Monday, May 30, 2011

It's been a horror filled day...what a way to start the week!

Well, this week has started out wonderfully horrifying...and it is a beautiful thing...

First off, I'm in final edits for TWITCH and I've learned that I'm like most writers'...too many commas. I' also learned what a few of my got-to words are too (various, such as, especially). I'll have to work on that, especially...heh heh...just kidding. Actually, all is going well and it will be ready by June 15th.

Second, I placed 2nd in the 55 word fiction contest at Jezri's Nightmares ( with a revised piece called "Being Bugged."

My palm itched. I scratched deeply. Digging harder, surface blood flows, forcing flaky bits of red tainted flesh underneath my fingernails. They’re not long enough and the itch dives deeper, fades from my palm, into my wrist, and begins striking up my arm. My nails follow and I feel unclean. The worm is moving again…

I won a free ebook (The Carnival by Lisa McCourt Hollar). Talk about a book that's right up my alley...I can't wait to dive into it. I'll post a review here when I do. Sound interesting? Get it here

Speaking of reviews, one of my favorite editors, Ashley McConnell (aka the Demon Princess) has written a short story called "Nightmares." I haven't read it yet, but I will soon and review it also. You can get it at

Currently, my nose is stuck deeply in book three of "The Hunger Games" trilogy, Mockingjay. I'm almost finished with it and it has been a fantastic read, even if it isn't horror per se.

And third, Kirsten Kowalewski, Editor at Monster Librarian ( has confirmed that she will review TWITCH, but indicated that there is a backlog and it would be a bit before she could. No problem there!

So, it's Monday and already the week has kicked off with a bang. I'm looking forward to seeing what the rest of the week has in store for me. I do know that I will finish a tale for Suspense Magazine and I suspect I will have another tale completed too, besides Friday's Daily Death. However, I can't say right now, especially (oops! there I go again) since I'm hard at finishing up TWITCH. I can say that when it's completed, my novel is next on the horizon.

Stay Scared,


Saturday, May 28, 2011

It's been a busy week...and sure to get busier...

Hello my demented horror folks. It's been a wonderful week for writing and I accomplished most of what I set out to do.

1) And No Grits Either! - is a little ditty that explores a couple stumbling on a desolate Louisiana diner that has a very special menu. I submitted it Wily Writers for the Masters of Horror contest. The winner becomes a podcast.

2) The Smell of Flowers - is a piece that surrounds a lost soul and a fitting finality. This piece went to Shock Totem.

3) And, another Daily Death was posted Friday. I still have quite a few co-workers to kill so, this series will probably continue, at least until the end of summer.

Although, I didn't finish the piece I have slated for Suspense Magazine just yet...but, I soon will.

Otherwise, I submitted a few more Twitch (my e-novella coming out on June 15th from Suspense Publishing) review requests and have another blog added to a blog tour I'm currently organizing discussing this. Coincidently, if there are any blog owners that would like me to stop by, feel free to contact me at

Starting this week, I intend to delve deeply into my novel. I'm not going to say much about it right at the moment other than it is a horror / Sci-Fi type of piece. I've been into it recently and have jotted more down. However, I do also have a few short pieces that I want to finish up too. Regardless, just as soon as Twitch is released and the blog tour is over, I suspect the novel will take over my life. And, I'm looking forward to it. It will be my most ambitious piece to date. Currently, Twitch has that distinction.

However, today is a relaxing day. Planning on heading to the beach with Catching Fire (The Second Book of the Hunger Games). But, tomorrow will bring a compulsion that will most assuredly push me to get back at it...and it will be a wonderful thing...

Have a great Memorial weekend folks.

Stay Scared,


Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Rome wasn't written in a day...but, we writers' try...

Last weekend, I had originally planned to finish a couple of unfinished short tales, and ready them up for submission. However, both fortunately AND unfortunately, I had bought The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. Fortunately, because it is a tremendous read, and unfortunately, because I didn't get to much writing because of it. And, to be honest, it was a beautiful thing. Of course, this weekend I suspect Catching Fire will find its way into my hands, (thanks a lot Suzanne, you keep writing books like these and I'll never get any writing accomplished! LOL)

Regardless, knowing what my weekend has in store for me, and having these numerous short pieces so close to completion, this week, I'm tackling them head on. I can't say what I will actually finish, but I do know that it will be at least two and just maybe three.

