Never have I read the stories of a man so amazing with words and eery in story-telling. Except Medusa's Coil, that one wasn't really that good, but the rest are great!
My reaction to the first two fucking sentences of Call of Cthulhu:
Ah man, what?
Seriously though, I can't understand a goddamn word in a Lovecraft story. I tried listening to an audio book of The Dunwich Horror, but I can't understand what the fuck it's about! Don't get me wrong, I want to get into his stories and I know that they're like fucking amazing or whatever, but I need to wait until I at least know what the fuck correlate means. Oh right, dictionaries exist.
How the fuck are you in Grade Eight and don't know what correlate means? :P
'Merican schools only teach you two things:
1. School sucks and you won't learn anything.
2. See 1.
I learned a lot in school... but then, I didn't go to a public school. :P
But, honestly, knowing the word exists and living in this time period means you don't have an excuse not to know its definition. Google is a thing. Look it up. If you don't, then its your own fault. xD
Did you, perchance watch True Detective recently?
That was so disappointing.
Actually, for the purposes of inspiration-seeking (and because I have always meant to), I am about to delve into the world of Lovecraft. I am generally familiar with the world and mythos of his stories, but I have never actually read any.
Can you recommend a story to start with?
Which are your favorites?
Sidenote: If you are a Spotify user, there seem to be several of his stories available on there as complete audiobooks, which is excellent.
Also, you know, YouTube, evidently.
Start with The Color out of Space and The Call of Cthulhu; they're classic for a reason. If you're looking for something more odd, try starting with The Hound or The Rats in the Walls.
The Doom that came to Sarnath and The Dream Quest of Unknown Cadath is great if you want to get into the extensive canon of H.P. Lovecraft's Dream World.
If you want to learn about the basic Pantheon it's relatively easy to find them by reading the stories named after the gods, Dagon, Call of Cthulhu, Azathoth, Nyarlathotep, etc. The Other Gods is a more obscure one that I really like.
For interesting, more personal tales about how these anomalies interact with our world, At the Mountains of Madness, The Music of Erich Zann, The Dunwich Horror, From Beyond, The Case of Charles Dexter Ward, The Whisperer in Darkness, and Facts concerning the late Arthur Jermyn and his Family.
Be warned, he was very much a man of the early 1900s, and he has some blatantly prejudiced author tract that reflects that. Other than that, though, the stuff he writes is amazing, trippy, and descriptive as fuck. Seriously, the man is a master of descriptions and the good kind of purple prose, even when he purposefully leaves things out. In one or two cases, I've seen him write off a being or vision as horrific and indescribable, only to go on to describe that thing in gross detail. That's like the literary equivalent of Genghis Khan invading Russia in the middle of winter and winning. Twice.
While this story isn't part of the mythos, I do think that Reanimator bears honorable mention, just because it's a very interesting and potentially disturbing story, even if it contains the most infamous example of Lovecraft being a racist.
Though 'The Thing on the Doorstep' was interesting.
I'm a huge fan of H.P Lovecraft, but of late i've been drifting towards W.B Chambers, the creator of the King in Yellow (I actually own a hard copy of the entire book.)
I dunno, the way he describes things is just so gross with detail, it almost makes me slobber with how juicy the words are in every piece of context. "Woe who is he, who is crowned by the King in Yellow!"
"Upon the cloud waves break, the shores of Carcosa." It's so good. I base a lot of my writing on both Lovecraft and W.B Chambers respectively.
Well, I read The Rats in The Walls... That was the best fucking decision of my life.
10/10, would be imprisoned for eating Captain Norrys after discovering that my family was eating people for centuries again.
Was that the one where they found the gigantic pit and could see Nyarlathotep at the bottom?
I think it's the one where he dicovers his basement is a city full of cow-people.
Not cow-people (even though Lovecraft described them as human cattle) and not a city full of them; just regular people whom his family was storing to eat in a cave that they have below their house for God knows what reason. Also, the people were pretty dead, so they couldn't have established a city or whatever.
Just finished reading The Thing on the Doorstep...
This shit is dope as fuck, why didn't I read Lovecraft earlier?
Well, in the month or so since I posted asking for recommendations I have devoured the majority of Lovecraft's works (I am still working my way through some of the dream cycle works, but my pace has slowed).
I would say that his work ranges from strange, fascinating, and incredible, to merely strange. Sometimes he captivated me and immersed my in wonderful and terrible worlds, and sometimes he tried to stretch a bit too far and made the stories so fantastical or abstract that they laid flat on the page.
You were also not kidding about the mild (and sometimes not-so-mild, like in The Horror at Red Hook) racism which factors into his work by varying degrees. I understand that he was a writer of his times, striving for a sense of mystery and horror. However, the tone of a lot of his work, especially dealing with other races (even fictional ones) was that things were horrifying simply by virtue of being different.
But that unpleasant factor did not diminish the truly visceral horror or masterful prose and vision of the majority of his work. I admire that he could stray into the highly mystical in one story, then into the highly scientific in another.
Longer: The Mountains of Madness (Long, fantastic, science-fiction and suspenseful goodness), The Shadow Over Innismouth (I appreciated how this one told a more specific narrative, almost an adventure, while still creating an interesting and vivid world).
Shorter: The Thing on the Doorstep, From Beyond.
Also, has anybody read Sweet Ermengarde? H.P. departs fom his box to satirize the popular romances of the day. I honestly thought it was hysterical.