Posts Tagged ‘The Tears of Isis’

That is, you can get twenty percent off through Sunday on Perpetual Motion Machine Publishing books, including my (ahem!) Stoker(R)-nominated collection THE TEARS OF ISIS. Or in PMMP’s own words:

Anyway, yeah, book sale! All weekend long, we’re discounting our books by 20%. All you gotta do is enter code BF20 upon checkout, and you should be all set.

Here is a link to our webstore.*

That’s where the books are.

For more on THE TEARS OF ISIS itself, one can click its picture in the center column. Or to go directly to PMMP, here. Then for other PMMP titles as well, one can navigate from there.

But again one must hurry, it’s only on from now through Sunday. And enter BF20 for the the 20% discount, on THE TEARS OF ISIS as well as all other PMMP titles.


*That is to say (again), press here.

Just a short post, but Perpetual Motion Machine Publishing appears to be happy with the recent election and is celebrating with a sale. As it happens one of my books is included, THE TEARS OF ISIS (cf. picture in the center column), so. . . .

To quote PMMP: Look, it’s a very good weekend for the planet! Let’s celebrate. Starting now and ending Monday morning every book on our webstore is 20% off when you enter code GOODBYEBITCH during checkout. THE TEARS OF ISIS, I might add, is a 2013 Bram Stoker Award(R) finalist for fiction collection, so (if I may brag a little) it might be worth buying. For reading, perhaps, during duller Inaugural Day speeches, or maybe for just giving to friends for an early Christmas.

Or maybe even just reading oneself. In any event, the PMMP webstore page for it can be found here — with links from there to other books too, of course, but there’s no harm in checking mine out first!

Wednesday late afternoon what should bounce into ye olde Computer Cave mailbox but my authors copy of the anthology SCARE ME. This is the one from Esskaye Books (see August 26 — including Amazon links for Kindle — et al.) with my story, “Pets,” originally published in THE DARKER SIDE: GENERATIONS OF HORROR (Roc Books, 2002) as well as reprinted in THE TEARS OF ISIS.

The story itself is one about insects and civil unrest, set in a country in Eastern Europe just after the breakup of the Soviet Union. A less than nice period for many who lived it, but much like our own pandemic year of 2020 one in which comfort animals might become especially welcome — even such as might not normally be considered desirable companions.

As Editor/Publisher M. L. Smith explains, [a]ll the tales in these pages refuse to rely on tired horror tropes and instead bring new chills. Instead of werewolves and vampires we have sinister cults, an unexplained (and unexplainable) club, questionable innocence, unconscionable evil, and more. . . In all, these add up to “Twelve Slices of Horror,” of which mine is tenth.

And one thing more, it’s available now in print as well as e-format, for which one may press here.

The week winds on with Wednesday night bringing an email from PULP LITERATURE Managing Editor Jennifer Landels, including a PDF (cf. September 11, et al.), to the effect that they’re slightly behind on their production schedule for the Autumn issue. So goes the life, in this case of publishers as well as authors.

However, this did give a chance as well for a final look while it’s in the final proofreading stages, especially to check such ancillary items as author biographies, bylines, and titles. And as it happened I did find one or two problems, albeit minor, hence noted and sent back this afternoon. This will issue 28 including my story “Moons of Saturn,” originally published in 1993 in Algis Budrys’s TOMORROW and also reprinted in THE TEARS OF ISIS, a somewhat surrealistic tale of the 1980s Voyager space probes and two people watching the pictures being sent back on TV.

So, things back on track, hopefully I’ll receive my copy in time for Halloween although, in that it will be coming from Canada, maybe November will be more likely. In either case, watch for announcement here.

And here it is (cf. September 21)! My poem, “The Birdcatchers,” originally published — well, that info all appears under the poem — is now available to Horror Writers Association members in the just-published October NEWSLETTER. This is the monster (well, size that is) Halloween issue and I and it appear sixth of twelve poets in the “Gallery of Poetry,” way, way down toward the end of the contents.

So for those who’re not members — or just over anxious — please enjoy it here too as a lagniappe:


They come from the plains outside the city
with cages and baskets,
a flurry of screeching,
to show off their wares.

These are the birds they have snared at first morning,
when dew is heavy:
the merlins, the windhovers, juggers and owls,
blue-and-white taloned birds, birds without feathers,
— all scales and sharpness —
the carrion eaters.
Birds of the night.

These are bought by the city’s young women
because, it is said, they make excellent pets.
Because, it is said, they crave only spun sugar,
molded in spheres,
to the shape of the eyes of one faithless in love.

[First published in The Tome, Summer 1992. It also appears as part of the story, “The Birdcatchers,” in my 2013 collection The Tears of Isis, as well as in my all-poetry Vamps (A Retrospective).]

