Somehow half a year went by and I didn’t manage to blog. So let us proceed without delay.Read more: Blog #24: Dispatches from Fringewood
In this issue:
- Fringewood + short story + poetry announcements
- New Doom That Came To Mellonville merch
- Book reviews: You’ve Lost a Lot of Blood, What Moves the Dead, Below, Moonfellow
- My fave photos from Vancouver
Now Available: Fringewood
My debut poetry collection Fringewood is now available from Alien Buddha Press.
22 gothic, folk horror, and paranormal-inspired poems set in a strange little town that may or may not exist. Equal parts monster madness and meditations on melancholy.
Warriors of the Wild Sky
After fleeing her abusive husband just in time to avoid the apocalypse sweeping through her town, a hitchhiker is picked up by a mysterious driver. His name is Driver, and he might be exactly what she needs to start a new life. He also might be Nicolas Cage. He’s definitely not human.
A tribute to Wild At Heart by way of Mandy. Read it in His Soul’s Still Dancing: A Nicolas Cage Inspired Anthology from Ex-Parrot Press.
As if her parents’ agonizing divorce wasn’t enough, teenaged Hailey also has to deal with The Ghoul: the eyeliner-wearing, accident-prone independent wrestler who may be her new stepfather. A summer on the wrestling circuit at least provides an escape, until a hometown show puts her face-to-face with her feelings.
Read it in From Parts Unknown: A Professional Wrestling Anthology from Daily Drunk.
Into the Great Wide Open
When a toddler vanishes in the dead of night, his teenage father is suspected of murder. As it turns out, Joe knows exactly where his son is. He also knows that no one on earth will be able to bring him back.
Read this cosmic mystery in Nightmare Sky: Stories of Astronomical Horror from Death Knell Press.
Enter the Heimlich Academy Screenplay Challenge they said. A horror movie will sell, they said. Who exactly is saying these things, and why does this script appear to be writing itself?
Explore the mind of a tortured writer in It Was All A Dream: An Anthology of Bad Horror Tropes Done Right from Hungry Shadow Press.
Cannibal Mutant Maneating Spider
A poem about giant spiders and bureaucratic paperwork, appearing in the Horror Writers’ Association Poetry Showcase Vol. IX.
New Merch: Doom Squirrel Shirt
If you ever wanted The Doom That Came To Mellonville‘s iconic squirrel on a shirt, your dreams are about to come true.
What I’ve Been Reading:
Eric Larocca – You’ve Lost a Lot of Blood
After scoring a breakout hit with last year’s Things Have Gotten Worse Since We Last Spoke, Eric Larocca returns with another addictive epistolary novella. This one purports to be a collection of writings and recordings by an artistically-inclined serial killer, including a full novella-within-the-novella (also titled You’ve Lost a Lot of Blood) published by the fiend.
Because Larocca narrators are more eloquent than mere mortals, the featured poems, journal entries, and metafiction are compelling on their own, the murderous author’s flair for melodrama allowing Larocca to luxuriate in deliciously disturbing imagery. It’s a novel you admire the craft of, even as you’re carried away by the story. You’ve Lost A Lot of Blood is also, in a way, a mystery, one you don’t realize you’re reading until everything comes together.
Buy a copy here.
T. Kingfisher – What Moves The Dead (Tor Nightfire)
T. Kingfisher’s reimaging of “The Fall of the House of Usher” begins much like the original: a soldier arrives at the decaying Usher estate in the hopes of assisting a troubled friend and his ill sister, to find that both of them have declined beyond salvation.
But where Poe’s story is enigmatic, a gothic Rorschach Test that lends itself to countless interpretations, What Moves the Dead recalls the rationalism of antiquarian horror, with a cast of level-headed veterans and a mycologist set on identifying the cause of the disturbance. The resulting tale is equal parts grotesque and funny, witty without undercutting the terror.
Buy a copy here.
Laurel Hightower – Below (Ghoulish)
I hate moths and shuddered every time our hero’s hand brushed a furry limb in the dark. But this tale of a horror writer trapped in a cave a giant moth is more than just a monster mash.
Laurel Hightower knows what makes cryptids creepy – the subtle hints of conspiracy, the suggestion that there’s more to their existence than just a quirk of evolution. Her Mothman is an enigmatic and sinister being, and the book is filled with unsolved mysteries and sick surprises that will leave you off-kilter.
Buy a copy here.
Danger Slater – Moonfellows (Perpetual Motion Machine Publishing)
Danger Slater has an impressive ability to wring genuine emotion from nonsensical situations. This bizarro tale of three scientists, a military man, and a gravedigger abandoned on the moon in the early 1900s is as elegiac as it is absurd, with Slater effectively conveying the loneliness and vast scale of the moon (contrasted with the ramshackle spaceship that got them there). It made me laugh and also hit all of my sad-bones.
Buy a copy here.
Until next time…
In the next edition I’ll be reviewing four books I loved but haven’t found the words for yet: Joe Koch’s Convulsive, Madeleine Swann’s Sharp Edge of the Rainbow, Rebecca Rowland’s Shagging the Boss, and Gretchen Felker-Martin’s Manhunt.
In the meantime, please enjoy this gallery from my recent trip to Vancouver: