The horror genre is in the middle of a fantastic television resurgence, and series like Hannibal and Penny Dreadful are proving that adapting the masterworks of horror’s greatest minds is sometimes the way to go. As we’re on the eve of Lifetime’s TV movie Big Driver, based on Stephen King’s Full Dark No Stars novella, there’s no better time than now to look at ten(ish) horror novels that need to find their way to the small screen immediately. There are millions of psyches out there that just aren’t damaged enough, dammit.

A list so small obviously doesn’t account for the totality of this wonderfully enormous genre, and this is just a percentage of a percentage of the viewer-ready side of horror lit. (I left out our own Rich Knight’s Darkness of the Womb, though it would definitely make for some weird TV.) So check out my choices here and be sure to fill the comment section with horror novels that you think would make TV a more frightening, dangerous and all-around better place.

The Long Walk – Stephen King
Stephen King inspired this list (as well as many dozens of film and TV adaptations) so we might as well start with him, though CBS’ Under the Dome had temporarily turned me off of the idea of episodic King. With The Maze Runner’s theatrical success proving the dystopian teen fiction craze isn’t dead yet, King’s terrifyingly bleak tale of a last man standing should do well. The 1979 novel, originally written under pseudonym Richard Bachman, centers on a group of 100 boys who compete in an annual contest for which the winner gets literally whatever he wants for the rest of his life. But winning requires being able to walk longer than anyone else, under penalty of death. Sounds like a dreary story to live with week after week, certainly, but by introducing more flashbacks and expanding the narrative and characters to allow for a potentially different climax from the novel, The Long Walk would be a nice contemplative change from the surface-level issues of blockbuster YA fiction.

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