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Craig Laurance Gidney

Craig Laurance Gidney is the author of the collections Sea, Swallow Me & Other Stories and Skin Deep Magic, the Young Adult novel Bereft, and The Nectar of Nightmares. His work has been nominated for the Lambda Literary and Gaylactic Spectrum Awards, and he has won both the Bronze Moonbeam and Silver Independent Publishers Book Awards. He lives in his native Washington, DC.

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A Spectral Hue: Weird in the best possible way

A Spectral Hue by Craig Laurance Gidney

I don’t know how to categorize Craig Laurance Gidney’s 2019 novel A Spectral Hue. It has an eerie, otherworldly story, and it’s published by a noted small horror press, but I didn’t think it was horror. I didn’t think it was fantasy either. And maybe categories don’t really matter for this slim novel that gave me a genuinely original reading experience.

Gidney’s story is set in a small town, a village really, nearly surrounded by marshlands, in Maryland. Many escaped or emancipated enslaved people ended up in Shimmer, working as crab fishers or taking other jobs associated with the water. There is an entity in the marsh, and some people are sensitive to it. Whether they are drawn to the somewhat rare marsh bell orchid flower, with its pink-purple flowers, or something else, they began to create things. Hazel Whitely, an enslaved woman, made strange qui... Read More

The Nectar of Nightmares: Long may Gidney write!

The Nectar of Nightmares by Craig Laurance Gidney

It’s horror season for me, the time of year where I usually settle in with a cozy haunted house story, but sometimes branch out into the region of the genuinely horrifying or the truly weird. Craig Laurance Gidney’s short story collection The Nectar of Nightmares, published in 2022, fits that bill. As with most collections, I loved several, and a few were misses for me. This is even more likely to happen with a horror collection than, say, a fantasy collection. Even when I wasn’t the audience for a tale, though, I admired all of these. When it comes to shaping the weird and the uncanny, few are doing it as well as Gidney does.

Nectar of Nightmares has 14 stories that range from body horror, American gothic (or Lovecraftian), weird tales, erotic h... Read More