by Laura Harvey
At last! I always love Friday the 13th, but I’ve been anticipating this one with barely suppressed glee. This Friday, LEGENDARY gets released into the wild. And I can hardly wait. Seriously. I have my party hat on and confetti at hand.
I’ve loved this concept from the beginning. I’m the kind of person that collects classic horror flicks to binge watch around Halloween and enjoys creepy stories told around campfires. I’m ridiculously easy to scare, but that doesn’t stop me. Who needs to sleep easy, anyway?
So, when Pen and Kink Publishing asked if I wanted to edit a romance anthology based on urban legends, I jumped. Darned skippy, I did! Bring on Bloody Mary! The Woman in White! The Hook Man (or woman, as it turns out)!
I loved the stories that hit my inbox. I legitimately snorted my tea reading Sara Dobie Bauer’s “Not Again.” Campy humor really is my bag, baby. I wound up reading it aloud on a road trip, complete with sound effects. I don’t often comment “can we get some more gore here? Steaming intestines on the roof, maybe?” during revisions, but I made an exception. And I still haven’t forgiven her for… well. Who am I to spoil it?
I teared up over Michael Leonberger’s “The Hook.” I loved the healing power of love at work in this story. Love doesn’t dull the painful cracks and broken pieces of our lives, but it can give us the light and the strength to hold ourselves together.
The characters in this anthology stole my heart. If y’all can get through this anthology without laughing out loud or tearing up at least once, you’re not human.
Lastly, I’m also exceptionally happy to have a chance to work with more diverse romances. As an editor, the vast majority of submissions I receive involve white, cis-gendered, heterosexual romances. As it turns out, four of the five stories in this anthology do not fall into at least one of these categories. Such a ratio was unintentional, but pleases me just the same.
Here’s to hoping you enjoy these five fun tales as much as I have. And if you want to read them by flashlight late at night, I don’t blame you.