Horror & Dark Fantasy

Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2017

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Nonfiction

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Norman Partridge

As a writer I don’t always like to answer all the questions a story presents, or every question readers might have. Of course, I want the logic of the story to operate . . . but I want to leave room for a few mysteries, too. To me, that’s a key element to much of the horror fiction I enjoy—the questions that keep readers coming back to a piece, especially the ones that might make them see it a little differently the next time they read it.

Artist Showcase

Artist Showcase: Sergio Diaz

I don’t think there is a prevailing “Argentinian attitude” toward horror in art. I know some who are drawn to it (like me), some who are indifferent to it, some who are repulsed by it. At least that’s all I can tell you based on my personal experience. In Argentina there are exceptional artists whose work is based in horror and they’ve earned public acceptance.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Ted Kosmatka

The premise was drawn, as you might expect, from my experiences trying to deal with a toddler in church. When you are getting glared at by a hundred old people, your mind begins searching for any escape, and somehow this story kind of appeared in my head during the course of one very traumatizing baptism.

Nonfiction

The H Word: The Failure of Fear

Let me make a confession here: I haven’t been truly scared by a work of literary or cinematic horror in a long time—perhaps only once in my adult lifetime.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Margo Lanagan

What drew me to “Hansel and Gretel” was a Yiddish word, “gunsel,” that I happened upon in the dictionary. One of its several definitions went something like, “a youth, particularly a homosexual one, kept by a tramp.” So there’d been a time and place in which tramps commonly kept boys for sexual purposes—so commonly that there was a word for it? I immediately wanted to set a story there, and to tell it from the point of view of a gunsel.

Editorial

Editorial, February 2013

Welcome to issue number five of Nightmare! We’ve got another great issue for you this month; read the editorial to see what we’ve got on tap.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Sarah Langan

I find that I want to be good at everything I do, but it’s impossible. Every day, I fail someone I love, on some level, and that includes failing at my own career ambitions. But that’s life. I can’t be good at half the jobs I have.

Nonfiction

The H Word: Choosing Gruesome Subjects

It’s not the first time that I’ve been asked, “Why do you write that stuff?” It’s typically been voiced by those who are friendly to me but not particularly close: colleagues at the school where I teach; the parents of my younger son’s classmates; the people who stop to talk to me at bookstores or libraries or conventions, when I’m signing books or after I’ve finished giving a reading or sitting on a panel. After years of hearing this, I still don’t have a good answer.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Lucius Shepard

Stories just come to me, sometimes over a period of years, sometimes over a few days. I’m not into self-analysis, so I don’t explore their origins, but in this case it was obvious. I was an abused child, and a very angry teenager and young man. I don’t think I’ve ever gotten over being angry—so in this case I was more or less blending some autobiographical stuff with fantasy. When I was a kid, I believed anger was magic of a kind, power, and I wanted to convey that feeling in the main character. I got angry when I was writing it.

Artist Showcase

Artist Showcase: Chelsea Knight

I discovered photography when I was around fourteen. I used a throw-away camera first and discovered that my mother had a very simple digital camera. From then on I saved my money to purchase my own Canon. My dad gave me his old Canon F-1 film camera and, ever since, photography has grown into my primary artistic passion.