October, the month of Halloween, an important time for us in the horror profession.  This, then, was the call from HORROR WRITERS ASSOCIATION NEWSLETTER Editor Kathryn Ptacek:  i would really like to include poetry in the honkin’ huge october issue, as we did last year.  you probably all know that i am a big supporter of poetry, and i think it’s important for writers to see what horror poetry looks like now!/  so, if you have ONE poem or maybe TWO [maximum 25 lines each] that you would like to send to me, i’d love to run them.  it can be new or it can be old . . . just please do not send the one you sent last year, if you were in the poetry gallery. <g>

Okay, so which one?  I decided on a 16-line sort of list poem “The Birdcatchers” (ah, but what kinds of birds . . . and why?), originally published in THE TOME as well as reprinted as part of the story “The Birdcatchers” in [*PLUG*] my collection THE TEARS OF ISIS, and in my all-poetry VAMPS (A RETROSPECTIVE).  It gets around, yes?

So this is the reply received late Sunday — and about as terse as they come:  thanks, james, for letting me use your poem!  So, while not actually saying “acceptance” in so many words, I think I can assume is.

October 1 is the hoped for publication date for Canadian magazine PULP LITERATURE (cf. August 29, et al.) with my story, “Moons of Saturn,” in it.  So lateish last night the email arrived from Editor Jennifer Landels:  Hope you’re well.  Our copy editor has been through “Moons of Saturn” and has a few word change suggestions I’d like you to take a look at  . . .  well, we know the drill, though I will add that they have a copy editor who, in my opinion, is quite good.  This can be a sign the editing in general, story selection, the whole publication may be quite good too.  But, cut to the chase, with very few — and minor — actual changes and, including the few I asked to have changed back, in all cases being for sensible reasons.

Of course, the vintage computer’s limitations made working with the editing program adventurous in places, but that’s its own story, and soon enough it was done and sent back.  “Moons of Saturn” itself was originally published in the July 1993 prozine TOMORROW, a tale of 1980s space probes with a fantasy/mythological twist, and, should you read it and like it, also appears in my 2013 collection THE TEARS OF ISIS.

Contracts, contracts.  Friday the email came from PULP LITERATURE Acquisitions Editor Genevieve Wynand (cf. June 15, November 19):  I hope this finds you well and enjoying the remaining days of summer.  I have attached the contract for “Moons of Saturn” for Issue 28, Autumn 2020.  Please take a look and make sure we’ve got your correct address, by-line, etc.  We do accept electronic signatures, so you don’t have to print and scan it.  Thanks so much!

Simple.  Straightforward.  Except, of course, we have COVID-19 and the vintage laptop to have their say.  But not to worry, today, Saturday, brought a simple workaround and, the contract now signed and recorded, “Moons of Saturn” — originally published in Algis Budrys’s TOMORROW in 1993, as well as THE TEARS OF ISIS — is back on track for its re-publication, most likely at about the beginning of October.

The word is out.  From Esskaye Books Editor Marcus Smith (cf. August 24, June 16):  The electronic edition of SCARE ME has been released.  It is available at Amazon and Kobo and other vendors of online books.  To this was added links to both Kobo and Amazon UK, for which one may press here or here, or for the US Amazon site here.

Or quoting from Esskaye Books’s own site:  Compiled by M. Leon Smith/  Containing twelve terrifying slices of cold, dark fiction, the eBook edition of SCARE ME is now available from Amazon, Kobo, or your favourite vendor./  Produced by Esskaye Books and some of the best new and established writers.

Face true fear . . .  Featuring Tylor James, Jarred Martin, Rob Francis, Laura DeHaan, Chris Kuriata, David A. Riley, Dee Caples, Stephen McQuiggan, Holley Cornetto, James Dorr, Alex Ebenstein, and Trisha McKee.

And lest we forget, my part in this is “Pets,” published in 2002’s THE DARKER SIDE:  GENERATIONS OF HORROR (also reprinted in my Stoker-nominated collection THE TEARS OF ISIS), a tale of internecine war in eastern Europe and . . . cockroaches.

This is to be the debut anthology from British publisher Esskaye Books, SCARE ME, for unthemed horror in the 3,000-5,000 word range, with my story in it one of insects and insurrection in post-Cold War Europe called “Pets,” originally published in THE DARKER SIDE:  GENERATIONS OF HORROR by Roc Books in 2002 (and which also appears in my collection THE TEARS OF ISIS).  How’s that for a sentence?  It had been quickly accepted for publication (cf. June 16), and there, for the time being, the matter lay.

And now something new from Editor/Publisher Marcus Smith:  Please accept my apologies for the lack of communication recently.  I finally have good news for you!  SCARE ME has been sent to be printed.  There will be a day or two wait while they manually check the print book for technical error but the ebook is already available to retailers.

He adds that even that has just gone out a few hours ago so it most likely hasn’t had time to appear on retailers’ sites quite yet (in fact, I just checked the US Amazon site myself), but it should be soon.  So keep an eye here as well as on your favorite bookstore — the print edition should follow soon as well, with more news hopefully in the near future.

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