Can’t-Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted over at Wishful Endings to spotlight and discuss the books we’re excited about but haven’t yet read. Most of the time they’re books that have yet to be released, but not always. It’s based on the Waiting on Wednesday meme, which was originally hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine.
This week my Can’t-Wait-For Book is Queer Little Nightmares ed by David Ly & Daniel Zomparelli!Queer Little Nightmares: An Anthology of Monstrous Fiction and Poetry by David Ly, Daniel Zomparelli, Kai Cheng Thom, Amber Dawn, Hiromi Goto, David Demchuk, jaye simpson, Eddy Boudel Tan
Genres: Fantasy, Contemporary or Urban Fantasy
Representation: Queer MCs
The fiction and poetry of Queer Little Nightmares reimagines monsters old and new through a queer lens, subverting the horror gaze to celebrate ideas and identities canonically feared in monster lit. Throughout history, monsters have appeared in popular culture as stand-ins for the non-conforming, the marginalized of society. Pushed into the shadows as objects of fear, revulsion, and hostility, these characters have long conjured fascination and self-identification in the LGBTQ+ community, and over time, monsters have become queer icons.
In Queer Little Nightmares, creatures of myth and folklore seek belonging and intimate connection, cryptids challenge their outcast status, and classic movie monsters explore the experience of coming into queerness. The characters in these stories and poems - the Minotaur camouflaged in a crowd of cosplayers, a pubescent werewolf, a Hindu revenant waiting to reunite with her lover, a tender-hearted kaiju, a lagoon creature aching for the swimmers above him, a ghost of Pride past - relish their new sparkle in the spotlight. Pushing against tropes that have historically been used to demonize, the queer creators of this collection instead ask: What does it mean to be (and to love) a monster?
Contributors include Amber Dawn, David Demchuk, Hiromi Goto, jaye simpson, Eddy Boudel Tan, and Kai Cheng Thom.
I’m very picky when it comes to short story collections, but how could I resist an anthology that’s all about queering cryptids?!
I suspect the idea behind this collection might have its beginnings in the utterly delightful claiming of the Babadook by the queer community – not that that that was the first time queerness and monsters have been aligned, or, even better, reappropriated. Queer Little Nightmares is just the latest in a deeply satisfying tradition of queers going ‘sorry-not-sorry, these are ours now!’ when it comes to beasties.
I am extremely here for it.