A friend of mine once asked me why I write monster stories. I was appalled at first, protesting that I write fantasy, not horror, but then it dawned on me that I do write monster stories. In fact, that's just about all I write. All my fantasy tales take the form of a quest. All of them revolve around a young person on the brink of adulthood, and all are somehow concerned with the nature of love. But it had never struck me, before my friend's remark, that all these tales also teem with monsters from beginning to end. . . .
. . . But where did all these monsters come from? Their origins, I suspect, can only lie in childhood. My formative years were spent in perpetual motion: a whirlwind of day-tripping, extended vacationing, and worse yet, moving. The dust scarcely had leisure to settle before the parental dynamos were off again, dragging the whole household kicking and squealing into new and doubtless dangerous unknowns.
A legion of burglars followed us wherever we went. They camped outside our house each night, just waiting for us to nod off so that they could break in, make off with the furniture, wreak havoc. Luckily, a large, loyal following of stuffed animals--who were alive, by the way, and could talk--guarded my bed. We conducted endless late-night strategy sessions on how best to counter the enemy assault, what our escape routes would be,and which of my plush compadres would nobly sacrifice themselves that I, their leader, might live.
We're talking deeply neurotic childhood. Neurotic and intensely magical. . . .