My 19 year old daughter shares the same addiction to horror that I do. I've been looking for a short story I read in an anthology years ago, probably 1970's or 1980's. It's one of the first stories, I believe.

It's about a young boy whose father is taking him "fishing" for the first time.

  • The mother clearly does not want him to go.
  • They leave with a friend of the father's with them.
  • It's not an ordinary fishing trip.
  • The boy describes what he sees: knowing they are descending further and further down the earth...it gets darker, more shadows, the buildings change to those of ancient times with crumbling pillars... He sees dark "human" figures scurrying and hiding...
  • The father announces something along the lines of "We've hit bottom."

I cannot find anything searching the regular way so I thought I'd try this. It always stuck with me - so dark, mysterious and to me, what horror should be. It's haunted me all this time.

I read it when I was in my teens and now I am 49. Any help I'd appreciate.

1 Answer 1


Pretty sure you're thinking of the story "City Fishing" by Steve Rasnic Tem. It's collected in an anthology of the same name.

That first link actually has the whole short story - it matches your description almost exactly.

  • Yep. I just looked through the story, and it looks like a perfect fit. Originally appeared in New Terrors 1, Ramsey Campbell, editor
    – Joe L.
    Commented Dec 11, 2014 at 2:31
  • I have to say... I don't really understand the story. But it does have very interesting imagery.
    – FuzzyBoots
    Commented Dec 11, 2014 at 14:35

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