Tag Archives: SSWA Press

Black Candies: Gross and Unlikeable contributors

Our women-only edition of our annual collection of dark fiction, literary horror, and art, Black Candies: Gross and Unlikeable, launches this week, on Black Friday (and you can pre-order it now here).

In a 2015 interview with Black Candies founding editor Ryan Bradford, we asked him about why women’s voices matter in horror:

I’ve found that women are often underrepresented in horror, and wanted to create a platform where they could not only have a voice, but be as gross, dark and unlikeable as they want. I still think there’s an attitude, even among the liberal literati, that can’t abide a woman writing ugly stories.

And lo, a theme was born: gross and unlikeable. Over the past year, guest editor Natanya Ann Pulley has carefully led us in the midwifery of putting together this collection of beautiful and powerful stories and art. Along every step of the way, all contributors have been women. Behold the line-up of incredible writers, artists, editors, and designers that comprise this killer book:

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Fiction by:

RACHEL MARSTON / LILY HOANG / MARY CROSBIE / RACHEL LEE TAYLOR / KAYLA MILLER / MARIE JOHNSON PARRISH / CAIT COLE / DANIELLE RENINO / JENNIFER D. CORLEY / BONNIE ALEXANDER / COLLEEN BURNER / JEANETTE SANCHEZ-IZENMAN / CHRISTINE HAMM / GABRIELLE JOY LESSANS / SUBASHINI NAVARATNAM / T.A. STANLEY / CLAIRE HERO / FLORENCE ANN MARLOWE / JESSICA LANAY / CHELSEA LAINE WELLS / JENNIFER MANALILI / HANNA TAWATER / MADELINE GOBBO / RACHEL BUSNARDO / JOANNA ROYE / CHRISTINA LYDIA / BRENDA SIECZKOWSKI

Art by:

CHRISTINE HAMM / MADELINE GOBBO / CARABELLA SANDS / RAYNA HERNANDEZ / CARRIE ANNE HUDSON / SARAH GIRDZIUS / MELISSA GUTIERREZ / CHRISTINA COLLINS / JULIA DIXON EVANS / KRISTY BLACKWELL / LAURIE NASICA / SOMARAMOS / MISANTHROPE / JOHANNA ROSS / VANESSA MARTINEZ / LAURA GWYNNE / VANESSA MARTINEZ / WILHELMINA BONES

Editorial staff:

GUEST EDITOR: NATANYA ANN PULLEY
EDITOR: JULIA DIXON EVANS
DESIGNER AND COVER ART: CAROLYN RAMOS
FOUNDING EDITOR: RYAN BRADFORD
PUBLISHER: SO SAY WE ALL

We can’t wait for you to get your eager little hands on this book. Black Friday. Here.

San Diego: come to our release party on December 8th.


If you like what we do at So Say We All, please consider becoming a supporting member. For as little as $5 per month you can support the work we do in finding the voices we don’t often hear from and helping them tell their stories, and tell them well.

Adrian Van Young on Black Candies: Gross and Unlikeable

New Orleans author Adrian Van Young, author of the novel Shadows in Summerland, and the short story collection The Man Who Noticed Everything, recently read at the very first installment of our literary reading series, The Foundry, in April. We loved having him in town and showing him off for you all, and now he is busy showing us off. Check out what Adrian has to say about Black Candies: Gross and Unlikeable, publishing next week, on Black Friday, November 25th.

Gross and Unlikeable is our collection of short fiction and art exclusively by women contributors. We are proud of and madly in love with this work, and hope you will be too.

“The writers in this anthology breathe life into characters and conflagrations that are frightening and fearful, cagey and forthright, familiar and unknowable, repulsive and endearing, vulnerable and indomitable, befuddling and unmistakable, gross and unlikeable, yes, i.e. human. Together, they churn up a vital miasma of horror’s sub-genres to create something heedless, fresh and lasting. Reading this book is like being drawn and quartered by a stampede of half-decayed, red-eyed horses.”

–Adrian Van Young, author of Shadows in Summerland

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We have never been drawn and quartered by a stampede of any horses, much less half-decayed, red-eyed ones, but we now know what Adrian thinks it feels like. We can’t wait to show you the way our authors take horror’s sub-genres and stand them on end in this beautiful volume. PRE ORDER IT NOW!

Coming Black Friday. We hope you’ve adjusted your Christmas lists accordingly because it’s time to get some gross and unlikeable stories by women out into the world.


Mark it as “WANT TO READ” on Goodreads and impress your friends with your incredible taste.

And come to our San Diego release party: https://www.facebook.com/events/1138153422920005/


If you like what we do at So Say We All, please consider becoming a supporting member for as little as $5 per month.

Baby’s First Pushcart Nominations

For the first time, So Say We All is proud and heart-bursty to announce the following nominations for the Pushcart Prize from all of our 2016 publications. The Pushcart Prize honors the best of the work coming out of small presses, and we hope they’re buckled up and ready for the envelope of amazing, bananas, and beautiful work coming from us.

