Monday, December 31, 2012
I just want to wish all of you a Happy New Year. I meant to write this sooner but I am recovering from a bout with pneumonia and have been slow to get much done these past few days. I want to thank all of you for your support; your comments; and your readership. I promise we will entertain you more in 2013. Be safe and be well; be prosperous and be happy. This was a tough year but we can make this coming year a stronger one.
Friday, December 28, 2012
Life is Merry Go Round that never ends; and in fact, at times, is not very merry. As we begin to close out the year from all the day to day crap we all have to do, some things slide even if you work hard at it. Well I was reviewing where we come this year. We published a lot more, had fewer rejections, and even on the rejections, for the most part we upgraded when published. But my cupboard is bare. I have precious very little out there. So I guess its time to write again. I am happy to say we have some neat things in progress. Probably too many, but I like the direction we are headed. My hope is that you the reader will continue to be entertained. I thank you for your support and encouragement as we look to barge into and through 2013. Thank you.
Thursday, December 27, 2012
This is the Apocalypse themed issue. My horror story 'Snow Baby' finds his way. I also have an article in this issue on the history of apocalyptic literature from the 1800s to today. Give it a read. Thanks. One failure of mine though: I was asked to read three submissions. One was barely readable and two I thought were quite good. None made it though. My work as an associate editor was a failure, although it could have worse--they could have published the one I thought stunk. Maybe I should just stick to writing....
Monday, December 24, 2012
Destined to be a Christmas classic for a new age please see my review of Douglas Lindsay's 'SANTA'S CHRISTMAS EVE BLUES' from Blasted Heath publishing on LURID-LIT NOW!! Make it the start of a new Christmas tradition.
Thursday, December 20, 2012
Well, here we are in the final moments of this planet. According to Mayan Calendar the end will be as crappy as the final moment of "The Sopranos". So to honor our demise I present today an original short story concerning the last man on earth. The last man on earth, while thise words are tied to Richard Matheson's work on film started as a 'knock story'. A Knock story is a two line story that tells the entire tale. In this case the story was published in 1949 as part of an anthology titled "The Best Science Fiction Stories: 1949" edited by Everett F. Bieler & T. E. Dikty and published by Frederick Fell. The story is this: The last man on earth sat in a room. There was a knock on the door... Innumerable writing contests and exercises have seized on that theme asking newbies and seasoned scribes alike to expand on it. Here is my version: The last man on Earth sat alone in a room, there was a knock at the door: one single knock. At first he thought it might be just the building settling, the door-jam adjusting or some air expansion in the pipes. He sits in his junk scavenged refuge – a fifteen by fifteen hell-hole of protection – scraping the last bits from a tin can. He always sits on the opposite side of the room, facing the door, so he cannot quite pinpoint the sound. It is morning. Another countless and dateless morning as the sun shines on the barren devastation and crumbling debris that was once a civilization. The rays of the sun, ever brighter as the clouds lift, spill through the windows and holes in the roof and walls giving the man the only bath he can ever hope to have. There is another knock. It is the door: this he is now sure. He is also sure about what has happened. He has been sure about that for months. The building he has taken refuge in from the radioactive rain, while better than most, is heavily damaged from the bombings and fallout. The knock is followed by another and another. The knocking persists with neither rhythm nor pattern, nor with any force - just simple knocking. Under the door, interrupting the light pouring in under the crack, he sees two distinct shadows cutting the single slender beam into three, smaller chunks, as though someone is standing there. And that someone is knocking. The last man on Earth holds his breath as the door handle jiggles. The visitor is attempting to enter. The handle shakes with a sense of urgency as the man remains glued to his chair. While he does have a knife he uses for food, he never thought he might need it for protection. Still holding his breath, something else begins to creep in from outside the door. Replacing the knocking and the rattling is a rasp – a sound less than a voice and even less than a word. “. . . ow.” “. . . ow.” ‘Maybe I’m not alone’, he thinks. ‘Maybe this is someone in trouble.’ “. . .ow.” ‘Maybe this is someone in pain.’ His mind begins to spin. ‘Ordinarily…but I only have enough rations for a few more days. So far, I’ve been able to avoid radiation poisoning, but if I open that door to help this man, I run the risk of exposing myself to whatever ails him. But what if it isn’t . . . I know I’m the only one left.’ Indecision can be the delicious teaser before the pain of doubt and remorse. The last man on Earth – exhausted, grieving, confused and guilty – prays to his God: a God he resents; a God who has allowed extinction to happen in a matter of seconds; a God who has allowed him, and only him, to face Hell without the strength of resolve or, seemingly, redemption. He attempts to play out scenarios rooted in sleepless speculation and grief, with options equating to dread. To let another man in need die is truly a sin, but what about the sin he finds himself in? His thoughts are jogged by a thump from the other side of the door. Initially there is silence. Then a low, guttural and choking moan – louder than the knock, louder than the rattle, louder than the rasp. This is the sound of pain. Underneath the door, poking through into his room is the blade of a knife. Blinded at first by sun on steel, he can see that the blade is more than three quarters under his door, it’s tip bent and flattened, gouging into the wood of the floor. It resembles the knife the man is clutching in his own right hand – from the curve of the blade to the serrations. The moaning grows louder and more desperate. The last man on Earth edges his way to the door. Never having used a knife before other than to eat a meal, he clutches it firmly in his right hand, blade pointed outward, in a way he believes will allow him to defend himself – or even strike first. Unlocking the door, the moans turn into howls of pain. Thanking God that the door opens inward, the man cautiously cranes his body, knife first and held high, around the latch. Before he can strike, before he can attack the invader, his breathing stops, his heart skips and his own knife drops to the floor. There before him lies a contorted, boil-covered, scab-encrusted, oozing mass of human flesh. It’s lips are deformed, it’s eyes are but slits, but the man can still recognize his own face, mirrored back at him in the blade of his knife. The last man on Earth sits alone in a room…
Tuesday, December 18, 2012
My G-rated, children's. family poem about a UFO and the government titled "Shooting Stars" has just been published on Feathertale.com a Canadien humor magazine/e-zine. Nothing scary here, just humor. Check it out under poetry.
