"a woman who churns out short stories wherein every character is so warped, damaged, and bent that when I read the story I think death would be a mercy for them all."
I understand your points about Miss O'Connor. When I first was forced-fed her work in college, it seemed abhorrent to me.
Of course, in paying attention only to the warped, damaged, and bent nature of the characters, one also misses the beauty and the response to grace of the same. In re-reading A Good Man is Hard to Find yesterday, I was (again) struck at how these "warped, damaged, and bent" characters were admixed with kindness, nostalgia, curiosity, joy, and other qualities.
Miss O'Connor certainly exaggerates the "warped, damaged, and bent nature" of characters, but perhaps she does so to hold up a mirror to the reader. Perhaps the revulsion we naturally feel is because we would prefer that we have only qualities like kindness, nostalgia, curiously, joy, and the others, and recoil in horror and indignity when the "warped, damaged, and bent nature" of our own souls is exposed to us.
However, it is the conceit of the current time to deny that we are warped, damaged, and bent.