Late last night was a great start. I finished a tale entitled "And No Grits Either!" A tale exploring a couple at a secluded late night diner with a very special menu...and they don't serve grits. I submitted to Wily Writers for a Masters of Horror contest. If selected, it would become a Podcast. Okay, one down...

Tonight I'm planning to complete "The Smell of Flowers." A fitting finality tale. Where it goes, I can't say just yet...but, rest assured, it will go somewhere.

Tomorrow, I expect my horror funny bone to fully kick in when I finish "Whistle while you work...just don't lose your lips: The Zombie Guide to Employment" And, it will be submitted to Suspense Magazine.

And, Friday will have another Daily Death. Who will it be this time? MWOOOHAHAHAHAHAHA!

Of course, as with anything, and especially in the publishing industry, there are no guarantees. I'll just keep my fingers crossed and hope for the best.

That will aid in eliminating some of my writing compulsiveness, (at least for the weekend), and allow me to spend a relaxing day at the beach this Memorial Day weekend. However, I will have my nose in Catching Fire while I'm there. It's going to be a great week. I hope all of you have the same.

Stay Scared,


Monday, May 23, 2011

The Hunger Games...A read that will border obsession until it's completed!

The Hunger Games
Click the book to get it

Being off Friday, after writing "The Daily Death," I swung by my local bookstore, simply intending to browse. That was until I come across a book that I had read a review prior. I think it was in Entertainment Weekly but, I'm really not sure since I seem to stick my nose in a variety of sorts. Regardless, the review was quite engaging and ever since, my interest was piqued with wanting to explore it. Of course, like I said, I hadn't any intentions or any specific book in mind when I walked in. However, when I saw it on the shelf, the interest came crashing back like a runaway locomotive, and I immediately knew I was buying it.

So, I get the book home, kicked back, and started delving into it. Let's just say that I was glad that I was also off on Saturday too. I couldn't put it down. It haunted me somewhat. Occasionally, I would flip ends on the couch and continue on. By Friday night, after a couple of quick dozes in between, I was over a third of the way through it. By Saturday night, I had fourteen pages left, and finished gobbling those up upon getting home from work on Sunday. Absolutely fantastic read. The pace is quick and it certainly is a page turner.
So, what is it about? I really don't want to give too much away so I'll keep it brief. After all, I would rather not spoil it for you. It's truly worth it.

In the future, after all the disasters, famine, and an uprising against the government, the nation of Panem (assumed to be the old United States), has a Capitol at the center of twelve districts that surround it. This Capital has quashed the rebellion and now rules with an iron fist. In order to keep these districts in line, each one is forced to send one boy and one girl (ages between twelve and eighteen) to the yearly Hunger Games, a live televised fight to the death type event (similar to The Running Man but, that's where the similarities end).

Katniss Everdeen is a sixteen-year-old girl from district twelve. She keeps food on the family table by hunting, scrounging, and trading, and is witty and smart. Her little sister is chosen for the games and Katniss steps in to take her place.

   The book is a nonstop suspenseful ride that will border obsession until it's finished, (you've been warned). Coincidently, it is the first of a trilogy and also is intending to be a major motion picture. Some have even called it the "new" Twilight. And, I suppose it could be, minus the vampires of course.

So, this weekend, I didn't get too much writing accomplished. Usually that would bother me. But, not this time…

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Twitch will be released by June 15th

Well folks, it's official...Last night I signed, received my arc's (advanced review copies) and am now an indie with Suspense Publishing. Twitch will be released by June 15th. It will be available at Amazon and various other online outlets, and in all formats such as Kindle, Nook, ipad, and iphone. And for only 99 cents!

Therefore, I thought I would leave the excerpt up for another day. However, for Friday, I have a "Daily Death" planned.

And, a couple of other exciting things happened too. After sending 25 or so review submissions out, I received a couple of responses back quite quickly. Sheri White said she would review Twitch for Horror News dot net and Norman Goldman at Bookpleasures dot com has forwarded it to his reviewers for consideration. Wow! that was that quick and I am most appreciative.

Hopfully, a few others, including Fangoria and Scream the Horror Magazine, will too. We'll have to wait and see.

