Archive for the ‘Romance’ Category

And now for something completely different.  Or, well, different at least, a recasting of an interview of . . . *moi* . . . by Rushelle Dillon (cf. October 22 2017) in a video format, or part of it anyway.  The title is “Video Refresh:  James Dorr Interview” by Stuart Conover and it’s on HORRORTREE.COM.  Or, to let the poster speak for himself:  A Sample of our interview with James Dorr by Ruschelle Dillon.  In the interview, he has a lot of fun details on his take on the writing process.  If you delve into the full interview there are a lot of playful details on his life on top of that!  . . .  This is a new format that we’re playing around with for articles, interviews, and potentially Trembling With Fear.  Please let us know if this is something that you’d like to see more of!

For more, press here (yes, it is kind of fun)!  And there’s also a link if you wish to read the whole interview as it had been originally posted.

Then a quick word on the two Kickstarters we followed earlier this month.  The ITTY BITTY WRITING SPACE one (see February 3, January 29) will be over this Thursday, February 21, so there’s not much time left if you’re tempted to participate.  The other for Gehenna and Hinnom Books (see February 1), with as of now a few extra prizes added, will end just past the close of the month, on Saturday March 2.  Links to both can be found in their posts on the dates just noted.


Well, it’s on THE-LINE-UP.COM and it’s actually titled “10 Romantic Horror Movies To Watch on Valentine’s Day,” by MacKenzie Stuart, but I didn’t run across it until today.  And anyway, really, ten movies on one day?  To quote the author:  Does the word rom-com send chills down your spine?  If you’re a true horror flick aficionado, you’re likely to dread md_e4939c90cafa-auditionventuring outside of your comfort zone of zombies and psychopaths.  However, horror and romance don’t have to be mutually exclusive.  You can enjoy the best of both worlds with a romantic horror movie that seamlessly weaves touching love stories into your favorite gory films.

And indeed, what films are being suggested, something for everyone starting with SWEENY TODD:  THE DEMON BARBER OF FLEET STREET all the way down to ONLY LOVERS LEFT ALIVE (these two movies, by the way, with a strong musical interest too).  With, in between, WARM BODIES, HELLRAISER, PRIDE AND PREJUDICE AND ZOMBIES . . . and five in addition, all to be checked out by pressing here.  So break out the amaretto along with the popcorn, snuggle up with your significant other (and/or the family cat — yes, Triana, you’re invited too) and enjoy, enjoy!

