When Poppy invited me to write a wee thing for this book, I was skeptical and cynical. "Erotic vampires," I frowned -- how blase. With my vignette, I decided to try and write something that was tainted with the cosmic mythos of H. P. Lovecraft, and I was delighted when Poppy accepted my prose-poem. She had excited me with her stunning originality as an author, and I suspected that any book edited by Poppy would be a rare gem -- and so it is, this LOVE IN VEIN. It is a dark jewel that is of uncommon lustre, reflecting the genius of its editor and the way in which that genius triggers originality in those who were invited to write for the book. These are vampiric manifestations that one will not find otherwhere. And because Poppy is an extremely good writer, and understands that which makes up good fiction and story-telling, she has the ability to choose good stories for her anthologies. Each of these tales is well-written and original. One of the best tales does not deal with vampires at all -- Jessica Amanda Salmonson's brilliant "The Final Fete of Abba Adi" -- a tale of delicious decadence, of the feasting on blood and flesh. Jessica's jeweled prose reveals that she is one of the genre's outstanding poets. The book's excellent opening tale, "Do Not Hasten to Bid Me Adieu" by Norman Partridge, is a completely different beast altogether, modern in every way, yet linked in delightful manner to a very old and famous novel concerning a very old and famous Count. Story after story reveals the originality of each author, with singular treatments of the vampire theme. The book reminds me of another magnificent anthology, Ellen Datlow's LOVECRAFT UNBOUND, of which many clueless critics have complained, "It ain't like Lovecraft!" Just so. It was an honour to be included in this book, with a prose-poem a literary form that one does not oft find in commercial horror anthologies. That Poppy published it has given me wet red joy.