Exploring Dark Short Fiction #4: A Primer to Jeffrey Ford by Eric J. Guignard
Author of the fantastic and the bizarre, Jeffrey Ford’s work has won awards and acclaim across the globe for his stories of humor, horror, and unconventional beauty. “Powerful and disturbing in the best possible way” (Gawker) and “Intensely engaging” (Publishers Weekly), Ford crosses speculative genres with literary ideals, which has earned him the World Fantasy Award (seven times), the Shirley Jackson Award (four times), the Edgar Allan Poe Award, and France’s vaunted Grand Prix de l’Imaginaire.
Dark Moon Books and editor Eric J. Guignard bring you this introduction to his work, the fourth in a series of primers exploring modern masters of literary dark short fiction. Herein is a chance to discover—or learn more of—the extraordinary voice of Jeffrey Ford, as beautifully illustrated by artist Michelle Prebich.
Included within these pages are:
• Six short stories, one written exclusively for this book
• Author interview
• Complete bibliography
• Academic commentary by Michael Arnzen, PhD (former humanities chair and professor of the year, Seton Hill University)
• … and more!
Enter this doorway to the vast and fantastic: Get to know Jeffrey Ford.
Author and editor Eric J. Guignard spent some time with The Big Thrill discussing his latest anthology, EXPLORING DARK SHORT FICTION #4: A PRIMER TO JEFFREY FORD. Here’s what he had to say:
What do you hope readers will take away from this book?
That author Jeffrey Ford is a modern master of the literary short horror tale, incorporating a striking range of emotion, surrealism, and character study into his cross-genre work.
This is the fourth in a line of scholarly studies of modern day authors who write short fiction stories in the dark fiction genre. Collected by editor Eric J. Guignard, this Primer includes—besides stories by the author—scholarly commentary, illustrations, author interview, complete bibliography, and more.
Was there anything new you discovered, or that surprised you, as you wrote this book?
The increasing attraction to this genre! The excitement, the thrills. The strange. The emotional resonance. The imaginative. Basically, I love monsters and explorations of fear, but I also love literary accouterments and beautiful storylines, which is an ideal (to me) in this genre.
What authors or books have influenced your career as a writer, and why?
My earliest media influences were Twilight Zone, Jack London, Stephen King, and vigilante-style comic books, and because of that I tend to write with the same sort of blended literary and thriller audience in mind.
Authors I currently adore and consider inspirations include Cormac McCarthy, George Orwell, Stephen Graham Jones, Jeffrey Ford, Lisa Morton, Kaaron Warren, Dennis Lehane, Seanan McGuire, Joe R. Lansdale, Nisi Shawl, Hunter S. Thompson, Jack Kerouac, Neil Gaiman, Robert McCammon, Mark Bowden, O. Henry, James Ellroy, Steve Rasnic Tem, Ramsey Campbell, John Steinbeck, Weston Ochse, John Langan, and many others…
Eric J. Guignard is a writer and editor of dark and speculative fiction, operating from the shadowy outskirts of Los Angeles, where he also runs the small press Dark Moon Books. He’s twice won the Bram Stoker Award, been a finalist for the International Thriller Writers Award, and a multi-nominee of the Pushcart Prize.
He has over one hundred stories and non-fiction author credits appearing in publications around the world. As editor, Eric’s published multiple fiction anthologies, including his most recent, Pop the Clutch: Thrilling Tales of Rockabilly, Monsters and Hot Rod Horror, and A World of Horror, a showcase of international horror short fiction.
His latest books are his short story collection That Which Grows Wild: 16 Tales of Dark Fiction (Cemetery Dance Publications, 2018) and novel Doorways to the Deadeye (JournalStone, 2019).
Outside the glamorous and jet-setting world of indie fiction, Eric’s a technical writer and college professor, and he stumbles home each day to a wife, children, cats, and a terrarium filled with mischievous beetles.
To learn more about the author and his work, please visit his website, his blog, and follow him on Twitter (@ericjguignard).
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