‘Crow and Rat’ by James Dorr is a mesmerisingly unusual love story with a dark edge, post-apocalyptic urban myth feel.
Yes, they’re at it again, those two malcontents Rat and Crow, byblows from the world depicted in TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH.  But their story was in a different book, HUMANAGERIE (see December 16, October 28, 3, et al.), published in the UK by Eibonvale Press.  And so the above came in Saturday’s email from HUMANAGERIE Editors Allen Ashley and Sarah Doyle:  Some of you may have seen this on social media, but I’m getting in touch because I thought people might like to read this wonderful review of our beastly book, written by renowned poet, critic and publisher, Sarah James, for Abegail Morley’s Poetry Shed.  Such a detailed and sensitive reading is really heartening; Allen and I are so pleased to see you all recognised and appreciated.  To see it all for yourself, press here.
Also a second, more eclectic review appeared about a month ago on the blog RAMEAU’S NEPHEW by nullimmortalis, which can be seen here.  This takes an impressionistic approach and doesn’t necessarily cover the the book’s entire contents, but “Crow and Rat” is there, as seventh in the listed items.  Of interest as well is a link in that item to a review of the BRITISH FANTASY SOCIETY JOURNAL, October 2014, and another story — which does appear in my novel-in-stories, TOMBS, incidentally — “Flute and Harp.”
(From the DVD)  From master storyteller, Guillermo del Toro, comes THE SHAPE OF WATER, an otherworldly fairy tale set against the backdrop of Cold War America circa 1962.  In the hidden, high-security government laboratory where she works, lonely Elisa (Sally Hawkins) is trapped in a life of isolation.  Elisa’s life is changed forever when she and co-worker Zelda (Octavia Spencer) discover a secret classified experiment.  Rounding out the case are Michael Shannon, Richard Jenkens, Michael Stuhlbarg, and Doug Jones.  
Thursday “at the movies” we watched the Swedish film BORDER (for which see below, January 11) with its description in part as [b]lending supernatural folklore and contemporary social issues, the film explores themes of tribalism, racism, and fear of the “other.”  So last night, Friday, I made it a point to watch THE SHAPE OF WATER on DVD, a film cut in part from the same thematic cloth, but with another theme as well that permeates both films:  that of loneliness.  Both films’ protagonists are themselves in some part “the other” and, in both instances, come up against a recognized non-human creature of folklore and find within themselves an affinity.  But what does that then say about them?  The “other,” the “different,” does like then attract like?
Weirdly there’s a bit of Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Little Mermaid” to THE SHAPE OF WATER as well, with some role reversal, not to mention CREATURE FROM THE BLACK LAGOON.  Posters, the DVD cover itself, make no bones that here the “other” will be a merman or similar creature.  But here there is magic too, hinted at in the very beginning, then demonstrated a little bit in the film’s final third (in contrast to BORDER where the creature itself is finally identified — here it’s obvious as soon as we see him) which sets us up for a magic-assisted, surprisingly happy ending.  And it is a good film, even if as mermaids go I did like the Polish film THE LURE better (see December 27, April 25 2017 — in fairness though THE LURE does have vampires, as well as music), and for del Toro I don’t think it quite matches PAN’S LABYRINTH either.  But especially when seen with BORDER as a curtain raiser, THE SHAPE OF WATER makes for part of a great double feature!

Yes, AbeBooks is at it again with a quick through-Christmas sale (cf. November 8, et al.).  Save up to 50% on books and collectibles from select sellers. Discover a great selection of new, used, and collectible books, art and ephemera, all discounted until December 28th, from the horse’s mouth.  And, never mind “only” fifty percent off, there are some copies of TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH marked down to less than $7.00, this for new copies with shipping to the US free, which can be found here.

Also, and this is new, there’s even one copy of THE TEARS OF ISIS for $9.02 (usually, for some reason, not on their sale list), shipping again free though this is a used copy in “very good” condition, as well as a new one at $12.95 with shipping again free, for which one may press here.  So give it a try and enjoy, enjoy!

Yesterday afternoon HUMANAGERIE (cf. October 28, 3, et al.) arrived in the Computer Cave Mailbox, all the way from the United Kingdom, with “Crow and Rat” nestled toward the bottom of the first page of contents.  It’s a very handsome book, moreso than society throwaways like the aforementioned duo are used to, so be sure that they’re on their best behavior.  Moreover, should it be of interest, the world they inhabit is that of my novel-in-stories TOMBS: A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH.  To see more for oneself the anthology can be ordered in both hardbound and softcover editions directly from the publisher, Eibonvale Press, by pressing here.

Then those gimlet-eyed enough may have noticed on Friday’s post, for December 14, a misspelling of my name on the cover of PLANET SCUMM pictured.  A missing first letter, “D,” to be exact.  I’m assured however that the picture is of a preliminary test cover from the printer, that had to be used for advertising on their website, and that the actual finished issues sent to subscribers, etc., have been corrected.

His name was Crow, and she was called Rat.  Both of them were beggars in the New City, not the creative kind, jongleurs or tale-tellers, gossip-mongers or criers or news-spreaders, but rather the shabbier, desperate grubbers of others’ detritus — ghouls as it were of the wealthier precincts’ trashheaps and middens.  Petty thieves, sometimes, when courage and opportunity blessed them.  In other words, common enough to be unnoticed.

Thus starts the tale of “Crow and Rat,” but who however have not been unnoticed.  First in the UK, in the anthology HUMANAGERIE (cf. October 28, 3, et al.), then an Honorable Mention in MYTHIC BEAST’s “Icarus” story competition (November 30 and 11), they have made their mark, not to mention in their tale itself set in the universe of the “Tombs.”  And now a culmination of sorts, the MYTHIC BEAST retelling has just gone live, joining the Icarus contest winner and several companion placements, with several more of the latter to come on a weekly basis throughout December.

