Archive for the ‘Vampires’ Category

Today brings an email plus PDF proof from Editor Vince Gotera of the latest STAR*LINE for Fall 2017.  Please proof your piece(s) . . . as well as your listing(s) in the table of contents.  Could you please get back to me with any corrections ASAP?  In my case the page of interest is the twelfth with, sharing poems by Christine Sng and by R. Mac Jones, tucked neatly in at the bottom right my three-liner “Wet Work” (cf. October 13).  And this time, aha!, there was an error, one of the sort that would sneak past a computer spell-checker (whereas, ironically, the correct word might not).

So not to worry, I’ve sent back the change along with mailing and payment details.  More to come when the published issue arrives.

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Nine days to Halloween — how time does fly!  So to anticipate the upcoming holiday, THE HORROR TREE has just posted an interview of me, a long one by Ruschelle Dillon which even includes a question, with picture, about the Goth Cat Triana (with mention as well of dear departed Wednesday).  Did you know both of them have their own web pages (look for their names under “Pages” to the right)?  Captain Kirk or Jean Luc Picard?  (Yes, that’s one of the questions, but how do the “Casket Girls” fit in?)  Meldings of horror, science fiction, and romance.  Art and Death. Which TOMBS tale was “honorable mentioned” in Circlet Press’s BEST FANTASTIC EROTICA 2007?  Inspirational kitties.  Novels-in-stories.  And what does Poe’s “Poetic Principle” have to do with it all?

These and more — you know the routine!  Some things secret, some better well known, but all of them open for readers’ enjoyment by pressing here.

Friday the Thirteenth proper has revealed more good news too, at least so far.  At least from the writing standpoint, with a Friday publication of THREE DROPS FROM A CAULDRON, for Samhain 2017, by Britain’s Three Drops Press.  Although largely a book of poetry, my ingredient in the inculcation is a very short story, “School Nights,”* originally published in GOTHIC BLUE BOOK IV:  THE FOLKLORE EDITION (Burial Day Books, 2014, cf. October 29 2014, et al.), about a young girl who . . . well . . . learns.  The book itself can be read for free by pressing here, with instructions also for purchase of a 74-page paperback edition for $7.32.

Then, speaking of money, another royalty has been received with again, as is my custom, neither publisher or amount revealed to avoid embarrassment.  Nevertheless, had it not been paid via Paypal anyway, the check would have covered the cost to mail it with some cash left over.

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*Oddly enough, the title seems to have been omitted from the contents page.  Look for the “School Nights” on page 22, following “Vampire Girls” and “House of Horrors.”

Who knows what Friday the Thirteenth will bring, but yesterday, Thursday the twelfth, was rather nice despite a gloomy, Octobery day.  The highlight, a first poetry acceptance for me by STAR*LINE new editor Vince Gotera, for a “horrorku” titled “Wet Work.”  Horrorku?  Well, it’s sort of supposed to be horror plus haiku though it’s really more just a three line poem with a vaguely 5-7-5 syllable count (mine is 5-7-4) on a horror subject, which in my case would more likely be epigrammatic, although not always.  But to the point, even if lacking walruses (cf. October 1) “Wet Work” does have a mermaid.

Then Thursday night brought the Bloomington Writers Guild co-sponsored “Second Thursday Players Pub Spoken Word Series” (cf. June 8, et al.) with, this time, a special reading performance of PREMIUM TAFT, a two-act play by Tom Trent, with musical interludes by Jason Fickel.  PREMIUM TAFT is, to read from the Facebook description, “[a] fictional time-traveling comedy about William Howard Taft’s whistle-stop presidential campaign appearance at the Mitchell Opera House in 1908 . . .  or maybe 1958?”  Or science fiction meets farce, in this case with an Indiana small-town ambience with grifters, politicos, greed, and rock ‘n’ roll.  And lots of fun.

This was followed by “open mic” presentations of which mine came in fourth of six, to an audience of about 15 people.  Noting that it had been a gloomy, Octobery day, ideal as a precursor for Halloween, I read four poems from VAMPS (A RETROSPECTIVE), “Night Child,” “La Méduse,” “Moonlight Swimming,” and “Chagrin du Vampire.”

As part of the HWA’s pre-Halloween run-up, three poems of mine have been published this month in a four-poet mini-anthology “Gallery of Poems” in the October issue of the HORROR WRITERS ASSOCIATION NEWSLETTER.  The poems, “Night Child,” “La Méduse,” and “Bon Appétit,” are all reprinted from my 2011 poetry collection VAMPS (A RETROSPECTIVE) along with two illustrations by Marge Simon, albeit erroneously attributed to me as well in the HWA NEWS.  Oops!  The poems themselves were also reprints when they appeared in VAMPS, with original attributions appearing in this current publication.

