- Notes on Weird Fiction.
- Written c. summer and fall 1933. First published (b, c, and d only) in The Notes & Commonplace Book (Futile Press, 1938). Erroneously published as part of HPL’s “commonplace book” in BWSand SRIn 1933, HPL began to keep notes in a pocket calendar from his concentrated rereading of the classic works of weird fiction, in an attempt to reinvigorate himself for fiction-writing. The notebook contains four items: (a) “Weird Story Plots” (unpublished) consists of brief plot summaries primarily of the works of Poe, Blackwood, Machen, and M.R.James. From those summaries he compiled (b) “A list of certain basic underlying horrors effectively used in weird fiction” and (c) “List of primary ideas motivating possible weird tales,” a further distillation, giving likely motives for weird occurrences. He then composed the rough draft of (d) “Suggestions for writing weird story (the ideaand plot being tentatively decided on)” and “Elements of a Weird Story & Types of Weird Story,” an instructional piece for turning plot ideas into effective stories. HPL eventually polished (d) into “Notes on Writing Weird Fiction.”
An H.P.Lovecraft encyclopedia. S.T. Joshi, David E. Schultz.
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