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What is Gothic Fiction?

what is gothic fiction


Gothic fiction is a genre of literature that typically features dark or horror-themed stories. The term “gothic” has been used to describe a variety of genres, including horror, mystery, and suspense. However, gothic fiction is typically associated with tales that feature haunted castles, ghosts, vampires, and other supernatural elements.


Gothic fiction was first popularised in the late 18th century by writers such as Mary Shelley and Bram Stoker. Today, the genre remains popular and continues to attract new readers. Some of the most well-known modern authors of gothic fiction include Stephen King and Anne Rice.

The first mention of Gothic literature appeared in English writer Horace Walpole’s The Castle of Otranto, published in 1764. – Invaluable

what is gothic fiction book


Gothic fiction can be divided into two main categories: classic and contemporary. Classic gothic fiction, such as Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein and Robert Louis Stevenson’s The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, is typically set in old castles or decrepit villages where gothic elements such as ghosts, monsters, and other supernatural beings can haunt the surroundings. Contemporary gothic fiction also includes these spooky features but takes place in modern times and often involves more realistic crimes that may involve a serial killer or secret society.

In the most general terms, ​Gothic literature can be defined as writing that employs dark and picturesque scenery, startling and melodramatic narrative devices, and an overall atmosphere of exoticism, mystery, fear, and dread. – ThoughtCo


Gothic fiction has been adapted for numerous films over the years. Classic movies include the original Dracula film from 1931 and What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? from 1962. Contemporary examples of gothic films include Crimson Peak (2015) and A Cure for Wellness (2017).


So what makes a work of literature gothic fiction? There is no single answer to this question, as there is no set formula for creating a gothic story.

what is gothic fiction story

Gothic fiction is a term used in literary criticism and journalism to characterize certain novels, stories and movies. Gothic literature encompasses many different types of writing, including romance, fantasy, science fiction and horror. What these genres have in common with each other is that they all attempt to induce a feeling of terror in the reader. Although every writer aims to create an emotional experience for their audience, writers often deal with specific emotions such as disgust or empathy differently than others. What separates gothic writers from other authors is that they focus on creating unease and anxiety through bizarre plots, eerie settings and mysterious characters rather than through disgust or empathy between characters.

Whether you’re a fan of dark and suspenseful tales or simply enjoy a good scare, gothic fiction is a genre that is sure to please. So if you’re looking for a new read, be sure to check out some of the latest gothic fiction novels. You won’t be disappointed!


Are you new to the gothic fiction genre? Why not start with some short stories from my book, Uneasy?

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