenty. Get better and better and market yourself and your work and people will read it and tell people they know about it. But not if you don't write it, and not if you don't tell people about it. Publish the book, tell the world about it, then get to work on the next book.  I would also say make those connections! Connect with readers, with other writers, with cover designers and podcasters and editors. This is meant to be fun, and the friendships are what make it fun. Plug into the community. But stay away from any fighting or drama...you do NOT have to comment. Let it go and do something positive with your day. Like write the next book! Good luck!


Ruth Anna's Bio:

Ruth Anna Evans is a horror writer, anthologist, and cover designer who lives in the heart of all that is sinister: the American Midwest. She has self-published the horror collections OH FUCK OH FUCK IT HURTS and No One Can Help You: Tales of Lost Children and Other Nightmares. She is the editor of Ooze: Little Bursts of Body Horror featuring Judith Sonnet and Rowland Bercy Jr. She also has work appearing in several anthologies, including The First Five Minutes of the Apocalypse from Hungry Shadow Press and Splatterpunk-nominated We're Here: An Anthology of Queer Horror. She is the author of What Did Not Die, published by PsychoToxin Press, and the novella Do Not Go In That House from Gloom House Publishing. Most recently, she edited the anthology Dark Blooms: Girls' Coming-of-Age Horrors, featuring sixteen women writers telling stories of the death of girlhood. 

Follow Ruth Anna on Twitter @ruthannaevans and on Facebook at Ruth Anna Evans.

Contact Ruth Anna Evans at authorruthannaevans@gmail.com



 


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