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Paula Guran | 20 Questions: THE YEAR’S BEST DARK FANTASY AND HORROR Volume Three

The Year's Best Dark Fantasy and Horror Vol. 3
Paula Guran



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Volume 3

October 2022
On Sale: October 18, 2022
460 pages
ISBN: 1645060349
EAN: 9781645060345
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Also by Paula Guran:
The Year's Best Dark Fantasy and Horror Vol. 3, October 2022
New York Fantastic, December 2017
Beyond the Woods, July 2016
Best New Romantic Fantasy 2, June 2007

1--What is the title of your latest release?



2--What’s the “elevator pitch” for your new book?

The supernatural, the surreal, and the all-too-real . . . tales of the dark. Such stories have always fascinated us, and modern authors carry on the disquieting traditions of the past while inventing imaginative new ways to unsettle us. Stories from some of today’s finest writers of the fantastique—sure to delight as well as disturb!


3--When beginning an anthology how do you decide what "types" of horror and dark fantasy will be included? Both genres can be so broad.

I don’t try to define either - it’s something I’ve addressed in introductions for the volumes since 2010. Generally, I look for stories that don’t necessarily scare so much as unsettle or disturb.


4--What kind of archetypal supernatural/horror character would you hang out with in "real life?"

Not sure I’d consort with archetypical archetypes! Maybe fresh versions of them.


5--What are three words that describe what you are looking for in a horror and/or dark fantasy story? 

Effective, revelatory, and entertaining.


6--What’s something you learned while acquiring the stories and editing this book?

I guess I re-learn, every year, just how talented, creative, and original these writers are. I also re-learn there’s a great deal of not-very-good stuff published.


7--Do you edit as stories start coming in or wait until a submission deadline has passed and read all submissions at once?

I read all the time. One must!


8--What’s your favorite foodie indulgence?

One of the few things I still bake is a very old family recipe for pound cake. My daughter’s birthday is a good excuse to make one...or two...and have my share.


9--Describe your writing space/office!

A room with wall-to-wall bookshelves on one wall and a sizeable closet, a file cabinet, and another bookcase on the opposite wall. My desk (circa the 1940s) is between with my faithful Mac on it as well as stacks of more books and stuff on the floor. A window behind the chair. Opposite my chair is a wall with an entry door and a small sofa that turns into a bed for guests. Some framed art hangs over the sofa. The room is painted teal with white trim.


10--Who is an author you admire?

Far too many to name! Although I will mention the late Hilary Mantel.


11--Is there a book that changed your life?

Maybe books in general. Learning to read opened the universe for me.


12--Tell us about when you got “the call.” (when you found out your first anthology was going to be published. I believe the current book is your 51st anthology - does the feeling remain the same?)

My very first anthology was announced and then the publishing company stopped publishing. So whatever the initial thrill, it was diluted. It had to find a new home, which it did with a new, neophyte small publisher. I think the high point then was getting a great, starred Publishers Weekly review. Then the publisher disappeared off the face of the Earth owing me money. Since then, there’s not really been a call then a celebration. More of a satisfying process.


13--What’s your favorite genre to read?

My “relaxation” or “for fun” reading tends to be nonfiction, usually history or biography.


14--What’s your favorite movie?

I like classic movies a lot. The ones I’ve watched and rewatched are things as diverse as Casablanca, Bell, Book and Candle, All That Jazz, and Blade Runner (and Blade Runner 2049). And now that special effects are effective, I enjoy the fun superhero epics and more thoughtful SF like Inception and Ex Machina. Really liked Denis Villeneuve’s Dune.


15--What is your favorite season?

Toss-up between spring and fall. Fall in northeast Ohio is lovely but I always enjoy the world renewing each spring.


16--How do you like to celebrate your birthday?

With family. These days, my five grandchildren make it special.


17--What’s a recent tv show/movie/book/podcast you highly recommend?

Light & Magic—the six-episode series about George Lucas’s special effects house, Industrial Light & Magic. The Broken Earth trilogy by N. K. Jemison (The Fifth Season, The Obelisk Gate, The Stone Sky), Ann Leckie’s Imperial Radch trilogy (Ancillary Justice, Ancillary Sword, Ancillary Mercy), Martha Wells’ The Murderbot Diaries series.


18--What’s your favorite type of cuisine?

Probably Tex-Mex.


19--What do you do when you have free time?

I’m not sure it is free time—but I love being with my grandchildren. I still get to play. And I’m a big fan of the Cleveland Guardians and Cleveland Cavaliers; I watch or listen to most of the games. Definitely not free time, it’s part of my schedule, but my essential recreation-exercise-meditation is swimming.


20--What can readers expect from you next?

The Year’s Best Fantasy, Volume Two came out July or August 2022 followed by The Year’s Best Dark Fantasy and Horror, Volume Four (actually the FOURTEENTH volume) in October 2022.


Volume 3

The Year's Best Dark Fantasy and Horror Vol. 3

The supernatural, the surreal, and the all-too real. . . Such tales of the dark and the unknown have always fascinated us, and modern authors carry on the disquieting traditions of the past while inventing imaginative new ways to unsettle us. Chosen from a wide variety of venues, these stories are as eclectic and varied as shadows.

The latest volume of The Year's Best Dark Fantasy and Horror edited by fantasy aficionado Paula Guran offers more than four hundred pages of tales from some of today’s finest writers of the fantastique including Alix E. Harrow, Zen Cho, Elizabeth Hand and many more! Indulge if you dare, because these 23 tales of terror are sure to delight as well as disturb!


Fantasy Dark | Fantasy Anthology | Horror [Pyr, On Sale: October 18, 2022, Paperback, ISBN: 9781645060345 / eISBN: 9781645060352]

Buy THE YEAR'S BEST DARK FANTASY AND HORROR VOL. | | Apple Books | Kobo | Google Play | Powell's Books | Books-A-Million | Indie BookShops | Ripped Bodice | Love's Sweet Arrow | | Book Depository | |

About Paula Guran

Paula Guran

Paula Guran has edited more than 50 science fiction, fantasy, and horror anthologies and more than 50 novels and collections featuring the same. She’s reviewed and written articles for dozens of publications. She lives in Akron, Ohio, near enough to her grandchildren to frequently be indulgent.





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