Archive for the ‘short stories’ Category

My micro horror story (~200 words) “Protection” is now available in the online version of Frozen Wavelets issue #1, a newly launched speculative flash fiction and poetry magazine based in Scotland.

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About Frozen Wavelets, from Editor Steph P. Bianchini:

Frozen Wavelets is an e-zine of speculative flash fiction and poetry, offspring of The Earthian Hivemind. We exist because we believe there’s not enough out there that specialises in this exquisite and peculiar format, not because it is not worthy of attention but because the genre fiction market logic overall doesn’t favour it. This is our contribution to give voice to writers and poets who love it as much as we do, and who keep writing it nonetheless.

TOC of Frozen Wavelets issue #1:

She Sleeps (Annie Neugebauer)

The Sea Bride (Deborah Davitt)

Protection (Kc Grifant)

Alien Evening (Kim Whysall-Hammond)

At the Frayed Edges of The Night (Isabel Cañas)

Bulgarian Grass – Българска Трева (Margarita I Serafimova)

Shell (Sonora Taylor)

The Wishing Clock of Gassytown (Deborah Wong)

Moon Catcher (Beth Cato)

Our Flesh Was Bred for This (Octavia Cade)

Sparse Wavelets (Colleen Anderson, Stewart C. Baker, Anatoly Belilovsky, Marc Criley, Pat Tompkins, Dawn Vogel)

Read more about the contributors here or visit the Patreon page here.

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I’m pleased to share that my New England-based quiet horror story, “Better Halves,” which first appeared in the Lovecraft eZine, is reprinted in The Macabre Museum‘s debut issue. 

Creators Sara Tantlinger, Chandler Morrison, Dan Coxon, Hailey Piper, Marge Simon, Sam Rebelein and others share their dark and twisted visions in this strong debut of stories, poems and artwork.

The quarterly horror literary journal and “digital museum of terrors,” edited by R.R. Trevino, is described as follows:

Imagine walking through a dark museum. A painting, basking in the soft light from a sconce, catches your eye. You approach, drawn in by its unparalleled beauty and raw power. Standing there, in front of the painting, you are mesmerized, changed in some profound way.

This is the feeling The Macabre Museum aims to evoke in its readers. Each piece we publish, whether it be fiction, poetry, or art, promises to claw at your heart and lie festering in your soul. Our art, like all good art, is timeless, has staying power, and is terrifying in its beauty.

Click through for the full version of the NSFW cover and/or to purchase via Amazon or support the Macabre Museum on its patreon page here.

 

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I’m delighted to announce my new story “Vermin” appears in Unnerving Magazine issue #10. “Vermin” tells the tale of twentysomethings encountering… interesting… creatures in the underbelly of NYC. I had a great time writing this story and evoking the feeling of running around the city–even though it’s been over a decade since I lived there.

The issue features stories from Kate Jonez, Philip Fracassi, Theodore C. Van Alst, Jr., and Richard Montoya, and nonfiction by Gwendolyn Kiste, Jennifer McMahon, Rio Youers, Andy Davidson, and Ray Cluley. The issue also includes novel excerpts of IN THE SCRAPE by James Newman and Mark Steensland, and THE HUNGRY ONES by Chris Sorensen.

Edited by Eddie Generous, Unnerving Magazine is a Canadian-based horror and suspense magazine that also publishes delightfully strange and weird podcasts and books–check them out at the link below!

Unnerving Magazine Website

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2018 Year in Review

The road to writing and publishing is paved with a whole lot of self-doubt and countless rejections. Writers need to celebrate any accomplishment, big or small, to help fuel motivation and bade away the naysayers (internal and external). New Year’s Eve is a good opportunity to pause and take stock of accomplishments of the past year and reflect on upcoming goals.

Personally it’s been a year of firsts, with some accomplishments of note:

International: This year I broke into the Australian (Andromeda Spaceways Magazine, COLP, and Things in the Well series); Canadian (Renaissance Book Publisher); and British (Tales to Terrify podcast) marketplaces.

Cover feature: My Weird Western tale “Dusty Arrival” was the cover story for the award-winning Andromeda Spaceways Magazine (March 2018 issue). This was a particular thrill: it never gets old to see how talented illustrators interpret your work. 

