Posts Tagged ‘Horror’

The human body has long been the enemy of horror films.  One only has to look as early as THE INVISIBLE MAN or THE WOLFMAN for manifestations of physical forms undergoing irrevocable change.  But the body horror genre encompasses three distinct variations of organic terror:  invasion via disease or decomposition, violation through mutilation or penetration, and transformation from a reconstitution of biology.

Body horror?  Yes, today’s email includes an announcement from Gehenna & Hinnom Editor/Publisher C.P. Dunphey that Shane Ramirez’s “Deconstructing Body Horror,” part of which is quoted above, as originally published in SOUNDONSIGHT.ORG and POPTOPIQ.COM has been selected asbh2 the introduction for YEAR’S BEST BODY HORROR 2017 ANTHOLOGY, the contents page for the rest of which has appeared below (cf. August 10, also September 18, 13, et al.).  This is a large book at 400-some pages, with forty-plus stories, expected out on September 30 and available for e-copy pre-order by pressing here.  And my cut in the carnage?  A story called “Flesh,” the surrealistic tale of a man of means and a nightmare-based need of a weighty nature.

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An unseasonably warm sun-drenched day greeted September’s “Last Sunday Poetry Reading & Open Mic” (cf. May 29, et al.).  Co-sponsored by the Writers Guild at Bloomington and the Monroe County Convention Center, four local writers were featured this time, Jenny Kander, Thomas Tokarski, Doris Lynch, and Roger Pfingston, billed as “The Tuesday Poets” and offering a variety of styles and subject matter.  After the break, four walk-ons stepped up to read, offering a symmetry of sorts as well as a similar range of styles, of which I was the last with a series of very short, horror-related pieces, on tracking zombies, mermaids and vampires, Erzebet Bathory, and other such subjects, the best received of which — why not? — I’ll present here as well:

LAND OF MILK AND HONEY

It wasn’t bad
till they released the bears;
the cats came
of their own accord.

And so the autumn season begins. . . .

Can’t resist reprinting this just-received press release from Gehenna & Hinnom (seeing as how I’m mentioned in it):  MISSISSIPPI, September 30th, 2017:  C.P. Dunphey, critically acclaimed author of PLANE WALKER, has collected 40+ stories from the best up-and-coming authors in horror for Gehenna & Hinnom’s debut collection, THE YEAR’S BEST BODY HORROR 2017 ANTHOLOGY.  From Bram Stoker Award-nominated authors like James Dorr, to bestselling science fiction authors like David Beers, the anthology presents no shortage of entertaining visceral horror.

Coming off the heels of an incredibly successful first two issues of HINNOM MAGAZINE — one an H.P. Lovecraft-themed memorial collection — Gehenna & Hinnom launches itself into Late-September with unprecedented anticipation for their Body Horror Anthology.  From tales of infectious diseases rotting flesh to cosmic horror stories of perversion and mysticism, horror readers of all audiences will love this collection.

But more to the immediate point, here is the announcement late yesterday from Editor/Publisher C.P Dunphey:  We are excited to announce that the Body Horror Anthology is live for pre-order in digital formats!  The release date is still set for September 30th for both print and e-book, and we are excited to unleash this behemoth into the world.

At 400 pages, this will be a big book (cf. August 10 for a contents listing, May 8), with a pre-order price for the Kindle edition at $4.99.  And as noted above, both print and electronic versions will be physically out at the end of the month.  My part in this one is a slightly surrealistic tale called “Flesh,” of a man of wealth who has a weight problem, but perhaps not the kind one might first think.

So if you can’t wait (and who could blame you?) to pre-order now press here.

The message came this morning from TALES TO TERRIFY, James, Just wanted to let you know your story aired on our podcast this week narrated by Jake Wachholz.   The story in question:  “In the Octopus’s Garden” (see April 8, 1; also April 21), originally published in 69 FLAVORS OF PARANOIA and also the lead story in my collection THE TEARS OF ISIS.  So, like an unruly child, now it can be heard as well as seen by pressing here, then pressing the button you’ll find therein.  It’s the second story in a podcast of two, starting at just over fourteen minutes in (about 14:12 to be almost exact) with title and bionote, then the reading of the story proper at about 15:18.  That is, fifteen minutes and 18 seconds, but that was my quick approximation for what that’s worth.

Then for reading the words, I’ve already mentioned THE TEARS OF ISIS, for more on which one can click its picture in the center column.  But also “In the Octopus’s Garden” has been quasi-simultaneously released in print and Kindle this August in DEADMAN’S TOME CAMPFIRE TALES, BOOK ONE (cf. July 15, April 24, 21).  For more on this one, one may press here.

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).

