Monday, February 4, 2013
Editor’s hat, February 2013
Probably one of the best feelings an editor can get is when a publisher green-lights a project you’ve pitched. So you’ve found *this* author or you’ve had *that* idea for an anthology. You do a lot of talking, and getting excited. Then it starts happening.
To touch base on where I’m at right now, I’m in the midst of editing the finalists and winner for the 2012 SA HorrorFest Bloody Parchment short story competition. We feature some established South African authors such as Diane Awerbuck, SA Partridge, but also some of the previous year’s finalists—Benjamin Knox, Toby Bennett and Lee Mather, among others. The anthology will be released mid-year and is once again published by eKhaya, the digital imprint of Random House Struik. But you can make this editor really happy by buying the current anthology which is available at Amazon and Kobo, among others. Even better, go leave a review.
I’m pleased to announce that I’ll be working with DC Petterson again. Last year we celebrated the release of A Melancholy Humour, a tale that draws upon Italian folklore relating to the Benandanti and the Malandanti. If you love werewolves, and enjoy crime stories involving hunting down serial killers then this one will appeal to you. This year we’re working on Bella Lupa, which also features Petterson’s wolves, but in a historical setting and will be published by Dark Continents Publishing. One of his stories is also featuring in my upcoming Dark Harvest anthology. Release date will be announced. His voice is dark, seductive and rich in detail. You will understand what it feels like to run with the wolves and taste the metallic essence of blood on your tongue.
Dark Harvest is something I’ve been threatening to do for a long time, in which I invite authors I admire to submit stories I can compile in an anthology. Some of these are reprints. Some are new. The tales are dark, twisted… Sometimes humorous. Mysterious. Downright weird. I sent out the contracts for these yesterday, and am pleased to have the likes of Don Webb, Sarah Lotz, Carrie Clevenger, Autumn Christian, SL Schmitz, Sonya Clark, Liz Strange, Tony Bennett, Rab Swannock Fulton, Amy Burgess, DC Petterson and Anna Reith. I’ve included one of my own tales as well, and am well pleased with the wide cross-section I’ll be offering.
I’d also like to draw your attention to some of last year’s projects that I’m inordinately proud of.
Somewhere along the line I was introduced to Rab Swannock Fulton. He’s a real-life storyteller (as in he gets paid to tell stories to a live audience). Based in Ireland, this chap definitely kissed the Blarney Stone at some point, and I was pleased to work on his novella, Transformation. A huge big warning: when you start reading this story you will think it’s a romance. It’s most emphatically not. And afterward, you’ll find something unerringly creepy about the way goats stare at you. His prose is lyrical, and you can almost hear that Irish lilt in the way he turns his words. If you’re looking for a story of mythic proportions, then I totally recommend this one.
Crooked Fang came about after I stumbled onto Carrie Clevenger’s blog serial quite by chance, and fell in love with Xan Marcelles, the smart-mouthed bass-playing vampire. He has a knack for finding trouble, and what I love about him the most is that he’s just a guy who loves music, and has an unfortunate need to drink blood. He’s totally the antithesis of all those dreadful foppish fangless vampires who glitter.
I welcome queries from authors, and if you think you’ve got a story that might pique my interest, feel free to query me at firstname.lastname@example.org
As a guide, I’m a huge fan of Neil Gaiman, Storm Constantine, Anne Rice, Mary Renault, Mary Gentle, CJ Cherryh and Poppy Z Brite, among others. My preferred genres are dark fantasy/horror, epic and urban fantasy and selected SF (I prefer space opera in the vein of Star Wars to military SF).