This episode of This Writing Life road trips to Portland, Maine!
For me, being a writer means always studying other media—film, music, art, whatever. One of my favorite things to do is attend DAMNATIONLAND—a horror film festival which showcases short films by independent Maine filmmakers. I probably did more partying than studying…but come take the ride with me! Watch This Writing Life Episode 10: Damnationland here: https://youtu.be/1ro3aNkm89M
If you wanna do it for real? You can check out the dates for 2017 on the Damnationland FB page here: https://www.facebook.com/Damnationland/?ref=br_rs
I spent the first six months of this year as a guest editor for an upcoming issue of Dark Alley Press’ Ink Stains anthology series, and I’m pleased to announce that, except for a couple of rounds of proofing and the fact that the cover isn’t complete, it’s in the can!
This was my first stint as guest editor, and it was nothing short of a magical experience. There was something special about not just cherry-picking pieces for a collection from a slush pile, but curating a collection; tapping talent for some unpublished stories that had haunted me for—in some cases—a quarter of a century, or always anticipating that moment when that perfect story I have to have! would appear in the submissions manager.
In addition, every writer I worked with shared the vision; it was an enlightening journey in every sense of the phrase.
The theme of the issue was my choice—decay. It’s a pervasive Read the rest of this entry
Dark Discussions gets a case of The Berlin Syndrome—a disturbing look at a passionate affair that turns into narcissistic abuse. The film, which stars Teresa Palmer, takes us along for the ride as an Australian photographer travels to Germany and gets more than she bargained for, and is available now on VOD.
Check out the film and then listen to our episode on Stitcher, iTunes, and here: http://www.darkdiscussions.com/Pages/podcast_292.html
I’m thrilled to announce that my short story “We’ve Always Been Here” will be appearing in Great Old Ones Publishing’s upcoming anthology Invocations.
I don’t want to say much and ruin the surprise, but I will say the first draft of this story was written last Halloween (October 31) and was inspired by yet another report of a “creepy clown” attack. Remember those?
As of today, the release date is slated for September 1. I’ll let you know when it’s available.
Zombie stories have never been my favorite—they tend to take a tired thing and beat it to its last gasp in a not-too original way. However, I found several gems in 2011’s The Zombie Feed, Vol. 1; each story offers a thrilling, interesting, and refreshing twist on the trope. Not one would I consider a “standard” Zombie story.
If my statement still doesn’t entice you, consider this one story alone: “Goddamn Electric,” by K. Allen Wood.
In one of the most richly-detailed, atmospheric, yet suspenseful pieces I’ve read in a long time, “Goddamn Electric” induces chills in part because of its literary sensibilities: it deftly uses single effect in all its glory. This story about a small town full of crotchety New Englanders about to get their comeuppance is not to be missed–I promise you, it’s different than any other zombie thing you’ve ever read. Grab it here: https://amzn.com/0982159641
I often get asked about what influences my work as a writer. Inspired by the amazing website Kindertrauma–which is right up my alley–I’m compiling all of my childhood (and some adult) terrors.
In 1978, the ABC Friday Night Movie aired The Bermuda Depths. It was billed, in the original TV Guide full page ad, as a frightening mystery surrounding the Bermuda Triangle—a hot topic back in the In Search Of-cryptid-paranormal-UFO-obsessed decade that was the 1970s. I didn’t know this then, but it was written by Alan Rankin, produced by Jules Bass (yes, the Rankin/Bass behind Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer) and directed by Tsugunobu (Tom) Kotani of 1977’s The Last Dinosaur fame—which meant creatures and creepy imagery, and it would certainly deliver.
In the 1970s, Read the rest of this entry
Dark Discussions rediscovers 2001’s Donnie Darko! On Stitcher, iTunes, and here: http://www.darkdiscussions.com/Pages/podcast_288.html
This Writing Life Episode 9A: Snowbound: with Zombies is live! You can watch it here: https://youtu.be/BE0wZM3cTtk
In this episode, we jam the Snowbound: with Zombies release event into a full weekend! Snowbound: with Zombies is a collection of scary stories by several New England writers, and 100% of the proceeds benefits the Whittier Birthplace Museum in Haverhill, Massachusetts. Available in both print and Kindle. Get it here: http://bit.ly/SnowboundPrint (Kindle link posted on that page too). Oh…and we also find a cool Cracker Barrel.
Don’t know much about Whittier but want to? I recommend The Poetry of John Greenleaf Whittier: A Reader’s Edition, edited by William Jolliff.
There’s now a second collection for mystery lovers! If you love mysteries, give back to the community and pick up Murder Among Friends (which contains my story “The Cricket in the Wall”) here: http://bit.ly/MAFCricket
Dark Discussions gets hooked (or not) on The Lure, a strange little 1980s-style rock musical that toys with the original Hans Christian Andersen version of “The Little Mermaid.” On Stitcher, iTunes and here: http://www.darkdiscussions.com/Pages/podcast_287.html