Audio: Another big highlight was a foray into audio storytelling with the acceptance of my reprint story “The Peerlings” for the Tales to Terrify podcast. Much like when an artist visually manifests your story, it is surreal and gratifying to hear a talented voice actor interpret your tale.

In summary, I’ve had 6 publications and 1 author interview this year:

I am incredibly grateful for the writing and editing community, particularly in the areas of genre fiction, which often are misunderstood (e.g., horror = slasher). I am also indebted to friends and family who provide support in this tough craft. I hope the coming year leads to new stories that provide respite, intrigue or food for thought. Happy 2019!

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“It is true, we shall be monsters, cut off from all the world; but on that account we shall be more attached to one another.”

–Mary Shelley, Frankenstein

It’s aliiiiiive!

Edited by Derek Newman-Stille, We Shall Be Monsters (Renaissance Book Press, 2018) celebrates Frankenstein’s 200th birthday with similarly themed stories by authors from around the world. My dark short story “Wanting” shows how far a high school student will go to fit in in a cybernetic, near-future society.

From the publisher, Canada-based Renaissance Book Press:

Mary Shelley’s genre-changing book Frankenstein; or, the Modern Prometheus, helped to shape the genres of science fiction and horror, and helped to articulate new forms for women’s writing. It also helped us to think about the figure of the outsider, to question medical power, to question ideas of “normal,” and to think about what we mean by the word “monster.” Derek Newman-Stille has teamed up with Renaissance Press to celebrate Frankenstein’s 200th birthday by creating a book that explores Frankenstein stories from new and exciting angles and perspectives.

We Shall Be Monsters: Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein Two Centuries On features a broad range of fiction stories by authors from around the world, ranging from direct interactions with Shelley’s texts to explorations of the stitched, assembled body and narrative experiments in monstrous creations. We Shall Be Monsters collects explorations of disability, queer and trans identity, and ideas of race and colonialism.

With stories by Day Al-Mohamed, Lena Ng, Ashley Caranto Morford Cait Gordon, JF Garrard, Andrew Wilmot, Evelyn Deshane, D. Simon Turner, Kaitlin Tremblay, Lisa Carreiro Eric Choi & Joseph McGinty, Jennifer Lee Rossman, Randall G. Arnold, Alex Acks, KC Grifant, Halli Lilburn, Kev Harrison, Corey Redekop, Arianna Verbree, Max D. Stanton, Victoria K. Martin, Priya Sridhar, Liam Hogan, Joshua Bartolome

Read more: https://renaissancebookpress.com/product/we-shall-be-monsters/

Or purchase: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1987963415/

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My short scifi horror story “The Peerlings” appears in the terrific British podcast series Tales to Terrify, episode 354.

“The Peerlings” was first published in Beyond the Infinite – Tales from the Outer Reaches (Things in the Well series), edited by Steve Dillon. In the story, members of an off-world colony begin to vanish once elusive creatures–who can only safely be heard, not seen–descend upon their home. The mayor must figure out how to protect her citizens while warding off mass hysteria and a brewing rebellion.

The story begins at 00:21:21 and is read by Amy Paonessa (Twitter), host of The Bloodlust horror review website. She does an amazing job bringing the characters to life and conveying a sense of desolation and isolation throughout the piece.

Funny enough, a few people have mentioned that Netflix’s recently released Bird Box (based on the 2014 British novel) reminded them of “The Peerlings.” Check it out on Tales to Terrify and decide for yourself!

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Trembling with Fear Year One is a collection of horror short stories and drabbles.

My short horror scifi story “Turning Tides” appears Trembling with Fear: Year 1, a print anthology collection of horror-themed flash and short fiction now available.

“Turning Tides” was first published at The Horror Tree’s January 29, 2017 online edition. The story is what’s known as a “drabble.” These are flash fiction pieces taken to an extreme, incorporating style, character and plot all within a paltry 100 words.

The new collection, which includes both dribbles and flash stories, is edited by Stephanie Ellis and Stuart Conover, who curate the immensely popular Horror Tree website.

From the publisher:

This Trembling With Fear anthology is a compilation of all the drabbles, flash fiction stories and dark poetry published during 2017 at HorrorTree.com. In its pages you will find work from both the novice and the established writer, the newbie and the award-winner. Here, the dead walk and murders abound, demons and ghosts torment the living whilst vampires and wolves compete for space with internet and aliens. Within these pages you will find dark speculative fiction from contributors across the globe, for our world is a world without borders. Nowhere is safe from the dark.

