Posts Tagged ‘Chupa Cabra House’

“What is your take on a dystopian world?  Is it a police state?  Do people live in fear of an outside force?  Or is it an inner source they are scared or?”  Such was the call last autumn by Hydra Publications and, today, Editor Frank Hall answered with an acceptance of a reprint story from me, “Invisible People,” for the upcoming anthology DYSTOPIAN HYDRA.

“Invisible People” was first published in the Winter 1992-93 edition of DARK INFINITY, and has also been noted in these pages as appearing in WE WALK INVISIBLE (Chupa Cabra House, 2013; cf. February 9 2014, et al.).  It is the tale of a man who . . . we2ae02e6ff992b2e0837892af56eaaa41ll . . . becomes invisible.  So, you know, like panhandlers and homeless people, etc., become so ignored they end up kind of invisible too, but in a society that really encourages it — that is, even more than we do now.  And so, what happens when an ordinarily law-abiding worker-bee type suddenly loses his job?

One will just have to see for oneself, with more information reported here when it becomes known.  For now let suffice from this afternoon’s announcement, “[i]n no particular order the final titles in the anthology and their authors:


“Friendling – Gregory Norris

When the Wind Blows – Pam Farley

Fit to Rule – Stephanie Neilan

Republic of Masks – Josh Brown

The Unnaturals – Michael J. Epstien

The Unbinding – Maureen Neal

Data  Crabs – Deborah Walker

Fudgesickles – Brick Marlin

Surrender – Bob Brown

Twenty-one Seconds – Ian Neack

Greater Good – Jeff Provine

Scarecrow Scarecrow on the hill – Tracy Fahey

Invisible People – James S Dorr

Jotnar – D. R. Acula

The First Price – Benjamin Sperduto

An Unfettered Life – C Bryan Brown

Running with the Devil – Peter Welmerink

Cohort 17 – Val Muller

Finding Chindera – Dave Creek

Public Hating – Nigel Sellers”

We’ve been having a William S. Burroughs (b. Feb. 5 1914 – d. 1997) festival here, not considered a horror author but books like JUNKIE and NAKED LUNCH come close.  So I’ve been watching movies as part of it at Indiana University Cinema, BURROUGHS:  THE MOVIE (a new remastered version) Thursday night, then Friday night, braving 6 degree weather, CHAPPAQUA.  The latter, about an addict in rehab reliving/hallucinating experiences on drugs, was NakedLunchespecially interesting, non-linear by definition, surrealistic in places — think “bizarro” if one will, though it’s not that exactly — with cameos by Allen Ginsberg and William Burroughs, soundtrack largely by Ravi Shankar.  There’s no specific local connection to Burroughs except that despite connections to Tangier, etc, he was really a Midwesterner, born in St. Louis and died in Lawrence Kansas after he’d left New York.  A few nights before I’d also attended the opening at the IU Fine Arts Building of  a small display of paintings he did mostly later in life, a number of these while in Kansas.  I understand there’s also (though I haven’t been to it yet)  a display in the university’s rare book library.

So they’ll be showing the movie of NAKED LUNCH later tonight as I write this, though, in that I happen to have the VHS of that one anyway — and it would also partially overlap tonight’s CBS special on the 50th anniversary of the Beatles’ appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show in New York (thus the headline above:  How Time Passes) — I’m tentatively planning a “private showing” probably around midnight tonight.

This afternoon, though, I’m just back from a showing of short films Burroughs was in or made or was involved with too, some experimental (THE CUT-UPS, e.g., probably best described as a prolonged example of montage, the more interesting because some scenes that came up had already appeared in BURROUGHS:  THE MOVIE) some less so (e.g. a sentimental cartoon version of his short story, “The Junkie’s Christmas”), also including TOWERS OPEN FIRE, WILLIAM BUYS A PARROT, BILL AND TONY, GHOSTS AT NO. 9, et al.  And then tonight, the weather report is talking about another quick cold snap plus maybe more snow (though probably not much), another excuse for the “private showing,” as well as that I’m looking forward to being able to run scenes back to look at again, etc., with some of the techniques Burroughs used himself both in his writing and his own films still fresh in my mind.

Then for something completely different, Saturday brought a long-anticipated copy of WE WALK INVISIBLE (cf. November 8, SeptWeWalkInvisible1122FINALjustcovercopyember 23), actually published in November by Chupa Cabra House, but due to postal mixups of some sort, only now sent.  So, okay, there is an air of paranoia there that might relate to some of Burrough’s work as well.  And then there’s my story “Invisible People,” a near-future tale of alienation and, yes, paranoia too, originally published in DARK INFINITY in Winter 1992-93 — and chastely described on the back cover as “A man finds that retirement makes him invisible to society.”

