edited by Nancy Kilpatrick
Modern lives seem littered with expiration dates. Packaging tells us when our food will go bad; when we can expect appliances to cease functioning; when contracts for the internet finish! But as annoying as these small expiration dates are, they fade to nothing compared to the larger events: when a species goes extinct; when a body of water evaporates, or dies because the PH balance alters; when giant icebergs break apart and glaciers melt forever, threatening the ecosystem of this planet.
From the micro to the macro in terms of expirations, we are faced with the one termination with which we are all too familiar— the up-close-and-personal end of life for each of us and for the ones we love. It’s the personal that terrifies us most because it feels the most real.
Nancy Kilpatrick has gathered together twenty-five original stories by Kelley Armstrong; Nancy Holder & Erin Underwood; Steve Rasnic Tem and Melanie Tem; Lois H. Gresh; Gar and Judy Reeves-Stevens; Daniel Sernine; Paul Kane; Sèphera Girón; Kathryn Ptacek; Steve Vernon; Rebecca Bradley; Mary E. Choo; Morgan Dambergs; Tobin Elliott; Pat Flewwelling; J. M. Frey; Ken Goldman; Amy Grech; David McDonald; Ryan McFadden; Silvia Moreno-Garcia; Elaine Pascale; Richard Payne; Christine Steendam; and George Wilhite to look at the what-if’s of our expiring future.
These stories span a range of emotions. Some will make you laugh, other will make you cry. They are grim and hopeful, sad and joyous, horrifying and comforting. You can expect to be touched in some way.
Each of us comes with an alpha and an omega stamp, an inception and an expiration date. Knowing this is what allows us to focus on what is truly important: paying attention to our best-before date and treating ourselves, each other and life in general with kindness, understanding, respect, and experiencing the awe of the miracle that we are, at this very moment, alive!
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Award-winning author Nancy Kilpatrick has published 18 novels, over 225 short stories, 7 collections of her stories, 1 non-fiction book (The Goth Bible) and has edited 15 anthologies. She writes mainly dark fantasy, horror, mysteries and erotica, and is currently working on two new novels. Current work appears in Searchers After Horror; The Darke Phantastique; Zombie Apoclaypse: Endgame!; and the upcoming Blood Sisters: Vampire Stories by Women; Innsmouth Nightmares; The Madness of Cthulhu 2; Dreams of the Witch House: Female Voices of Lovecraftian Horror; Stone Skin Bestiary. Nancy co-edited with David Morrell the horror/dark fantasy anthology Tesseracts Thirteen. She is the editor of Evolve: Vampire Stories of the New Undead, Evolve Two: Vampire Stories of the Future Undead, and Danse Macabre: Close Encounters with the Reaper. Her next anthology nEvermore! Tales of Murder, Mystery and the Macabre will be out in the fall of 2015.
Nancy won the Arthur Ellis Award for best mystery story, has been a Bram Stoker finalist three times and a finalist for the Aurora Award five times. Danse Macabre won the Best Anthology of the Year from the Paris Book Festival, and Nancy's short fiction collection Vampyric Variations won silver in the horror catagory of the ForeWord Reviewers Book of the Year Awards.
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