Holly Newstein’s story, “Delice,” may not have shotguns and brains, but it will give you the heebie-jeebies all the same. Set in old New Orleans, a young slave girl named Delice awakens unexpectedly in the home of a magic-wielding priestess, but something doesn’t feel quite right.
This is one of my absolute favorite stories in this anthology, and when you read it, you’ll instantly see why. Vividly dark and beautiful like a New Orleans twilight, “Delice” is a fearsome reminder that revenge is best served cold…and preferably extracted from a tomb.
Prepare yourself for the coming apocalypse and save yourself a copy of Zombies: More Recent Dead before it’s released in September! You can pre-order a copy from Barnes & Noble, Powell’s Books, IndieBound, or Amazon.
1. The Writing Question: Do you tend to plan your stories before you write them, or do you write and just see what you discover in the process?
I definitely have to plan my stories before I start writing. I like to have a “road map” so I can see where the story is going to go. But – depending on what comes to me as I write, or how the characters develop, I am perfectly willing to take detours, or change direction completely. If I start with no plan at all, perhaps just a sketch of an idea, more often than not I wind up painting myself into a corner.
2. The Zombie Question: What enticed you to writing this zombie story?
I was doing some research for an entirely different story, and came across the story of a doctor in early nineteenth-century New Orleans that performed horrific medical experiments on his slaves. Even at the height of slavery, in the deep South, the city was outraged by his cruelty and he had to hightail it back to Paris. I thought he and his wife deserved a taste of their own medicine :-)
3. The Random Question: What are you reading currently?
I am reading Joe Lansdale’s COLD IN JULY, and plan to see the movie after I finish it. I love Joe’s ability to pull you into the story and fully engage you with his characters. Every time I read a Lansdale book, I have trouble putting it down, and the characters stay with me. He is definitely one of the most underrated American writers working today.
Holly Newstein’s short fiction has appeared in Cemetery Dance magazine and the anthologies Borderlands 5, The New Dead, In Laymon’s Terms, Epitaphs: The Journal of the New England Horror Writers Association, and Evil Jester Digest, Volume 2. Her collaboration with Rick Hautala, “Trapper Boy” appeared in anthology Dark Duets, edited by Christopher Golden (Harper Voyager, 2014. Her story “Eight Minutes” was part of Anthology II (The Four Horsemen Press, 2013). She was the featured author in the June 2014 edition of LampLight Magazine, with her story “Shadows and Light.” She is also the coauthor of the novels Ashes and The Epicure with Ralph W. Bieber, published originally under the pen name H. R. Howland. She lives in Maine with her dogs, Keira and Remy.