It seems like yesterday that I was bemoaning the onset of winter. Now, summer is almost upon us (or at least it is here in Italy, where 25°C is considered a perfectly reasonable May temperature). And summer is, in my mind, associated with one thing above all else: the Edinburgh eBook Festival, masterminded by the unflagging Cally Phillips.
This year I’ve been booked to write some contribution pieces about Gothic fiction. Since the Festival is concerned to a large extent with eBooks and self-publishing, I’d like to shine a light on some examples of good self-published Gothic fiction (ironically, I suppose, given the Gothic preference for murk and mystery). I’ve a few ideas already, but of course the sheer number of books out there is bewildering, so once again I’m sending out a plea for help: if anyone out there knows of any great self-published Gothic fiction, please get in touch. You can leave a comment, contact me via Twitter or Facebook, or email me: firstname.lastname@example.org.
I suppose it’s quite funny, in a way. Shouldn’t Gothic novels be lurking in the internet’s darkest corners, fangs bared, waiting for their chance to leap out at unsuspecting passersby? And of course, like all genres, Gothic fiction is a bit nebulous: where exactly do we draw the line that demarcates the Gothic from the non-Gothic? But one of the points I’m hoping to make during the Festival is that Gothic fiction is a vital, living – or perhaps undead – variety of literature, that will continue to develop and remain relevant. Nobody’s going to drive a stake through this genre’s heart just yet.
So, if anyone out there knows of any self-pubbed Gothic fiction that deserves to rub icy shoulders with Frankenstein or share coffin space with Dracula (all right, I’m setting the bar high there, I grant you), please don’t hesitate to get in touch. In the unlikely event that I’m deluged with suggestions, I may not be able to include them all, though I will consider them all. And those that I do include probably won’t shoot to the top of the book charts as a result, though given the Gothic taste for the highly unlikely I suppose you never know…