Monthly Archives: August 2013

Goodreads Giveway for Little Deaths Ends Sept. 13

Little Deaths Cover

Got a Goodreads Giveaway contest running for my extremely well-received short story collection Little Deaths.  More than 225 people are already entered into the contest to giveaway five (5) signed copies of the book.  But hurry!  The contest closes Sept. 13th.

Go here to enter.

The Bell Witch small (small)

Also, I’ll have a similar contest for 5 copies of The Bell Witch.  That contest will begin September 3 and run through October 3!  More on that when it opens.

KillOff

And, you guessed it, I’ll have a third contest starting up probably in late September for copies of Kill/Off.  More on that…later!

 


I Have the September Special Guest Story at The Horror Zine!

As you count the days until the paperback edition of The Bell Witch is out–and both editions of Kill/Off !–here’s a little something to hold you over!

The lovely Jeani Rector over at The Horror Zine, has graciously made me the Special Guest for the September issue of the online mag.  The issue is up now, and my Special Guest Story is “Wall to Wall,” a gruesome little piece about carpeting, vacuum cleaners and infidelity.  Yeah, don’t even bother trying to figure that out...just go take a look.  The issue also features fiction by Shaun Meeks, Alex Zivko-Clark, and Glen Singer, as well as a special feature by Stoker-winner Mort Castle.

Thanks to Jeani for the invite.  Hope you guys like the free–did I mention it’s free?–story!  It’s never appeared anywhere else, so The Horror Zine is the only place you’ll be able to read it.  While you’re there, dig through back issues of The Horror Zine…there’s some great stuff by some great authors!

 


Two Honorable Mentions in Ellen Datlow’s Best Horror of the Year Vol. 5

Little Deaths Cover

Here I was, ready to go to bed, and I just saw that Ellen Datlow, the esteemed editor of The Best Horror of the Year, has given two of my stories honorable mentions in the recently published Volume 5.

Go here to see my name on her list…twice.

Both of the stories are from my recent short story collection, Little Deaths.  Still available from Amazon.  Get it here.

The stories are “The Scent” and “The Mire of Human Veins.”  Wouldn’t have been my two choices, but then it’s not my anthology.

But I’m not complaining.  Great news to go to bed on!  Awesome news!


I’ve Got Stories in Two Collections Coming in September

It’s going to start coming fast and furious as I have a bunch of stuff coming out over the next four months.  The first two stories will be out in September.

shades-e1369143812580

Shades of Blue & Gray is a major new horror anthology edited by Steve Berman and published by Prime Books.  It’s available now for pre-order at Amazon, and will be published Sept. 4th.  My story in the collection, which also features stories by Laird Barron and Ed Kurtz, is entitled “Three Silent Things.”  The story is a reprint for me, interestingly enough the first story I sold to Cemetery Dance.

DarkVisions1_LowRez

The second story is called “Show Me,” and it will be out in a new anthology called Dark Visions Vol. 1 by Grey Matter Press.  Here’s the announcement:

The publication date of the much anticipated Dark Visions: A Collection of Modern Horror – Volume One (DV1) was announced today by Grey Matter Press. The company’s premiere collection of dark fiction will be released and available for purchase on September 17, 2013.

“We are exceedingly happy to see the publication of this collection that will have readers cowering under their sheets,” said co-editor Anthony Rivera. “Everyone at Grey Matter Press is proud to see Dark Visionshitting the streets next month as it features a number of bestselling horror and fantasy authors with long histories in legacy publishing, national and international award winners, a selection of indie authors making huge waves, as well as authors whose work some may never have read.”

Dark Visions: A Collection of Modern Horror – Volume One will be available for purchase on September 17. The collection will be published in both print and digital versions. Its companion volume, Dark Visions 2 (DV2), is slated for release later this fall.

When combined, the two volumes will make up a collection containing more than 25 tales of terror that the publisher hopes will keep horror lovers awake at night. The multi-volume collection is co-edited by Anthony Rivera and Sharon Lawson.

