I have two short stories in Dan Alatorre’s latest horror anthology, Dark Visions: An anthology of 34 horror stories from 27 authors.
Writing stories in the horror and supernatural genre was a big move for me away from my existing children’s book and poetry. I have been following the progress of this book on Amazon with great interest and am delighted to see that it achieved number 1 in its category during the first week of its release. I have also been reading the reviews of the book and am thrilled that a few of them specifically mention one or the other of my stories, or both.
The first tale, The Willow Tree, was my first attempt at a short story in this genre and is a psychological thriller. My son suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder (“PTSD”) and obsessive-compulsive disorder (“OCD”). He is under the care of a psychiatrist and a psychologist and he has done very well in getting his symptoms and anxiety under control. Some of the compulsions that may develop in OCD sufferers are very invasive to the family and can cause a lot of stress and strife among family members. It was not a big stretch of the imagination for me to develop a character who comes from a family where the parents are not able to cope with the strain. This story is a fictionalization of what could potentially happen to an extraordinarily clever individual with PTSD and OCD who is abused by the people he trusts and depends on the most in life.
One reviewer described this story as “dark and twisted, but what makes it even more frightening is that it’s not entirely out of the realm of possibility.”
The Haunting of William is a supernatural short story. The idea for this story came from one of Sue Vincent’s Thursday photo prompts entitled Turrets. I had been doing some research on ghosts in the Suffolk area and I came across a few lines about a chambermaid working in a local inn in the late 1800s. Matilda is said to have committed suicide after her lover leaves her, pregnant and unmarried.
I read Charli Mills’ The Congress of Rough Writers: Flash Fiction Anthology Vol. 1 earlier this year. As well as showcasing numerous lovely pieces of 99-word flash fiction by various writers, this anthology included a section which illustrated how selected writers had developed their short pieces of inspiration into longer short stories. This is the methodology I applied in developing my story from a short piece into a much longer and more interesting story.
I had to do a fair amount of research to write The Haunting of William as I needed to ensure that the clothing, jobs and attitudes of the era, for each social and economic class of character included in the tale, was historically factual. The different roles and statuses of housekeepers, butlers, horse grooms, chambermaids and kitchen maids in an English manner house needed to ring true. I also had to research the consequences for unmarried, working women who became pregnant.
From the creators of the #1 bestseller The Box Under The Bed horror anthology comes Dark Visions, 34 horror stories from 27 authors. Tag along on a con man’s New Orleans vacation where he gets more than he bargained for from a mysterious voodoo shop. A collection of family photos reveals an eerie secret about a beloved grandmother’s true nature. A child’s horrifying memories haunt her into adulthood. A new camp counselor learns that the camp has secrets she might not live to reveal. Edited and compiled by Amazon bestselling author Dan Alatorre, this anthology of horror brings together the minds and pens of more than two dozen amazing authors. Dark Visions will take you into the realm of the eerie and macabre, with thrills and chills from: bestselling author Dan Alatorre (The Navigators) bestselling author Jenifer Ruff (Everett), bestselling author Allison Maruska (The Fourth Descendant), bestselling author J. A. Allen, award-winning author MD Walker, award-winning author Juliet Nubel, award-winning author Dabney Farmer, award-winning author Sharon E. Cathcart, award-winning author Heather Kindt, award-winning author Bonnie Lyons, award-winning author Sharon Connell, award-winning author Geoff LePard, award-winning author Anne Marie Andrus, award-winning author Christine Valentor, award-winning author BA Helberg, Ernesto San Giacomo, Alana Turner, Nick Vossen, award-winning author Robbie Cheadle, Betty Valentine, award-winning author Frank Parker, award-winning author Bonnie Lyons, award-winning author Lori Micken, Chuck Jackson, Ellen Best, Victoria Clapton, Perfect for Halloween or any time, these stories will make you think twice before spending the night alone, planting a tree in your garden, or even visiting your mother. Consider yourselves warned. NOTE: American and British spelling inside. Of the 34 stories contained in this anthology, almost all are not part of any larger work. Many of these stories are from new authors being published for first time, and this is their sole published work.
About the author
Robbie, short for Roberta, is an author with five published children’s picture books in the Sir Chocolate books series for children aged 2 to 9 years old (co-authored with her son, Michael Cheadle), one published middle grade book in the Silly Willy series and one published preteen/young adult fictionalised biography about her mother’s life as a young girl growing up in an English town in Suffolk during World War II called While the Bombs Fell (co-authored with her mother, Elsie Hancy Eaton). All of Robbie’s children’s book are written under Robbie Cheadle and are published by TSL Publications. Robbie has recently branched into adult horror and supernatural writing and, in order to clearly differentiate her children’s books from her adult writing, these will be published under Roberta Eaton Cheadle. Robbie has two short stories in the horror/supernatural genre included in Dark Visions, a collection of 34 short stories by 27 different authors and edited by award winning author, Dan Alatorre. These short stories are published under Robbie Cheadle.
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