I am a film scholar and an author. I write about women and the fantastic genres, especially horror. In my research, I ask, is it good for us to feel fear in fiction if we avoid fear in real life?
My answer is, yes, stories about fear are good because fantastic fiction allows us to play with our emotions. It makes us stronger, wiser, more creative, and mentally more robust. When we enter alternate worlds, we can face our deepest fears and wildest dreams. And when characters die, we don’t. We live and learn.
In my spare time, I run and travel. I have run marathons in Warsaw and Venice, on The Great Wall of China, and on winter-cold beaches in Jutland, which was my hardest run so far. A trail run in water and sand. But I finished and felt fantastic.