“We believe that Dark Visions is going to be quite a surprising thrill ride for readers and fans of horror, both old and new,” said Lawson. “Within its pages, there’s something for everyone.”

***

STORY SYNOPSES FOR DARK VISIONS ONE (alphabetical by title)

Collage by Jay Caselberg
What would you do if you lost your one true love? Most of us will be faced with that question at some point in our lives. That is, unless, we are the one lucky enough to get out first. It’s said that love hurts. But does it have to hurt this much?

Delicate Spaces by Brian Fatah Steele
There are places all over the world where the veil between the living and the dead is so thin that those on either side can sometimes see through. It’s when the dead choose to step across that line that it becomes a problem.

The Last Ice Cream Kiss by Jason S. Ridler
The mind of a disturbed child is a terrifying thing, like an abandoned building filled with dark and dangerous hallways. There are passages that should not be walked, doors that are better left unopened and rooms whose secrets were never intended be revealed.

Mister Pockets: A Pine Deep Story by Jonathan Maberry
Pine Deep, Pennsylvania is a typical small town with a not-so-typical dark and troubled past. But it’s just another ordinary day for young Lefty Horrigan until there is a mysterious murder and he come face-to-face with Pine Deep’s sole hobo. Has the trouble returned to “the most haunted town in America?”

Raining Stones by Sean Logan
A gruesome series of murders plagues San Francisco as the broken memories of an absent father point an alcoholic reporter in a direction he may not want to go. Are Lonnie’s dreams merely liquor-fueled hallucinations, or are they instead leading him down a darker path into the strange world of religious fanaticism?

Scrap by David A. Riley
Childhood should be a time for leisurely days spent playing in the sun. But for two abused brothers coming to grips with life on their new English estate, a day of adventure opens the door into a world of evil and sets in motion a change of events from which there seems little hope of escape.

Second Opinion by Ray Garton
Greg is a failing author who hasn’t had a bestseller in years. But he believes he has just the right manuscript to revive his career. In need of a fresh set of eyes, he shares the story with a friend and fellow author who provides him with a bit more than a second opinion.

Show Me by John F.D. Taff
There is something very strange about Joe Middleton, and everyone on campus knows it. But that doesn’t mean the college junior is off limits when it comes to trying to get into his pants. But be forewarned, once you know Joe, you will never be the same again.

Thanatos Park by Charles Austin Muir
There are horrible things that exist just beyond the barrier of human perception. Sometimes we hear them in that steady, chronic drone of a world humming along around us. Other times we stumble onto the truth in the darkness, unprepared and incapable of grasping the sheer magnitude of our wholly inaccurate concept of reality.

Three Minutes by Sarah L. Johnson
For an orphan living in a group home, John doesn’t have much of a future to look forward to. Awakened each night by the same horrifying nightmare, he takes to sneaking out to the local lake in order to avoid the Dream Eater that plagues his sleep. His goal: to hold his breath underwater, for only three minutes.

The Troll by Jonathan Balog
The magic of summer is over, and the new school year has begun. Time that was once Marty’s to enjoy is now sure to be filled with the drudgery of homework and avoiding grade-school bullies. That is until he hears a strange voice calling to him from beneath a bridge.  One he meets the troll, life for Marty become a whole lot more interesting.

The Weight of Paradise by Jeff Hemenway
Humans have tried for years to live their lives without worry. For some this might mean a desire for wealth, fortune or fame. For Alfie it means trying to fight off the deadly form of leukemia that’s killing him long enough to enable his scientist girlfriend to find a cure. But sometimes it’s important to be careful what we ask for.

What Do You Need? by Milo James Fowler
John wakes up in an unfamiliar place that appears to look like any run-of-the-mill 1970s motel room. But the problem is, it’s not the ‘70s. What is he doing here? How long has he been here? And whose is that terrifying voice on the phone?

