Where Nightmares Are Born: The Offices of 23 Kickass Horror Writers

For writers, the only real office we need resides in our minds. As long as our imaginations exist, then—theoretically—we should be able to write anywhere, under any circumstances. It shouldn’t matter if we’re in our offices, our favorite coffee shops, or dangling on a window washer’s fragile scaffold. If Swordfish taught us anything, it’s that Wolverine looks hilarious when he’s getting a blowjob. And if we learned anything else, it’s that when put to the test, we can work under any circumstances. Our daily writing routines and habits that we use to prepare ourselves are only in our heads.

But with that said, many writers take pride over their writing stations. Sure, I have no doubt they can write wherever the hell they want, but it’s always nice to have a special area devoted to doing what you love the most. A place that makes you feel warm. A place that feels like home.

I am fascinated by the desks and offices of writers. I don’t think it necessarily says anything about what type of writer they are, but I do sometimes find myself enthralled by the photos nonetheless. Especially when it comes to horror writers. Do horror writers dress up their desks to match their genre preferences? Is every day Halloween?

Are all writers as cool as Robert Jackson Bennett?

These are things I wanted to know, so I tracked down photos of horror authors I admire to see what their desks look like. You’d be surprised by how much nudity I had to edit out of most of them. Seriously, you guys, just damn.

For example, here’s Jeff Strand’s writing area. As you can see, he prefers to be outside, with the beautiful sight of his backyard to keep him company.

Sadly, we had to crop out the majority of the photo, as Strand thought it would be hilarious to reenact “Goatse”. If you don’t know what “Goatse” is—first, hi, welcome to the Internet, now please go Google it. We will wait. Okay. Now go wash out your eyeballs. We’ll keep waiting. It’s okay. All right. Better? No, don’t lie to yourself. You will never be better.

Let’s try something a little bit more adorable. Like Jack Ketchum and his cute cat, Zoey!

Awwww. Look at them. I bet you already forgot about the visualization of Jeff Strand reenacting Goatse I implanted into your brain. Except now I reminded you. My bad. Here. Have more cat action! This time, with Ray Garton!

“This is me at my desk with my constant companion, Buddy, who thinks I'm furniture.  My desk is pretty boring.  Just above my head on the wall behind me is the giant head of a tyrannosaurus rex, and on top of the shelf behind me is all kinds of junk — Universal monster action figures, Batman, the alien from Independence Day.” — Ray Garton


I’m sorry to hit you back-to-back with an overload of cuteness. I should have spaced those out better. But I just couldn’t resist. Because awwwww.

Okay. Here’s some more photos from kickass authors.

Mercedes M. Yardley

Rebecca J. Allred

Adam Cesare

Damien Angelica Walters

Belinda Frisch

John C. Foster

Michael Paul Gonzalez

Nikki Nelson-Hicks

K. Trap Jones

David James Keaton

Jessica McHugh

Chantal Noordeloos

Richard Thomas

Brandon Tietz

Paul Tremblay

D. Alexander Ward

Jay Wilburn

Robert S. Wilson

Stephen King (late '80s)

[Photo credit: The Writer's Desk]

And, Finally, Some Asshole Named Max Booth III

Now...what's your writing office like? In the comments, we'd love to hear all about them.

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Richard's picture
Richard from St. Louis is reading various anthologies October 30, 2015 - 12:48pm

Awesome. I love seeing all of these. Thanks for including me.

Skygrotto's picture
Skygrotto from Southwestern Ontario is reading Europe: A History by Norman Davies October 30, 2015 - 6:00pm

Mine's a cheap wood desk, an 18th C. style chair, stack of science journals and mags, the books I'm currently reading, and my iPad Air 2 with the keyboard case for typing. Next to the desk I have bookshelves with my books, and a laundry basket full of copies of poetry books I published over a decade ago.

Mike Roberts's picture
Mike Roberts from Kingston, Ontario is reading Julia Cameron October 30, 2015 - 6:50pm

Right now, it's an Ikea glass kitchen table, an old Acer laptop and an Alphasmart NEO2 plugged into it and running Scrivener.

If I need to get away, I write at the local CoffeeCo.


Dino Parenti's picture
Dino Parenti from Los Angeles is reading Everything He Gets His Hands On October 31, 2015 - 8:45am

Mine's an ikea sectiona;/covertable couch with my bookcase behind it. Sometimes it's outside at a local public garden, or I'll go edit at my favorite coffee shop.

Lori Olenick Miller's picture
Lori Olenick Miller October 31, 2015 - 9:54am

Where's Tim Miller??

Lori Olenick Miller's picture
Lori Olenick Miller October 31, 2015 - 9:54am

Where's Tim Miller??

Max's picture
Max from Texas is reading goosebumps October 31, 2015 - 10:20am

Not here, that's for sure!

helpfulsnowman's picture
Community Manager
helpfulsnowman from Colorado is reading But What If We're Wrong? by Chuck Klosterman November 1, 2015 - 4:23pm

I like this. Any time I can mix voyeurism with "professional reading" is delightful.

Anyone know what that gizmo on Adam Cesare's desk is?

M. Gregory's picture
M. Gregory from Fort Lauderdale is reading Collected Stories of Raymond Carver November 1, 2015 - 9:55pm

I had that same question. Took me a little while to find it. AlphaSmart Dana.


Sean McDonough's picture
Sean McDonough November 3, 2015 - 2:25pm

I've got the same oak desk my dad bought at a garage sale 30 years ago, recently sanded and stained by my lovely wife. It faces a wall that I painted with chalkboard paint so I can write notes as they occur to me.