We typically feature female creators on this show who write cracking female or marginalised characters, but in this episode, we talk to author Grady Hendrix, an author adept at creating female protagonists both believable and relatable.

From his first book, Horrorstör, to his most recent novel, How To Sell A Haunted House, he has placed a female character front and centre of the action. Listen on for a wide-ranging discussion about the origins of the haunted house trope and its evolution, and the roles women play – as both creators of and participants in – horror stories.

Authors mentioned in this episode:

  • Ann Radcliffe
  • Anne Rice
  • Stephen King
  • Stephen Graham Jones
  • V. C. Andrews 
  • Shirley Jackson

Works mentioned in this episode:

  • Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
  • The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson
  • Dracula by Bram Stoker
  • Fairy Water by Charlotte Riddell
  • Hell House by Richard Matheson
  • The Silence of the Lambs by Thomas Harris
  • Burnt Offerings by Robert Marasco
  • Beloved by Toni Morrison
  • You’re Dead to Me (podcast)
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer
  • Angel
  • Xena: Warrior Princess
  • The X-Files
  • Scream
  • Halloween
  • I Know What You Did Last Summer
  • The Amityville Horror
  • Cabin in the Woods
  • The Texas Chainsaw Massacre
  • Friday the 13th
  • A Nightmare on Elm Street
  • A Night of the Living Dead
  • Urban Legend
  • The Dark Secret of Harvest Home
  • Rosemary’s Baby
  • The Stepford Wives

New York Times bestselling author Grady Hendrix makes up lies and sells them to people. His novels include HORRORSTÖR about a haunted IKEA, MY BEST FRIEND’S EXORCISM, which is basically “Beaches” meets “The Exorcist”, WE SOLD OUR SOULS, a heavy metal horror epic, THE SOUTHERN BOOK CLUB’S GUIDE TO SLAYING VAMPIRES, and THE FINAL GIRL SUPPORT GROUP. HOW TO SELL A HAUNTED HOUSE is his latest novel.

He’s also the author of PAPERBACKS FROM HELL, an award-winning history of the horror paperback boom of the Seventies and Eighties. He wrote the screenplay for MOHAWK, a horror flick about the War of 1812, and SATANIC PANIC about a pizza delivery woman fighting rich Satanists. You can discover more ridiculous facts about him at www.gradyhendrix.com.