I was sitting on my sofa just now, contemplating various matters, one of which reminded me of Lovecraft’s “Shadow over Innsmouth”. I started thinking about how Lovecraft describe it and all his locations eerily. It occurred to me that he lived almost his entire life in Providence and seldom went out of its vicinity. In fact, most of the settings for his stories occur relatively near to Rhode Island. Apparently, he did not travel or often from his home. I started thinking that if he traveled little and only to nearby areas and if he saw the few places he went as spooky or eerie (which would explain why he could describe places so eerily), then maybe he was uncomfortable or had a fear of going outside his physical comfort zone. From what little I know of his day-to-day life, I have the impression that he probably did not leave his home very often and probably spent his time in his room writing or editing stories and writing tons of correspondence to his friends and colleagues.
This makes me wonder if Lovecraft had at least a touch of agoraphobia, a fear of public places.
He seems to have been fascinated with architecture and is very descriptive of it, but I have to wonder if that isn’t because if he was fascinated with it because it frightened him. If something frightens me, I watch it very closely and find out what I can about it in order to alleviate my fears.
I have never read anything about Lovecraft having agoraphobia and I am no psychologist. If anyone knows of an article on this subject, please let me know. I would also love to hear your thoughts and comments on this topic.