Alfred Edgar Coppard (4 January 1878 –13 January 1957) was an English writer and poet, noted for his influence on the short story form.
Coppard was born the son of a tailor and a housemaid in Folkestone, and had little formal education.Coppard grew up in difficult, poverty-stricken circumstances; he later described his childhood as "shockingly poor" and Frank O'Connor described Coppard's early life as "cruel". He left school at the age of nine to work as an errand boy for a Jewish trouser maker in Whitechapel during the period of the Jack the Ripper murders.
In the early 1920s, and still unpublished, he was in Oxford and a leading light of a literary group, the New Elizabethans, who met in a pub to read Elizabethan drama. W. B. Yeats sometimes attended the meetings. At this period he met Richard Hughesand Edgell Rickword, amongst others.
Coppard was a member of the Independent Labour Party for a period. [ dubious ], favourably compared to that of H. E. Bates. Coppard's work enjoyed a surge in popularity in the United States after his Selected Tales was chosen as a selection by the Book of the Month Club.Coppard's fiction was influenced by Thomas Hardy and, on its initial publication
In the profile in Twentieth Century Authors, Coppard lists Abraham Lincoln as the politician he most admired.Coppard also listed Sterne, Dickens, James, Hardy, Shaw, Chekhov and Joyce as authors he valued; conversely, he expressed a dislike for the works of D. H. Lawrence, T. E. Lawrence, and Rudyard Kipling.
Some of Coppard's collections, such as Adam and Eve and Pinch Me and Fearful Pleasures, contain stories with fantastic elements, either of supernatural horror or allegorical fantasy.
In Nancy Cunard's 1937 book Authors take Sides on the Spanish War, Coppard took the side of the Republicans.
A.E. Coppard was the uncle of George Coppard, a British soldier who served with the Machine Gun Corps during World War I, known for his memoirs With A Machine Gun to Cambrai.
Coppard's short stories were praised by Ford Madox Ford and Frank O'Connor.Coppard's book Nixey's Harlequin received good reviews from L. A. G. Strong, Gerald Bullett, and The Times Literary Supplement (which praised Coppard's "brilliant virtuosity as a pure spinner of tales"). Coppard's supernatural fiction was admired by Algernon Blackwood. Brian Stableford argues that Coppard's fantasy has a similar style to that of Walter de la Mare and that "many of his mercurial and oddly plaintive fantasies are deeply disturbing".
(Coppard was one of the contributors to this book; the others were Seán Ó Faoláin, Elizabeth Bowen, John Van Druten, Gladys Bronwyn Stern, Ronald Fraser, Malachi Whitaker, Norah Hoult and Hamish Maclaren.)
Clark Ashton Smith was an American writer and artist. He achieved early local recognition, largely through the enthusiasm of George Sterling, for traditional verse in the vein of Swinburne. As a poet, Smith is grouped with the West Coast Romantics alongside Joaquin Miller, Sterling, and Nora May French and remembered as "The Last of the Great Romantics" and "The Bard of Auburn". Smith's work was praised by his contemporaries. H. P. Lovecraft stated that "in sheer daemonic strangeness and fertility of conception, Clark Ashton Smith is perhaps unexcelled", and Ray Bradbury said that Smith "filled my mind with incredible worlds, impossibly beautiful cities, and still more fantastic creatures".
Horror is the one of the largest genres of speculative fiction which is intended to frighten, scare, or disgust. Literary historian J. A. Cuddon defined the horror story as "a piece of fiction in prose of variable length... which shocks, or even frightens the reader, or perhaps induces a feeling of repulsion or loathing". Horror intends to create an eerie and frightening atmosphere for the reader. Horror is often divided into the psychological horror and supernatural horror sub-genres. Often the central menace of a work of horror fiction can be interpreted as a metaphor for the larger fears of a society. Prevalent elements include ghosts, demons, vampires, werewolves, ghouls, the Devil, witches, monsters, dystopian and apocalyptic worlds, serial killers, cannibalism, psychopaths, cults, dark magic, Satanism, the macabre, gore, and torture.
Arkham House is an American publishing house specializing in weird fiction. It was founded in Sauk City, Wisconsin in 1939 by August Derleth and Donald Wandrei to preserve in hardcover the best fiction of H. P. Lovecraft. The company's name is derived from Lovecraft's fictional New England city, Arkham. Arkham House editions are noted for the quality of their printing and binding. The colophon for Arkham House was designed by Frank Utpatel.
Algernon Henry Blackwood, CBE was an English broadcasting narrator, journalist, novelist and short story writer, and among the most prolific ghost story writers in the history of the genre. The literary critic S. T. Joshi stated, "His work is more consistently meritorious than any weird writer's except Dunsany's." and that his short story collection Incredible Adventures (1914) "may be the premier weird collection of this or any other century".
Robert William Chambers was an American artist and fiction writer, best known for his book of short stories titled The King in Yellow, published in 1895.
