2015 Roundup — Of Nectar and Awards

2015 was very productive year
Ups include:

–SKIN DEEP MAGIC was on a couple of college syllabi, and I got to do two author visits with college students, and it was a finalist for the Lambda Literary Award.
–BEREFT, my YA novel about bullying, racism and homophobia, won a Bronze Moonbeam and a Silver IPPY Award

–I got to assist with editors choosing the fiction in QUEERS DESTROY HORROR.
–I got to go to WORLD HORROR in Atlanta, which led to several professional friendships.
–My novelette THE NECTAR OF NIGHTMARES was published and illustrated got good reviews
–My first collection, SEA, SWALLOW ME & OTHER STORIES was turned into an audiobook.
All are bucket list accomplishments.

Downs include:
The death of Tanith Lee. We used to exchange emails and she was very supportive of all of my work. I only met her once. We had planned a visit before her illness. I dedicated THE NECTAR OF NIGHTMARES to her.


A Portrait of the Author as a Horror Writer

I just came from a wonderful weekend spent at the World Horror Convention in Atlanta.

I’ve never considered myself as a horror writer. My elevator pitch description to folks who ask me what I write is often “magical realist” or “contemporary fantasy.” But there is a streak of darkness that runs through my fiction. Maybe I’m more “dark fantasy,” but I have written some horrific things.

Below is a list of my published horror fiction

In Sea, Swallow Me & Other Stories

“The Safety of Thorns”: African elder gods (or spirits) live in the briar patch on a plantation in the antebellum South. The story is about the encounter between them and a young enslaved boy.

“Etiolate”: A homoerotic horror story about a kind of incubus set in the 90s goth scene in Baltimore. It has a David Lynchian feel.

“Catch Him by the Toe”: A Southern Gothic tale about a town haunted by a demonic ghost.

In Skin Deep Magic

“Death and Two Maidens”: A penny dreadful set in Victorian London about an Afro-British charwoman’s misadventures in the afterlife.

“Sugardaddy”: Set in a housing project in DC, this is the story of a teenage girl’s bizarre transformation. It takes the form of journal entries, and is partially a homage to Robert Aickman’s “Pages from a Young Girl’s Journal.”

Balogun Ojetagde, Jeff Carroll, Gerald Coleman, John Edward Lawson, Crystal Connor and yours truly. Photo by Scott Nicolay
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