Many years ago ‘Here be Dragons’ was written on maps to indicate unknown areas of land and sea. Frightening creatures, Dragons are so similar to Dinosaurs, Crocodiles and Alligators that they could easily be turned into a horrific monster who stalks your protagonist with the echo of a hungry growl. Lots of publishers are out there now putting together Dragon anthologies and they are pretty easy to make work in horror.
Ok, the Fae have started to creep into the mainstream, after all Sookie in TrueBlood is part Fae and Karen Marie Moning has been using Fae as evil alien like god creature since her Fever series. But I feel that they still haven’t really hit their stride yet. Faeries and Fae creatures dominated old English folklore – even, when I was a little girl, I was told by my mum not to dance in mushroom circles lest the Faeries take me! They are a massive race of lots of different creatures, they even have their own vampires and werewolves, so exploration of these creatures is actually fairly top of my list of research. Remember though, don’t feel you have to stick with tradition here – what’s to stop you from creating your own race of Faeries?
Supposedly so ugly that they scare away evil spirits, Gargoyles are either guardians or rogue monsters. I have read stories that interpret them as both, but these guys are still peripheral to all other monsters and, to be honest I can understand why. Unlike Vamps and Weres they don’t have the handsome side that can be used in paranormal romance, and being made of stone their scare factor can be a little bland – although the stone Angels in Dr Who are pretty darn scary! If you want to utilise these bad boys in your work you’re going to have really think hard before putting pen to paper, or finger to keyboard.
Perfect for paranormal romance – a bit of a problem for horror. Most publishers in their guidelines state that there should be no rape scenes in your story, and as Incubus feed off sex, well that can be a problem; if its not consensual it can’t go in. These guys are beautiful and fantastic lovers, so for supernatural erotica they’re right on the money. Of course there are Succubus as well – Bo in the series ‘Lost Girl’ is a Succubus and also Fae in origin – so really the world’s your paranormal romantic oyster when it comes to them – but be careful though if you’re looking to include them in horror.
I find these monsters very nasty indeed. Exact evil identical twins who want to kill you and take over your life. All your friends and family would think you’re mad and, quite frankly they could cause no end of French Farce type situations. For me – worse still, if they managed to kill me, they’d probably do a better job in managing my life than I’m doing! Doppelgangers are not used enough in horror or paranormal romance – so roll the idea round in your imagination and see what sticks!
Also known under the broader Fae family and even Merfolk, Sirens are wonderfully rich in their history and have the capabilities of both paranormal Romance and horror – depending on how you write them. In my opinion, to come into their own they really need to have their story line out of the ‘attack the ship’ box and perhaps should be updated into something more modern – what would happen if a Siren got an audition at X Factor?
OK – not really a proper monster but the Willo-the –Wisp cartoon in the early 1980s was my very first introduction to the world of weird and when I was small I loved it! Kenneth Williams rocked! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Willo_the_Wisp But hey looking at the legends they could be manipulated into something quite nasty and, with a bit of creativity, even something ghostly romantic too…