Monday, December 17, 2012
Saturday, December 15, 2012
YOU CAN'T KILL ME, I'M ALREADY DEAD: A VAMPIRE ANTHOLOGY" IS OUT ON AMAZON NOW!!! Published by Zombie Works Publication the paperback and e-book are both out on Amazon.com. My story WAKE UP is there; a good olde fashioned vampire biting tale.
Friday, December 14, 2012
Nothing dramatic should be said. All the hyper analysis should be toned down. The fact of the matter is that there are evil people in the world who everyday kill, maim, and do worse to innocent people. Our Courts and our jails and our hospitals are full of them. Every time though, they seem to carry more rights than the average citizen and the victim. There was a time when these people weren't coddled and weren't allowed to impinge on the public but too many on the side of a bloody heart pushed and shamed and belittled our common sense into treating these souls as 'special'. I am sure in the days and weeks to come the warning signs were there. I am sure the said velvet glove treatment was present. What happened today was a tragedy but each day in this country these tragedies get re-played in movie theaters and malls; in streets and homes and in the end the media and many gather around the perp with a teary eye. We need to be harder on criminals not their instruments of destruction. We need to stop evil though we know it cannot be stopped. We need to stop treating everything as an illness as if it were cold. We need to take responsibility. We need to tell our children the facts of life: we are not special in and of ourselves but only as a community, as a good law abiding citizen that is responsible for his and her actions. I am sad tonight, and I am afraid I will be sad again yet tomorrow and the day after until we as a people deal with the real problem and deal with the real problem makers.
Monday, December 10, 2012
Catch my review of Seth Blackburn's "Circus of the Dead" on Luridlit now. After all with the 21st approaching that may be hard to do when you are burning in the sun; and I don't mean a beach at a resort.
Sunday, December 9, 2012
In the Fall 2013 issue. NIGHT TO DAWN MAGAZINE is a semi-annual horror magazine that searches for its tales world-wide. I am very honored to be included in such a prestiguous periodical.
Saturday, December 8, 2012
Our publisher tells us that "YOU CAN'T KILL ME, I'M ALREADY DEAD: A Vampire Anthology" will be published before Christmas, or that is the hope. Keep your fingers crossed. Whether it comes out pre-Christmas or even after- it will be out soon.
Maybe you are an author; or a writer who is part of an anthology; or a fan of an author; or better yet you just read something or want to read something and just want to catch the skinny...Well, maybe I am can help. If you have a book you want reviewed write me at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will see what we can do.
Thursday, December 6, 2012
So the world is supposed to end on the 21st. The earth will fall out of orbit and roll into the sun. That, I have been told is the Mayan prediction. SO WHAT ARE RUSHING AROUND FOR THE HOLIDAYS FOR? Why aren't we calling in sick to work or taking our vacation days and living it up? I don't know. I just thought out of it. I also thought, why not celebrate the very demise of our species and the planet we use as a toilet by publishing a horror story? Instead of reading my insane ramblings on various subjects to bore your--why not read an insane story on this very topic--here and original? That is what we will do, before we die we'll read about how we died; here and live on the 21st. And if we live to the 22nd, send in your comments.
Just received and reviewed it. Mr. Russo and Zombieworks will now be going to the printer and this book that includes my "Wake Up" should be on shelves and available for purchase very soon.
Sunday, December 2, 2012
There is a big reason I am so happy about WAKE UP getting its due with inclusion in the Zombie Works Publications "You Can't Kill Me, I'm Already Dead: A Vampire Anthology". While you love all of your children the same, there always seems to be that one baby that just always seems to get a little more attention than the others. Maybe he is your favorite, something you don't want to admit openly around your othe children or maybe you feel he is the one that will really prove himself if given a chance but his options are limited. In this age where vampire stories double for romance stories and the schlock has replaced well written ideas--finally a story about horror and, yes love, albeit a sick twisted love, written below the surface, can finally get its opportunity to prove itself worthy in front of the reader. Thank you Alan Russo and everyone at Zombie Works Publications for this opportunity to return the vampire to his rightful and terrible place.