Well … I’ve been waiting with baited breath for several long months to announce this latest project. It is the first ever horror anthology edited by yours truly.
It’s called TERROR TALES OF THE LAKE DISTRICT, and it will be available to pre-order from the tireless GRAY FRIAR PRESS from tomorrow afternoon (Saturday, 17th September).
For those of you who don’t know the UK, the Lake District is a wild, mountainous region in northwest England, famous for its astonishing scenery: towering crags and ridges, and deep, majestic lakes. It is one of the most popular holiday destinations in the whole of Britain, particularly for climbers, hikers, campers and yachtsmen. But some corners of it are extremely remote and even now in the 21st century remain wreathed in superstition and rural mystery. The above cover, which comes to us courtesy of artist Steve Upham, illustrates one such spooky legend – Tom Fool, the demonic jester of Muncaster Castle.
Here, for your interest, is the official back-cover blurb:
The Lake District – land of mountains and megaliths, night-black lakes and fathomless woods filled with spectral mist …
The eerie entity on Striding Edge
The living corpse of Croglin
The demented clown of Muncaster
The winged horror of Langdale
The drowned bride of Windermere
The hairy brute of Beetham
The nightmares on Burnmoor
And many more chilling tales by Ramsey Campbell, Adam Nevill, Simon Clark, Peter Crowther, Reggie Oliver, Gary McMahon and other award-winning masters and mistresses of the macabre.
The book contains ten works of original horror fiction set in the Lake District, and three classic reprints. It also features numerous anecdotal tales concerning supposedly true incidents of Lakeland terror.
In case your appetites haven’t been whetted enough, here is the full table of contents:
Little Mag’s Barrow by Adam L.G. Nevill
The Mad Clown of Muncaster
The Coniston Star Mystery by Simon Clark
The Croglin Vampire
Devils of Lakeland by Paul Finch
The Mumps Hall Murders
The Moraine by Simon Bestwick
The Tawny Boy
The Claife Crier by Carole Johnstone
The Monster of Renwick
Jewels in the Dust by Peter Crowther
The Devil’s Hole
Above the World by Ramsey Campbell
Nightmares of Burnmoor
The Jilted Bride of Windermere by Gary Fry
The Horror at Carlisle Castle
Walk the Last Mile by Steven Savile
The Poltergeist of Walla Crag
Framed by Peter Bell
Night of the Crone by Anna Taborska
The Tortured Souls of Lord’s Rake
Along Life’s Trail by Gary McMahon
The Black Hound of Shap
Striding Edge by Reggie Oliver
I can’t thank these authors enough for their efforts, not to mention Steve Upham, whose artwork is astonishing, Gary Fry of Gray Friar Press, who has been hugely supportive and helpful throughout, and Steve Lockley for his advice.
This project has been a year in the making and, as such, is very close to my heart. It wasn’t entirely hitch-free, but this is the first anthology I’ve created on my own, and hopefully it won’t be the last. In fact, at the risk of running before my horse to market, I would like this to be the first volume in a brand new series of regionally-themed British horror fiction, but of course we must at least break even with this first book before we can proceed with my other plans. So you guys know what you need to do – get ordering! (You won’t be disappointed).