Monthly Archives: February 2014

An Exciting New Announcement. Here. Tuesday, March 4th.

Well, it’s exciting if you like me…or my writing.

It’s cool, I can hardly wait to share it.  It’s taking all I’ve got not to just blurt it out right now.

Ummm….I’d like to announce that…nope…whew.

Tuesday, March 4th.

Check back here.

I’m in Two Anthologies That Made it to the Stoker Award Final Ballot!












Great news today!  The Horror Writers Association released the final ballot for the 2013 Stoker Awards.  Two of the fantastic anthologies I’m in made it to the final ballot.

First, Horror Library V, edited by Boyd Harris and R.J. Cavender.  It’s another in the series of this venerable anthology, and it’s a great read.  About 30 stories in this issue, and one of them is mine, “The Immolation Scene.”  Congrats to everyone associated with this!

And then, Dark Visions Vol. 1, edited by Anthony Rivera and Sharon Lawson and published by Grey Matter Press.  In fact, it’s the first book put out by this awesome company, so it’s great to see their efforts rewarded with this nomination.  My story in this antho is “Show Me.” Congrats to Sharon & Tony and everyone at Grey Matter!

I’m extremely proud to have stories in both of these anthologies.  Award or not, these are both great books!

Guardians of the Galaxy: This Looks Awesome…

DC can’t quite figure out how to make Wonder Woman work in a movie, while Marvel says, “Fuck that.  Here’s a walking tree and a racoon with a machine gun. Enjoy.”

Great 5-Star Review for Kill/Off


Got a fantastic review over at Amazon for Kill/Off from David Spell.  David’s become quite the fan of my work.  Here’s a part of his 5-star review:

“I had no idea what to expect from Kill/Off after reading the great collection of horror from John FD Taff in his book Little Deaths. I knew he had the ability to deliver great short creepy tales and found Kill/Off to be a very well done novel. This is a great read and a great story filled with suspense that will have you turning pages. This is second book I have read by this author and I am hooked and will be on the lookout for what he has coming next.”

Thanks, David.  Glad you enjoyed the book.

Like that review?  Go and pick up a copy of Kill/Off!

Five-Star Review for Ominous Realities Calls out My Story “Angie”


Ominous Realities, the anthology from the fine folks at Grey Matter Press, has garnered an interesting (well, to me anyway) 5-star review that not only heaps praise all over it but also manages to get a bunch of that praise all over me, too.

Ominous Realities is Grey Matter’s third antho–Dark Visions Vol. 1 (also with a story from me, “Show Me”) and Splatterlands came first, then Ominous Realities, then Dark Visions Vol. 2.  If you haven’t picked any of these up, you’re missing out.  Grey Matter, in an extremely short time, has rocketed to the head of the class of small press horror publishers, due to a great eye for talent, respect for both authors and readers, and some high-quality production standards.

Anyway, Dale L. Elster, the Amazon reviewer, left a great-5-star review for Ominous Realities, that managed to single out my story.  Here’s the first part of what he said about “Angie,” one of only two zombie stories I’ve written:

“Speaking of which, one of the tales, “Angie,” although incredibly well written by John F.D. Taff is a zombie story and feels oddly out of place here when compared to the rest of the tales, but nonetheless is an outstanding and well told human story set in a hellish world of the undead. If you haven’t read zombie fiction for whatever reason before, read this one.”

Okay, that’s pretty good as is, but wait!  Dale has more to say about “Angie.”

“If you are strictly into traditional horror (monsters, killers, blood-and-guts) you may not like Ominous Realities much. But I encourage you to open your mind and give it a try. Hell – “Angie” alone makes it worth the purchase! And the first story in the collection may be about robots, but it’s much more a horror tale than it is sci-fi!”

That’s pretty sweet!  Go get Ominous Realities!

And, oh, by the way, I’ve got a super-secret announcement to make very, very soon that concerns my friends at Grey Matter.

Hold on to your hats!

Grey Matter Press to Host St. Valentine’s Week Massacre–FREE BOOKS!!!


My great friends over at Grey Matter Press are hosting a week’s worth of contests & giveaways starting Sunday, February 9th…tomorrow.  Here’s their announcement release:

Evil has plagued Mankind since that first nudist garden party in Paradise so many years ago. So it’s no surprise that violence, mayhem and murder are still running rampant in our modern human society.

Grey Matter Press, the Chicago-based publisher of exceptional dark fiction, is committed to continuing the carnage. To commemorate the 85th Anniversary of an event that shocked not only a city but also the world, Grey Matter Press intends to spread around the globe the horror for which its hometown is known.

History tells us that on the morning of February 14, 1929, members of Al Capone’s notorious South Side gang brutally slaughtered seven members of their North Side rivals. This act of butchery, still known today as the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre, gave rise to Chicago’s reputation as a frightening, brutal city where the streets flowed with rivers of blood.

