(Editors note: The following post was written by Andrea Subissati as part of our new Stories about.me project. If you have a personal story to share, please follow this link to submit your writing.)
I never sat down and decided I wanted to be a horror journalist.
My journey in horror started out like everyone else in the biz; as a fan. I loved horror movies and was fascinated by them, and my education in sociology really nurtured that. I wrote my masters thesis In 2007 on the social relevance of the zombie craze, and I received an offer to publish it as a book in 2010.
After my book came out, I was interviewed on the Rue Morgue podcast and my show was so popular, they invited me back to do a few more. I discovered a thriving “horror community” through several networks; both online and through local events. I connected with Kim Paffenroth who wrote Gospel of the Dead, a book I relied upon heavily while writing my thesis.
In 2012, he approached me to contribute a chapter to an academic compilation he was editing, The Undead and Theology, which became my second publication. Online networking also helped me meet and develop relationships with like-minded individuals such as my Faculty of Horror podcast cohost Alexandra West, and Paul Corupe, with whom I founded The Black Museum horror lecture series.
People talk a lot of trash about the Internet and its negative effects on social interaction, but online networking been nothing but a blessing to me.
I went from renting horror movies from the video store by myself to hosting large-scale screenings and events. I went from buying Rue Morgue at the drug store to writing reviews for them. I’ve gotten to meet personal heroes like George A Romero, who wrote and directed Night of the Living Dead, and I interviewed the cast of From Beyond at a horror convention last summer.
You really can’t underestimate the value of online social networking to help your interests and ambitions flourish, and about.me is a valuable addition to the modern social network pantheon with a clear and easily-searchable interface. I look forward to continuing to expand my family of horror-loving folks and sharing opportunities to contribute to it.
Top image courtesy of Ashlea Wessel Photography
Bottom image courtesy of Emily Nieves