In the past few months, I’ve gotten on well with Mike Davis, founder of the excessively cool and informative Lovecraft eZine.
This week, I’m the featured Author of the Week there, which keeps up with this trend of mini-interviews that has clustered the past few months (really, see the Press page under 2014). I’m already dreading next week, and am looking for loopholes so I can remain the Author of the Week every week.
Freshly baked this month by England’s Spectral Press is The Spectral Book of Horror Stories … which editor and way-back-in-the-long-ago fellow Dell/Abyss author Mark Morris hopes is the first of an ongoing series. So buy the thing already and help make that a reality!
My piece? “Cures For A Sickened World,” it’s called, and you could think of it as a love letter to smug haters everywhere. Remember that line of Patrick Swayze’s from Roadhouse: “Be nice, until it’s time to not be nice”…? Yeah, that time is shrinking in the rear view mirror already.
For a bit more insight into the conception process than usual, let me swipe from the short interview I gave to contributor Angela Slatter, in her customary series of Q&As with the rest of her fellow anthology residents:
“It came out of two factors that were perfectly juxtaposed. One day, on Facebook, I followed a link that author Steven Savile posted to a review of the last Coldplay album. Scathing doesn’t even begin to describe it. I don’t care anything about Coldplay — I don’t think I’ve ever heard one of their songs in its entirety. But this reviewer’s whole routine seems to be that he hates everything and everyone, and tries to be as insulting as possible, even if he has to bring your family into it. Apparently it’s supposed to be amusing.
“At the time, I happened to be devouring this big encyclopedic book on black metal. I don’t give a shit about Coldplay, but I love black metal, and as I was reading that review, I thought, ‘Hmm, how might one of those guys react to this? What if someone decided to take this reviewer’s hyperbole at face value?’ So the story emerged as this unlikely head-on collision between cosmic horror and the deterioration of journalistic integrity. And it definitely wouldn’t have happened if not for those two windows of exposure lining up the way they did.”
The Spectral Book of Horror Stories is published in the U.K., but here in the U.S. you can order it domestically through Amazon in print or for Kindle.
Get your forklifts ready. Cemetery Dance Publications’ long-awaited Big Fat Hardcover Edition of my early post-apocalyptic epic, Dark Advent, is slated for release late this summer. An e-book edition will follow within a few months.
One reason to go for the print edition: the gorgeous cover art wrought by artist Vincent Chong, who also did the cover for my 2011 collection, Picking The Bones. It’s a wraparound panorama that takes up the entire dust jacket.
While I normally give early work a light polish before it goes back into print, this time I put in so much labor it amounts to a brand new draft. Not to worry — nobody behaves any differently. Mostly it was about getting out of my own way, and clearing up a couple of lapses in logic. An afterword about the novel’s origins, etc., rounds the whole package off. This is going to be a beautiful edition that, unlike the original, will no longer require an electron microscope to read.
Further information and pre-order here.
And in a coincidence of timing, last year the novel made the list of “22 Pandemic Books To Read Before The H7N9 Virus Kills Us All.” Good company, there.
Once more into the breach, as another earlier book makes the transition into e-book format. DarkFuse has released Worlds of Hurt, which isn’t quite like any book I’ve done before.
You could call it a collection. Or you could call it an episodic novel, containing a novel-within-the-novel.
Mostly, though, I just think of it as an omnibus edition gathering the first four installments of my Misbegotten story cycle, which has been called “a mythos every bit as dismal and bleak as Lovecraft’s Elder Gods.” And which I’m planning on furthering later this year.
Bringing these works together in one place, rather than leaving them scattered thither and yon, will make it a lot easier to maintain accessibility as I go forward with this saga. For more details, see the book’s bibliography page.
Alert readers may have noticed that the short novel World of Hurt is not yet among the books of mine that have made the transition into e-book format.
That’s because for quite some time I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do with it. While it can stand alone, it’s still part of a larger story cycle that by now I think of as the Misbegotten mythos. Ultimately, I didn’t want to send it out without backup.
Enter DarkFuse, publisher of my recent longish works Whom the Gods Would Destroy and Without Purpose, Without Pity. Next up, we’ll be doing an omnibus edition of all four installments to date in this cycle. This gathers together, for the first time:
- “The Alchemy of the Throat” (Bram Stoker Award finalist)
- “The Dripping of Sundered Wineskins” (World Fantasy Award finalist)
- “When the Bough Doesn’t Break”
- World of Hurt
It’s win-win. Not only does a unified volume bring everything together in the same place; it will also make it easier to keep future Misbegotten works under the same roof.
Worlds of Hurt should be released sometime in the next several weeks.
Oh, Lovecraft … you could be such a fussy fellow, but your whacked-out imagination is the gift that keeps on giving.
The Ellen Datlow editorial byline on this beast should be all the imprimatur you need for quality control. But I’ve read my contributor copy straight from Tachyon already, and can confirm: Yup, this is the goods. The reviews I’ve seen, and there have been many, have skewed heavily toward the rave end of the spectrum.
Plus if you missed my own “The Same Deep Waters As You” in Weirder Shadows Over Innsmouth and just can’t wait for it in The Best Horror Of The Year, Vol. 6, then all roads have led you to this perfect moment.
So it’s official: after making the shortlist for DarkFuse’s Readers’ Choice Award, Whom the Gods Would Destroy takes the win for Best Novella of 2013.
Fellow Coloradan Jon Bassoff took Best Novel, with Corrosion, making it an improbable all-Boulder sweep.
There’s a plaque coming — nice, but you can tell from the photo what I’d really rather have.