Posts Tagged ‘Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine’

This just in from Editor Cliff Gerstang, that EVERYWHERE STORIES:  SHORT FICTION FROM A SMALL PLANET, VOLUME II (cf. November 27, September 29, et al.) can now be obtained in a Kindle edition.  One need but press here.  But for those new to this blog (or perhaps short of memory), let us now take a trip on the Wayback Machine to July 25 2016everywhere-stories-vol-ii, quoting from publisher Press 53:  With a theme of “It’s a Mysterious World,” this exciting addition to the EVERYWHERE STORIES series, edited by award-winning author Clifford Garstang, takes readers on a journey around the globe:  to a wrestling match in Turkey, to a mysterious eye doctor in Guatelmala, to a homeless man wandering the streets of Chicago, to a religious school in Samoa, to a drowning in Mexico, to a fortune-telling monk in Korea, to a miraculous hotel in Egypt, and to more stories in countries on every continent.

Yes, that EVERYWHERE STORIES, VOLUME II, originally published in good ol’ print in the days of yore on September 26.  So these things take time, sometimes.  My tale in this one is “The Wellmaster’s Daughter,” of crime and family life gone sour in the Sahara Desert, originally told in ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S MYSTERY MAGAZINE, November 1991, and also reprinted in my collection STRANGE MISTRESSES:  TALES OF WONDER AND ROMANCE (for more information, click its pic in the center column).  Or for the print version of EVERYWHERE STORIES, VOL II, us dead tree buffs can still press here.

This year, we launched a new initiative called The Society of Misfit Stories.  To celebrate we’re adding the “Misfits” to our Reader’s Choice poll.  Let us know which story you have enjoyed the most so far.  Each story is only 99 cents and they are also available as part of your KindleUnlimited subscription.  This was the announcement from Bards and Sages Publishing as part of their annual Reader”s Choice poll.  This year, however, we are changing things up.  You will still select your favorite stories from each issue, but now the Author of the Year selections also include authors published in our GREAT TOMES series and THE SOCIETY OF MISFIT STORIES!  You can also vote for your favorite “Misfit” that we have published so far!  But the thing was, while I’m not sure they follo51hxoyeaatlwed through on the others, a quick check of the “Misfit” voting showed that my entry in the stand-alone electronic chapbook series, BY FORCE AND AGAINST THE KING’S PEACE (see October 3, et al.), was running in first place!

And now polls have closed and, while I’ve not received an official announcement yet, the totals on the voting pages show BY FORCE to have won in the “Misfits Division,” if one may call it that, with 56 percent of the final vote!  Or, to see for yourself, press here.

BY FORCE AND AGAINST THE KING’S PEACE, incidentally, is a reprint, originally published in ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S MYSTERY MAGAZINE in December 1999, a tale of mystery and courtroom drama concerning a peasant’s plea for redress against a wayward wizard.  As for THE SOCIETY OF MISFIT STORIES (cf. July 6, June 23), the general idea is to provide a place for longer stories, from about 5,000 to 20,000 words (BY FORCE is about 9800 words), to provide a loving home for those misfit tales that are too long for most periodicals but too short for print.  So it looks like it may be printed yet again, or at least so has said the polling information, that [w]inning stories and authors will be invited to have their work republished in next year’s BARDIC TALES AND SAGE ADVICE anthology.  But if you want to read it right away, you can also press here.

In a slightly belated announcement  (I just got the news yesterday myself), EVERYWHERE STORIES, VOLUME II (cf. September 18, 6, et al.) was officially published Monday this week, September 26.  This means it can be ordered on Amazon, B&L, etc., as well as directly from publieverywhere-stories-vol-iisher Press 53, this last by pressing here.  Edited by Clifford Gerstang, and not necessarily genre bound, the book contains tales set in various countries the world over, no two repeated.  Mine for instance, originally published in ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S MYSTERY MAGAZINE (also in my collection, STRANGE MISTRESSES:  TALES OF WONDER AND ROMANCE), is “The Wellmaster’s Daughter,” set in Mali, a horrorish crime tale of family relations gone bad in the Sahara Desert.

For those in the Washington DC/Virginia/North Carolina area, several signings for EVERYWHERE STORIES have been planned, for updates on which one can check out their Facebook page here.  Also for a bit more information, an article on the launch appeared in the AUGUSTA (Virginia) FREE PRESS, and can be found here.

