George William Russell (1867-1935)—who published as “A.E.”—was a poet, painter, economist, and mystic. In 1897 he started work with Sir Horace Plunkett’s Irish Agricultural Organisation Society, editing their journal The Irish Homestead. In addition to numerous volumes of poetry, essays, and mystical writings, A.E. also nurtured the careers of Ireland’s most important writers, including Patrick Kavanagh, James Stephens, and James Joyce. Highly regarded in life, on his death A.E.’s funeral cortège was over a mile long.
R. B. Russell is the author of three novels, three novellas and four short story collections, along with a few books of non-fiction. With his partner, Rosalie Parker, he publishes classic works of curious and macabre fiction under the Tartarus Press imprint.
Lynda E. Rucker has sold more than three dozen short stories to various magazines and anthologies, won the 2015 Shirley Jackson Award for Best Short Story, and is a regular columnist for UK horror magazine Black Static. Her first collection, The Moon Will Look Strange, was released in 2013 from Karoshi Books; and her second, You’ll Know When You Get There, was published by Swan River Press in 2016.
Rosa Mulholland was born in Belfast on 19 March 1841. In 1891 she married the eminent Irish historian Sir John T. Gilbert (1829-1898). In addition to her two-volume Life of Sir John T. Gilbert (1905), Mulholland produced a long line of novels mostly set in rural Ireland, and featuring strong female characters, including The Wicked Woods of Tobereevil (1872) and Banshee Castle (1895). Many of her supernatural tales were collected in The Haunted Organist of Hurly Burly (1880). Mulholland died at her home Villa Nova on 21 April 1921.
John Howard was born in London. His books include The Defeat of Grief, The Lustre of Time, The Silver Voices, Written by Daylight, Cities and Thrones and Powers, and Buried Shadows. Secret Europe and Inner Europe are joint collections written with Mark Valentine. Howard’s essays on fantastic fiction and its classic authors have appeared in Wormwood and other places, and many are gathered in Touchstones: Essays on the Fantastic.
B. M. Croker was born in Co. Roscommon in 1849. She married John Stokes Croker, an officer in the Royal Scots Fusiliers, in 1870, and accompanied him to India, there commencing a long literary career. Authoring some fifty-two books, her novel The Road to Mandalay was filmed in 1926. Mrs. Croker died at a nursing home in London, after a short and sudden illness, on 20 October 1920.
Mark Valentine is the author of about twenty books, mostly of ghost stories or of essays on book collecting and obscure authors. He also edited The Scarlet Soul: Stories for Dorian Gray for Swan River Press. His fiction collections include The Uncertainty of All Earthly Things (Zagava) and, with John Howard, Secret Europe and Inner Europe (Tartarus). He also edits Wormwood, a journal of the literature of the fantastic and supernatural.
Timothy J. Jarvis is a writer and scholar with an interest in the antic, the weird, the strange. His first novel, The Wanderer, was published by Perfect Edge Books in 2014. His short fiction has appeared in The Flower Book, The Shadow Booth Volume 1, The Scarlet Soul, Murder Ballads, and Uncertainties I, among other places. He also writes criticism and reviews, and is co-editor of Faunus, the journal of the Friends of Arthur Machen.
Katharine Tynan (1859-1931) was born in Dublin and raised at Whitehall, the family home in Clondalkin. Her literary salon there attracted notables such as W. B. Yeats, with whom she formed a lifelong friendship. Tynan became a prolific writer, authoring more than a hundred novels in addition to memoirs and numerous volumes of poetry. Her works deal with feminism, Catholicism, and nationalism—Yeats declared of her early collection Shamrocks (1887) that “in finding her nationality, she has also found herself”.
Dorothy Macardle (1889-1958)—historian, playwright, journalist, and novelist—was born in Dundalk, Co. Louth. She was educated at Alexandra College in Dublin where she later lectured in English literature. She is best remembered for her seminal treatise on Ireland’s struggle for independence, The Irish Republic (1937), but also wrote novels of the uncanny, including Uneasy Freehold/The Uninvited (1941), Fantastic Summer/The Unforeseen (1946), and Dark Enchantment (1953). She died in Drogheda and is buried in St. Fintan’s Cemetery, Sutton.