AND, I had contacted Ellen Datlow to mention how much of a fan I am with her anthologies. Lo and behold, an hour or so later she requested that I submit "The Horrors of Easter" (Suspense Magazine April 2011) for possible inclusion in her "The Best Horror of the Year Volume Four."
So, it's going  into the mail today...
 Between her and Stephen Jones, it's hard to choose a favorite!
Imagine that...

Twitch, a stubbed limbed, white eye deformed carnival freak attraction is often abused. But, he harbors a dark secret...and his retribution is far worse!

In mid-June, my e-novella "Twitch" is released to the world. Here is a short excerpt:

“Huurey Huurey Huurey, step right up, see the…” She looked toward the voice. A barker, complete with top hat, bow tie, and tuxedo tails, stood at the center of a small stage alongside the tent row. With his voice bellowing and vividly animating with his hands, he enticed the passing crowd with the “amazing wonders” that could be found behind its canvas walls. Directly in front, sitting behind a ticket booth below him, was a midget, dressed as a mediocre clown and waiting on an increasing line of customers. She went, bought a ticket, and joined the line of people at the tent’s entrance."

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Twitch is coming soon!

Well folks, I'm sorry I've been away for a bit...It couldn't be helped. And, I feel I owe you an explanation. Basically, in a nutshell, I had some professional business to tend to.
Oh...I also did a little writing too...more on that later this week. However...

Twitch - ( A stubbed limbed, white eye deformed carnival freak attraction is often abused. But, he harbors a dark secret and his retribution is certainly far worse), is to be released next month (Mid-June).
Although, as of yet, I can't give you the exact date. Rest assured, I will just as soon as I can. This week I am finalizing a few things and will tell you more later.

Right now, I am just beginning to gear up into the full swing of things and basically back to normal.  And, I simply wanted to let everyone know that things are well and to say thanks for bearing with me....I truly appreciate it.

Stay Scared,

Friday, May 6, 2011

"Don't Forget the Fingers: A Guide to the Perfect Zombie Family Picnic"

This is from the May 2011 issue of Suspense Magazine.

Just like most families in this fast-paced, rat-race day and age, quality time for you is probably a rare occurrence. However, all hope is not lost. With summer on the horizon, better and warmer weather will likely let you enjoy outdoor activities. Picnics are relatively inexpensive and most rewarding, for the living. But, why should they be limited to the living? Zombie families have needs and desires, too. There’s no reason why a zombie family can’t also enjoy picnics.
However, unlike with the living, there are certain considerations that must be addressed. With a little extra planning, it can be a most enjoyable experience for the undead. This guide, although incomplete and subject to variation, covers most aspects. Of course, be sure to use what little brain you have left to explore specific family orientations.


• Location, location, location. This cannot be stressed enough. Choosing the right spot is the most crucial aspect for an enjoyable family outing. Most often, the best location is one of seclusion, ensuring that living and oft en fright-filled observers do not damper the family atmosphere with their cries for help. If or when this occurs, gather all family members and retreat immediately.

• Spots surrounded and covered by thick trees are ideal. Space matters, so leave a considerable distance between you and the living. With any luck, they won’t even notice your family’s differences in physical appearance and leave you alone.

• Avoid shelters and picnic tables. Selecting such a spot is simply asking for trouble. Granted, they are comfortable, but they are also easily noticed. It is a quick route to a ruined family adventure.


• While sunshiny days may be ideal for the living, they are detrimental to nonliving flesh. Sunlight not only warms, which hastens decay and rot, but it also could sizzle your lighter-shaded flesh. Kids are especially vulnerable and usually unaware of this hazard. That’s because they’re primarily concerned with excitedly stumbling around until it’s too late. A couple of alternatives would be to coat the exposed part with the highest sunblock available or keep the tattered clothing over it completely. The latter is recommended, considering that sunblock works in conjunction with embalming fluid and usually speeds up the decay process.
Coincidently, sunlight is also hard on the deceased eye since the pupil was frozen upon death and does not allow screening. It may also cause blindness. Therefore, for the living-dead family, overcast skies is the wiser choice.

Rainy days are another good choice since the living typically avoid them for picnicking. So, picnic tables are more available on these days. However, continue to observe the “no shelter” rule just in case a living family happens to be caught in the rain and in search of a dryer location.


