Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Communications in omlette form?

What my wife said:
"Your Caps destroyed the Devils last night. YaY!!!"

How I interpreted that statement:
"An inability or unwillingness to remove the cap lock on the keyboard resulted in an exorcism or inadvertent slaying of some satanic being over the evening."

Apparently, she was talking about a hockey match wherein the club from Washington scored more baskets than the ne'er do wells of New Jersey.

Gotta love the flexibility of language and the gap between intended message and received message.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

A Maudlin Look at Days Dead and Gone

I don't know why this took so long to write, maybe because it took so long to really and truly kick in.

It isn't a secret, by now; to any fan of horror literature that Dorchester Publishing's horror line (Leisure Horror) has fallen on hard times. They have pulled out of the mass market business and plan on only releasing trade paperbacks and e-books. I certainly won't knock either approach, especially since printed words are destined to be a very niche market as ereaders proliferate and cheapen but it still makes me incredibly sad to see.

You see, dear friends and neighbors, Leisure was my introduction into the horror that I truly adore now. Without their covers leering at me during eight hour mindless slogs in a Kroger photo lab, I never would have discovered the likes of Tom Piccirilli, Gerard Houarner, Jack Ketchum, Charlee Jacob, Gary Braunbeck, Dick Laymon, etc. etc. If I had never discovered them, then I would not have been pulled into the dark tunnels of the independent horror publishers in search of more of their stuff. This, in turn would have deprived me of the huge, ghastly and gorgeous surprises that have lit up my life over the years. I never would have known there was such a thing as the Hardcore movement or met a lively dead cat with a penchant for unvirtuous living. My library would suck!

This loss means a lot to many writers who would never have had the opportunities they currently possess, but it means as much to me as a fan. This is a loss to the art itself, a loss to the horror community. Without a mass market publisher willing to take the risks Leisure took, I am afraid that the chances others have of accidentally tripping over something amazing that lies just over the boundary of easy profit will be practically nil.

I'll be okay. I get free books from amazing writers and publishers all the time just because I talk too much about them. I'll also continue to follow the Leisure line, as their editors have shown remarkable taste. All the same, a glorious time that means more to me than I can adequately convey is over.


Sunday, December 5, 2010

They done popped my cherriy.

I'm no longer a virgin people.

On January 21st, 2011, my first monetarily lucrative story will be available to smack you in the face. The story is “The Song that Crawls”, the product of my split obsessions with Lovercraft, Tom Piccirilli and all things Dax Riggs (the title actually comes from an Agents of Oblivion song, but Dax gave me permission to use it) and I'm glad to see that it has found comfortable little home in Necrotic Tissue. They've got a great mag going on there -I've said a few nice things about them periodically- and I am awed to have my name appear in their pages.

Sure, I've had work published in the past and some of it will eventually result in money gracing my palm but none have actually done so yet. That makes this particular work something very special to me and I would like anyone reading this to celebrate by buying a copy or, even better, subscribing to the magazine.

In case you are curious, “The Morning Ritual,” a tale of sacrifice and the morning commute, will be appearing in the digital version of Title Goes Here and “Beautiful Things,” dealing with familial responsibility, will show up in an upcoming issue of Shroud. I'll let you know dates when I know them.

For the moment, I feel a little bit tired, a little bit sore and very content in your arms.