Ah, but there’s so much more, not only in that, but in fifteen more stories that make up WE WALK INVISIBLE, for more information on which press here.

“Lakes.  Cemeteries.  Labs.  Greenhouses.  Front lawns and backyards.  Plants surround us, and from their roots, branches, and seeds come the most visceral and horrific stories of all.  These nightmares are sentient.  They’re haunted.  They’re tired, and done suffering a population that could not survive without them.  From the most gorgeous of flowers to the smallest of fungi, GROWING CONCERNS sheds light on the last psychological terror of the human race:  Mother Earth in rebellion.”

So states Chupa Cabra House’s press release for its upcoming eco-horror anthology (cf. November 4 and 18), which is scheduled for release next Wednesday, January 15th, according to Editor Alex Hurst.  My skunk at this garden party is a tale called “Seeds,” about a man who would rather watch baseball than dig up the yard for a flower bed, except that his wife has other ideas.  But might the flowers themselves have a say?

To find out, check back here in a week for more details on GROWING CONCERNS, and hopefully a link for ordering, as soon as I know them.

In other news, Untreed Reads Publishing has announced a challenge for readers to read twelve books free during 2014, and then say what they think of them — but the thing is, you have to sign up by the end of this month, January 31.  The rules,from Editor-in-Chief Jay Hartman:

“1.  Send your name and email address to .  If you’re participating in another reading challenge on the Internet, be sure to let us know that too.  We won’t EVER share your info with anyone else, but we’ll add you to our New Releases newsletter so you can see the great new books coming down the pike . . . plus get even more coupons!

“2.  Each month we’ll send you a coupon good for a free download from our store (  You can choose any title up to $5.99 and in any format you prefer:  EPUB, PDF or Kindle.

“3.  Read the book and leave a review in our store and as many other places you can, such as Amazon and Goodreads.  Please leave an honest review!  You’ll also need to include in your review that you received a free copy of the book in exchange for a review.  The government requires that.  Darn red tape!”

Then let me now add, for four of these I might suggest my own solo Untreed Reads chapbooks, PEDS, VANITAS, I’M DREAMING OF A. . ., and the anthology YEAR’S END:  14 TALES OF HOLIDAY HORROR with my lead story “Appointment in Time,” for more information on which click here.

What does 1960s iconic cartoonist Robert Crumb have to do with success in writing?  Fame, fortune, or respect — which is best?  That’s right, it’s interview time again, this time courtesy of Jim Mcleod and his GINGER NUTS OF HORROR blog.  It’s a pretty short one this time as some go, self-styled as “Five Minutes of Questions,” but it’s the questions themselves (and the answers) that hold the interest, yes?  What book was I reading when I did the interview (hint:  one that I don’t have a story in myself)?  Will the resident cave cat Wednesday find a way to get herself mentioned too?

Answers to these and more can be found here.

Also, the mail has just arrived and, with it, my copy of RADICAL DISLOCATIONS (cf. September 1, July 17 and 28), Chupa Cabra House’s limited edition volume of “weird poems by the best underground poets.”  Who can say whether every poet is the best or not, such matters perhaps best left to taste, but three of the offerings anyway are mine:  “Last Rides” (what happens when a coffin is kicked during the graveside service — hint:  it doesn’t involve zombies or anything similar), “Book Fair Buzz Is Not Contained Between 2 Covers” (killer bees at the annual Book Fair), and “Why He Ate His Hat” (the thwarting of an alien invasion).  Edited by Timm Tayshun, the book itself is somewhat rough and ready — my middle initial on the contents page, for instance, has wandered a few spots down in the alphabet from where it is on the poems themselves — but, from a preliminary dipping inside, looks to be a lot of fun.

Unfortunately RADICAL DISLOCATIONS is already out of print, but it does have a page on Amazon, here, where used copies could conceivably come up.

A new review of THE TEARS OF ISIS went up on Amazon today, having already appeared on Goodreads Sunday.  And this one, from Australian author Natasha Ewendt, gives the collection five stars out of five, not to mention some very alluring words!  “Is there anything better than a short story isiscovermasterfinalebook1-copy-201x300collection that pulls you in from the very first line?”  “Each tale has a killer twist, deep dark intrigue and/or something disturbing to make you shiver.”  To read for yourself on Amazon press here (in the interest of full disclosure, not all of the reviews are as good, alas, but one must make up one’s own mind about them — and, in fact, seeing all together I think gives a better idea of a book as a whole in terms of why one reader may like one aspect that a second reader may be less excited by), on Goodreads here.  And for both a thank you from me to Natasha!

