My half of “The Stairway In The Crypt” – a collaborative short story with Wilum Pugmire

Today I did a final revision of my half of the short story “The Stairway In The Crypt.” It’s an “expanded beginning” that tells what happened before the story that Wilum Hopfrog Pugmire wrote. It was a challenge to imagine how the characters got where they are when his story starts, their history and relationships, the back story that leads inevitably to the conclusion of Wilum’s story. Loads of fun. Plus I crammed in themes from several Poe pieces and at least one Lovecraft story (much of this suggested by Wilum, but I found other bits on my own that blended in well with the elements he had selected.) Next up, I’ll be expanding a story Wilum wrote about “Pickman in Dreamland” into a novellette — that’s not the title. So I need to reread HPL’s book “The Dream quest of Unknown Kadath” which I last read decades ago. Luckily, I have the old Ballantine Books Adult Fantasy paperback with Lin Carter’s intro and postscript. Whoopee! Both of these collaborations are for our book “Spectres of Lovecraftian Horror” which Dark Renaissance Books will publish about a year from now.


About David Barker

David Barker is the author of two works of weird horror fiction written in collaboration with W. H. Pugmire: The Revenant of Rebecca Pascal and In the Gulfs of Dream & Other Lovecraftian Tales (both books were published by the now defunct Dark Renaissance Books, but copies are still available from Dark Regions Press.) Barker and Pugmire also collaborated on a Lovecraftian horror novel, Witches In Dreamland, which will be published by Hippocampus Press, possibly in late 2017. Recently, his stories and poems have appeared in Fungi, Cyaegha, Spectral Realms, The Art Mephitic, The Audient Void, The Indiscriminate Mixture and on He has a short story in the weird fiction anthology, Nightmare's Realm, edited by S. T. Joshi and published in 2017 by Dark Regions Press. He also has published several works of horror and bizarro fiction as Kindle ebooks, including the bizarro zombie novel Dead Guys in Packards. Together with Jordan Hofer, David Barker has written two nonfiction books about UFOs and alien abduction: Little Gray Bastards (published in 2016 by Schiffer Publishing) and Unidentifiable Flying Objects (due in Fall 2017 from Schiffer.)
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