GdT: Very rarely, but I had to hear that for years from my family, especially my grandmother, whom I grew up with. She was on her deathbed, and I was showing her my portfolio of makeup effects and she said, 'Why were you never able to do something beautiful?' I said to her, 'To me, this is beautiful.' I think it's a very simple question and people have the right to ask it, but the answer is equally simple: Art is a reconstruction of the world, and violence and horror are absolutely as much part of the world as butterflies and happy faces. There are so many more people trying to sell us the bullshit that the world has to be happy and the world has to be sunny, and you have to have good breath and shiny hair. With this, we lose touch with imperfection and that makes for a really harsh, cold measure to live by. I think horror makes us human, because it reminds us of our imperfection.
That part about beauty really got me. I think, a lot of times, people look at my writing and see only "scary," not understanding the complexity of "horror," which, of course, must include "beauty." Narcissa Snow is a good example. I wrote her to be terrible, broken, insane, misguided, sadistic, monstrous, and so forth, but always, always beautiful in a senese far beyond and more profound than any simplistic concept of physical beauty (though, ironically, she has that, too).
Go write, Caitlín. Leave the people alone.