And while it was nearly impossible to pick just six nominations from the vast volumes of amazing stories we’ve had the privilege to publish this year, here are our 2016 Pushcart Prize nominations:

From our anthology of veteran non-fiction, Incoming: Veteran Writers on Returning Home (March 2016)

  • Brooke King, “Redeployment Packing Checklist” (MEMOIR)
  • Benjamin Busch, “Home Invasion” (MEMOIR)

From our annual literary magazine, The Radvocate Issue 14 (September 2016)

  • Joe Baumann, “Shrinking” (FICTION)

From our women-only anthology of literary horror and dark fiction, Black Candies: Gross and Unlikeable (Forthcoming November 25th, 2016)

  • Madeline Gobbo, “The Other Half” (FICTION)
  • Chelsea Laine Wells, “Jack Sprat” (FICTION)
  • Joanna Roye, “Second Legs” (FICTION)

Congratulations and thank you and we love you to all our nominees. You’ve made this so year great for us. To get to just read your work has been fantastic, let alone getting to publish it ourselves. Thank you.

Brian Evenson on Black Candies: Gross and Unlikeable

We sent a copy of our forthcoming Black Candies: Gross and Unlikeable book to Brian Evenson, acclaimed literary horror author, and he had some very, very nice things to say. We can’t even begin to tell you how starstruck (and breathless) (and bleeding) we feel right now about this. Thank you, Brian!

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“I’ve long thought that the most interesting work being done in a genre is being done on its fringes, by the people who those at the center fail to acknowledge:  those marginalized writers haven’t drunk the Kool Aid yet.

Black Candies: Gross and Unlikeable is about what happens when women take over Horror, invert its tropes, turn them on their head, and make Horror do things that you didn’t know it could.

An important and razor-sharp anthology that will leave you breathless and bleeding.”

—Brian Evenson

Black Candies: Gross and Unlikeable is our women-only edition of our annual print anthology of literary horror and dark fiction. This book features 28 stories and accompanying art. All women contributors: writers, artists, editors, designers.

Available for pre-sale Monday, November 14th, 2016.

Publication date: BLACK FRIDAY, November 25th, 2016.

Add Gross and Unlikeable as “WANT TO READ” on Goodreads here.

Women. Horror. Breathless. Breathing.

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BRIAN EVENSON is the author of more than a dozen books of fiction, most recently the story collection A Collapse of Horses (Coffee House Press, 2015) and the critical book Ed Vs. Yummy Fur: Or What Happens When a Serial Comic Becomes a Graphic Novel (Uncivilized, 2014).  His collection Windeye (2012) and the novel Immobility (2012) were both finalists for the Shirley Jackson Award. His novel Last Days won the 2009 ALA-RUSA Award). His novel The Open Curtain (2004) was a finalist for an Edgar Award and an International Horror Guild Award.


If you like what we do at So Say We All and want us to keep doing more of it, please consider becoming a supporting member. Details here.

Black Candies: Gross and Unlikeable cover reveal!

Here it is. The gorgeous cover for the forthcoming edition of our anthology of literary horror and dark fiction by women, Black Candies: Gross and Unlikeable. Publication date: Black Friday, November 25th, 2016.

Women. Horror. Coming November 25th, 2016

Gross and unlikeable is reality. When women tackle the stories that are handed down to them or muck about in the narratives bodies share or live in the liminal as they do in this collection, they aren’t evoking a theme, but destroying the lie of women tamed, of women just so.

Cover design by Carolyn Ramos.

Black Friday. Get ready. This is gonna punch you right in the gut.

For advance review copy inquiries please contact Julia Evans at info@sosayweallonline.com


If you like what we do at So Say We All, please consider becoming a supporting member.

INCOMING: An Excerpt of Natalie Lovejoy’s “Two Roads”

Our anthology of true veteran literature, “Incoming: Veteran Writers on Coming Home” was published earlier this year. It’s a collection of real stories, written by veterans, in their own voices, on the theme of coming home. This is the book that launched a public radio show. Purchase copies on Amazon, tell your friends, tell your colleagues, tell your mom, tell your Goodreads friends. We hope you love it as much as we do.

Incoming cover

Contributor Natalie Lovejoy wrote an original musical, “Deployed,” while married to a soldier who was currently deployed in Iraq. But her story, “Two Roads” takes on what happens when somebody comes home.

One reader contacted us after reading Natalie’s piece, to say:

“…I’m sobbing and am having trouble stilling my breath to find my voice. I have never felt that anyone understood what it meant to be a military wife; and quite rightly so because no one in my immediate circle was. You have put all of those feelings into a few short pages. Thank you for writing. Thank you for understanding.”

–Jessica W

We were so glad to feature Natalie’s story, “Two Roads” in Incoming. Here’s a short excerpt:

The GPS says it’s only thirty-four miles until the beltway. We are sitting in one of our car-trip formations: His eyes locked forward, his back soldier-straight, his jaw tight, his right hand gripping the steering wheel instead of my hand. I sit cross-legged, with my body and eyes tilted toward the passenger window.

[…]

…I’d learned to keep my outbursts to myself — in fact, it was my patriotic duty to do so. Don’t tell him about your problems because it will upset him, and he needs to focus on the mission. It’s okay for you to be upset but nor for him to be. Because what he’s doing is important and what you’re doing is not. Because his life is important and yours is not. At least not as important as his. This is your role in life, and you  must accept it. You need to accept not mattering as much. But it’s really not so bad — you get a roof over your head, free dental cleanings, and tax-free shopping at the PX. Mattering is overrated. Calm down, woman, and treat yourself to a manicure.

Natalie’s piece is vulnerable, eye-opening, and brutally beautiful. Read the rest of her story, and many other stories on the theme of coming home, in a copy of Incoming. You can buy it from Amazon here.

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Natalie Lovejoy is a composer, lyricist, and bookwriter whose work as been performed at Lincoln Center, 54 Below, the Flea Theater, and The Duplex, to name a few. Her original musical, Deployed, which she began writing while married to a soldier deployed to Iraq with the 101st Airborne Division, premiered off-off Broadway at the Abingdon Theatre Company in November 2013 and played again at the Gene Frankel Theatre in January 2014 to sold-out audiences. She is currently collaborating on three new musicals and is listed in the director of musical theater writers at contemporarymusicaltheatre.com. Her education includes NYU Steinhardt (MM in Music Composition), Catholic University (BM in Musical Theater), the BMI Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Workshop, and the Johnny Mercer Musical Theatre Project at Northwestern University. She is a Professional Member of ASCAP and The Dramatist Guild. www.natalielovejoy.nyc

We are an Independent Bookstore!

Happy Independent Bookstore Day! Did you know we have our own indie bookstore? In addition to selling books at our shows and events, we also sell our titles online in our new online bookstore.

So Say We All Press is a very small and independent publisher, and we hope you’ll consider buying some of our fantastic books, non-fiction, fiction, poetry, art, everything. We love sharing stories with you.

Visit the bookstore.
12888542_10100501388360791_8754099073623122719_o(buy our books please and thank you)

Interview with Black Candies Guest Editor Natanya Ann Pulley

Our own Julia Dixon Evans recently chatted with the remarkable Natanya Ann Pulley, guest editor of the upcoming special issue of Black Candies, our literary journal of horror and dark fiction. It’s a women-identifying only issue, and the theme is “Gross and Unlikeable.

We asked Natanya about the things she loves in stories, what drives her, what it’s like to write and publish as a woman, and lots more.

My work has been called alienating before and we are always advised not to “alienate” our readers–which is a silly idea to me. I want to be an alien reader from time to time. Sure I read for pleasure and I do read to connect (or rather to see myself in something else), but I also read to enter new terrain and breathe a new air–to worry about my safety and sense of self among a strange or peculiar system of words, sounds, ideas, and bodies. I love confusion and anxiety in writing. I’m sick of understanding or at least recognizing my understanding of life in every little thing I read. It’s boring.

Go read the interview on our Black Candies website, and get to know our darling guest editor. We think she’s pretty great. The submission deadline for stories is April 30th. Send us your finest and grossest stuff.

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A glowing review of INCOMING from Red Bull Rising

INCOMING, our just-published collection of true veteran stories on the theme of coming home, was reviewed by Red Bull Rising.

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Exploring themes of home, homecoming, and finding one’s place in the world, the anthology “Incoming” hits a sweet spot on the terrain of contemporary veteran-voiced literature, and is certain to expand and enrich future conversations between civilian and military populations.

The review gives a glowing account of the book’s composition: its themes, its significance, and the variety of contributors.

There is, in short, something for everyone in this book: the profane, the sublime, and the mundane.

Thank you, everyone at Red Bull Rising, for the thoughtful read and kind, insightful words. Go read the review here, and then pick up your own copy of INCOMING.

This is clear-eyed. This is heart-felt. This is the real deal.

Incoming cover

“Miasma” by C.A. Schaefer now published online

Say hello to the new Black Candies website. Black Candies is our journal of literary horror and dark fiction, showcasing writing and art from both local and worldwide contributors.

As we approach the April 30th submission deadline for the women-identifying writers issue of Black Candies: “Gross and Unlikeable,” we are going to make select Black Candies stories available online.

To kick things off, take a look at C.A. Schaefer’s short story, “Miasma,” which was first published in Black Candies: See Through. You can learn more about See Through or purchase a copy in our book store here.

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Accompanying illustration by Carabella Sands

The little children call me The Beak Doctor, and squawk like birds around me. It is only play. But at my feet they throw flowers. They think it will keep them safe.

The beak is really a cone meant to hold clean scents: amber, camphor, myrrh.

Oh, I know how false miasma is. It is not bad air that carries the plague. I could laugh at the thought.

But they do not bring me to laugh. They bring to prod their clothes with my cane, to feel their pulse. They bring me to speak to the dying and the dead, to the children and wives and fathers.

(Read the rest here).

And while you’re there, poke around at the Black Candies website and learn more about submitting to the upcoming Gross and Unlikeable issue.