A Ride Into the Deep: The Story Behind “Horseshoe”

Earlier this month, my horror story, “Horseshoe,” made its debut in The Haunting of Lake Manor Hotel! This anthology, which features thirteen up-and-coming speculative fiction writers, is the first title released from Woodbridge Press, and I’m so thrilled and honored to be part of it! The Haunting of Lake Manor HotelWorking on The Haunting of Lake Manor Hotel has been an incredible experience. This project unites me with authors Scarlett R. Algee and Brooke Warra, both of whom I met through our publication and eventual work as slush pile readers at Sanitarium Magazine. And of course, the three of us also worked together on A Shadow of Autumn last fall, so in my mind, that makes us family. This is also the first time I’ve worked directly with author and editor Nathan Hystad. Nathan and I have been crossing paths for the last couple years, since we were both featured in Whispers from the Past: Fright and Fear way back in September 2014. So when he asked me to be involved in his first project as an editor, I most definitely jumped at the opportunity.

My story, “Horseshoe,” started simply enough with the image of the horseshoe driveway. That was how Nathan described the entrance of the hotel in the shared world information all the authors received as we embarked on the project, and the image immediately caught my interest. There’s a bit of irony for me that the specter of horses looms large over my life—I live in a rural county in Pennsylvania that has been described as having more horses than people, and even the property where my husband and I live is a former horse farm, with fences and troughs and all the other horse abode trimmings. However, truth be told, I myself have only been on horseback once or twice. So I used these phantom-like horses to craft a tale about a tormented jockey who is trying to come to terms with her father’s death while coping with the very real ghosts that haunt her and Lake Manor Hotel.

The twelve other stories in The Haunting of Lake Manor Hotel all take different aspects of the property and make the ethereal qualities their own. So if strange and apparitional locales intrigue you as much as they intrigue me, then Lake Manor Hotel might be a perfect stopover on your reading list. Just be sure to lock the door and leave on the light.

Happy reading!