Hailing from the U.K., Anna Taborska studied Experimental Psychology at Oxford University. Afterward, she worked in the fields of public relations, journalism and advertising. The move she made to filmmaking and television proved a successful one, seeing her direct and work on a wide variety of films, documentaries and television productions. Her one-hour television drama The Rain Has Stopped won two awards at the British Film Festival in 2009. She’s also penned a number of screenplays as well. Her horror fiction has been selected for several Year’s Best anthologies and has garnered numerous awards and nominations over the years, including a just announced 2020 Bram Stoker nomination for Superior Achievement in a Fiction Collection for her collection Bloody Britain.
Below is a look at a selection of Anna’s short stories with links to free readings when possible. Her stories are always intriguing, well-written, and often quite vicious.
Stories (Listed by order of publication):
1. “Halloween Lights” (2009) – On Halloween night a disoriented figure flees through neighborhood streets seeking the elusive Alice. This is a well told, atmospheric tale. Listen here: https://talestoterrify.com/episodes/tales-to-terrify-no-6-gemma-files/
2. “Schroedinger’s Human” (2009) – A sadistic man who loves to torture animals meets his match when he’s forced to take an equally evil cat with strong psychic powers into his home. Listen here for free: https://talestoterrify.com/episodes/tales-to-terrify-no-34-anna-taborska/
3. “Bagpuss” (2010) – A girl who suffers from severe anxiety travels with her single mother and her pet cat Bagpuss to their new place out in the country. The area is much different than their former life in the city and all the changes begin to ramp up her paranoia. This story is shown through the eyes of the daughter, the mother, and the cat as they struggle to cope with their new lifestyle, but the toll is heaviest on the daughter. This is a well-written tale that portrays anxiety disorder and the high stakes it incurs. Listen here for free: https://talestoterrify.com/episodes/tales-to-terrify-270-diane-awerbuck-anna-taborska-peter-white/
4. “Picture This” (2010) – This flash fiction story is about you and how you quickly regret killing Uncle Geoffrey for his inheritance when he comes back for revenge. Read it here for free: http://52stitches.blogspot.com/2010/01/picture-this.html
5. “Night of the Crone” (2011) – A group of delinquent boys, known to be vandals and druggies, decide to try and dig up some treasure which legend claims is hidden beneath ancient, stone formations known as Long Meg and her Daughters. An ancient force that is tied to that area makes them pay for the decision.
6. “Little Pig” (2011) – A man goes to meet his Polish girlfriend’s grandmother at the terminal. As she’s disembarking the train, she drops and breaks her glasses. She mutters something about it being just a “little pig” and chuckles. We are then shown a flashback to the past to learn the horrific meaning behind this phrase. This story has no supernatural elements to it but is very suspenseful and horrifying. Listen here for free: https://talestoterrify.com/episodes/tales-to-terrify-no-34-anna-taborska/
7. “The Gatehouse” (2013) – Soon after her husband and daughter are killed in a tragic fire, a woman moves into a house she inherited from an uncle she’d never met. The house seems to be attuned to her. She learns the place is a key location for a local sect of people who worship the demon-god Baphomet of which her uncle was a member. They believe she can help them with a ritual which could help bring back her deceased family members. This is an excellent, gothic-style horror tale which is very cinematic in how it unfolds.
8. “Formby Point” (2019) – A man visiting his parents leaves early so he can return to a place he loved as a child called Formby Point. The area has been the sight of some horrific events lately, but that doesn’t dissuade him from going anyway. When he arrives at the beach, he sees the remains of old shipwrecks which have become visible due to a particularly low tide of late. Then he hears a voice calling to him from the water.
9. “The Haggis Queen” (2020) – In a Glasgow apartment, a man is awoken in the middle of the night by the sound of clanking crockery coming from his kitchen. He’s shocked to discover the dark figure of a woman repetitively rubbing her hands together in his sink. The woman, who shouldn’t be there, speaks of how much she hates the smell of haggis. This is a very brief but effective tale.
10. “Cyril’s Mission” (2020) – Cyril is a priest who’s lost his faith but continues to serve the congregation of the small village of Mortkirk where he has been assigned. Recently, a couple of children have gone missing, and Cyril discovers that the area experiences a slew of such disappearances every 300 years. Perhaps it’s all somehow related to the image of a giant, worm-like beast depicted in the church’s ancient, stained glass window.
Anna’s Website: https://annataborska.wixsite.com/horror
Anna’s U.S. Amazon Page: https://www.amazon.com/Anna-Taborska/e/B00DRIPW96%3Fref=dbs_a_mng_rwt_scns_share
Anna’s. U.K. Amazon Page: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Anna-Taborska/e/B00DRIPW96