Labor Day, the “official” ending of the summer season, no wearing of white till the next Memorial Day, the beginning of work through fall and winter, and . . . what’s that about a connection between Edgar Allan Poe and Winnie the Pooh?  For that last, welcome to the first interview for Fall 2018, courtesy of THE TATTOOED BOOK GEEK (cf. August 20), coming to us from across the Atlantic.  The answers to questions which sometimes boil down to “I don’t know either” — and some where I do!  The origins of ideas?  Writers of influence?  What can a reader do (other than buying his or her books, of course) to best help an author?

And what of connections not just between Poe and Pooh, but art and death?  Revealed perhaps in a peek at the Stoker(R)-nominated THE TEARS OF ISIS.  And “mosaic” novels?  The hint’s in a note and a blurb for my latest book, TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH.  Again to find out, some things possibly already known, other things all new, one need but click on the books’ own pictures in the center column, and also for British blogger Drew Weldon’s THE TATTOOED BOOK GEEK interview, press here.

While Saturday started off a bit cool and clouded for my taste, the sun had established itself by a little past noon and Sunday followed sunny and warm too, a beautiful weekend for this year’s Bloomington 4th Street Festival of Arts & Crafts and, with it, the Bloomington Writers Guild’s Spoken Word Stage (cf. below, August 30).  Along with a number of poets both days, Saturday also brought Bloomington High School South’s Poetry Out Loud (getting the new generation on our side), children’s theater with the Merry Mac Players, FRANKENSTEIN as presented by the Fig Tree Fellowship Radio Players, and poetry “band” Shakespeare’s Monkey.  Then Sunday introduced more prose fiction readers, including Joan Hawkins and Shayne Laughter who we’ve met before (cf., e.g., various First Sundays Prose readings, for which in a way today’s Spoken Word session was a substitute), and . . . somewhat late in the day at 3:30 p.m., me.  In my case, I read three excerpts from TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH, the back cover blurb and the introduction to Section II — by way of a sort of introduction — followed by the Section II story-chapter “The Last Dance.”  This was the same as the reading I presented last July at NASFiC in Puerto Rico (see July 13) and it seemed to go over well to an audience that started out on the small side, but grew as I continued, a good sign as these things go.  Next month, also, I’ll probably read the same first two parts but a slightly shorter story-chapter for October’s First Sunday.

Then speaking of TOMBS, Saturday’s email brought an “eligibility check” from the Horror Writers Association for works submitted to the Bram Stoker Award(R) Jury.  This consisted of questions concerning publication date, length and content, and prior publication (if any) of parts of the contents, all of which I was able to answer in the affirmative and send right back.  While this will be checked by the Jury people, with an official “acceptance” probably not for two weeks, one possibly ambiguous thing has been decided.  Although TOMBS: A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH is a novel-in-stories, akin to Ray Bradbury’s THE MARTIAN CHRONICLES or Amy Tan’s THE JOY LUCK CLUB, under the technicalities of the Stoker rules, it will be voted on in the Fiction Collection category.

So what that means in the here and now:  If you’re a HWA member and have read TOMBS, and have a hankering to recommend it for a Stoker, please do it for “Superior Achievement in a Fiction Collection.”  But even if you’re not a HWA member, while/if the spirit moves please also consider reviewing it for Amazon and Barnes & Noble (both of which are offering wildly discounted prices on TOMBS, by the way, while they last), as well as on Goodreads.

What is it with lists?  I’ve had too many lately, probably, but this is a major one to round out the month with.  From the GEHENNA POST, “43 Underrated Films from the Darker Side of Cinema You’ve Probably Never Seen,” with plot descriptions from IMDb plus links to Amazon (though, of the latter, mostly Blu-ray ones, but peons like me can click from there to mere DVD).  To quote from the site:  In this list, you will find 43 films that we felt are lacking in recognition and that deserve more appreciation and acknowledgement.  These films are in no particular order.  There are a few foreign language films, but we are planning an entirely different list for them (so don’t be disappointed at the lack of representation just yet!), seeing as there are so many great pieces out there from across the world.

Appetite whetted?  I will say there are some I haven’t seen myself, including the one pictured here, LAST SHIFT.  Also, while mostly horror, a fair number of them are science fiction — or mostly science fiction.  But to see for yourself, press here.

“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).

Yes, I know, this is actually being posted in the wee hours of Tardy Tuesday.  That’s how it goes sometimes — and it was initially posted by Lindsey Goddard on DIRTY LITTLE HORROR several days before, under the deceptively modest title of “Horror Humor.”  But I think it’s worth looking at any time one is in need of a dark laugh, photos, mostly, but artfully captioned, a sample of which appears to right.  For the rest press here.

There are 22 in all, with my favorites numbers 5, 7 through 10, 12, 13, 16, 22, and of course the one pictured, number 1.  Which ones are yours?




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