In more mundane matters, today I also sent back the proof sheets to Editor Alex Hurst for GROWING CONCERNS (see November 4), Chupa Cabra House’s upcoming Ecological Horror anthology.  My offering in this is “Seeds,” the tale of an uppity flower garden in the Chicago area and why one’s Sunday afternoons might be more safely spent watching baseball on TV.

Who could resist a call like this, for “any kind of story related to plants, forests, gardens, or anything scary/dark/bizarre in relation to vegetable matter.”  Certainly not I.  So off I sent a 3500-word story, another reprint this time (but what the heck, if you got ‘em, flaunt ‘em) originally published in the February 1997 KEEN SCIENCE FICTION titled “Seeds,” a tale of old love possibly being supplanted by new, backyard flowerbeds, and the Chicago Cubs.  No, they still lost ChupaCabraHousegames back then as well.  But then today came the accepting email:  “This is Alex Hurst from Chupa Cabra House Publishing. I’d like to thank you again for your submission to our eco-horror anthology GROWING CONCERNS and am quite pleased to inform you that your story has been accepted for inclusion.  I loved the dark humor of this story, and the circular nature of the plot’s various tendrils, and hope our readers will enjoy it just as much.

“Please expect further correspondence from our Chief Editor, Timm Tayshun, regarding rights and contracts, and feel free to contact me with any more questions.”

And so, “The First Hundred Years” (see below, November 1) actually having being officially accepted October 31, here is the first sale of the new month only four days in.  Publisher Chupa Cabra House has been on these pages before, however, with another reprint story, “Invisible People,” set to be published in WE WALK INVISIBLE (cf. September 23) and three poems presumably already out in RADICAL DISLOCATIONS (cf. September 1, et al. — my author’s copy actiually hasn’t arrived yet so I can’t comment on it, but hopefully it will be along soon).

In the meantime, Weldon Burge of Smart Rhino Publications has just announced a special sale on their anthology UNCOMMON ASSASSINS on Kindle starting tomorrow,  November 5, at 6:00 PM PST.  To quote further from their Facebbook ad:

“Here’s how it breaks down:

“Nov. 5 at 6:00 PM = $0.99 (76% discount)

“Nov. 7 at 6:00 PM = $1.99 (51% discount)

“Nov. 9 at 6:00 PM = $2.99 (26% discount)

“Nov. 11 at 6:00 PM = Original list price $3.99

“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.”

My pony in this paddock is called “The Wellmaster’s Daughter,” of which, if interested in buying it and its companions at a possibly very deep discount, or just for more information, press here.

Lots of small bits, with one not all that small.  Editor Timm Tayshun of Chupa Cabra House emailed today to say they’re accepting  my story “Invisible People,” originally published in the Winter 1992-93 DARK INFINITY, as a reprint for their anthology WE WALK INVISIBLE.  “Invisible People” is a symbolic (if one will) near-future dystopia based on the idea that as one becomes alienated by a society, he or she becomes no-longer-noticed by those still in that society’s mainstream.  The point is made, for instance (and to sneak in a plug 😉 ) in the story “Bottles” in THE TEARS OF ISIS where the maid Maria can walk unmolested as long as she’s wearing her maid’s uniform, but on her days off if she wears her own clothes she’s whistled at by the college boys at neighboring Harvard.  And as for the world in “Invisible People,” suppose one literally becomes invisible when those in the mainstream have been conditioned to only believe — and, hence, only to “see” — what society has told them is reality.

Also Horrified Press has announced the official release date for NIGHTMARE STALKERS & DREAM WALKERS (cf. September 20, June 28) as October 23, “just in time for the holiday season. . . .”  “The highly awaited horror anthology NIGHTMARE STALKERS & DREAM WALKERS edited by Suzie Lockhart & Bruce Lockhart 2nd dares you to confront the dark behind your eyelids, as no-one is safe to dream in this collection of  frightening tales from some of the biggest names in horror. NIGHTMARE STALKERS & DREAM WALKERS will be available in both digital and print formats.”  Speculation aside as to whether I qualify as one of “the biggest names,” etc., my story in this is one called “Flesh,” about a man who, because of a dream, has decided to get fat.

So, okay, you’ve just got to read it to see why.

And, speaking of the highly absurd, today’s third announcement is that my review of the Japanese film VAMPIRE GIRL VS. FRANKENSTEIN GIRL, originally presented here last October 28 (“Recommended for Halloween Fun”), has been selected by M.R. Gott to appear as a guest blog on October 1, opening 2013’s WHERE THE DEAD FEAR TO TREAD, a.k.a. M.R. GOTT’S CUTIS ANSERINA, annual Halloween Celebration.  Thus far eleven more guest spots have been chosen stretching from mine on the first to October 29 and, while the real fun may not start for eight more days, for a sample of what WHERE THE DEAD FEAR TO TREAD is all about, one need but click here.

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