Consider that horror is everywhere and is very much a part of everyone. It's in our fears, our imaginations, and hiding in our personality... Who knows what we are capable of under certain circumstances. Horror is in our heads, lurking in our minds. It is those thoughts we dare not say out loud, are embarrassed about or try to ignore. It's part of us... and it's O.K. Most of us can keep those little bits in check. It's what makes us human.
Sometimes writers ask questions. Instead of asking, what would be wonderful? Or what would be romantic? A horror writer might ask, what would be scary? And expands on that question or related idea. Sometimes the direction of a story can take a writer to a dark and frightening place, urging them to face something that terrifies them.... The very same things that terrify us... As consumers of horror - chasing a good scare - how can we condemn a writer for exploring subject matter we then elect to explore for ourselves after they have charted the course for us?
To those who are turned off completely to the sick and twisted realm of horror, consider this: that horror can be smart.
To quote Clive Barker:
"We fear death and dismemberment, we fear pain, insanity and loss, we even fear sexuality, and it's only by addressing these fears that we avoid living in a state of constant trepidation. Horror can speak of such things in a way that a more realistic or naturalistic genre can't.
Horror is a leap of faith and imagination in a world where the subconscious holds domination; a call to enter a territory where no image or act is so damnable it cannot be explored, kissed and courted; finally - why whisper it? - embraced."
To be sure, there are many entries in the genre that have more to do with being shocking, gross or offensive as an objective. In many of those cases it's intentional and designed to draw consumers... because we eat that stuff up! For example, the wild ways in which characters die in the Final Destination franchise aren't likely a result of some sick mind in constant thought of horrible deaths - its driven by box office motivation to deliver on " how can we top ourselves now?", "How can we gross them out more?" Because it equals dollars.
That's not to say there aren't those who aren't truly disturbed or tormented by living nightmares... it's just that, creators of horror aren't often times that. No, to put rightly, many are the "imaginative" and "creative"... same as those other authors of different genres in whom many of us more readily bestow the encouragement and prestige of those kind words.