Archive for the ‘Horror’ Category

(Quoth the Press Release)  This is Book Four in the Alternatives Series of anthologies.

The Alternatives series looks at the social and political questions of the day with a mix of story, poetry, essay and, above all, a healthy bite of humor.

ALTERNATIVE THEOLOGIES takes its turn with a gentle look at religion.

A sensitive topic.

Henry Frederic Amiel said:  “Life is short and we have never too much time for gladdening the hearts of those who are travelling the dark journey with us.  Oh be swift to love, make haste to be kind.”

And while this book explores theology and beliefs, it is written to be kind, thoughtful, and at times funny.

It will make you laugh, and it will make you think, but it will also give you an understanding of how diverse people see belief.

And so it goes, Tuesday, August 14.  This is the official release date for B Cubed Press’s ALTERNATIVE THEOLOGIES:  PARABLES FOR THE MODERN WORLD (cf. August 11, 10, et al.), and now with a newly integrated Amazon page where both Kindle and print copies can be obtained!  But is it Book Four or only Book Three?  One has seen it both ways.  The answer, I think, is there are two other books with the actual word “Alternative” in their titles, ALTERNATIVE TRUTHS and MORE ALTERNATIVE TRUTHS:  STORIES FROM THE RESISTANCE, both of tales of America in a post-Trump world.  But there is one other, AFTER THE ORANGE:  RUIN AND RECOVERY, so that can be counted as Volume three — or not, depending on how you see it.

In any event, all three — or four! — have now been officially published by B Cubed Press.  And to check out the latest (in print OR Kindle, both choices are offered, and both with my poem “Tit for Tat” because, yes, I have a kit in this kaboodle too) one need but press here.


Good news for dark science fiction fans — or at least for me and 30 or so fellow writers.  And a thank you as well to those who contributed.  SINS AND OTHER WORLDS (see August 11, July 28, et al. — early table of contents July 19) has met its primary goal and img_1110will (a) be published and (b) its authors be paid!  According to Editor Eric Fomley:  SINS AND OTHER WORLDS is a dark Science Fiction short story anthology comprised of reprint stories from 30 talented authors.  The stories range from deep space, alien planets, alternate realities and beyond.  Most stories within are flash fiction interspersed with several longer works from both emerging authors and titans in the field.  The anthology collects some of the best dark sci-fi in recent memory.  And moreover, sufficient readers have pledged support that two or three bonus stories may be added to the contents.

My story in this is called “The Cyclops,” about an unnaturally intelligent but physically challenged baby, originally published in DARK MOON DIGEST YOUNG ADULT HORROR, June 2013.  More on it and its new companions will be reported here as it becomes revealed.

A quick miscellany to round out Saturday (Sunday I hope I’ll maybe just rest):  SINS AND OTHER WORLDS (see July 28, et al.) has sent a reminder its Kickstarter campaign has less than two days to go, ending 1:27 p.m. (EST) Monday.  This is an all-reprint dark science fiction anthology with a couple of big names in its contents along with the rest of us, and includes my story “The Cyclops.”  It’s still a bit over $100 short as of this writing and, if any reading this should feel the urge, the place to check it out is here.

Then amongst the Forbiddens and the Alternatives, word came today that ALTERED AMERICA (see March 28 2014, et al.), Martinus Press’s alternate history anthology with my “Avoid Seeing a Mouse” is still making sales, though whether enough to amount to a decent royalty split between the authors remains to be seen.  Martinus, however, us also the publisher for FORBIDDEN (yes, that one, with my “The Wind” and “Fetuscam,” cf. August 10, et al.) which one may hope will follow its predecessor’s lead.

Then finally HUMANAGERIE’s release time has been narrowed to “late October 2018,” announced with a request for biographical and other author information.  My story in this one is “Crow and Rat” (see July 29), set in a less-desirable sector of TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH’S New City.

A very quick addendum:  ALTERNATIVE THEOLOGIES: PARABLES FOR A MODERN WORLD (cf. just below) is now available on Amazon too, at a fairly modest $12.25.  Weirdly enough, though, there’s no link between this and the Kindle edition, so they must be found via separate links, the one for the hard copy being right here.

Moving fast, the “other” Things Maybe Forbidden anthology is back in the news as well, this time with the Kindle edition of ALTERNATIVE THEOLOGIES:  PARABLES FOR THE MODERN WORLD (see August 5, July 30, et al.) up for pre-order.  For info, press here or, to order directly, here.  The official release date according to Amazon will be August 14, next Tuesday, with a print version also expected in the near future.

