…but we’re gonna do it anyway!
Hey there, my fellow horror fans, fiends, and freaks! As you might have noticed, the world is in a shit kind of place right now. As you may not have noticed, our first launch of the year, the horror and dark fiction anthology Coppice & Brake, is scheduled to hit the virtual shelves this Saturday, March 21.
In preparation for the launch, we’ve set up our ARC crew with advance copies, sent out press releases, solicited reviews from horror sites and bloggers, planned an advertisement or two, and scheduled a bunch of social media content around the launch. Even with the challenges that are currently presenting themselves to small press publishers and indie authors everywhere, I am excited about the stories in this anthology, and I think that this volume of tales is a collection of top notch fiction.
And what are those challenges, pray tell? Well … here I am, a horror publisher, sending out a volume of intense, at times disturbing, short fiction. Not exactly what people are looking for to escape the dread and worry of real life. Here in Seaside, CA, yours truly is currently under an apocalyptic-sounding “shelter in place” order. Going to the Post Office to even mail contributor copies might be an issue (although I could stop by the store for beer and call it a “grocery run.”) Additionally, Amazon, the retailer we primarily rely on to distribute our books, has announced a de-prioritization of mailing actual books.
Right around now I’m kicking myself and wondering how/if COVID-19 counts as an “act of God” when I’m filing my taxes this quarter…
But what are challenges except for good stories to tell in the future? I know that horror fans are still excited for offerings in the genres. For example, Shudder is offering 30 days of free streaming horror films with the promo code “SHUTIN” (thanks, IndieWire). Second, there does not seem to be any issue with ordering ebooks. So, you can get Coppice & Brake on Kindle. You can also read our first anthology, Stories We Tell After Midnight for free on Kindle Unlimited.
And last, but not least, we have a great lineup of offerings in this volume. Our authors have tales that will terrify you–but many of these stories will also give you something to think about, may even give you hope. Avra Margariti’s “All the Dead Girls, Singing” makes me cry each time I read it, not only with sadness, but because of the notes of love that transcend death. Jeff Dosser’s “Ghost Story” offers an image of redemption through the power of stories. Voss Foster’s “Eccentric on the Grandest of Scales” is one of the most optimistic dark fiction stories I’ve ever read. And “Cold Dread and Hot Slices” by Spencer Koelle is a portrait of the people who are currently keeping our country together by working the sorts of jobs that ensure people can eat and buy groceries and live. These are just some of the 23 stories you’ll find in the table of contents, stories that I am very proud to include in the anthology and share with the world. I can’t wait for you to read it!
A night guard brings an offering to the eternal denizens of a notorious prison.
In a young girl’s room, the shiny people keep watch in the night.
A proud father beams as his son takes the stage for the performance of a lifetime.
The stories in this anthology are the glimpses of the dark places between the forest and a dream. They are the shadows seeking the last notes of a dying violin. They invite the reader into a world where a condemned man faces his fate over and over and over again. Coppice & Brake is an anthology of dark fiction, featuring tales from the borderlands of horror, speculative fiction, and the nightmare fears that linger even after you turn on the lights.