Welcome to She Wears the Midnight Crown and He Bears the Cape of Stars, two brand-new anthologies that share a common theme – masquerades – but tell different types of stories – wlw in She Wears the Midnight Crown and mlm in He Bears the Cape of Stars. These collections are the latest titles from Duck Prints Press, the indie publisher founded by fans to publish original works by fan creators, and they’re crowdfunding NOW, only on Seed & Spark!
Curious about the collections? Well, here’s a sneak peek of the works of two of our creators!
She Wears the Midnight Crown Contributor Spotlight: Emma Victoria
Biography: Emma Victoria was born an old soul, because you’re destined to be one when you’re given two old-fashioned names like that. She grew up with a taste for folklore and history and a penchant for going into the woods to have conversations with trees. As an adult, she’s dedicated herself to the study of photography and art criticism, but writing fantasy is a bedfellow she just can’t give up. After all, it’s the only way to meet dragons.
Story Title: The Scent of Roses
She was still wearing a single white dress-glove, the other one nowhere to be seen. Tris pulled it off, feeling the soft fabric catch on the callouses of her work-roughened hand. It had all been as much of a costume as the mask had been, but she had enjoyed it: not just pretending to be the kind of person who attended balls, but taking on the role the masculine clothes had afforded her. Women had curtsied to her and given her their hands to bow over; they had giggled and blushed over her compliments and let her lead them on the dance floor.
Just a few inches under six feet, Tris was tall for a woman, and had little in the way of curves. She kept her hair cropped short, and in her usual gardener’s slops she was, at best, a tolerated eccentric.
The masked ball and its anonymity had offered an interlude. Under the glittering candlelight, the borrowed doublet and the half-mask had transformed her from an undesirable woman into a lean and graceful young man in the eyes of the other revelers.
In her heart, Tris did not want to be a man.
She just wanted women to look at her the way they looked at men.
What harm could one night of deception do?
He Bears the Cape of Stars Contributor Spotlight: Julia Perroni
Biography: Julia Perroni (she/her) is a lifelong writer of fiction who was born and raised in not-so-sunny Vancouver, BC. She has been previously published in Geist Magazine and in several student writing contest anthologies, and writes on Archive of Our Own in various fandoms in her free time. Some of her favourite fic tropes include hurt/comfort, arranged marriage, and truth serum, but she’ll read (or write!) just about anything.
When she’s not writing creatively, she can be found in the library studying Ancient Greek for her ongoing graduate degree in Classics, working on her podcast, or out on the cliffs with chalk under her fingernails.
Story Title: Porcelain Skin
Favourite clients had come and gone over the years: some he saw only once, and had been delighted to work for; others every few years; still others once a year at least for three or four years in a row before they met their match and married, never to walk through his door again. Or so they hoped, of course. He’d had his share of widows and widowers, too, and always did his best for them.
But none were like James Elenbrook. The young lord had been through his door several times a year, every year since he succeeded his father as master of Elenbrook Grove. The first time, Benjamin had barely agreed to the job. He had been young and still building a reputation and resources from nearly nothing – he’d been nowhere near his current popularity – and it had been a very late order. In recent years, Benjamin’s time filled so quickly that he had considered creating some manner of waiting list. But he always saved a little slice of time for the man he wished he could know as James.
Intrigued? You should be! But, if you want to read the rest of these stories you’ll need to back our campaign, running now through July 14th, 2022!