For more, read their story as they themselves lived it by pressing here.

We surely remember “Crow and Rat,” the neer-do-wells from the New City who, after their role in HUMANAGERIE, went on to gain an honorable mention in MYTHIC BEAST’s “Icarus” stories competition (see November 11, et al.).  Word came yesterday afternoon from curator Leslie Marrick that our would-be heroes’ tale from the world of TOMBS will Icarus with broken wingsgo live on the MYTHIC BEAST (née MYTHRAEUM) site on December 3, for more on which — including the current contest for tales about Medusa — one may press here.  In all there were ten honorable mentions, seven of which plus the winner are to be displayed on a week to week basis, with three already there.  For those interested, here is the list, with all to be finally on the website on December 31.


ALEX SHVARTSMAN — “Icarus Falls” (winner)

CLARK ZLOTCHEW – “Aiming High”
Nov. 19 2018

Nov. 26 2018

JAMES DORR – “Crow and Rat”
Publishing Dec. 3 2018

ETHAN HEDMAN – “Impact Imminent”
Publishing Dec. 10 2018

AMY SAKOVICH – “Key of Flight”
Publishing Dec. 17 2018

ZOE BURNESS – “When the Ocean Boils”
Publishing Dec. 24 2018

TONY GROESCHEN – “The Charred Sheriff of Crete”
Publishing Dec. 31 2018

R.A. GOLI – “Scattered Feathers”
Roberta’s story won’t appear on Mythic Beast. But check out her website!

DIE BOOTH – “Stone Ghosts”
Die’s story will not appear on Mythic Beast. But check out his website!

SUZANNE SIMPSON – “Wax Melting into Water”
Suzanne’s Story will not appear on Mythic Beast.

Let us recall our friends “Crow and Rat,” the lowest of the low, thieves and rascals of the New City as limned in, in this case, the British anthology HUMANAGERIE (see October 28, 3, et al.).  Born in the world of TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH.  But they have been up to other capers as well, behind our backs as it were, notably (they being good at sneaking into places where they might be thought to be not wanted) “The Icarus Contest.”  This was a call for stories concerning the Icarus myth, Daedalus and the Labyrinth and Crete and all that, a serious one run by MYTHRAEUM (recently renamed MYTHIC BEAST) and not one where riffraff would be expected — except that, like Icarus, Crow was said to be able to fly, and that for a few moments Rat actually did!  So why not try?
The word came back late Saturday evening from contest curator Leslie Marrick, and, no, they didn’t win.  But they did receive an Honorable Mention!  How about that?  And with it came an offer that their tale be retold on the pages (or pixels) of MYTHIC BEAST, which — with a request that HUMANAGERIE be credited as the first to take them in — I accepted this afternoon.

AbeBooks has announced today a post-Halloween sale through the end of November.  To quote the source:  Save up to 50% on books, art & collectibles from select sellers.  Click through to find a great selection of items discounted until November 30th.  Also, on their site:  AbeBooks is an online marketplace that connects you with professional sellers selling new, used, rare and out-of-print books, art and collectibles.  Each month, select sellers offer their items for sale on our site at huge discounts, making it easy to buy cheap books, art and collectibles online.  Whether you’re a crime fiction fanatic, a science fiction fiend or a collector of art, you’ll discover thousands of books and other items in our seller sale – all for a bargain.  We may remember (cf. September 25, 20, et al.) that my mosaic novel TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH has been one of the sale books in the past with some astounding bargains offered on both new and used paperback copies.  These are continued in this new sale and may be seen by pressing here.

Also, if you should obtain a copy of TOMBS — or have one already and enjoyed it — please consider sending a review to Amazon, Goodreads, and similar sites.  Only a sentence or two would do, but reviews can help us authors immensely (and that includes other books by other authors as well 🙂 ).

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