Horror & Dark Fantasy

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July 2021 (Issue 106)

We have original short fiction from Benjamin Peek (“At the Periphery”) and Gordon B. White (“Gordon B. White is Creating Haunting Weird Horror”). Our Horror Lab originals include a flash story (“Sometimes Boys Don’t Know”) from Donyae Coles and a poem (“The Returned”) from Stephanie M. Wytovich. We also have the latest installment of our column on horror, “The H Word,” plus author spotlights with our authors, and a book review from Terence Taylor.

In This Issue: July 2021 (Issue 106)

Editorial

Editorial: July 2021

Here in Oregon, we’re facing a statewide drought, and authorities are already concerned about the potential of violent clashes over water rights. Homicide has hit levels not seen in Portland for twenty-five years. And the elastic in my favorite running shorts is starting to give out. But enough about the bad stuff! Is horror literature smoking hot this year, or what?!?

Fiction

At The Periphery

He asks for a table by himself, in a quiet part of The Periphery. It’s late, nearly ten, and the pub is just about empty. Ali has twenty minutes left on her shift. She doesn’t care where he sits. “Anywhere you want is fine, sir,” she says. He slips into a booth full of shadows. One of the lights on the wall is gone. He’s a tall man, this man who slouches down in the seat, his features worn. She cannot guess his age.

Author Spotlight

Fiction

Sometimes Boys Don’t Know

There are a ton of passages from books and stories written by men that make me wonder if they had ever seen a woman in real life. Boobs that expand to show arousal and Barbie crotches if they’re virgins, wild stuff like that. I just took what they started to its monstrous extremes.

Nonfiction

The H Word: Getting Cozy with Horror

Once you reach a certain point in your friendship, Horror grows up and becomes a teenager. It’s no longer the BFF you spent the night with, eating cereal and reading comic books. It’s a young adult with grand ideas, mostly about itself. “I’m a statement about our society,” it explains, breaking your heart. “People watch me because I help exorcise their fears.”

Fiction

Gordon B. White is creating Haunting Weird Horror

You’ve enjoyed a few of his stories and you follow each other on Twitter, so when you see that horror and weird fiction author Gordon B. White has started a Patreon, you think, “Sure, I’ll throw him a couple of bucks.” You pick the $7 tier—Postcards of Lesser Known Haunted Houses—thinking it might be a lark to get a picture and a microfiction each month for your modest contribution.

Author Spotlight

Nonfiction

The Returned

I’m deeply inspired by the dark surrealist photography of Christopher McKenney. His work is ethereal, haunting, and filled with dread and the onset of violence. When I was writing “The Returned,” I asked myself what the creatures and specters in his photographs were saying, and as I expected, each one had a terrifying tale to […]

Nonfiction

Book Reviews: July 2021

This month, Terence Taylor digs into works that explore the theme of communication: a new novel, Smithy, from Amanda Desiree, and a nonfiction book, The Madman’s Library, by Edward Brooke-Hitching.