- Apex Book Companyharlanborg, writer, minion, 2005 - present
- Writereditor, writer, blogger, book reviewer, 1996 - present
I am a southern gothic fiction writer who grew up in the coal mining community of Woodbine in southeastern Kentucky.
My poetry, short stories, and other writing to date have appeared in the e-zines associated with the now-defunct 3Sides Literary Agency, the limited Stories from the Red Light District anthology, in various projects associated with Apex Publications, and in the Help anthology.
I wrote my first ‘book’ at six and my first poetry at nine. The book has survived and is now buried in a memory box; the poetry, thankfully, long ago parted this earth. All through childhood, the creative arts including drawing, painting, sketching, and of course writing interested me more than anything else; I was all the time at work making something. As a Girl Scout and 4-H participant, I wrote event and camping write-ups for the local newspaper. Later, I was a high school newspaper editor and yearbook designer, then a university yearbook photographer and designer; I had several poems published in the university literary magazine, The Aurora. In my last year of high school and first year of college (many suns ago), I was active in the Corbin Community Theatre as an actor, singer, and stage manager.
My stories, at least what I’ve written since 1996, take place in my own version of the gothic hinterlands of Harlan County, located in Kentucky. The great beauty of Harlan County contrasts sharply with abject, inherent strife. Its mountains are scarred by mining, and its people are quite often insular and distrustful. This landscape provides the backdrop for my writing and is often a character in its own right.
I started writing what would become the first in my Harlan Vampire Series (although I’ve learned recently the series has gained some strange infamy on college and university campuses as the “Hillbilly Vampires” which makes me smile) in October 1996. It only seemed natural to call that first story Midnight – so much imagery ended up woven all through the story because of that one simple word. Promise of Midnight, Midnight, Midnight’s Heir, Heir’s Starlight, and Starlight’s Shadow are all books in my “Harlan Vampires Series” – or HVS as it’s called. The characters in my stories are not your usual bloodthirsty Bram Stoker-type vampires. They are people with hopes and dreams, desires, drives, and life-crises – some major, some minor, but all of which help push the characters into growth and understanding.
I’m on leave from my ‘job’ as a slush editor for Apex Magazine, and am busy being an independent writer, book reviewer, and editor. I am the editor of the Harlan County Horrors anthology, published by Apex Book Company in October 2009. My first novel, Midnight, will be published by Apex Publications in Spring 2014.
I have lived away from the mountains and lived deep in the mountains. My current home is in Central Kentucky with my lifepartner and our cat. I am the mother of two young men and am an avid supporter of kidney disease awareness and living organ donation awareness. The mountains, their culture, their superstitions, their particular magics, will always be in my heart and my blood.
- Eastern Kentucky University
- Corbin High School
- Corbin Middle School
- South Ward Elementary
- Woodbine Elementary