A Black History Horror First

Rather than doing my usual profile of an African-American who made some kind of contribution to horror cinema, I thought I’d do something a little different this year. Instead, I’m going to highlight the (alleged) first-ever collection of short horror fiction by African-American authors.

First published in 2004, Dark Dreams: A Collection of Horror and Suspense by Black Writers, is an anthology of 20 tales of terror edited by Brandon Massey. From classic horror staples like ghosts and vampires to lesser known creatures of the night, “Dark Dreams” has them all. Interested parties can find previews of selected stories here. I particularly liked Steven Barnes and Tananarive Due’s “Danger Word,” a tale of survival in a zombie-infested world. In my opinion, the rich characterization and interesting twists would’ve made for a perfect episode of Masters of Horror. I’ll definitely have to dig up a copy of this sometime (as should you).

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