Writing ‘dark fiction’: an autoethnographic reflection

Lee-Price, Simon (2021) Writing ‘dark fiction’: an autoethnographic reflection. New Writing. pp. 1-13. ISSN 1943-3107

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An earlier version of this paper was presented at a multidisciplinary conference on ‘dark heritage’ in 2019. It describes and reflects on my experience of writing a short story for submission to a commercial ‘dark fiction’ anthology and discusses the social, personal, and linguistic factors which contribute to the production of a popular literary text. In particular, it examines to what extent negative connotations of ‘darkness’ as well as stereotypical representations of the monstrous can be avoided or subverted, while at the same time adhering to the genre requirements of a commercial publisher’s brief and writing to a deadline. The approach I take is broadly autoethnographic: my ‘data’ includes ‘field notes’ that I kept throughout the writing process and daily captures of the story as it progressed toward completion. The paper also reflects on the occasion of the conference, which enabled a rich opportunity for cross-disciplinary dialogue. Heritage studies, literary studies, and genre fiction have a shared history and ongoing investment in the dark. By bringing to light the process through which a dark text is produced, I offer a means for thinking about the deployment and interpretation of tropes of darkness in scholarly and imaginative writing. It is hoped that the autoethnographic methods I employ could be suitably adapted for use in creative writing studies as a means of developing students' and teachers' writerly selfawareness.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: The Version of Record of this manuscript has been published and is available in 'New Writing', published online on the 29th of November 2021 (http://www.tandfonline.com) with the DOI https://doi.org/10.1080/14790726.2021.2004170. ** From Crossref journal articles via Jisc Publications Router ** History: epub 29-11-2021; issued 29-11-2021.
Keywords: Literature, Literary Theory
SWORD Depositor: JISC Router
Depositing User: JISC Router
Date Deposited: 28 Jan 2022 10:04
Last Modified: 31 May 2023 03:00
URI: https://bnu.repository.guildhe.ac.uk/id/eprint/18469

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