I love the horror genre. I’ve always loved it; the thrill of being (safely) scared, the adrenaline buzz, the imagination. It’s escapism, pure and simple.
It’s my dad’s fault. He worked at a video shop when I was young, and often brought home boxes full of videos that customers had returned with complaints of creased tape or other such obscure problems. So he’d have to watch the videos and find the problem, then cut and splice the tape if possible. I would often help, and dad being a massive horror fan, we’d sit down together and watch movies I probably shouldn’t have at that age!
That, plus being able to rent out any movie we wanted for free because of dad’s job, meant I watched a crazy amount of movies growing up. We also had permanent free passes to the movie theatres! It was brilliant!
Then one day I saw a movie called Alien, and that was it. Forever a sci-fi/horror nut! There was never any hope for me. ‘In space, no one can hear you scream.’
Movies naturally led into books (of course it was Stephen King; how could it not be? But then came Clive Barker…), and that’s where I’ve been ever since – although one day, I’d love to make a movie… Or be involved with one.
Marty Young is a Bram Stoker-nominated and Australian Shadows Award-winning writer and editor, and sometimes ghost hunter. He was the founding President of the Australian Horror Writers Association* from 2005-2010, and one of the creative minds behind the internationally acclaimed Midnight Echo magazine, for which he also served as Executive Editor until mid-2013.
Marty’s first novel, 809 Jacob Street, was originally published in 2013 by Black Beacon Books, winning the Australian Shadows Award for Best Horror Novel and being nominated as a Notable Indie Book of 2013. His short horror fiction has been nominated for both the Australian Shadows and Ditmar awards, reprinted in Australian Dark Fantasy and Horror (‘the best of 2008’), and repeatedly included in year’s best recommended reading lists.
Marty’s essays on horror literature have been published in journals and university textbooks across the world, and he was also co-editor of the award winning Macabre; A Journey through Australia’s Darkest Fears, a landmark anthology showcasing the best Australian horror stories from 1836 to the present.
When not writing, Marty is a Director and Senior Palynologist at MGPalaeo, based in Perth, WA. He spends a fair bit of time in the deep dark jungles of Papua New Guinea, no doubt wondering what the hell he’s doing there.
And when he’s not doing that, he’s working towards his second dan black belt in freestyle karate, a mixed martial arts style that incorporates elements of gōjū-ryū karate, muay thai, BJJ, kali, and other disciplines. He’s often getting kicked and punched or put into a sleeper hold, but for some strange reason, he quite enjoys it…
Marty was the Associate Editor of the HWA’s Dark Whispers blog, where he ran the monthly Horror Roundtable for a year and a half, stepping down in April 2014. He used to keep an irregularly updated blog called Darkling Muse (October 2006 to December 2011), which detailed his extensive travels for work to all sorts of fascinating places around the world, and an even more irregularly updated joint venture blog called Screaming Ink. SI eventually died a slow drawn out death in 2013.
From 2019, Marty has been writing Drop Bears and Taniwha for the HWA’s monthly newsletter, where he covers all thing horror from an Australian/New Zealand perspective.
* The AHWA’s official website was www.australianhorror.com but due to reasons we’re not going into here, that domain was lost. However, a recent name change means the AHWA is now the Australasian Horror Writers Association (which I’m all for!), and the new website is https://australasianhorror.com/. The original site and all of its content can be accessed as an archived site here: http://pandora.nla.gov.au/tep/120583.
Note: The background image on this website is a piece called The Colors of the Storm by the amazing Inga Nielsen. To see more of Inga’s work, click here.