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My room is like an antique shop, full of junk, and weird stuff. There's a big sword in there. And a taxidermy bird, and a couple of birdcages. And a lot of newspaper cuttings. I used to have a weird thing about cutting out morbid headlines from newspapers, and collecting them. I was fascinated with drowning, which is kind of strange.
I don't think I'm morbid by nature. Serious writers have always written about serious subjects. Lighthearted material doesn't appeal to me, and I don't read it. I think I'm a realist, with a realistic sensibility of history and the tragedy of history.
We've enshrined the purity, sanctity, value, and importance of bringing children into the world, yet we don't discuss death. There used to be an enshrined period where mourning was a necessary part of going through the process of grieving; death wasn't considered morbid or antisocial. But that's totally gone.
I was very young, and I was on vacation with my family, and there was a retrospective of old films, and one of them was 'The Phantom of the Opera' with Claude Rains that was in color. It was something very important for my career because I began to follow these stories that were morbid.
I'm possibly a very morbid person but I think about death a lot.