Mothers of the Roundtable Author Spotlight: Jonathan Louis Duckworth

May 8, 2023

R Leigh Hennig gathered many of the amazing authors from Mother: Tales of Love and Terror for a council at the roundtable about writing, mothers, and horror. Join us as we pop in for a brief spotlight on how the stories of Mother, and their makers, worked their horrible magic to create this book.


Author Spotlight: Jonathan Louis Duckworth, author of  “Unchild”


Q: Did you know what you wanted to do with this story from the start, or did it surprise you?

A: I knew I wanted wasps. Everything else sort of accreted around that core image.


Q: Do you have any thoughts on turning this story into something longer, or do you feel the tale has been told?

A: Technically it’s already part of something longer, in that it’s one of the tales from my “Wilderthere” setting. This story takes place in the “market lands,” what was once the eastern seaboard of the United States before the apocalypse, whereas most of my prior tales take place in “stead country” which more or less corresponds to Texas, Arkansas, and Oklahoma. But I think Tame’s tale is just about perfect at the length it’s at.


Q: Have you explored these themes before, and if so, to what depth?

A: Miscarriages crop up a lot in my fiction, probably because I survived one. I was originally going to be a triplet, but my other two siblings miscarried. I don’t like thinking about it, but I apparently love writing about it.


Jonathan Louis Duckworth is a completely normal, entirely human person with the right number of heads and everything. He received his MFA from Florida International University. His speculative fiction work appears in Pseudopod, Beneath Ceaseless Skies, Southwest Review, Flash Fiction Online, and elsewhere. He is a PhD student at University of North Texas where he serves as the interviews editor at American Literary Review, and he is also an active HWA member.
Fracture by Mercedes M. Yardley - Mother: Tales of Love and Terror

Fracture, by Mercedes M. Yardley

Read the full story that is on the Bram Stoker Awards® Preliminary Ballot right here!

Vote for MOTHER!

Mother: Tales of Love and Terror has been included on the preliminary ballot for the 2022 Bram Stoker Awards® for Superior Achievement in an Anthology. If you are a voting member of the HWA, we would love to have you consider our anthology, as well as Mercedes M. Yardley’s story, “Fracture,” which is also on the ballot in the Short Fiction category. 

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