In recognition of the legacy of Shirley Jackson’s writing, and with permission of the author’s estate, the Shirley Jackson Award has been established for outstanding achievement in the literature of psychological suspense, horror, and the dark fantastic.
Ellen Datlow's on the Board of Advisors. (I just shopping carted at amazon an anthology of ghost stories she's edited.) She's well-equipped by experience and talent to advise for this award, obviously. In a recent interview at FEARZONE, she says:
But I try to read every horror/dark story published in and outside of the field -- which means that all a writer has to do is write brilliant short stories. There are so many pieces of short fiction (this is not only in horror of course) that provide a set up and scene but no real story. Or have no texture -- all surface, no undercurrents. Or use flabby language or over the top language with dialog that you'd never hear in real life. I prefer fiction that works on more than one level (although a short, sharp shock can be fine for a change of pace).
The best writers can take the traditional horror tropes of serial killers, zombies, vampires, werewolves, ghouls, children in danger, "bad" houses or places -- and make something new out of them by their skills at storytelling and use of language.
Eligibility rules here. Did you have a terrific dark, suspenseful, etc story pubbed in 2007. Link us up. (Snarky Chris, get cracking for next year's.)
I look forward to seeing who gets nominated.