The HWA NEWSLETTER is, alas, a private publication so I’m not including a link to it here, but if you have friends in the HWA, by all means ask them to give you a look (as well as at those of the three other poets, Marge Simon, Jill Bauman, and Sandy DeLuca, with mine appearing last in the column).

Let us recall last July and a special dispatch from NASFiC at a happier time in San Juan Puerto Rico, and the news that Casket Girls tale “Flightless Rats,” originally sent as an anthology submission, had just received an acceptance instead for FANTASIA DIVINITY #14 to be out in September (see July 7).  Then came September’s announcement that, lo, it had appeared, in fourth position out of five on the FANTASIA DIVINITY website (see September 5, et al.).  And now, albeit a few days late, please to be informed that vampiress Aimée’s adventure concerning a date gone bad in 19th Century New Orleans is now available in a print edition as well (with, it is promised, much nicer formatting) which can be found by pressing here.

Originally published in T. GENE DAVIS’S SPECULATIVE BLOG on Jan 12 2015 as well as, in print, in MOCHA’S DARK BREW (Mocha Memoirs Press, Jul 2016) it can still be read, too, on the FANTASIA website for free by pressing here.  But (fourth out of five, remember?) only after a lot of scrolling down.

The gravitational assist trajectories at Jupiter were successfully carried out by both Voyagers, and the two spacecraft went on to visit Saturn and its system of moons and rings.  Voyager 1 encountered Saturn in November 1980, with the closest approach on November 12, 1980, when the space probe came within 124,000 kilometers (77,000 mi) of Saturn’s cloud-tops.  The space probe’s cameras detected complex structures in the rings of Saturn, and its remote sensing instruments studied the atmospheres of Saturn and its giant moon Titan.  (Wikipedia, “Voyager 1”)

Two items occurred to me to close out the weekend, the first that there were space probes prior to Cassini (cf. September 17, 11, 7), including Voyagers 1 and 2 which also paid a visit to Saturn.  Launched 16 days apart in 1972, Voyager 1 was actually the second, but was on a trajectory that had it reaching Saturn first, performing flybys of not just Saturn and Titan, but also the moons Tethys, Mimas, Enceladus, Rhea, and Hyperion.  And while Voyager 2 also went on to Uranus and Neptune, on August 12 2012 Voyager 1 became the first human-made object to enter interstellar space.  Also, unlike Cassini, both Voyagers continue to journey outward.

So, why my interest?  Thirteen years after Voyager 1 and Saturn, a story of mine, one marking a breakthrough in my writing in my opinion, appeared in the July 1993 edition of Algys Budrys’s short-lived magazine TOMORROW.  Titled “Moons of Saturn,” it told of a couple watching a detailed series of news items on TV of the Voyager mission as it might have been, bringing in also the mythical origins of the moons’ names.  Added to this are fancied adventures on, e.g., the “jewel mines of Rhea,” these conducted through dreams or, possibly, astral projection, all through which the woman, Phoebe, 518B8qShonL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_named for one of the moons herself, grows progressively weaker as the man (“Enceladus,” as named by Phoebe) attempts to find a cure.  This latter possibly with tones of vampirism. . . .

And the thing is (or, here comes the plug!), while TOMORROW and its electronic successor TOMORROW SF are now long gone, “Moons of Saturn” has been reprinted in my collection THE TEARS OF ISIS.  For more information, or possible purchase, just press its picture in the center column.

Then one more item in the life of the writer:  Gehenna and Hinnom Editor/Publisher C.P. Dunphey emailed that the payment for my story in THE YEAR’S BEST BODY HORROR 2017 ANTHOLOGY (see September 13, August 10, May 8) has been sent to Paypal — a thing good to know since Paypal seems no longer to bother to tell people themselves when they’ve received money.  The story in question here is called “Flesh” — and like “Moons of Saturn” may be a little on the surreal side although with a more domestic setting — and also a reprint originally published in Spring 1999 in MAELSTROM SPECULATIVE FICTION.  THE YEAR’S BEST BODY HORROR can be pre-ordered now, by pressing here, in anticipation of a September 30 publication date.

 

Two items today, to look for in the near future:  The first is courtesy of Steph P. Bianchini’s blog THE EARTHIAN HIVEMIND, reminding us that the Cassini space probe will be sending its last signals to Earth just eight days from now.  Or from, as it were, the horse’s mouth, “on September 15, with its fuel tank now almost empty, the probe will make its final dive straight into Saturn, heading for the gas giant’s surface.”  And so, via THE EARTHIAN HIVEMIND, this sendoff:  “Cassini’s 13 Years of Stunning Saturn Science — In Pictures,” by Alexandra Witze on NATURE.COM.  To read (and see), press here.