“Can a poor farmer get justice in a court of law when an errant wizard destroys his crops?  And even if the crime can be proven and restitution ordered, how does one compel a wizard to comply?”  This the blurb, or at least a preliminary version, by Bards and Sages Publishing for my story “By Force and Against the King’s Peace,” currently scheduled for September 9 for THE SOCIETY OF MISFIT STORIES (see July 6, June 23).  This is a new electronic-only publication, tailored for stories from about 5,000 to 20,000 words, “to provide a loving home for those misfit tales that are too long for most periodicals but too short for print.”  And so today the galley proof came with a request for it to be returned by the weekend with any changes.  Yes, the life of the writer continues.sorceress1

“By Force and Against the King’s Peace” has been published before, in ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S MYSTERY MAGAZINE in December 1999, and, yes, partly because of its relatively long length (about 9800 words), it has not been reprinted since.  Also it is a story of crime, though speculative too as defined by Bards and Sages’s guidelines (“horror, science fiction, slipstream, steampunk, magical realism, etc.”), a sort of fantasy courtroom drama involving a young, new-minted wizard just starting her practice and an experienced, older — but not too old — King’s Justice of the Peace.

And, of course, magic.

“Imagine yourself in a cemetery.  Void of all light at the base of a tree.  But it’s no ordinary tree.  This tree abounds with the dead.  Now envision that each tree limb is a short story with its own vision, its own length of words, and its own insanity. . . .”

So begins the description on Amazon of CEMETERY RIOTS (cf. May 5; September 2, August 27 2015), dated the last day of June, the 30th, by Editors T.C. Bennett and Tracy L. Carbone with stories by such as Richard Christian Matheson, Hal Bodner, Cemetery RiotEric J. Guignard, John Palisano, William F. Nolan, and, um, me.  A “new collection of dark cautionary tales” in which mine, “The Re-Possessed,” might be seen as a warning to never stiff (yes, pun intended) the funeral director.

But hey, this is one we’ve been waiting for, so without, as they say, further ado, for more information/ordering press here.

Then, received this afternoon, my fantasy/mystery courtroom novelette “By Force and Against the King’s Peace” has received a publication date for Bards and Sages Publishing’s THE SOCIETY OF MISFIT STORIES (cf. June 23), a new electronic-only series tailored for science fiction, fantasy, and horror stories from 5,000 to 20,000 words that may find themselves at an awkward length for submission elsewhere.  “By Force. . . ,” at a tad less than 10,000 words, is itself a reprint (which is okay, though it’s expected that most “Society” members will probably be new) originally published in ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S MYSTERY MAGAZINE in December 1999, and is being tagged here to appear on September 9.

Contracts came Tuesday, were signed Wednesday, and went into the mail today.  And oddly they shared the same envelope, although they’re for very different projects.  For the first, in fact, there’s a funny story that goes back to when I had been in Boy Scouts, and of an over-zealous (though mercifully fictional) Scoutmaster who proposed a survival hike in which participants would spend a week in the woods with “nothing but a jock strap and a knife.”  And so, once upon a more recent time, I wrote a sort of absurdist story in which the horror trope of the defenseless woman lost in the woods being stalked by a monster would be ratcheted up, the victim becoming a college student in a “survival geology” course with nothing but a rock hammer, a thong, and a silver dollar.

The geology part, incidentally, was a spinoff from another story, “Ice Vermin,” which will be reprinted in Bards and Sages Publishing’s third volume in their GREAT TOMES anthology series (cf. June 9, et al.), THE GREAT TOME OF FANTASTIC AND WONDROUS PLACES (see specifically May 11), thus joining stories I already have in their first two entries.  And so by coincidence this new story, called “The Stalker,” seemed like it might fit in the fourth and last book, but there was a snag.  The editors thought the undies might make it too over the top, and so on request I rewrote a new, more modestly attired version.  And now the word has come (well, actually Tuesday), the new better dressed “Stalker” (well, actually the stalker’s victim, the stalker itself being more like fur-covered) has been accepted for Volume 4, THE GREAT TOME OF CRYPTIDS AND LEGENDARY CREATURES, set for a December 2016 publication — and so I have stories either out, or due out by the end of the year, in all four of the GREAT TOMES volumes.

But another coincidence now comes forth.  A new Bards and Sages project has been announced, THE SOCIETY OF MISFIT STORIES “to provide a loving home for those misfit tales that are too long for most periodicals but too short for print.”  This will be in electronic format only, with reprints allowed although unpublished stories are preferred, for tales between 5,000 and 20,000 words in length “in all speculative genres (horror, science fiction, slipstream, steampunk, magical realism, etc.).  We will also consider mysteries, thrillers, and action-adventure stories for this series.”  These will be bought for a modest sum, but only for a six-month period, subject to subsequent renewals by mutual consent.  And I have several stories that otherwise are doing nothing that fit the description.

So, long story short, Tuesday also brought a contract for my 9,800 or thereabouts word “By Force and Against the King’s Peace,” a fantasy-mystery originally published in ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S MYSTERY MAGAZINE in December 1999, and now tentatively scheduled for this September.

