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Where New Pulp Lives! And from Time to Time...Dies!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Guest Post Up at SF Signal

In which I talk about novels you didn't know were horror novels.  Hop on over and check it out.  And if you dig, leave a kewl comment.

Monday, October 27, 2014

MADHOUSE Final Push

Hey, just wanted to drop a quick note and let you know the final push for the Indiegogo campaign for the MADHOUSE anthology is on.  Only $1700 short of the overall goal with 6 days left!

Check out the press release here.

Friday, October 24, 2014

On Paperbacks and Childhood Dreams of Being a Writer

That's a pretty heavy-handed blog title but it does accurately reflect my feelings.  You see, I got these in the mail the other day:



Now this ain't my first rodeo when it comes to seeing my name on a physical book I've written and published by someone not me.  My first book, Blood Spring, came out in 2010 from Bad Moon Books.  It was a lovely trade paperback with original art by Jill Bauman.  The first hardcover was a super limited edition of Demon from Bad Moon Books.  In both instances, it was a profoundly cool and deeply humbling experience to see my work in a format I had, up to those points, only hoped to one day see.

Yet they weren't knock you out experiences.  Don't ask me why.  I was happy but ultimately I moved on to the next thing (the next thing being the unfortunate task of me begging others to buy the books).  And don't get me started on e-books.  I like them, but it is incredibly hard to build a tactile and sensory nostalgia with whatever preferred electronic reading device you use.

I guess that's what it boils down to: a tactile and sensory nostalgia.  I grew up reading mass market paperbacks.  My folks had a bookshelf at the top of the stairs pretty much dedicated to paperbacks.  I used to pull them off and just stare at the covers, imagining what they were about.  Dad had a lot of horror and sci-fi books.  I loved the art on those covers.  I used to draw a lot back then.  I was considered "gifted" for my age, whatever that means.  And what I used to draw a lot of were copies of covers.  Comic books at first but eventually paperbacks.  So I'd draw and start to imagine what the heck were the stories behind those covers.

Eventually, when I was in fourth grade, I finally cracked the covers and started reading.  The first book, Christine by Stephen King.  The cover to the movie tie-in.  You know, this one:



There was something strangely cool about that cover.  I remember thinking it was the ghost of a car haunting people, vice a sentient evil car that just likes to kill.

This one scared the hell out of me for some reason.  Of course, it never stopped me from looking at it:



And of course, this on just creeped me out.



I asked what it was about.  Vampires I was told.  My mom would then dutifully tell me it scared the hell out of her and she'd never read Stephen King again.

I was hooked.  And for good reason.  Mass market paperbacks boiled those covers down to emotion.  They had to lure you and hook you, even if the cover didn't match what you actually would end up reading inside.  Hardbacks work on the author's name selling it.  Trade paperbacks tend to be more "artsy" (which is fine).  But MMP, well, that's the stuff of pulp.

As time moved on, I shifted from drawing to writing.  I didn't think about getting published in some cool magazine or how great it would be to land a fantastic agent (still not represented, for any agents out there).  I didn't daydream of bookshelves line with my works.  I did daydream about being a bestseller and rolling around in a bed covered in c-notes, but don't we all?  No, the main thing I dreamed about was eventually holding a mass market paperback of my work with my name on it.

That day has come.

So when my book showed up this week in MMP format, well, I was just tickled pink.  I held it.  I sniffed it (not ashamed to admit that).  I flipped through it.

For the first time, I felt like the author I dreamed of becoming all those years ago.

I've been writing since I was young.  I've been writing for publication since 2005.  But earlier this week, I felt like I'd arrived.

Thank you, HarperCollins (and my wonderful editor, Kelly O'Connor), for taking a chance on me and helping me fulfill a dream.


End of the Week Wrap-Up

So this week I guest blogged at author Nicholas Kaufmann's site as part of his continuing series The Scariest Part.  I talked about fear and personal experience and how they both fed into the writing of Demon.

I did a Q&A with My Bookish Ways.  Still TBD on when it will go up on the site.  Trust me, I'll let you know as soon as it does.

I also wrote guest blogs for The Skiffy and Fanty Show as well as SF Signal.  Again, TBD on when they'll go up.  Stay tuned.

Lastly, I received two advanced copies of the mass market paperback for Demon.  I think I'm gonna do a separate post on how awesome it was to received those.

Of course, if you're interested in picking up a copy of Demon in e-book or paperback format, hit the link at the top of the page that says DEMON and it'll take you to a page with a buffet of purchase options.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Quick Movie Review - The Counselor

People get head.

People get beheaded.

People die in other ways.

Something about drugs.

But the whole thing that starts it off with a scummy lawyer (our main character) who decides to get into the drug trade so he can afford to buy a really expensive engagement ring for his girlfriend.

And why are we supposed to care about any of these characters?

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Talking Demon at The Scariest Part

Today I'm guest blogging over at author Nicholas Kaufmann's site.  He does a recurring feature called The Scariest Part in which authors, comic book writers, filmmakers, and game creators tall about what scares them in their latest works of horror, dark fantasy, dark science fiction, and suspense.

My topic?  Why Demon of course.

