Anna Taborska is a British filmmaker and horror writer. She has written and directed two short films (Ela and The Sin), two documentaries (My Uprising and A Fragment of Being) and a one-hour television drama (The Rain Has Stopped), which won two awards at the British Film Festival Los Angeles in 2009. Anna also worked on seventeen other films, and was involved in the making of two major BBC television series: Auschwitz: the Nazis and the Final Solution and World War Two behind Closed Doors – Stalin, the Nazis and the West.
Anna’s short stories have appeared in various anthologies, including Best New Writing 2011, Best New Werewolf Tales Vol.1, The Best Horror of the Year Volume Four, The Best British Horror 2014 and Year’s Best Weird Fiction Volume One. Anna’s short story "Bagpuss" was an Eric Hoffer Award Honoree, and the screenplay adaptation of her story "Little Pig" was a finalist in the Shriekfest Film Festival Screenplay Competition, 2009. Anna’s debut short story collection, For Those who Dream Monsters, was released by Mortbury Press in 2013, with a novelette collection (working title Bloody Britain) to follow.
When did you know you wanted to become a writer?
I come from a film-making background. The process of making a film is lengthy. It starts with writing a screenplay and, if funding is not forthcoming, often ends there – with an unproduced screenplay that only a handful of people ever read. While trying to find a producer for my film projects, I started writing horror short stories and, in November 2013, Mortbury Press (home of The Black Books of Horror) published eighteen of them in my first book, For Those who Dream Monsters.
How did you pick the genre you write in?
The world is a cruel and terrifying place, and, if art is supposed to hold a mirror up to nature, then horror is the art form that does it best.
Plotter or pantser?
I’m a pantser aspiring to be a plotter. I usually know how my story will begin and end, but my characters often surprise me by doing and saying things that I wasn’t expecting. Usually when I write, I enter what I think of as “the zone”, where I lose time and the words seem to write themselves – that’s my favourite part of the writing experience (I can’t really call it a process, as I frequently don’t have much conscious control over it). I do realise that I need to get my act sorted, take control and start to plot, scheme and outline in a much more orderly fashion.
What do you enjoy reading?
I enjoy reading any type of horror – particularly short stories by my fellow writers. I love the horror classics too, including those by ladies of horror, such as Mary Shelley and Shirley Jackson.
In terms of future plans, I am working on a screenplay based on a novelette which will hopefully be published next year in my new UK-based collection. The working title is Bloody Britain, but this might change.
Anna's contribution to Strangely Funny II, "Dirty Dybbuk", is one of the stories from
For Those who Dream Monsters. It's the tale of a straight-laced Jewish girl who is possessed by a spirit with nymphomania. If you like it, check out the rest of the collection. For Those who Dream Monsters is available on Amazon and directly from Mortbury Press in the UK (where you can also view her trailer for it): http://mortburypress.webs.com/forthosewhodreammonsters.htm
You can view Anna’s full résumé here: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm1245940/, watch her films and book trailers here: http://www.youtube.com/annataborska and learn more about her short stories and screenplays here: http://annataborska.wix.com/horror .
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