What are the Two Types of Horror Stories? A Complete Guide

types of horror stories

Horror is a type of fiction in literature that aims to set a backdrop of fear by instigating emotions of dread, terror, and repulsion in the readers’ minds. The very definition of horror highlights the psychological feeling caused by it.

With roots in history, folklore, and religion, centered on curiosities, fears, and subjects, horror has always been successful in evoking fear among the readers through language and imagery. Whether they’re supernatural or not, all types of horror stories thrive on the readers’ deepest fears by emphasizing the most perplexing and frightening things of life, such as evil, death, the afterlife, supernatural creatures or forces, and witchcraft. In this blog, we shall discuss the two types of horror stories in detail.

  • Supernatural Horror

Supernatural horror refers to fiction that’s primarily comprised of paranormal or supernatural elements for plot development, such as monsters, ghosts, aliens, demons, zombies, and witches.

In these types of horror stories, the key source of terror comes from the human reaction when confronting the unknown, often at the time of a critical conflict, such as a possession, a haunting, an omen or curse, an invasion, and the likes.

The origin of supernatural horror dates way back in the history of literature as the entire idea of demons, spirits, and ghosts is as old as the human civilization itself.

Note that the honor of being the first supernatural and also the first gothic horror novel ever on publication goes to The Castle of Otranto by Horace Walpole. These types of horror stories became extremely popular from the late 1960s to early 1970s.

  • Non-Supernatural Horror

Non-supernatural horror refers to a particular class of fiction that doesn’t rely on supernatural elements. The terror treatment offered by these types of horror stories stems from the notion that what’s being unfolded in the story could happen in real life as well. This includes the odds of someone dying, making it the most preferred and de facto style for frightening mystery or crime stories.

Psycho by Robert Bloch; The Silence of the Lambs by Thomas Harris; Misery, The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon, Carrie, Shining, etc. by Stephen King; Ring by Koji Suzuki; and We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson are some of the most notable examples of non-supernatural horror literature.

Buy the Best Horror Books of All-Time by Brian T. Seifrit

An alma mater of the prestigious Columbia Academy in British Columbia, Brian T. Seifrit is one of Canada’s most popular authors in recent times with an ever-growing fan base. Before becoming a full-time novelist, he used to write for a Fruitvale-based, small community newspaper.

Some of the best horror books of all-time authored by Brian are Voracity, A Blood-Stained Hammer, and Absolute Anger, the last one being made into a full-fledged entertainment movie. You can know more about his literary works and purchase them online by visiting the Amazon author page.

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