Happy December! I hope you had a fulfilling Thanksgiving and are gearing up for a fun and restful holiday season. If you’re stumped on gift ideas, I’ve included some tips on horror and book gift suggestions below.

In personal news, I am beyond thrilled that my poem “A Woman’s Weapon” (published in HWA’s Poetry Showcase Volume VIII) made the recommendations list for the upcoming volume of Ellen Datlow’s esteemed Best Horror of the Year! You can peruse the full list here.

Book news

Early reviews from advanced readers on MELINDA WEST: MONSTER GUNSLINGER are starting to post on Goodreads and I’m delighted to see people enjoying this Weird West epic adventure.

If you haven’t already, you can add MELINDA WEST: MONSTER GUNSLINGER to your Goodreads list. Preorders will be available later this month.

Digital versions of Advanced Reader Copies (ARCs) are available for reviewers and early readers! If you’re interested, please message me

Book and horror shopping guide tips

If you need some shopping inspiration, check out the excellent Horror for the Holidays shopping guide from author Sara Tantlinger

Also I highly recommend Bookshop for great gift ideas for supporting independent bookstores. Better yet, browse your nearby indie bookstore!

Lastly, check out the social media pages of your favorite indie authors. Chances are that they (or their publishers) are having sales this month.

Upcoming short stories

I am thrilled to have another story appear in an upcoming Tales to Terrify episode. “Unrest,” a gothic horror tale about a cemetery taking revenge on a monster, first debuted in the anthology DANCING IN THE SHADOWS: A TRIBUTE TO ANNE RICE.

You can listen to my first Tales to Terrify cosmic scifi horror story, “The Peerlings,” here for free

I also have a new Weird West short story debuting in ALONG HARROWED TRAILS from Timber Ghost Press forthcoming in 2023.

Recent stories out now

To receive monthly email updates directly into your inbox, sign up here and, as always, happy reading!

The fall is always a busy and fun time for horror writers. I wanted to share some of the guest interviews and articles I was honored to recently be part of.

KC Grifant On The 5 Things You Need to Know to Become a Great Author

In this interview with Authority Magazine on Medium.com, I share my path to writing, thoughts on the Weird West genre and writing tips.

What Scares Horror Authors: Interview with Reader’s Entertainment Magazine

This was a fun, short interview with Reader’s Entertainment Magazine on “what scares horror authors.”

Guest Post at The Horror Tree

My article, “5 Tips to Writing a Horror Weird Western,” was featured on the Horror Tree. It was also highlighted as one of the “5 Must-Read Horror Articles” in October by This is Horror.

Visit this page for a full list of interviews/guest articles.

I’m honored that my horror pandemic story, “All Aboard,” debuts in 34 Orchard Magazine issue #6, a publication described as “a literary journal that takes you dark places.”

In “All Aboard,” a new pandemic forces those people to carry out their quarantine at sea, where strangers are less than charitable. You can download the entire issue as a pdf for free at https://34orchard.com/issues/issue-6/.

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I’m honored to have 12 new horror, scifi and/or weird west short stories published this year. These are eligible for award nominations, and several of them are free to read. Complimentary copies (PDF) of the others are available upon request. Hope you enjoy!

Horror

collage of publications


The Color of Friendship

-Published in Chromophobia: A Strangehouse Anthology by Women in Horror from Rooster Republic Press
-Description: A mean-girls, creature feature about a lake house trip gone sideways, this story is described by the editor as having “major CREEPSHOW vibes.”
-Words: 3,400

The U Train” (available online as an audio story)

Winner of the Sley House podcast competition and published in Tales of Sley House 2022
-Description: Four strangers find themselves on a New York subway platform, forced to face their pasts as they wait on a train that shouldn’t exist.
-Words: 5,300
-Note: “The U Train” is available as a free dramatic audio recording here: https://podcast.app/kc-grifants-u-train-e315014645/

Unrest

-Published in Dancing in the Shadows: A Tribute to Anne Rice and forthcoming in a future episode of Tales to Terrify
-Description: An unnatural force at the local cemetery seeks to avenge an act of murderous violence.
-Words: 2,400 

“All Aboard” (available online)

-Published in 34 Orchard magazine, issue #6
-Description: A new pandemic forces those exposed to carry out their quarantine at sea, where strangers are less than charitable.
-Words: 1,200
-Note: “All Aboard” is available to read for free at the magazine’s website (pdf): https://34orchard.files.wordpress.com/2022/11/34-orchard-issue-6-autumn-2022.pdf

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My Weird West monster action story, “The Fall of Denafas Manor,” debuts in this epic Western horror anthology from Cohesion Press. Edited by Amanda J Spedding and Geoff Brown, SNAFU: DEAD OR ALIVE is the latest addition to the SNAFU anthologies, some of which were adapted for the Netflix series LOVE, DEATH + ROBOTS.

“The Fall of Denfanas Manor” is an original story featuring gunslingers Melinda and Lance as they rescue a kidnapped victim from a relentless supernatural family. You can read an excerpt below.

As a side note: Melinda and Lance have their own novel-length adventure forthcoming in MELINDA WEST: MONSTER GUNSLINGER (Feb 2023, Brigids Gate Press).

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It’s October, the best month! When when the “Halloween People” come out to play and when the pumpkin spice flows freely. I hope you’re finding fun and spooky ways to celebrate.

Read on for book updates, my first reading of the season and a new article on Weird West writing tips. As always, I hope your bookshelves have been full and your reading time uninterrupted!

New article! 5 Tips For Writing a Horror Weird Western

My article, “5 Tips for Writing a Horror Weird Western,” is now live on The Horror Tree! You can read it here: https://horrortree.com/5-tips-for-writing-a-horror-weird-western/.

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I’m beyond excited to reveal the cover of MELINDA WEST: MONSTER GUNSLINGER, coming in February 2023 from Brigids Gate Press. I have always been a fan of UK-based Carrion House’s artwork, so I was thrilled to see how Luke would interpret the vibe and story (check out more of his amazing artwork here). Aside from the compelling, creepy imagery, the intriguing font also immediately drew me in. Needless to say, I couldn’t have imagined a better cover for this story!

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Happy September! I hope the pumpkin spice is flowing freely and apple picking is plentiful. Read on for recent updates!

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Surreal western book cover.

My Weird Western story, “Old Habits,” is now available in Queer Weird West Tales (QWWT)! Edited by Julie Bozza, the anthology is a diverse collection of international Weird West adventures.

“Old Habits” description

To save her girlfriend from a monster’s infectious venom, Topaz must confront her tumultuous past and ask the last person in the world she wants to see for help—her ex.

Topaz is a side character in my upcoming novel MELINDA WEST: MONSTER GUNSLINGER. She was so dynamic and intriguing, she practically demanded a spotlight in her own story. This tale focuses on Topaz’s adventures after the novel, expanding on her newfound love as she faces a reckoning with her past.

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My short fantasy flash story “Death Felt Fine” is available to read for free over at Dread Stone Press‘s Dose of Dread series. At 1000 words, it’s a quick tale, and follows Death’s mission to deal with the latest apocalypse even as he yearns for something more.

I love reading various interpretations of the Grim Reaper and Death. Probably one of my favorite depictions is from the Sandman series. In this tale, I pictured Death as a somewhat moody, nostalgic figure stuck in an eternal task along with his fated brothers and sisters.

Here’s a brief excerpt:

Hope you enjoy! For more of Dread Stone Press offerings, my short eco-horror story, “From Sea to Shining Sea,” appears in FIELD NOTES FROM A NIGHTMARE.