As we draw the week to a close, I can’t think of a better person to have as a guest writer than a woman who embodies what this week is all about-Amy Lynn Best. Amy is one of the names I thought of instantly when Women in Horror Week became a reality. She’s spent the better part of 15 years working professionally in the indie horror community. Ms. Best has done it all: Directing, producing, make-up, writing…hell, she’s even cooked for entire casts & crews!
You won’t be able to hit too many conventions in this area of the country without running into Amy and her husband (also an indie horror legend in his own right) Mike Watt. Their company, Happy Cloud Pictures has been plenty busy having released 5 features, 2 documentaries, and 4 short films. In addition to her own work, Amy Lynn Best has been a major advocate for women in horror. She’s used her own success as an opportunity to co-create the website Pretty-Scary (which is now www.fangirltastic.com) and has championed her fellows B-movie scream queens (Debbie Rochon, April Monique Burril, Brinke Stevens to name a few) by appearing alongside them on several occasions. She’s a horror loyalist. It goes beyond “getting work”-she’s a lover of horror. It’s still intriguing and entertaining to her, as it is to all of us. The bottom line is she’s still a fan.
I asked Ms. Best to write a piece for Women in Horror Week here at the ol’ Blood Sprayer talking about here tenure within horror. As long as people like here are working in horror, our genre will survive.
“When I was asked to write an article for Women in Horror Week on Bloodsprayer.com the hardest part was trying to figure out what to write. I’ve been writing articles on Women in Horror and my experiences in the horror industry for over 10 years so coming up with something I haven’t said, or beaten to death, is difficult. After realizing this, and with an email from Wes suggesting I write about my horror industry longevity, I realized that is exactly what I haven’t written about before, why I’ve been doing this for so long.
I’ve been making movies with my production company for over 13 years, and while that doesn’t seem like a long time when you look at the careers of some of the women I look up to, like Brinke Stevens, Linnea Quigley and Debbie Rochon, it is a long time in an industry that is constantly changing and reinventing itself. I’ve been asked many times how, and many more times why, I’ve kept making movies and attending conventions and film festivals. The short answer is that I love it. I love taking an idea from a concept to a finished DVD, I love watching an audience react in just the right way to a gore gag or a funny bit, I love receiving emails from fans who really enjoy what our company does, I love working with other people that I admire, I love making new friends who have the same interest in horror and horror films, I even love getting shunned by people who don’t understand why I like horror. I believe that anyone in this business has to love what they do or they won’t survive.
To those who ask how we’ve been able to last this long I tell them I try to keep the drama on the screen. This isn’t saying that I haven’t gotten involved in drama in the past, or even that I won’t ever again, but in the last few years, especially after a terrifying family ordeal, I’ve come to realize what is important to me and what isn’t. I love making movies and supporting others who love to make movies and I’m not paying attention to those who try to bring the drama into my life. I’ve seen many people come and go and this seems to be the formula to longevity, at least in my opinion.
So to all of those out there interested in the horror industry, especially the women because we can always use more smart, motivated and talented women in this business I say “Love what you do, train on how to do it and keep doing it”.