Death… Just the word can be a trigger for gut-wrenching fear. The kind of fear in which the heart pounds, cold sweat runs down to burn your eyes, and fingers tremble with a loss of strength. What’s the worst that can happen to someone? Death? Death will happen to all of us. From the moment of conception, the cosmic countdown begins with each moment bringing us closer to our demise. Volumes upon volumes have been written about what happens after death. Theories about what happens to us, where we go, what we can become, or what we transcend are endless, and can be found everywhere in the world at every time period. Some are lovely tales like when the dog goes to the big farm and can run and run and play every day. Others are the nice comforting stories about the “better place.” Some theories even tout a place filled with virgins-how is that a good thing? Yet a phrase keeps jumping out at me- a fate worse than death. Hmmmm. What would a fate worse than death look like? There’s the inspiration for Charon Coin’s newest anthology, Paying the Ferryman.
Paying the Ferryman is an anthology exploring just that topic-after death horror. Got an idea of a fate worse than death? Great write it up and submit it. Check out the guidelines for submissions.
All of the stories in Paying the Ferryman will take place after the main character’s death. The possibilities for thrilling stories of horror are infinite. Maybe they become monsters: vampires, zombies and ghosts. Oh my! Maybe they are trying to get across the River Styx and can’t, or trying to get away from the Ferryman, but there is never escape. Would they travel to an alternate realm or plane of existence only to find Hell is worse than they could have possibly imagined. Do they atone for their lives and live the worse moments over and over again. Maybe being shown the life they could have had was just out of their reach if this decision or that choice had been different. Could they be desperately trying to get a message to people they left behind? Maybe they are waiting in line to be reborn-hopefully they didn’t have to take a number, because really, Hell on Earth is waiting at the DMV. Whatever the case, death is just the beginning of the story.
Personally I am very excited to start reading the stories coming in for this anthology. The possibilities for storylines can vary so much. Someone may do a monster theme, some a trial, there may be religious connotations or even ghosts. I love that the only limits are the mind and that the character has to be dead. So get creative and have some fun.
Submissions are now open for Paying the Ferryman but don’t make the Ferryman wait too long, submissions close on September 1, 2014.
Paying the Ferryman – Editor