Horror & Dark Fantasy

COSMIC POWERS

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Mar. 2014 (Issue 18)

We have original fiction from Isabel Yap (“Have You Heard the One About Anamaria Marquez”) and Genevieve Valentine (“A Dweller in Amenty”), along with reprints by Glen Hirshberg (“I am Coming to Live in Your Mouth”) and Nathan Ballingrud (“Sunbleached”). We also have the latest installment of our column on horror, “The H Word,” plus author spotlights with our authors, a showcase on our cover artist, and a feature interview with Bram Stoker nominated author Jeff Strand.

In This Issue: Mar. 2014 (Issue 18)

Editorial

Editorial, March 2014

We have original fiction from Isabel Yap (“Have You Heard the One About Anamaria Marquez”) and Genevieve Valentine (“A Dweller in Amenty”), along with reprints by Glen Hirshberg (“I am Coming to Live in Your Mouth”) and Nathan Ballingrud (“Sunbleached”). We also have the latest installment of our column on horror, “The H Word,” plus author spotlights with our authors, a showcase on our cover artist, and a feature interview with Bram Stoker nominated author Jeff Strand.

Fiction

Have You Heard the One About Anamaria Marquez?

It all started when Ms. Salinas told us about her third eye. It was home ec., and we were sitting in front of the sewing machines with table runners that we were going to make our moms or yayas do for us anyway. I was pretty anxious about that project.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Isabel Yap

I wrote this for week three at the Clarion Workshop last summer. I kept trying to write another story that I had fleshed out more, but it was going nowhere and I needed to submit something the next morning. I put that story aside, went online, and pestered my best friends back in Manila to tell me the ghost stories they remembered from our Catholic girls’ school.

Fiction

I Am Coming to Live in Your Mouth

It happened the first time during the four a.m. feeding, and Kagome believed she was dreaming. This was not unusual; she almost never slept anymore, and most of her life felt like dreaming, now. She’d already flushed out Joe’s catheter, sponged gently at the pus that dripped incessantly from the tumor that had devoured his upper lip, and replaced the nutrient bag on the IV stand.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Glen Hirshberg

This story is one of the very few I’ve written that was inspired by another writer—or, in this case, another writer’s dreams. The fabulous Norm Partridge told me once about a work dream he’d been having about a figure who emerged from an elevator late at night, crossed to Norm’s desk, and said, “I am coming to live in your mouth, because you never have anything to say.” Norm said he was way too scared of the phrase to use it.

Nonfiction

The H Word: Being in the Presence of the Dead

When it comes to people, most of us know the dead only as waxy, foreign looking shells on display in coffins at the occasional funeral. Our world today has largely divorced us from experiencing the many strange and conflicting feelings that come with being in the presence of the dead. We don’t know that horror as much anymore, no matter how many times we see it on TV, and so I wanted to talk about that today.

Fiction

A Dweller in Amenty

The Pernille’s housekeeper shows me into the music room, where they’ve shoved the piano to the wall to make room for the coffin and the table and my seat. You can always tell serious clients. They lower the lights.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Genevieve Valentine

For me, sin eating is particularly interesting as a perceived supernatural ability exactly because of the balance of revulsion and power involved—the actual ability is both incredibly powerful and completely terrifying. And that’s one of the questions the story poses; if you’re born into an expectation of that magnitude, with such compulsion for doing it and such consequences for refusing, what does it mean to refuse?

Artist Showcase

Artist Showcase: Dave Palumbo

Dave Palumbo is a freelance illustrator and oil painter based in Philadelphia. Widely published, he has done editorial, concept, and promotional illustrations for publications ranging from SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN and THE NEW YORKER to Lucasfilm, Heavy Metal, and Marvel. Palumbo’s work has been shown in galleries from New York to Paris and has earned him a Chesley award and three Spectrum medals

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Nathan Ballingrud

I was very much thinking of the Dracula paradigm. I even wanted to include the mist and the turning into a bat. Of course there wasn’t a place for that, and that’s probably a good thing. But I was committed to the idea of a vampire being a merciless predator which relied on seduction to capture prey. The challenge was to do that in a way I hadn’t seen done before.

Fiction

Sunbleached

“We’re God’s beautiful creatures,” the vampire said, something like joy leaking into its voice for the first time since it had crawled under this house four days ago. “We’re the pinnacle of his art. If you believe in that kind of thing, anyway.”

Nonfiction

Interview: Jeff Strand

Jeff Strand may sometimes be called “the clown prince of horror,” but in truth he’s a multi-talented author whose work spans styles and genres. He started writing screenplays while still in college, but by the late 1990s he was regularly selling his comedic short horror stories. His novels run from the demented slapstick horror/comedy of BENJAMIN’S PARASITE to the more traditional werewolf tale WOLF HUNT to the intense psychological thriller PRESSURE.