***

The long list of contributors to Dark Visions: A Collection of Modern Horror (Volumes 1 and 2) features authors from 4 continents, including Jonathan Maberry, Ray Garton, Jay Caselberg, John F.D. Taff, Jason S. Ridler, David Blixt, J.C. Hemphill, C.M. Saunders, David Murphy, Edward Morris, Trent Zelazny, David A. Riley and many more. The complete list of contributors and their stories is available at the Dark Visions website: http://www.darkvisionsanthology.com.

“The stories in both volumes truly epitomize the concept of unrelenting evil, and we believe the cover artwork shatters that old cliché about not being able to judge a book by its cover,” explained Lawson. “When both volumes are combined side-by-side, the artwork creates a diptych that reveals the true vision of darkness that we believe haunts this collection.” Featuring the sinister image of a monster with a hideous glowing eye, the cover artwork, additional information and insight into the overall concept is available at the Dark Visions website: http://www.darkvisionsanthology.com.

Of course you want both books?  Me?  Laird Barron? Jonathan Maberry? Ray Garton?  Are you kidding me?  I can’t even wait!


Got a So-So Review for The Bell Witch…umm…Yay?

The Bell Witch small (small)

So, one of the things I want to do with this blog is be honest about stuff…my work, people’s reaction to it, etc.  So, when I get a review that is less than sterling, it’s going up here, too, just like all the great ones.  Because, as I’ve said before, not everyone will like everything I write.  And that’s cool.

So, the kind folks at Fearnet reviewed The Bell Witch.  And while the review didn’t trumpet the book as the next best thing to sliced bread, it was a measured, balanced review that still came out recommending the book.  I’m cool with that.

Here’s the review:

http://www.fearnet.com/news/review/book-review-bell-witch-john-fd-taff

Go take a look and come back.  I’ll wait…

OK, great, you’re back.  So, it was an OK review.  Normally, my blood might run cold for a few minutes after reading it, but I’m OK with this.  The reviewer explained why he thought what he did, what he expected from the book, and the fact that he didn’t get what he wanted from the book…and that he was cool with that, too.  And other readers might like exactly what it was he didn’t like about it.

I can understand what he’s saying.  The book isn’t the kind of ghost story some might expect.  It’s not a shrieking-in-the-middle-of-the-night-chains-a-rattlin’-boo fest.  I mean, yes, there’s some of this in the book, (it is a ghost story, for chrissake!), but I deliberately set out from the very beginning not to write that ghost story.  You can read that ghost story anywhere.

I wanted the Witch to be a character in the story, not just something I hauled out every chapter or so to make a loud noise or yank someone’s hair.  To me, that’s boring.  I wanted something that dug a litle deeper into the why of what she was and what she did, the pathos of the spirit, the poignancy of what was going on.  Because, poignancy + scares = better horror or at least a deeper, more nuanced horror…at least in my opinion.

So, if you’re looking for that other kind of ghost story–and that’s OK if you are–that’s not what you’re going to find in The Bell Witch.  I’m OK with that, and I understand exactly where the reviewer is coming from.

Still it’s a good review.  And I think that you should buy a copy of The Bell Witch and see for yourself!


Cover Unveil for Kill/Off

KillOff

 

Out October 2013 from Books of the Dead Press!

Awesome!

 


Goodreads Giveaway Contest for Little Deaths

I’m experimenting with Goodreads, a site for which, up to this point, I’ve found little use for other than simply being friends with other readers/writers on Goodreads.

But I’ve learned about the Goodreads Giveaway promos for books, so I thought I’d give it a whirl prior to the paperback releases of The Bell Witch and Kill/Off.

So I’ve got a contest going right now to giveaway 5 copies of my short story collection Little Deaths.  Here’s the Goodreads page to click on to enter the contest:

http://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/62156-little-deaths

There’s a fancy button widget thingie that I can supposedly add to the site, but it’s late, I’ve had a long day and I frankly don’t feel like being an IT person right now.  Perhaps tomorrow.

But if you’re interested, click, add your name to the list, and sometime in mid September, you could be the proud owner of a signed paperback issue of Little Deaths.

Or you could bypass fickle fate and just buy one here.

 

 


%d bloggers like this: