“Love is a spectre which haunts us all…”
Hope Nicholson (The Secret Loves of Geek Girls) and S.M. Beiko (Scion of the Fox) launched a Kickstarter campaign for the Gothic Tales of Haunted Love: A Comics Anthology. The Anthology – which the two are editing – is a 200 page full-color gothic romance comic series featuring ghostly and dangerous love stories from the comic world’s finest writers and artists. Here is a little more information about the anthology:
In 1950s Vietnam, a lost soul comes to the aid of a farmer’s field under attack. In Victorian Boston, a new governess comes to care for the rogueish widower of a stately manor and his charming brood of children. A fashion journalist lands the interview of her dreams – but it unearths deadly secrets of Taiwan’s most popular fashion designer. A Sioux elder heals a recently deceased woman who sets out to recover her lost love. And a young bride spins a story of murder and deceit that paints her husband as a killer . . . but is there any truth to her tale?
Featuring 22 original stories from some of modern comics’ finest talent, Gothic Tales of Haunted Love collects fragments of lovers torn apart, ghostly revenge, and horrific deeds, in the vein of 1970s gothic romance comics such as Haunted Love, Ghostly Tales, Dark Mansion of Forbidden Love, and Gothic Romances. Discover a diverse range of heroes and villains, spirits and monsters, in a modern reimagining that will leave your heart pounding and broken in the same seductive breath.
The Kickstarter campaign launched this weekend and is looking to hit a 21K goal. The anthology will feature new stories and art from Kitty Curran, Larissa Zageris, Sarah Searle, Katie West, Ray Fawkes, a reprint of a story Sanho Kim, and prints by James Hill and Lou Marchetti – to name a few!
Why this genre you may be asking. According to the Kickstarter campaign page:
The general gothic romance genre has been alive and well in literature, film, and television beyond cultural memory. Why? Well, maybe we like to be scared and seduced at the same time (safely distanced by the page!). The genre though is also full of tired tropes–blonde women shrieking across the thunderstorm-streaked moors of England, anyone?–and while we love the images gothic romance conjures, there could be so much more to it.
When reviewing the 150+ fervent submissions we received for this anthology, we selected our table of contents with an eye for not only subverting stereotypes, but reimagining them with claws sunk deep. While you’ll still find swooners and ghosts and sprawling manses in these pages, you’ll also find heroines falling in love with ghostly heiresses, creeping dread in Jamaica, a helpful spirit in 1950s Vietnam, desperation in 1890s gold-rush Yukon, Mexican and Japanese folklore, fashion and murder in 1970s Taiwan, and a clear demonstration that ghostly love isn’t limited to white girls in white dresses and brooding lords in Victorian England.
Oh my, I am picking up what you are putting down! So much imagery is running through my mind right now. Gothic romance is a genre we sometimes forget about but when you pull back it has had so much effect on the media we consume, cough cough – True Blood, Penny Dreadful, Sleepy Hallow (pretty much any fantasy TV show or movie has been based off of some kind of gothic romance literature). But what this anthology is setting out to do is switch up and reimagine stories fitting into our modern society!
I was able to chat a bit with Hope about why she was so passionate about this project:
When I discovered the short-lived gothic romance genre that for comics had it’s heyday in the 1970s, I was instantly hooked. It combined all the best elements of romance comics: the emotional intrigue, the campiness, the perplexed heroines, but without as many of its tropes. Lovers were revealed to be demons and monsters, and ghostly loves were commonplace. I loved it. But the majority of the stories featured just white characters, and all of the romances were straight. This collection pulls creators from a global network focusing on stories and characters exploring horror and love in different ways.
If this is something you are interested in getting your hands on you can make a donation starting at $5 and all the way up to 200 and beyond! Each level gets different perks and the campaign runs until September 13th!
To check out and donate to this Kickstarter campaign click HERE!
Gothic Tales of Haunted Love: A Comics Anthology is slated for a January 2018 release!