We have had some amazing talent contribute to the first year of ‘Trembling With Fear’ and we hope that you enjoy reading these as much as we have!

Read more or buy the book (digital or print) here.

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I’ve recently had a speculative story accepted to Australia-based Gypsum Sound Tale‘s Colp series. The latest collection, “Sky’s the Limit,” features stories that touch on the mystery and majestic nature of the sky. Simple, sublime and surreal.

From the editor: 

The sky has always fascinated me. The more I learn, the more questions I seem to have. Free radicals, refracting light, the knowledge that, if you travel high enough, everything will eventually give way to the blackness of space – each fact makes me more and more curious about what might be going on up there. There are stories wrapped up in this knowledge, plenty of stories…

Colp’s latest collection, Sky’s The Limit, contains twelve of these tales. Each story presents a unique perspective on our atmosphere and the effect that it may have on the people living, day by day, on the land down below.

My story, “Night Call,” focuses on a boy struggling with his day and a nocturnal visit by a mysterious acrobat.

Excerpt:

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The full story, and the entire digital collection, is available on Amazon.

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7-time Aurora Award-winning editor and critic Derek Newman-Stille teamed up with Renaissance Press to pull together horror stories from authors around the world. On the anthology’s Kickstarter page, Newman-Stille describes the project:

200 years ago, Mary Shelley wrote a genre-changing book, which she titled “Frankenstein or the Modern Prometheus”. This story helped to shape the genres of science fiction and horror and helped to articulate new forms for women’s writing. It also helped us to think about the figure of the outsider, to question medical power, to question ideas of normal, and to think about what we mean by the word “monster”. Her book inspired adaptations into stage, into film, into new books, poetry, television, and all manner of art. 

We Shall Be Monsters: Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein Two Centuries On will feature a broad range of fiction stories, from direct interactions with Shelley’s texts to explorations of the stitched, assembled body and narrative experiments in monstrous creations. We Shall Be Monsters is a fiction collection that will feature explorations of disability through Frankenstein, queer and trans identity, ideas of race and colonialism. Shelley’s story provides a space for exploring a multitude of identities through the figure of the sympathetic outsider. Frankenstein’s “monster” is a figure of Otherness, and one that can tell stories of exclusion and social oppression.

The Kickstarter has already met its funding goal, but if you are interested in supporting the project, there are 3 days left to contribute!

 

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Initial publication of Frankenstein, 1818.

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I am delighted to see that my story, “A Dusty Arrival,” inspired the cover art for issue 70 of the award-winning Australian publication, Andromeda Spaceways Magazine, edited by the talented Eugen M. Bacon. The story features a gunslinging couple intent on ridding the Wild West from an invasion of mysterious, mind-altering gremlins.

Excerpt:

A telltale glow that had nothing to do with the sunset bathed the western mountain gorge in unnatural shades of lavender. Melinda didn’t look directly at it from their vantage point on a foothill at the edge of town. The colour made her uneasy, as if it shouldn’t exist in this world. No one knew where the gremlins came from or what they wanted, just that the bizarre light always heralded their arrival.

As an author, it is such a treat to see your words brought to life in a different medium. In the case, artist Roan Carter really did the characters and setting justice.

This action-packed issue is described as follows:

Welcome aboard, voyagers. Sit back, fasten your seat belts, your odyssey awaits. This issue of ASM catapults you to a horde of ghost stories, satanic verses, time travel with dead musos and fairy tales with a twist. Yes, there are AI babies frolicking in their cots, as other tots drift fatherless in starlight. Is that a human host to Alludian larvae? Sci fi, fantasy and horror: we’ve got it all. Here you will find silvery pools bounded by galaxies, ornate havens to gaze out at the stars. Oh, see luminescent gremlins haunt the western mountain gorge, hear their hissing and ear-splitting howls. As the warm night sweeps over the black seas, a small glow emanates from the water, ushering a whole bunch of floating dead crew, mouths open and wide unblinking eyes. You fall back in terror and, just then, a timberthrall claws its way up, already bloodied from a feed, now driven by your screams. Calm down, look: here’s a shrewd poem. A discerning Writers Unearthed interview. A sobering book review. Get refreshments aboard the spacecraft, before facing off with the last monster you shall slay. That’s right, thrust with us to the Otherworld!

Issue 70 can be purchased here.