Hop on over and check it out.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Thirty-One Days of Horror Films Day 12 - Break

Another break but for good reason: all day smoking a 10 lb pork shoulder really takes it out of you.  Then eating eat?  Well, not all 10 lbs but a good chunk. Yeah, I caught the coma train early.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Thirty-One Days of Horror Films Day 11 - Demon Knight

Ah, a good one.  I loved me some Tales from the Crypt growing up (in my mind, nothing tops Chop Poker).  The gore, the humor, always fun.  This flick completely embraces and personifies that same spirit (unlike the other Tales movies).

Plus it's got a good cast.  A pretty awesome one, actually.

And Billy Zane.  Ah, Billy, Billy, Billy.  He's a cool dude.

Overall, fun to revisit this one.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Thirty-One Days of Horror Films Day 10 - Event Horizon

Cool sci-fi cosmic horror with a good cast.  I saw this movie years ago and remember thinking it was pretty decent.  Upon this rewatch, I'm not sure what to think.  Probably because I fell asleep thirty minutes into it.

That being said, the wife unit quit watching it about an hour in because it was freaky and I was asleep.  So there's that.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Thirty-One Days of Horror Films Day 9 - The Woman in Black

Back on the horse and watching horror flicks.  For now.

So, last night we fell on The Woman in Black.  Imagine my surprise when I realized it didn't star Gene Wilder or hot Kelly LeBrock and a terrible '80s soundtrack.

Anyhoo...

Hey!  A throwback, old-fashioned horror movie!  Yeah!

Sort of.

I mean, it was well done and it had it's cool creepy moments.  I'm all for subtly and build-up.  No, it was the logic that bugged me.

If you live in a town where you constantly fear for the lives of your kids because some maniac ghost might make them commit suicide and claim their immortal soul so it won't be lonely in the afterlife or some shit, my advice, move the fuck away.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Thirty-One Days of Horror Films Day 7 and 8 - The Trilogy of Fail is Complete

So, no movies since Sunday.  Again, getting over being sick.  Then the wife got sick.  Then we just didn't feel like it so we watched an old episode of The Prisoner instead and that was better than any horror movie we've watched so far.

I'm starting to think we should shift to horror shows and maybe knock out a season of American Horror Story or Walking Dead.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Great Big Thank You and Some Requests

Well, it's been one week since DEMON was re-released from HarperVoyagerImpulse as a spiffy new e-book.  I wanted to take a moment and thank all of you for the support and if you picked up a copy, double thanks!

To be honest with you, I'm not sure how its sales are doing.  Each merchant's algos are a little weird so it's hard to track.  I will say, from my experience the last year, and what I've heard from others, e-books sales are down quite a bit (unless you're HUGE).

I'd also hoped to have a blog tour arranged by now but that's still is being arranged by the publicity team at HarperCollins.

Why am I bringing this up?  Well, if you like my stuff and haven't picked up a copy, it would be a big boost if you did.  E-book sales tend to feed on momentum.  The higher the sales rank, the more people see it, the more people buy it.  Call it the velocity of money, if you will.  People tend to chase the popular.

If e-books are not your thing, you can pre-order the paperback.

The more popular the book, the more I sell, the more likely you'll see more books in this universe I've created.

That's, of course, if you like this universe.

Also, reviews help a lot, too.  If you've got an Amazon account (or equivalent on other platforms) and don't mind leaving a review, it's greatly appreciated.  Even if it's only a ranking on Goodreads, it is still appreciated all the same.

Finally, if you know people that like books that combine horror and military thrillers, point them in my direction.

All the different ways to pick up a copy can be found on the DEMON page, clickable there at the top of the blog.  Or by clicking here.


Thirty-One Days of Horror Films Day 6 - First Fail

So we didn't watch a horror flick last night.  Yeah, I know.  But hey, I was sick and we were both tired.  So there's that.

Instead, we watched a couple of episodes of Portlandia and got our laugh on instead.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Thirty-One Days of Horror Films Day 5 -The Lords of Salem

Part of me thinks this was an interesting attempt at a movie.  Certainly the most mature of Zombie's work.  What it lacks is a reason to care.  About anything going on.

In addition, by the end, I was wondering if Zombie was just doing his best to reach into the mind of the viewers and fuck them up.  There's a fine line between entertainment and sacrilege.  The more I reflect on it, that more I think it falls into the latter.

On a lighter note, Sam Strange delivers a far better and funnier review.  Check it out.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Thirty-One Days of Horror Films Day 4 - The Believers

Hey, I dig freaky-deaky cult films that involve weird religious, upper class assholes, and murder.  It's what made the first season of True Detective so awesome.  However, the same cannot be said for 1987's The Believers.

Again, this isn't a terrible movie.  It's just, well, you've already seen the best parts of it, done better, in flicks like The Exorcist, Rosemary's Baby, and Angel Heart.  You get a decent cast, led by Martin Sheen, some intriguing subtle violence, and Jimmy Smits going insane and stabbing himself to death because he thinks he has serpents in his belly.

Oh, and you get angry Robert Loggia.  That's always a plus.

However, the rest...meh.  Predictable.  Overly even-toned.  Yet the even-toneness is in reference to the two sides of Santeria.  Yet never do they address the two-sides of race that practice this religion.  Which makes all feel awkward and false.

Oh, and they keep talking about Catholicism but hey, no priests.  Or anything else.

Some nudity but not worth watching it for.

I will say I did like the big party where all the rich yuppies are smoking cigars because that's what the gods like.  It's stuff like that that makes this weird cult shit interesting.  More of that and less trying to impersonate the worst of The Omen sequels please.