Posts Tagged ‘Dystopias’

Well, life in the far future as depicted in TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH is, to be sure, not exactly cheery.  And Amazon’s keywords do include the term “Dystopian,” as well as “Horror.”  But here’s a description from Erin Roberts’s “How to Tell If You’re Living in a Dystopia — And Why It Matters,” from TOR.COM:  Dystopian fiction, which comes from the Ancient Greek words “dys” (bad) and “topia” (place), lives up to its name by featuring worlds in which reality is cruel, suffering is extreme, and hope seems pointless.  But not every horrible place is a dystopia — the trope usually features a world in which society itself is the problem — and not every dystopia is horrible in the same way.  The social order is broken, but how?  The system has been corrupted, but by whom?  These futures may be bleak, but they are not interchangeable.  And so the question, are troubles in TOMBS primarily that of a social order (or orders) gone wrong, or is it more just a physically lousy place to live?  Or some kind of combination of both?

Ms. Roberts suggests four questions one could ask to determine whether one’s milieu is dystopic or not, mostly having to do with societal origins and hopes of relief, but as some of the comments after may suggest those might not be the only criteria.  But see for yourself by pressing here.  While as for TOMBS, for more information click on its picture in the center column, read the reviews, and perhaps buy a copy.

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A time of revelry and reversal, Saturnalia represents the breakdown of what has been deemed the natural order.  HYPERION AND THEIA’s inaugural volume wants stories and poetry that runs the gamut of genres and turns expectations on their heads.  Submit a fantastical murder-mystery set in the biggest carnival in Atlantis.  Wow us with a sweeping romance in space where gods and goddesses serve their creations after a bloody war. . . .

Such had been the call some months ago and, last December, came the acceptance (cf. December 9 2016).  My “epic” poem DREAMING SATURN, originally published in the anthology DARK DESTINY (White Wolf, 1994) would not only be in the inaugural volume, but tentatively would be set as the opening item.  A contract would follow.

So you know how it is.  Life intrudes, delays happen.  But then, yesterday:  Sorry for the long wait!  I have attached the final contract for you to sign.  I will contact you again on the 27th of October with the cover and other promotional material.  Suffice to say, the signed 8451b32b-e3c4-41cb-8f3e-7c6834708f13contract went back in the email this afternoon.

In other news, a run through the e-bookstores this morning unearthed a 33-percent discount for TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH on Barnes and Noble, at $9.99 — and that’s just the “official” price, with individual sellers’ new copies as inexpensive as $8.98.  There’s no indication how long these prices may last, so best take advantage soon!  Amazon, also, while listing the full price of $14.95 on its site, has several individual listings in the $10 to $11 range.  If interested, check out Barnes and Noble by pressing here; while Amazon can continue to be found, including several substantive reviews, by clicking TOMBS’ picture in the center column.

So I’d been invited to be in this reading group discussion that brought up the possible influence of “classical” vampire movies on what a character would know about vampires, given the time the book takes place.  This brought up (on my part) some details about the Universal Pictures sequels to the Bela Lugosi version of DRACULA and how, wandering a bit off topic, I had been introduced to these myself via Saturday night horror movie shows on TV.  But checking some details brought me farther off topic to the shows themselves and their often iconic-in-their-own-right hosts.  Me, I liked “Zacherley” (a.k.a. John Zacherle) after he’d moved from Philadelphia to New York.  And from there I was brought, via LISTVERSE.COM, to “Top 10 TV Horror Hosts” by Dan Lepore, for which press here (and note as well, most come with with clips from the shows themselves, for which be especially sure to scroll down to number 4 to witness Maila Nurmi’s 1954 opening of THE VAMPIRA SHOW).  And not only that, but here’s an extra (more serendipity), Zacherleys 1958 performance of  the song “Dinner With Drac,” for which press here!

Then one more note, having recently pointed out discounts on B & N and Amazon for TOMBS: A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH, for UK readers in particular (albeit I’m giving US prices here) it’s being offered at 29 percent off its $14.95 list price, at $10.52, on the Book Depository, for which press here.  At least for the time being.

It’s either going to be a big, big book or a lot of the stories will be rather short, but Gehenna & Hinnom’s upcoming YEAR’S BEST BODY HORROR (cf. May 8) looks like it’s going to be exciting reading.  Set for a publication date of September 30, here is the table of contents along with the cover, as released Wednesday evening by Editor C.P. Dunphey.

Table of Contents:

(Note:  We have decided to go by alphabetical order by author for the stories, since there are just so many high quality pieces.)

