A Few Words About the StarkLight Four Anthology
Virginia Carraway Stark
The StarkLight Anthologies began nearly five years ago along with the inception of the press. Originally it was going to be just me and my husband, writing short stories together and putting them into a bound format for others to enjoy. When we told our friends about our venture they quickly jumped on board and shared their creativity and energy in with the mix.
We make a lot of Anthologies at StarkLight. Tales from Space 1 will be shortly followed by Tales from Space 2; we have holiday anthologies and anthologies about game-changing women and men. We have Steampunk Anthologies and anthologies on the Seasonal Blue Moon. This year, we added seasonal anthologies as well.
But StarkLight Anthologies, the official ones, they are different. Since they were originally anthologies meant just for us. each author we include in the StarkLight Volumes is an added jewel in the royalty of our Antholgies. Don’t expect there to be equal numbers of stories in these ones- they were our first inception and when someone is included, it’s something special.
There’s something special about these books that haunts us. Even as we release StarkLight Four I am reminded that according to our original schedule. we should be releasing Starklight Five. Instead the announcement entries to number five will be made in late March 2016 (this year). There’s something that makes these books difficult to make, I mean really difficult. They are like working on the Poltergeist movie. Terrible things happen, blood is shed, people die.
Let me break it down for you:
StarkLight 1: Originally released in early 2013. The release of this anthology was stalled by a mentally unbalanced stalker who followed us from city to city. Ironically, she also has a story in this first anthology. She was unbalanced but there was a little girl underneath who was ‘our biggest fan’ and there was a big girl above who was like Annie Wilkes in Misery. Dealing with this was a full time job on top of working and starting a press. It should have been released in 2012 but was delayed until 2013.
StarkLight 2: Return of the stalker. Our own private ‘Annie Wilkes’ killed herself using a method that I wrote about in StarkLight 1. We yanked StarkLight 1 from the shelves out of sensitivity and shock. We have just re-released StarkLight Vol. 1 again this year. Our biggest fan had told me before she killed herself that she was either going to kill me or herself. She decided on herself in the end, my guardian angel gets paid ovetime… again.
StarkLight 3: I had emergency surgery as I nearly bled to death shortly after admissions for Starklight 3 closed. I lost my baby in a miscarriage. StarkLight 3 is dedicated to Tony’s and my daughter, Vanessa Mara Stark. We will never hold her but she will always be our little butterfly.
I lost over four units of blood and a gold star for my guardian angel for getting me through the surgery and botched blood transfusion that followed.
StarkLight 4: I was run over by a taxi while crossing at a well-lit crosswalk. This is getting ridiculous. Remarkably, even though the taxi was speeding and he didn’t hit the breaks for over a block I walk away from this horrific accident and am told that my hair and makeup still looked good when I post pictures of myself in the neckbrace on Facebook. Does my guardian angel look out for my hair and makeup as well? Either way, I was scrambled but not dead, crippled or even had a broken bone from getting hit, and my hair was still fabulous. I attribute this to the classes I took in Russian Martial Arts that teach you to instinctively go limp when you are in a fight or a fall to avoid injury.
So as you read StarkLight 4, enjoy the stories and the tears, sweat and blood that have gone into the making of them. To us, they are just stories, Stories we love to write, love to read, love to share but to publish they are like climbing Everest everytime.
Enjoy the stories and look forward to StarkLight 5. Maybe my contribution to that one will be the Stranger than Fiction tale of the pain and horror that goes into each anthology.
Thank you to all our long-suffering authors who have waited patiently and with understanding while we battle to publish these Speculative Fiction Anthologies that have no great meaning in the great scheme of things and should really start to be easier to publish.
An extra thank you to my guardian angel. I’m pretty sure when I was in the hospital I saw him standing in the corner. I think he told me his name but he told me I wouldn’t remember it and he was right about that, too. I was pretty high on pain and adrenalin and the euphoria of being alive so who knows what I saw that night.
I like to think my incredibly competent guardian angel has our Vanessa with him and believe that one day we will all have coffee and laugh about this (and hopefully I will live long enough that Vanessa will be old enough to drink coffee by that time).
Have a good read and don’t forget to leave a review for us! We’re on Amazon and Goodreads and we would love to hear from you.
–Virginia Carraway Stark,
March 20, 2016.
Links to all anthologies will be added shortly 🙂