My owl in this ossuary is a poem (just one in this anthology, sorry 😉 ), “Tit for Tat,” about a little boy named Willie who liked to do lots of things that were forbidden.  And not just before he died and was buried.

This comes courtesy of author Frank Roger, via Facebook, who also has a thumb on this particular scale.  While an exact release date has not yet been set, Martinus Publishing has released a table of contents, including individual story blurbs, for its upcoming FORBIDDEN anthology (cf. June 16, 10, 9, et al.).  Subtitled TALES OF REPRESSION, RESTRICTION, AND REBELLION, FORBIDDEN is an anthology about that which is disallowed, whether it be the law or custom of a society, a particular group, or even just a single individual.  Stories that illustrate the sense or insanity of that which is disallowed, all with an eye on adventure, world-building, and thought-provoking entertainment!  Or so says Publisher Martin T. Ingham.  And this time by an odd chance of fate, I have two, not one but TWO, tales in this one myself.

But see for yourself.  To quote again, [f]rom the distant past to the far future, explore 17 stories of individuals inventing, partaking in, or resisting that which is Forbidden!

Red Raven –by Karl G. Rich
A tale of ancient spirits and forbidden love.

The Enemy Within –by KA Masters
At the fall of Troy, a goddess uses forbidden power to give a dead soldier a second chance to serve…

Duty –by William Rade
Trade on the high seas can cost a fortune, whether in taxes or blood.

Ultra Red –by Sam Kepfield
A murderer is killing young women during the Nixon era, and a forbidden government program may be responsible.

A Devil of a Deal –By Stephen A. Fox
A lawyer is asked to sue Satan, yet how does one trick the ultimate trickster?

The Wind –By James Dorr
His daughter’s death was due to an “act of God.”  But didn’t that mean God was to blame?

The Violation –by Charles Joseph Albert
Technologically, it’s not that hard for an Earth physicist to transcend space-time… the trick is to get past the 7th Council.

Progress –by G. Lloyd Helm
When paper becomes exceedingly rare, books become forbidden relics.

Fetuscam –by James Dorr
In a not-distant future, abortion has finally been made a crime equivalent to murder, and the police even have a special unit to entrap offenders.

Suicide Job –by Wendy Dranfield
It may be illegal to take your own life, but not if the Government helps you.

Radical Normal –by Ira Nayman
In a post-singular world where anything is possible, being normal may be the most radical act of all.

Outnumbered –by Frank Roger
In a world where numbers are forbidden, terror comes in the form of numerical grafitti.

Zack’s Rescue –by Kevin Stadt
Long after the fall of civilization, a man who can’t die struggles to give himself permission to live.

Haven –by Anthony Engebretson
In a society where loudness is prohibited, silence can be deafening.

Border Skirmish –by Dave D’Alessio
When the Hhoozbk fleet reached Terran space, they were told they could not enter it armed… it was forbidden.  The Hhoozbk took that as a challenge…

Neither Do They Spin –by William RD Wood
In some dark corners of the universe, even our very lives are Forbidden!

The Patriot Awakened –By Martin T. Ingham
In a primitive future where knowledge and literature are forbidden, Noah is content to be a loyal serf to his feudal masters… until Sergeant Davis shows him the spirit of rebellion.

If tempted, pre-orders are now being taken on the Martinus site, including free shipping for US orders, for more on which, press here.

One gets used to visual media, reading on book pages, movies, even public readings as a sort of live play (see just below, August 5, et al.).  But what about only the words themselves, through the medium of sound?  And hence, in a sort of message tag known only to Facebook, a few weeks ago I received an invitation from LuAnn Johnson of WFIU, the Indiana University Public Broadcasting Station, dating back to about early spring.  Ms. Johnson runs a program called THE POETS WEAVE in which local poets read short groupings of their work on the air. Or more specifically:  Prepare to read one or more groups of POEMS.  Each group should be approximately 4 minutes in length.  Selections should be acceptable for broadcast, (i.e., non-sexually explicit, non-scatological, and expletive free), per FCC restrictions.  It’s best to time yourself reading aloud, and please bring a couple of shorter poems in case we have to exchange a longer one for time.

I’m not entirely new to this, actually, having done a few similar types of readings some years in the past, though the programs here are perhaps a little more complex, involving not only a host-read introduction of the poet, etc., but also from the poet one or more BRIEF QUOTES — anything relating to the poetry you’ll be reading (or poetry in general), or writing, reading, and life.  It can be your own words or from another writer/poet you admire.  You’ll read one quote for each show set, so do bring a copy of the quotes with you; the host will read your bio when she introduces the show.  And also there is that idea of more than just one performance, but perhaps several groups on successive programs.

