Sunday, May 27, 2007

Lovecraft & the Awful Redux

H.P. Albarelli Jr. has contacted Ghooric Zone central on the matter of 'the Awful' (his comments can be found attached to the earlier post on this topic), having taken issue with my thoughts on his article. Mr. Albarelli informs me that he has no reason for emphasising a link between Lovecraft and Vermont, and that he does not even care for Lovecraft's writings. 'Fair enough' we at Ghooric Zone central say. But why then make such an issue of Lovecraft's alleged involvement in the case? And why claim that said cryptid had an important influence on Lovecraft's writing career? However, questions such as these simply sidetrack the main issue: where is the evidence to support claims about Lovecraft's interest in the case? And, indeed, for his supposed secret visit 1925 to Vermont? Given that Mr. Albarelli's article emphasises the important influence of 'the Awful' on Lovecraft's writing, it would also be helpful if full and proper referencing/sourcing of Lovecraft's alleged quotes on the matter could be provided. The following paragraph being the most problematic on this account:

"When H.P. Lovecraft returned to southern Vermont from Richford he told friends he was convinced that the Richford locals he had interviewed were "not in the least mistaken about what they had witnessed." Lovecraft later wrote, "The Awful became ample sustenance for my imagination" and "over time the creature became the basis for many of my own fictional inventions."

I'm trying not to be too smug or trite about this, because if Mr. Albarelli's claims can be supported they would constitute a major breakthrough in contemporary Lovecraftian scholarship, indicating a significant new source of Lovecraft's ideas, and necessitating a re-evaluation of Lovecraft's well-documented scepticism of things Fortean. I await Mr. Albarelli's response with trepidation.

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