« Real-world Patriot Act abuses? | Main | Look who's doing the work »

Happy Deathday, Howard

H. P. Lovecraft seems the kind of person who might celebrate his "deathday," and as a reader points out, today is Lovecraft's 68th. It's always gratifying to see one's childhood heroes finally receive the respect they deserve, even if it's years after their deaths (Gram Parsons is another such deity in my pantheon.)

I remember years ago reading an interview with Lovecraft published in the old Twilight Zone magazine, posthumously of course. I was amazed and amused at how warm and funny the guy was, not to mention self-deprecating. Some anthology or another of his work had just been published prior to the interview, and Lovecraft opined that anyone who shelled out good money for it was "a sucker."

Well I was a sucker. At the time I thought I was the only one, but now I realize there were tons more of us than I ever imagined. We still miss you down here, H. P. Rest in... whatever. I hope you have a bright shiny mansion in Unknown Kaddath.

"Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Lovecraft R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn"


I was introduced to Lovecraft a little later in life, through a collection of short stories. I was amazed at how something that was written almost a hundred years ago could give me genuine chills straight to the bone, something I've experienced with only King and Matheson. The Red Hook Horror has really stuck with me over the years, and I'm sure some might argue his portrayal of Brooklyn still sticks. ;p

So here's to you, Howard, may you lie eternally for those aeons of rest you deserved after your tortured existence.

Incidentally, did you know that you can now snuggle with a Lil' Cthulhu or Nyarlethotep plush?


I got introduced to Lovecraft through my father when I was about 15. My dad bought an anthology of his stories, the one with the creepy black and white paintings on it.
He never read it - but I did. I remember the Rat's in the Walls as being a huge influence on me when I was young. Pickman's model was another great one. As was Shadow Over Innsmouth.
I've read just about all of his work, then read the various authors who have expanded upon his mythos..it's amazing how many people have been influenced by him, and even written stories in the Lovecraft mythos.

Why worry about Global Warming when Cthulu is rising from his dream....

Gz, it sounds like you and I might have cut our teeth on the same anthology. My edition, however, was an Arkham House print of "The Dunwich Horror" that I got from my local library. Wow, what an epiphany that volume was!! Years later, I went back to the library and that cherished volume was gone. No doubt some reader realized what they had and absconded with it.

You're right about his influence. And among respectable writers, too. (Again, I'll draw a parallel with Gram Parsons, who had a bigger influence on other musicians than on the listening public during his lifetime.) I recently read an anthology of short stories by Fred Chappell and was surprised to see how many stories were Lovecraft-inspired, including a clever story about a used book store owner who runs across a copy of "The Necronomicon," and it taints the contents of any book it's placed next to ("Huckleberry Finn," for example, becomes filled with vile blasphemies and obscenities.) :-)

Post a comment