The Cemetery Dance Interview: The Haunting of Gwendolyn Kiste

banner graphic that says Cemetery Dance Interviews

Author Gwendolyn Kiste
Gwendolyn Kiste

Gwendolyn Kiste is a three-time Bram Stoker Award-winning author of The Haunting of VelkwoodThe Rust MaidensReluctant Mortals, and most recently, a short story called “Your Mother’s Love Is An Apocalypse” in the Mother Knows Best: Tales of Homemade Horror anthology, foreword by Sadie Hartmann, edited by Lindy Ryan. Kiste has also won the Lambda Literary Award and received the This is Horror award for Novel of the Year.

She doesn’t just tell any old ghost stories. Kiste’s books, like The Haunting of Velkwood, orbit themes of self-identity, complacency, and unbreakable bonds. To her, “Everyone’s life is like a haunted house.” Perhaps that’s why her books linger, giving readers a ghostly book hangover.

Kiste spoke to Cemetery Dance about The Haunting of Velkwood, gothic horror, themes of complacency and accountability in her latest novel, and, of course, ghost stories (her specialty).Continue Reading

Night Time Logic with Gwendolyn Kiste

Night Time Logic with Daniel Braum

“Ghost Stories. Interstitial Spaces. Crossing Over.”

Opposite of the “Day Time” part of a story, which is the part that deals with rules, linear logic, and things we consciously process, Night Time Logic is the part of a story that is felt but not consciously processed. 

photo of author Gwendolyn Kiste
Gwendolyn Kiste

Through in-depth conversation with authors this column explores the night time part of stories, the strange and uncanny in horror and dark fiction, and more.

While author Howard Waldrop coined the term, the phenomena is certainly on display in the work of British author Robert Aickman. Any of his books of stories are a fine starting place for those looking for recommendations to read what he called “strange tales.” My short story collection with Cemetery Dance is titled The Night Marchers and Other Strange Tales in homage to Aickman and his kind of stories. It can be found here

In March 2024 I spoke with Gwendolyn Kiste about her new book, ghost stories, haunted houses, and much more. Our conversation is available on YouTube.

Kiste’s newest novel The Haunting of Velkwood is out now from Saga Press. We begin our conversation by talking about ghost stories…Continue Reading

Review: The Haunting of Velkwood by Gwendolyn Kiste

cover of The Haunting of VelkwoodThe Haunting of Velkwood by Gwendolyn Kiste
S&S/Saga Press (March 5, 2024)
256 pages; $26.99 hardcover; e-book $12.99
Reviewed by Dave Simms

Sometimes a ghost story breaks through the confines of the tried and true and creates something different. Something unique. Something both beautiful and painful. 2024 is turning out to be an incredible year for dark fiction, and Gwendolyn Kiste just raised the bar for everyone with The Haunting of Velkwood, a novel that redefines the subgenre in the best way possible. It breaks and rewrites the rules that Stephen King, Richard Matheson and ,of course, Shirley Jackson, wrote. For those unfamiliar with Kiste’s work, this would be a fine place to begin.Continue Reading