Another week, another weekend, the writing life goes on.  This weekend brought my writing group’s monthly meeting (my story critiqued, a short-short “steampunk romance” that got a better reception there than from editors so far) and, actually received Friday, a full galley proof of EVERYWHERE STORIES, VOLUME 2 (cf. May 10, et al.), with my one-time ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S MYSTERY MAGAZINE story everywhere1“The Wellmaster’s Daughter” number three in the contents lineup.

Her tale originally published in November 1991, and also reprinted in STRANGE MISTRESSES:  TALES OF WONDER AND ROMANCE (for details on which, one can press its picture in the center column) and Smart Rhino Publications’s 2012 UNCOMMON ASSASSINS, etc., the daughter in question displays poor judgment in making friends, something that can have dangerous overtones if one’s home is in the Sahara Desert.  But part of the subtext of EVERYWHERE STORIES is itself danger, according to Editor Clifford Garstang, along with more than just a touch of the mysterious, with story locations spread over twenty different nations, covering at least five continents.

And so, Sunday night, in the wee, wee late hours, my “okay” of my parts of the text went back, well ahead of a July 10 deadline.  The book is still on schedule for an October or possibly earlier release, and therefore should be out from Press 53, LLC, well in time (for those who might, *ahem*, contemplate giving gifts) for a worldwide Halloween celebration.

“‘The Wellmaster’s Daughter,’ from James S. Dorr, engages with its exotic setting, foreboding mood, and rich language.”  So said David Searls in a review of UNCOMMON ASSASSINS last June 24 on HELLNOTES.  And now, if you haven’t read it already, Editor Weldon Burge has just announced that “Smart Rhino Publications has scheduled a Kindle Countdown sale for UNCOMMON ASSASSINS this weekend, Feb. 7-9.  On Friday, you can pick up the Kindle version for 99 cents; on Saturday, $1.99; and then later on Sunday, the price will go to the original price of $3.99.  If you haven’t read this anthology of suspense/thriller stories, here’s your chance to download a copy!”

“The Wellmaster’s Daughter” itself is a reprint that originally appeared in the November 1991 issue of ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S MYSTERY MAGAZINE, and is also available in my first collection STRANGE MISTRESSES:  TALES OF WONDER AND ROMANCE by Dark Regions Press in 2001 (at last notice, Dark Regions may be out of stock, but both new and used copies should be available on Amazon), but at least for this weekend can also be obtained with 22 other stories of crime and killing at a bargain price by pressing here.

“Hired killers.  Vigilantes.  Executioners.  Paid killers or assassins working from a moral or political motivation.  You’ll find them all in this thrilling anthology.  But these are not ordinary killers, not your run-of-the-mill hitmen.  The emphasis is on the ‘uncommon’ here — unusual characters, usual situations, and especially unusual means of killing.”  So goes the blurb.  “Here are tales by some of the best suspense/thriller writers today, [ranging from] historical fiction to science fiction to political thriller — there’s even an alternate history story in the mix.”  Published by Smart Rhino Publications, UNCOMMON ASSASSINS was originally planned for this fall (see April 17), but, at least on Amazon, has come out early with their release date listed as August 14.

And do I have a shot in this shebang?  You just bet I do, “The Wellmaster’s Daughter,” originally published in ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S MYSTERY MAGAZINE on November 1991 — my first ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S appearance as a matter of fact (for another tale of mine originally published in ALFRED HITCHCOCK’s, incidentally, click on the picture of VANITAS in the center column).  As for other non-run-of-the-mill malefactors to be found in UNCOMMON ASSASSINS’s pages, here is a partial table of contents (or, put another way, the latest interim one I could find).

Stories aleady accepted for this anthology include:
Stephen England, Nightshade
J. Gregory Smith, The Pepper Tyrant
Lisa Mannetti, Everybody Wins
Ken Goldman Fat Larry’s Night With the Alligators
Christine Morgan, Thyf’s Tale
Matt Hilton, Misconceptions
Billie Sue Mosiman, Second Amendment Solution
Ken Bruen, Killer
Rob M. Miller For the Love of Boys
Monica O’Rourke, Bloodshed Fred
F. Paul Wilson, Slasher
Joseph Badal, Fire & Ice
Doug Blakeslee, Madame
Elliott Capon, The Man Who Shot Hitler
Laura DiSilverio, Mercy Killing
Michael Bailey, Scrub
James Dorr, The Wellmaster’s Daughter
Jonathan Templar, Wish I’d Never Met You
J. Carson Black, The Bluelight Special
Weldon Burge, Welcome to the Food Chain
Al Boudreau, Inside Out
Charles Colyott, Katakiuchi
Lynn Mann, Taking Care of Business

So if you’ve a mind to, check it out here, and enjoy, enjoy!




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