Walter John de la Mare was an English poet, short story writer, and novelist. He is probably best remembered for his works for children, for his poem "The Listeners", and for a highly acclaimed selection of subtle psychological horror stories, amongst them "Seaton's Aunt" and "All Hallows".
Weird fiction is a subgenre of speculative fiction originating in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Weird fiction either eschews or radically reinterprets ghosts, vampires, werewolves, and other traditional antagonists of supernatural horror fiction. Writers on the subject of weird fiction, such as China Miéville, sometimes use "the tentacle" to represent this type of writing. The tentacle is a limb-type absent from most of the monsters of European folklore and gothic fiction, but often attached to the monstrous creatures created by weird fiction writers, such as William Hope Hodgson, M. R. James, and H. P. Lovecraft. Weird fiction often attempts to inspire awe as well as fear in response to its fictional creations, causing commentators like Miéville to paraphrase Goethe in saying that weird fiction evokes a sense of the numinous. Although "weird fiction" has been chiefly used as a historical description for works through the 1930s, it experienced a resurgence in the 1980s and 1990s, under the labels of New Weird and Slipstream, which continues into the 21st century.
George Oliver Onions, who published under the name Oliver Onions, was an English writer of short stories and over 40 novels. He wrote in various genres, but is perhaps best remembered for his ghost stories, notably the collection Widdershins and the widely anthologized novella "The Beckoning Fair One". He was married to the novelist Berta Ruck.
Fantasy literature is literature set in an imaginary universe, often but not always without any locations, events, or people from the real world. Magic, the supernatural and magical creatures are common in many of these imaginary worlds. Fantasy literature may be directed at both children and adults.
Louis Golding was an English writer, very famous in his time especially for his novels, though he is now largely neglected; he wrote also short stories, essays, fantasies, travel books and poetry.
Dark fantasy is a subgenre of fantasy literary, artistic, and cinematic works that incorporate disturbing and frightening themes of fantasy. It often combines fantasy with elements of horror or has a gloomy dark tone or a sense of horror and dread.
Gerald William Bullett was a British man of letters. He was known as a novelist, essayist, short story writer, critic and poet. He wrote both supernatural fiction and some children's literature. A few of his books were published under the pseudonym Sebastian Fox.
Elements of the supernatural and the fantastic were an element of literature from its beginning. The modern genre is distinguished from tales and folklore which contain fantastic elements, first by the acknowledged fictitious nature of the work, and second by the naming of an author. Works in which the marvels were not necessarily believed, or only half-believed, such as the European romances of chivalry and the tales of the Arabian Nights, slowly evolved into works with such traits. Authors like George MacDonald created the first explicitly fantastic works.
David Henry Keller was an American writer who worked for pulp magazines in the mid-twentieth century, in the science fiction, fantasy and horror genres. Considered to be "one of the most conceptually sophisticated" science fiction writers of his time, he was the first psychiatrist to write for the genre, and was most often published as David H. Keller, MD. He was also known by the pseudonyms Monk Smith, Matthew Smith, Amy Worth, Henry Cecil, Cecilia Henry, and Jacobus Hubelaire.
Jessica Amanda Salmonson is an American author and editor of fantasy and horror fiction and poetry. She lives on Puget Sound with her partner, artist and editor Rhonda Boothe.
Henry St. Clair Whitehead was an American Episcopal minister and author of horror and fantasy fiction.
Michael Raymond Donald Ashley is a British bibliographer, author and editor of science fiction, mystery, and fantasy.
The Twilight of the Gods and Other Tales is a collection of fantasy short stories by Richard Garnett, generally considered a classic in the genre. Its title notwithstanding, the collection "has nothing to do with the Norse gods—although it draws upon everything else, from Arabic legends and Chinese fairy tales to Roman history and Greek mythology." The title story actually concerns the release of Prometheus, upon the ultimate eclipse of Greek paganism by Christianity, from the torture to which he was sentenced by Zeus.
The conte cruel is, as The A to Z of Fantasy Literature by Brian Stableford states, a "short-story genre that takes its name from an 1883 collection by Villiers de l'Isle-Adam", although previous examples had been provided by such writers as Edgar Allan Poe. Some critics use the label to refer only to non-supernatural horror stories, especially those that have nasty climactic twists, but it is applicable to any story whose conclusion exploits the cruel aspects of the 'irony of fate.' The collection from which the short-story genre of the conte cruel takes its name is Contes cruels by Villiers de l'Isle-Adam. Also taking its name from this collection is Contes cruels, a two-volume set of about 150 tales and short stories by the 19th-century French writer Octave Mirbeau, collected and edited by Pierre Michel and Jean-François Nivet and published in two volumes in 1990 by Librairie Séguier.
The Best of Edmond Hamilton is a collection of science fiction short stories by American author Edmond Hamilton, edited by his wife and fellow science fiction writer Leigh Brackett. It was first published in hardback by Nelson Doubleday in April 1977 and in paperback by Ballantine Books in August of the same year as a volume in its Classic Library of Science Fiction. The book was reissued in trade paperback and ebook editions by Phoenix Pick in November 2010. It has also been translated into German.