Pseudopod 477: ARTEMIS RISING Women In Horror Showcase: Bug House

by Lisa Tuttle.

Bug House was first published in The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, June 1980. It won second place for best short story category in the 1981 Locus Awards.

Lisa Tuttle began her career as a published writer in the early 1970s, and won the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Science Fiction Writer of the year in 1974. She’s the author of seven novels and more than a hundred short stories. Born and raised in Texas, she has lived in a remote, rural part of Scotland for the past twenty-five years. Her first novel, Windhaven, was a collaboration with George R. R. Martin published in 1981. This was followed by a horror novel, Familiar Spirit, in 1983. Unable to stick to one well-defined genre, although most of her work features elements of horror and/or dark fantasy, she went on to write novels of psychological suspense, science fiction, and fantasy as well as books for children and young adults, and non-fiction (including the Encyclopedia of Feminism and Heroines).

Short stories were her first love, and remain important. Her first short story collection, A Nest of Nightmares was published in the U.K. in 1986, and two years later featured in Horror: 100 Best Books edited by Stephen Jones and Kim Newman. A number of her short stories have appeared in “best of the year” anthologies and been nominated for awards; “Closet Dreams” won the 2007 International Horror Guild Award. She edited an influential anthology of horror stories by women writers, Skin of the Soul, first published in 1990.

She has just finished a new novel, to be published in early 2016: THE CURIOUS AFFAIR OF THE SOMNAMBULIST AND THE PSYCHIC THIEF — this is the start of a new detective series set in London in the 1890s. If you want a taste of what is to come, check out her stories in both the Rogues and Down These Strange Streets anthologies and follow her author page on Facebook.

Your narrator – Heather Welliver is an Emmy Award nominated narrator and voice actress. She has been part of the Escape Artists family of narrators since 2007. She is slated for new episodes for Cast of Wonders, Escape Pod, and more in the coming year.

Your guest audio producer – Chelsea Davis is a scholar of Gothic fiction. She’s currently at work on a dissertation about supernatural war literature. In her spare time, she produces radio, & gets a huge kick out of reading killer Pseudopod submissions as an Associate Editor.

Your guest hosts – Tackling all things horror with a slash of analysis and research, horror journalists and occasional academics Andrea Subissati and Alexandra West are your hosts for brain plumping discussions on all things that go bump in the night. Produced independently in Toronto, Ontario The Faculty of Horror is your best source for classic and contemporary horror film discussions that will haunt the libraries of your mind! Follow them on Twitter at @FacultyofHorror.


The house was a wreck, resting like some storm-shattered ship on a weedy headland overlooking the ocean. Ellen felt her heart sink at the sight of it.

‘This it?’ asked the taxi-driver dubiously, squinting through his windscreen and slowing the car.

‘It must be,’ Ellen said without conviction. She couldn’t believe her aunt — or anyone else — lived in this house.

The house had been built, after the local custom, out of wood, and then set upon cement blocks that raised it three or four feet off the ground. But floods seemed far less dangerous to the house now than the winds, or simply time. The house was crumbling on its blocks. The boards were weatherbeaten and scabbed with flecks of ancient grey paint. Uncurtained windows glared blankly, and one shutter hung at a crazy angle. Between the boards of the sagging, second-storey balcony, Ellen could see daylight.