Anyhow while it took some time (as well as some emails back and forth) to consider quotes, select and time groups of poems, and figure a structure for multiple readings, this afternoon I sent back a proposal for three groupings of poems on the overall topic of Vampires and Things Vampiric, divided loosely into “the Who” (to meet some vampires), “the Where” (on where they might hang out), and “the Attraction,” all from my collection VAMPS (A RETROSPECTIVE).  And graced with suitable quotations from Rudyard Kipling, Bram Stoker, and Sheridan Le Fanu respectively.

More as it develops.

Saturday afternoon word came that B Cubed Press’s ALTERNATIVE THEOLOGIES (see July 30, 27, et al.) is scheduled to be out in just over a week, on August 14.  With it are a collection of personalized advertising banners, including one for me that features my poem “Tit for Tat.”  Incredible it is (I didn’t say that), and now you’ll be able to see for yourself while, as for the banners, to view the whole collection one can press here.

Then today brought this year’s Bloomington Writers Guild’s first (almost) autumn “First Sunday Prose Reading & Open Mic” (see May 6, April 1, et al.) at the local Monroe County Library.  Featured readers were Juliana Crespo, an Indiana University MFA in fiction and University of Nevada Reno MA in fiction, with three flash pieces from LITERARY ORPHANS and other journals; Denise Breeden-Ost, a writer of “fiction, creative nonfiction, and occasional poetry,” with a memoir from her growing up years; and PDNVCH presenting two rap pieces “from a project called CHAOS THEORY.”  After intermission, I was number three of six walk-ups from an audience of about twenty people, reading an unpublished story, “SMILE!,” of what happened when a billboard saying just that appeared on the outskirts of a small town.

While this begins the new fall semester, MC Joan Hawkins announced that as in past years there will be no September meeting due to Bloomington’s annual Labor Day weekend 4th Street Arts Festival.  Also this year the October First Sunday will give way to events surrounding FRANKENFEST, a celebration of the 200th anniversary of the first printing of FRANKENSTEIN, so the next time we meet won’t be until November 4.  For more on the Writers Guild, including upcoming events, press here.

Two items to start the weekend, the first a quick note from Editor/Publisher Casia Schreyer, that after a few unexpected delays, CHILDREN OF THE SKY (cf. July 11, 5) is now available in hard copy on Amazon.  Or from that site’s description:  Children of the Sky is a collection of 8 short stories by different authors.  What happens when aliens come to Earth?  What happens when humans finally reach for the stars?  There are so many possibilities — these are just a few.  Featuring stories by John M. Floyd, Jennifer Lee Rossman, Peter Medeiros, Liam Hogan, James Dorr, David A. Gray, Daniel M. Kimmel, and Hannah Dade.  My story in this is in the “humans finally reach for the stars” category, titled “Frog Pond” and originally published in England in HUB MAGAZINE, December 2006, on expediency’s possible role in the perception of alien intelligence.

CHILDREN OF THE SKY is one of a series of anthologies by Schreyer Ink Publishing, for details on which one may check here.  Also a Kindle edition has apparently just come out, for which press here.

Then for horror buffs, “The Scariest Horror Films Ever — Ranked!” by Peter Bradshaw on THEGUARDIAN.COM, courtesy of Kealan Patrick Burke on Facebook, is today’s serendipitously discovered movie list.  Mileage, as they say, no doubt will vary, though some solid — and well known — examples score high such as EXODUS, ROSEMARY’S BABY, and THE BLAIR WITCH PROJECT.  There is a predilection toward giallo, with Fulci and Argento both represented (e.g. DON’T TORTURE A DUCKLING and SUSPERIA) among the twenty-five films in all, but with others including THE ADDICTION, THE INNOCENTS, AUDITION, DON’T LOOK NOW, EYES WITHOUT A FACE (see also July 23, below), and NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD indicating a range of approaches.  And is your favorite there too?  To find out, press here.

Abe Books has announced discounts “on books, art & collectibles from select sellers” between now and August 27.  Included is my last year’s novel-in-stories from Elder Signs 8451b32b-e3c4-41cb-8f3e-7c6834708f13Press, TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH, with three new copies (as of this looking) at only $9.64 plus $2.64 shipping.  A number of others are listed at $8.69 plus $3.60 and another at $12.80 including shipping, followed by a clutch of used copies and more new copies, all at less than $13.00 including shipping.  Amazon, I might add, also offers some discounted copies (as well, of course, as electronic copies), though shipping costs there may tend to be higher, but for the moment if you’ve been thinking of buying a paperback copy of TOMBS and would like to save a bit on the cost, check it out on Abe Books before the 27th by pressing here.

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