A Special Week-Long Event

During an unprecedented week-long event, Grey Matter Press will uphold its hometown’s infamous notoriety and terrify dark fiction fans everywhere by delivering free copies of its blood-stained library of fear to doorsteps around the world during a week of unprecedented contests, sweepstakes and online giveaways.

The St. Valentine’s Week Massacre (#SVMMASSACRE) kicks off on Sunday, February 9 and runs through Saturday, February 15. During the week-long event, the Chicago publisher expects to award hundreds of copies of its multiple-Five-Starred anthologies to lucky contest winners. The prizes are valued at up to $3000.

“Over the course of seven days, and even into some evenings, we’re going to be giving our supporters, fans and followers the chance to win hundreds of copies of our books as we spread Chicago horror around the world,” said Publisher Anthony Rivera. “All week long we’ll be conducting horror-themed contests, online sweepstakes, fan-appreciation giveaways and random drawings at all of our online properties, including Twitter, Facebook and the Grey Matter Press website. We expect that there to be hundreds of winners of our books. It’s going to be a fantastic week. And there’s even a few surprises planned.”

Winning Will Be Easy

With so many prizes available, winning is going to be easy. All that contestants need to do is follow the activities of @GreyMatterPress on Twitter ( using #SVWMASSACRE, join the publisher on Facebook at its company page (, or subscribe to the Grey Matter Press website at and participate in the contests.

“The majority of prizes awarded will be chosen by the winners themselves who will select their prize from our list of fiction titles,” explained Rivera.

Special Unannounced Prizes to be Awarded

Depending on the individual contest, winners will be awarded digital or paperback versions of Grey Matter Press titles. In addition to single-title prize winners, an undisclosed number of grand prizes will be awarded during the week.

“At least one grand prize will be awarded per day, with these winners receiving trade paperback copies of our complete catalog,” explained Rivera. “There’s a lot of great fiction packed into those four volumes. And we feel this is a fantastic way to continue the long-standing tradition of sharing Chicago’s horrors with the world, while also introducing new readers to the exceptional work of the contributors to our collections.”

The current Grey Matter Press catalog consists of four titles that include the work of New York Times bestselling authors, Bram Stoker Award winners and nominees, veteran writers of the dark fiction, horror, science fiction and dark fantasy genres. Having received praise from both critics and readers alike, the catalog includes Dark Visions: A Collection of Modern Horror – Volume OneSplatterlands: Reawakening the Splatterpunk RevolutionOminous Realities: The Anthology of Speculative Horrors and Dark Visions: A Collection of Modern Horror – Volume Two.

“It’s going to be one heck of a thrill ride,” said Grey Matter Press Editor Sharon Lawson. “Much like our books, we’re hoping the events we have planned are going to be a lot of fun for not only current fans and supporters but new readers as well! We hope to show everyone exactly what to expect from the horror of Chicago.”

Participation is Simple

To become a part of the Grey Matter Press St. Valentine’s Week Massacre (#SVWMASSACRE) for the chance to win one hundreds of prizes, all you need to do is get connected. Be sure to join Grey Matter Press at one of their following online sites at anytime between now and the end of the St. Valentine’s Week Massacre:

– Subscribe to the Grey Matter Press website:

– Like Grey Matter Press on Facebook:

– Follow @GreyMatterPress on Twitter:

– Follow and use Twitter hastag: #SVWMASSACRE

Make sure to keep checking in on the progress of the St. Valentine’s Week Massacre (#SVWMASSACRE)throughout the day and every day between Sunday, February 9 and Saturday, February 15.

Contests will be ongoing throughout the week and will not be announced in advance. With hundreds of prizes available, the odds of winning are very much in your favor.

That’s about it.  If you haven’t read any of the Grey Matter Press anthos–Dark Visions Vol. 1 (with a story from me and on the preliminary ballot for the HWA Stoker Award!), Splatterlands, Dark Visions Vol. 2, and Ominous Realities (also with a story by me!–you’re missing something.  This is a new horror publishing company that is getting it right in a major way and deserves your support!  Sounds like a fun week ahead…let me know if you win some stuff!

Yep. Another Great 5-Star Review for The Bell Witch! Still on Sale for 99 Cents!

The Bell Witch 4 (small)

Another great 5-star review on Amazon for The Bell Witch…and it’s another one from a reader well-versed in the legend.  D. Parker from Memphis, TN says:

“I’m fascinated with anything Bell Witch, partly because in reality, John Bell’s family migrated with my ancestors to Robertson County, TN from Edgecombe Co. NC, but mostly, because it just makes for a heck of a great scary story. Of all the books I’ve read on the Bell Witch, this is my favorite. Making it a work of fiction enabled the author to tell a chilling and emotional story from beginning to end. It was truly well written and the story flowed easily. Now I’m hoping to find more books by this author.”

If that’s not a ringing endorsement I don’t know what is.  And here’s the thing:  The Bell Witch is still about #257 overall in Paid Kindle, No. 2 in Ghost fiction and No. 7 in Horror overall.

And the best thing for you…it’s still only 99 cents!  How can you beat that?  You can’t.  So go pick up a copy right now!

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