Foreword by C.P. Dunphey
Introduction by ?????

STORIES:
“SLOBBER” by Shaun Avery
“ERUPTION” by Charlotte Baker
“DEVIL’S TEARS” by Shadrick Beechem
“AN ANGEL AMONG US” by David Beers
“HUMAN-KINGS” by Austin Biela
“WRIGGLERS” by Chantal Boudreau*
“LITTLE MONSTERS” by Ed Burkley
“TOM’S THUMB” by K.M. Campbell
“FAMILY DINNER” by A. Collingwood
“THE ITCH” by Stuart Conover
“THE BLIND ASSASSIN” by Damien Donnelly
“FLESH” by James Dorr*
“A NORMAL SON” by Spinster Eskie
“GAS MASK BABY” by Santiago Eximeno
“HUMAN BODY” by Balázs Farkas*
“FRESH FACE” by Tarquin Ford
“MEET THE WIFE” by Kenneth C. Goldman*
“MADMAN ACROSS THE WATER” by James Harper
“MANTIS” by Kourtnea Hogan
“CICADA” by Carl R. Jennings
“TETANUS” by Christopher Vander Kaay
“GRUB” by Alexander Lloyd King
“MY LOVE BURNS WITH A GREEN FLAME” by Thomas C. Mavroudis
“THE FACE IN THE MIRROR” by Sean McCoy
“PORPHYRIA” by John S. McFarland
“THINGS” by Rick McQuiston
“THE FLESH GARDENER” by Jeremy Megargee
“EAR WAX” by G.A. Miller
“THE FACE” by Kurt Newton*
“BATTLEGROUND” by Drew Nicks
“WHIZZ-BANG ATTACK” by Sergio Palumbo
“THE ALWAYS WATCHING EYE” by Gary Power
“HOT FLASHES” by Jenya Joy Preece
“THE IMPLOSION OF A GASTROCRAT” by Frank Roger*
“NO STRINGS” by Josh Shiben*
“BABEL” by Ian Steadman
“A POUND OF FLESH” by Edmund Stone
“CONDITIONED APOCALYPSE” by Aric Sundquist
“LENGTH” by David Turton
“NATURAL GROWTH” by Mijat Vujačić*
“UTTER NO EVIL” by Joseph Watson
“DOWN WHERE HER NIGHTMARES DWELL” by Sheldon Woodbury

* means reprint

And in an ongoing news note, both Amazon and Barnes & Noble are back to offering pretty deep print copy discounts for TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH, with the B&N price at $11.28 (compared to a full price of $14.95) and Amazon at $10.65, 25 and 29 percent off, respectively.  (For electronic prices, B&N’s Nook is at $8.49, Amazon’s Kindle $8.99.)  I don’t know if this is an August thing, or if it will even last through the month — or extend beyond.  However, if interested, Barnes & Noble can be checked out here and Amazon here.

On both sites there may be individual sellers as well with copies at even lower prices.  But if you find the bargain you want, and like the book too, please consider posting a review of TOMBS at both locations.

“It began innocently enough with a Meet the Author Interview.”  So begins Heidi Angell’s entry on her blog, AN ANGELL’S LIFE OF BOOKISH GOODNESS, complete with a link to the interview itself (cf., also, January 10), followed by a note and links for the three guest posts also published on TOMBS over the past several months (cf. May 18, et al.).  But that’s not all, even before that Heidi has posted a video of her first impressions which, by way of a preview, you can check out here (or, again, the link is there as well for you).  But then comes the main event, for which I can just say “Wow!” Heidi Angell’s review of TOMBS: A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH, for which please press here.

If I may quote the last part (a “spoiler,” if one will):  I highly recommend this book for anyone who likes to think deep thoughts about what they read.  For anyone who has an interest in politics, social issues, climate issues, anthropological studies, biomedical, and for the curious who like to imagine how the world could turn out.  For me, this was more realistic an outcome than the Divergent series, Hunger Games, or Maze Runner, though definitely not for the same audience.  This is a grown up’s view for grown-ups of what a dystopian world could potentially provide.  Or again, to read the review as a whole, press here.

It can also be found, with Christine Rains’s earlier review (see June 1) on Goodreads, by pressing here.  Also, with C.P. Dunphey’s GEHENNA POST review (see June 3), all three reviews should eventually be on Amazon’s listing for TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH, although none have actually appeared there yet (I rather wish Amazon would hurry with it, but then they’re still offering their discount price, so slowness may have its advantages too 😉 ).

We may recall C.P. Dunphey’s interview of me, “Love and Death:  An Interview With TOMBS Author, James Dorr” (see May 26), as one homing in in detail on various aspects of TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH itself.  Inspiration, ghouls, the use of languages — and where does Vodoun come into the picture?  We’ve seen the preview, as it were, but what of the show?

Well, for the main event, really, one should buy the book.  A click on its picture in the center column brings more information, or press either of the Amazon or B&L links (both still offer discounts as of today) on May 30’s post, below.  But we’ve also seen one review already, by Christine Rains (cf. June 1) — are there not any others?

The answer (surprise!) is yes.  First came the interview, then — today — C.P. Dunphey’s review is now up on GEHENNA POST.  May I offer a quote?

TOMBS is an unexpected, enigmatic piece that author James Dorr spent years creating.  The world is visually stunning, the layers and depths of the universe never faltering in their ability to not only captivate the reader, but to also offer a lending hand in an escape to a world full of wonder and astonishment.  From the Old City to the Tombs, every setting is flawlessly illustrated with language poetic and frequently romantic.  Dorr crafts his universe with talent unrivaled and unparalleled.

To see all press here.

This is a thank you, too, for which a short look back as well to May 27.  Christine Rain’s opening review of TOMBS: A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH has already received a seconding comment on Goodreads, but now the review is also up at Christine’s own blog, SPECULATIVE FICTION WRITER CHRISTINE RAINS.  Sample it for yourself by pressing here — where you’ll find a fun blog in its own right (not to mention, well, TotemBlogheaderanother flattering comment about me, re. the writers group I’ve occasionally mentioned that she’s on as well — not the Bloomington Writers Guild, that is, but the sf/f/h critique one, cf. May 21; also June 24 2016).  TOMBS: A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH is “officially” published today as well*, and hopefully will be garnering other reviews too in the not far future (while in the meantime, if you’d like to add a comment to Christine’s, you have two places to do so, on her blog by pressing above, or for Goodreads by scrolling down to the third post below).
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*A quick check just now shows that both Amazon and Barnes & Noble have their pre-publication prices still available, but no indication of how long they’ll last (see post just below, May 30, and press the link of your choice there to take advantage)!

The word had already been circulating, that the printed edition of TOMBS: A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH, while still with an official publication date of June 1, was expected to be physically available several days early.  A friend then reported last week that her pe-ordered copy had already arrived from Amazon, and, today, a copy has also come into my hands — that is, on May 30.  So TOMBS is here, and a lovely volume it is too! A cursory look-through indicates the proof corrections I found, at least, have all been corrected.  The book looks delightful.

But also it does remain in a ghost realm of sorts, actually in hand for some but not “officially” actually published, which brings up an interesting opportunity.  Both Amazon and Barnes & Noble, whilc no longer terming them “pre-order” prices as such, are still offering substantial discounts of a tad over a third of the list price off, still available as of today and presumably tomorrow, the 31st of May, as well.  Presumably these will be over by Wednesday, official “official” publishing time, but if you haven’t ordered a copy already — and think that you might — it might pay to check by Amazon or B&N prior to Thursday, by pressing here or here, for a really good deal.  But after that they may go back to the cover price of $14.95, so it’s best that one hurry!

Less than a week out from June, and the official release time for TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH grows nigh.  Yesterday gave us what’s probably the last pre-publication interview of me, though I’ll try to have others in the months to come (if not at quite so manic a pace).  But also a first, as of late last night, a review on Goodreads by blogger and author Christine Rains, and five stars to boot!  (Yes, that’s five in a one-to-five system, with five being tops.)  But more to the point, to read it press here.

Yes, we said “Friday night” (see post just below), but the Gehenna & Hinnom Books interview of me on TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH is live now!  Kudos go to Editor/Interviewer C.P. Dunphey for excellent quickness, as well as great questions on origins, ghouls, use of languages, social cultures, and more.  Discover the parts played by whimsy — and guilty pleasures, the influence of Voodoo, and Charlie Chaplin’s “The Little Tramp.”  Pre-TOMBS “history.”  The long, long path to publication by Elder Signs Press and the inspiration of other authors and books going back to 1485 (and worldviews going back far, far, farther than that).  Of keeping one’s place and fun with details. . . .

And so, like a good zombie that just can’t be kept down — not to mention the biggest picture of the book’s cover I’ve seen thus far! — for the “dirt” on TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH be invited to press here.




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