Seaside Gothic

Fiction | Poetry | Nonfiction

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Life is contrast

The coastline is where the sea meets the land and is a creator of life.

Reality is change

In a space of two environments there exists a third: an environment of flux. This sense of change is integral to the creation of Seaside Gothic and the collaborations therein.

Equilibrium is relative

Offering a balance between two life-sustaining but opposed ecosystems is impossible without continual and constant entropy. Seaside Gothic will naturally evolve, as does life within the shifting space of the coastline.

Gothic is reflective

The conventions of gothic literature include the grotesque and the horrific, but also the beautiful and the romantic. Gothic has spread from its origins to reflect the setting within which it is written, as is the case for southern gothic and other gothic variations. As a category, seaside gothic is of the coastal setting from which it gains its name.

Criterion is essential

There are three criteria that define seaside gothic literature:

  1. It is led by emotion, not reason, exploring the human experience mentally and spiritually as well as physically, and is unashamed to embrace the violence of the sea and the wind along with the beauty of the land and the sky and the ever-changing tide.
  2. It addresses duality—land and sea, love and hate, the beautiful and the grotesque—to reflect the structures that line the coast, which are both those solidly braced against the fiercest elements and those built from what surrounds in a state of shanty transience.
  3. It connects to the edge, living on the seaside either literally or figuratively, and has one foot in the water and the other on solid ground, presenting the juxtaposition of a physical border with open space and a wilderness of water that provides life yet is inconsumable.

These criteria apply as much to the language used as the narrative form. Particular attention is paid to working class and transient voices in seaside gothic literature, as although the coastline in a sense equalises those who live along it, the very nature of surviving the border of two worlds is one of struggle and displacement.

Interpretation is open

How the criteria that define seaside gothic literature are interpreted is decided by the writer, author, poet, artist, photographer, illustrator, or contributor. The criteria exist to classify, not to restrict.

Collaboration is welcome

Seaside Gothic seeks to publish fiction, poetry, nonfiction, and visual art of literary merit and value. This is achieved through collaborating with those who share and seek to express the vision of Seaside Gothic through their own understanding and interpretation. Without contrast in this collaboration there will be no creation. Life is contrast.