Richard Carl Laymon (January 14, 1947 - February 14, 2001) was an American horror writer. He was born in Chicago, Illinois and lived as a child in California. He received a BA in English Literature from Willamette University in Oregon and an MA in English Literature from Loyola University in Los Angeles. Richard was married to Ann Laymon, and had one daughter, Kelly.
His works include more than sixty short stories and more than thirty novels, many of which were published posthumously in the United States. Most of his writings were firmly in the horror genre. Laymon is somewhat lesser known in North America than elsewhere, as he achieved much of his success in Europe, particularly the United Kingdom. His novel Flesh was named Best Horror Novel of 1988 by Science Fiction Chronicle, and both Flesh and Funland were nominated for the Bram Stoker Award. He won this award posthumously in 2001 for The Traveling Vampire Show.
Laymon also published several works under the pseudonym Richard Kelly. Many prominent horror novelists, such as Stephen King and Dean Koontz, are known to have praised Laymon's works. Cemetery Dance Publications is set to release a forthcoming tribute anthology called In Laymon's Terms (edited by Richard's daughter Kelly Laymon, Steve Gerlach, and Richard Chizmar). It features over three dozen contributors and will be released in three different editions. Despite writing over thirty popular horror novels, none of Laymon's stories have ever been filmed by a professional film studio.