Trick or Treat! A Collection of Spooky Stories

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Created out of PPCo’s first ever short story contest, we have the honor of presenting the work of: PJ Devlin, Herta B. Feely, Troy D. Kurz, Samantha Powers, Courtney M. Privett, and Lucious Vaughn.


About the stories:

PJ Devlin, “The Last Night in October”: A man is rescued from a car wreck on Halloween night by a Rimbaud-quoting young hippie.

Herta B. Feely, “Welcome to America!”: In this memoir, a woman recalls arriving in the U.S. as a child—on Halloween.

Troy D. Kurz, “Drinking with Mr. Bone Crow”: A mysterious stranger arrives at the local pub, where a grieving man is trying to drown his sorrow.

Courtney M. Privett, “They”: The narrator desperately flees a relentless band of pursuers.

Samantha Powers, “Portrait of a Lover”: An art historian gets more than she bargained for when she buys a crate of 200-year-old paintings.

Lucious Vaughn, “The Big Goose Was as White as a Ghost”: A woman learns just how perilous it is to defy a magical goose.


Author Bios:

PJ Devlin was raised near the Wissahickon Creek in Flourtown, Pennsylvania, and currently lives in Fairfax County, Virginia. Following her career as fiscal manager for the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department, she received an MFA in creative writing from George Mason University, where she studied with Susan Shreve, Courtney Brkic, and Alan Cheuse. Her latest novel, Becoming Jonika, will be published in September—one year after her debut novel, Wissahickon Souls.

Herta B. Feely is an author and editor based in Washington, D.C. Her debut novel will be released in September 2016 by Upper Hand Press in the U.S. and Twenty7 Books in the U.K. Her fiction and essays have appeared in a number of literary journals (The Sun, Lullwater Review, The Griffin, Provincetown Arts, Big Muddy, and others) and anthologies (Confessions: Fact or Fiction? and Enhanced Gravity.) She has received the James Jones First Novel Fellowship, an Artist in Literature Fellowship from the D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities, and the American Independent Writers’ award for best published personal essay.

Troy D. Kurz is currently working on a novel and hopes to complete a series of short story collections featuring the strange things he sees in his mind so others can enjoy them, too. He works as an electrician at a community college in Virginia, has three grown sons, and lives in Spotsylvania County, Virginia, with his girlfriend and daughter, along with two dogs and a couple of cats. He is a fan of classic monster movies, modern horror, and weird fantasy. “Drinking with Mr. Bone Crow” is his first published short story.

Samantha Powers lived in the Washington, D.C., area for many years before moving to Vermont. Her romance novel—part of a series set in Washington—will be released in November by Possibilities Publishing Company. “Portrait of a Lover” is her first published short story.

Courtney M. Privett is the author of the epic fantasy Malora Octet. She spent her childhood in rural northeastern Michigan and graduated from the University of Missouri-Rolla (now Missouri University of Science and Technology) in 2005 with a degree in ceramic engineering. She lives in California with her husband, three young children, and two useless cats. In addition to being a writer, she is an obsessive crafter, a classical percussionist, a vegan cook, and a vivid dreamer who has both auditory-tactile synesthesia and narcolepsy.

Lucious Vaughn studied creative writing at the University of Florida and Southern Illinois University and earned a bachelor’s degree in radio/television. His stories have appeared in Southern Gothic Online and Prick of the Spindle. He lives in Jacksonville, Florida.