East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai


Leiber where you least expected him

I was pleasantly surprised in discovering that the latest issue of Hellebore, the magazine of folklore and ancient terrors, features a lengthy and quite interesting piece on Fritz Leiber’s Conjure Wife, its real-world influences and its long-lasting legacy. The article was penned by Rebecca Baumann.

And I already like this magazine A LOT, but now I have even more reasons to recommend it.
I mean, Fritz Leiber, right?
What else do you need?

Hellebore magazine #3, the Malefice Issue, can be ordered directly from the mag’s website. It’s money well spent.
(and no, I don’t get a commission, and they don’t publish my stuff – but it’s a really great read, a beautiful addition to your shelf, and a magazine that deserves all the support it gets)


Hellebore ‘zine

This morning the postman balanced the envelope containing the digest-sized second issue of Hellebore magazine on the top of my mailbox. I found it as I went out a moment before lunch, to see if the feral cats had come to pay a visit.

Featuring articles about the Great God Pan (the guy himself, not just the Machen novel), the Wild Hunt, and an interview with Alan Moore about folk horror, Hellebore #2 (the Wild Gods issue) is a fine selection of curious things and if you are interested in mythology and folklore, folk horror, fantasy and ancient traditions, you should probably check it out.

And as you are at it, maybe also check out the first issue (The Sacrifice Issue), about which I wrote in the past (I’m sure WordPress will place a link at the bottom).

The reason why I am writing this post is very self-serving – I love Hellebore, as it’s the kind of beautifully designed, slightly weird magazine one reads for fun and research. The magazine was planned to be a quarterly, but a short paragraph at the end of the editorial intro of Issue #2 is pretty clear – a small-scale endeavour, Hellebore might not survive the current recession. It would be really a pity – I want my magazine!

And so I am putting this post here – check out Hellebore, and think about buying a copy. Let’s help this strange, beautiful project stay afloat.

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What was I saying about horror?
Because, you see, the postman just delivered my copy of the first issue of Hellebore magazine, and I am revising today’s schedule because I want to dive in straight away. But while my tea is brewing, I may as well give you a quick overview of this new fine mag.

Hellebore is a “limited-run magazine” devoted to the scholarly study of folk horror. For the uninitiated folk horror is that preeminently British sub-genre of horror fiction that uses folk traditions as its main source of inspiration: think about movies like The Wicker Man (the old one, not the one with Nick Cage) or Blood on Satan’s Claw. The genre had its heyday in the mid ’70s, but has been going through a revival in the last few years.

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