Episode 11: Peter Counter

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This week on the pod, we have our very own Matthew Stepanic interviewing Peter Counter, author of BE SCARED OF EVERYTHING, a collection of horror essays.

Slinging ectoplasm, tombstones, and chainsaws with aplomb, Be Scared of Everything is a frighteningly smart celebration of horror culture that will appeal to both horror aficionados and casual fans. Combining pop culture criticism and narrative memoir, Counter’s essays consider and deconstruct film, TV, video games and true crime to find importance in the occult, pathos in Ouija boards, poetry in madness, and beauty in annihilation.

Comprehensive in scope, these essays examine popular horror media including Silent Hill, Hannibal, Hereditary, the Alien films, Jaws, The X-Files, The Terror, The Southern Reach Trilogy, Interview with the Vampire, Misery, Gerald’s Game, The Sixth Sense, Scream, Halloween, The Blair Witch Project, The Babadook, the works of H. P. Lovecraft, Slenderman stories, alongside topics like nuclear physics, cannibalism, blood, Metallica, ritual magic, nightmares, and animatronic haunted houses.

This is a book that shows us everything is terrifying—from Pokémon to PTSD—and that horror can be just as honest, vulnerable, and funny as it is scary.

Peter Counter is a writer exploring ideas of faith, violence, horror, identity, and memory though criticism, creative nonfiction, and playwriting. His debut essay collection Be Scared of Everything launched in 2020 through Invisible Publishing, and his personal essay “Saint Tornado-Kick” is included in the 2019 nonfiction anthology Empty the Pews: Stories of Leaving the Church from Epiphany Publishing. Counter’s criticism has appeared on Motherboard, Art of the Title, That Shelf, and his horor blog Everything is Scary. He lives on unceded Mi'kmaq territory in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia.

51 episodes