For the second, we hark back a couple of months to an email from artist, poet, and sometime blog commentator Marge Simon:  Would you have a couple of vamp poems previously published that you could let Kathy Ptacek use for the HWA October newsletter?  If you’ve got an illo to go with it, great.  Maybe something we did for VAMPS?  The reference is to my poetry collection, VAMPS (A RETROSPECTIVE), hopefully to be coming out in a second edition but for info on which, for now, click on its picture in the center column, and so I sent Kathy three favorite poems plus two of Marge’s illustrations.

So then a few days ago came the reply:  thanks, james! I appreciate you sending these to me!  and that’s great that marge sent the artwork for them!  this is going to be a fun issue, I think!  heh!  The issue in question will be the October Horror Writers Association NEWSLETTER with an extra flourish to celebrate the coming Halloween.  And the poems (with initial publication information):  “Night Child,” TOMORROW SF, Feb. 1998; “La Méduse,” ASYLUMS AND LABYRINTHS (Rain Mountain Press, 1997), with a note that it also serves as sort of a foreword to my THE TEARS OF ISIS (Perpetual Motion Machine Publishing, 2013); and “Bon Appétit,” GOTHIC.NET, Aug. 2002).

This is just a quick note that my story “Flightless Rats,” of the vampiress Aimée’s difficulties with dating in Nineteenth Century New Orleans, is now available in FANTASIA DIVINITY MAGAZINE (see July 16, 7).  This is a somewhat bare-bones version which can be read on their website here, with a more completely formatted version in both print and e-formats to be available in the near future.  More to be reported here when it is known.

“Flightless Rats” was originally published electronically in T. GENE DAVIS’S SPECULATIVE BLOG on Jan 12 2015 and in print in MOCHA’S DARK BREW (Mocha Memoirs Press, Jul 2016).

“Now in its 7th year, the Spoken Word Stage at the 4th Street Arts Festival is one of the largest literary performance events in the Midwest, featuring storytelling, poetry, fiction, non-fiction, live radio theatre, and other unique collaborations,” the announcement tells us (see also, below, August 9 and 7).  As in years past, I will have a slot too, billed as “horror fiction” from 3:30 to 4 p.m. Sunday afternoon, September 3rd.  The event itself, arts fair, music, local displays, and the Bloomington Writers Guild-sponsored “Poetry on Demand” booth and Spoken Word Stage, spans the Labor Day weekend, Saturday and Sunday September 2 and 3, arrayed along 4th Street in Bloomington, Indiana.  Or more to the point for the Spoken Word Stage, just off 4th on Dunn Street.

Here is the schedule, as of today, noting again that I’ll be on Sunday with excerpts from my novel-in-stories, TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH, from 3:30 to 4.  And if you like it, I’ll be up again with an excerpt from a different section the following month, in a featured spot at the Writers Guild’s First Sunday Prose Reading, on which more later.

SATURDAY Sep 2
10:30 Shana Ritter (poetry)
11:00 5 Women Poets (poetry)
11:30 Merry MAC Players (theatre)
12:00 Merry MAC cont’d
12:30 Butch D’Ambrisio (sonnets)
1:00 Alex Hollett (poetry)
1:30 Abegunde (poetry)
2:00 Matt Hart (poetry)
2:30 Wil Gibson
3:00 PrideSlam Showcase (poetry)
3:30 Bloomington High School South Poetry Out Loud (poetry)
4:00 Fig Tree Fellowship Radio Players (audio theatre)
4:30 Fig Tree cont’d
5:00 Steve Henn (poetry)
5:30 Shakespeare’s Monkey (poetry band)

SUNDAY Sep 3
10:00 Tony Brewer (poetry)
10:30 Eric Rensberger (poetry)
11:00 Joan Hawkins (fiction)
11:30 New Leaf New Life volunteers (poetry and fiction)
12:00 Adam Henze (poetry)
12:30 Shayne Laughter (fiction)
1:00 Jack Ramey (poetry)
1:30 Jasper Wirtshafter (poetry)
2:00 Wil Gibson
2:30 Arbutus Cunningham (storytelling)
3:00 Cricket’s Bone Caravan (audio theatre)
3:30 James Dorr (horror fiction)
4:00 Lisa Kwong (poetry/personal essay)
4:30 Bloomington Storytellers Guild (storytelling)

In other news, today brought proof sheets for “Flightless Rats” from FANTASIA DIVINITY (cf. July 7, et al.) which, with one correction noted, went back this afternoon.  To be published in the September issue, “Flightless Rats” is the tale of New Orleanian “Casket Girl” Aimée a-prowl for a new husband, but how some prospects may not make the grade.  It is a reprint, originally published in T. GENE DAVIS’S SPECULATIVE BLOG, January 12 2015, and has also appeared in the flash fiction anthology MOCHA’S DARK BREW: 10 TALES OF HORROR (Mocha Memoirs Press, 2016).




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