The Wordsmiths is out today!

Months ago I saw a call for submissions as something that was being billed as a campfire anthology–but not your typical anthology of short stories. Rather, the ghost stories chosen would be part of a larger story, with characters sitting around a campfire telling the stories. I love an anthology that plays with form, and as it happened I had a ghost story that needed a home. Today that anthology is released in paperback–it’s called The Wordsmiths, and it’s put out by Hollow Oak Press. You can get a copy of your very own here.

“Harvest”–my story included in The Wordsmiths–is loosely based on a story associated with my late grandparents’ farm, although my grandparents grew cows and corn, not soybeans and pumpkins like in my story. So what’s it about? It’s a very voicey story about a high school senior scoffing at an old legend about a thresher her farmer parents own that is allegedly intent on feeding blood-hungry fields. Saying much more would give some things away, but I will say that the house it’s set in is 90 percent the house my grandparents lived in when they owned the farm. The house still exists, and I often wonder if the people who now live there can still eavesdrop through the heating grates… or if any of them have heard stories about the fields, even though the house is no longer connected to a working farm.

It’s fair to say that “Harvest” is a story set in the world of Devil’s Elbow, the same world as my upcoming novel A Misfortune of Lake Monsters. That makes about five or so short stories that are set in the Devil’s Elbow world–and if you want to read four of those stories (“Harvest” isn’t included), do sign up for my monthly newsletter (the link is at the bottom of this page): newsletter subscribers get a free subscriber-only companion collection of Devil’s Elbow stories called The Devil’s Companion, Volume 1. That does imply there will be a Volume 2. Just saying…

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