Warning: Its very possible that there will be the living nearby. DO NOT risk ruining the family outing and atmosphere by eating them. Resist the urge. You have your own basket. There will be plenty of days ahead to forage for living flesh.

There are many ideal foods that the zombie family can enjoy together. Think ahead. From prior prowling, capturing and eating adventures, try to save a few parts for the big day. Fingers, toes, ears and maybe even a few innard strips are ideal for a quick grab-and-go snack that will hold the kids before the main course is served.

• Even if the food basket may be overflowing with various tasty, blood-filled fleshy pieces and parts, there are still opportunities for more. En route, look out for roadkill. Various animals have different flavors and the older, more decayed ones are usually the best, already having added parasites and juicy, little, white crawling flavorful tidbits. The kids will thank you!

• On-site, be sure to explore nearby wooded areas. They are superb locations for hors d’oeuvres like mice and insects. Rotted stumps, logs, and woodpiles, offer a virtual treasure trove of crawling meal additions, from large moist grubs to beetles of all sorts and possibly even a snake or two. Get off the beaten path and venture deeper into the foliage. Try digging (being careful to not lose fingers in the process) underneath, into the soil. You may be pleasantly surprised.

• Vultures add to any meal. With their tendency to linger around dead flesh, they are easily caught. Using yourself as bait, lie perfectly still until one takes notice. The wait usually isn’t all that long and they will typically flock to you, thinking of nothing but a tasty meal. When they begin to peck, reach out, grab hold and wring its neck.
Imagine how excited the family will be when you come with a freshly killed buzzard carcass. (Side note: Let the children taste the rot-filled stomach. It’s the best part.)


Although many picnic activities require varying degrees of quickness, don’t be discouraged with the living-dead speed handicap. There are many slower activities that the family can enjoy.

• A leisurely family hike can be rewarding. From scourging to teaching the kids the proper hiding techniques to how to distinguish the most direct and least resistive path to a potential victim, the list is virtually endless. Hide-and-seek can be rather fun too.

• Swimming is possible but not recommended. There many hazards. For example, dead flesh does not harbor oxygen. Therefore, attempts at swimming will generally result in a quick sink to the bottom. Hungry fish will most likely take delicious notice and begin pecking and eating at you. When this occurs, don’t fret. Saunter as fast as possible across the lakebed, up the slope at the water’s edge and make your way out—resigning yourself to the fact that a part of you will now be missing.

• A friendly game of tag is not only a fun way to experience togetherness, but it can also be a learning experience for the children. It inadvertently teaches them chasing and grasping skills that they’ll use throughout their deathtime. The old adage—lead a zombie to a dead body and you will feed them for a day; but, teach a zombie to catch the living fl esh and you will feed them for a deathtime—certainly applies.


• Keeping the speed element in mind, most sporting activities are probably best reserved for the considerably faster living folks. Volleyball, badminton and softball, for example, require a substantial amount of physical exertion, and the living dead simply cannot keep up. Partaking in these activities, although enjoyable, is risky at best and will usually result in broken parts that will hamper future endeavors. As a parent, pay close attention to the children as they are the most apt to explore these types of things, obviously unaware of their limitations. A broken leg that forces them to walk on a stump for the rest of their death will certainly be regretted by any
zombie parent.

• The living should be avoided at all times when on these family outings. Be chronically aware and constantly use your keen sense of living-flesh smell. “Smell them before they see you” is a good motto to follow.

• Pests come in a variety of shapes, sizes, colors, and annoyances. The common housefly, unlike mosquitoes which seek out living blood, is probably the most concerning. It is automatically drawn to your “death” aroma and wholeheartedly wants to deposit its future generations onto and into you. They are viciously aggressive and won’t stop no matter how much shooing you do. Various sprays and candles on the market today will greatly assist in keeping them and other dead flesh-seeking insects at bay. Add this item to the top of your master picnic-item list.

As previously mentioned, this aid is simply a basic guideline covering some of the most common living-dead family picnic-outing concerns. By following them, the odds of that family picnic becoming a memory of a deathtime will be greatly increased.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Putting the pieces back together!

Hiya Folks...I'm sorry that I've been away for a bit and I regret to inform you that I will be away for just a couple of days more while I put all the pieces back together. But, I will be back very soon. And, starting next and every subsequent Friday, The Daily Death is back. I have a number of co-workers yet to kill and I'm actually looking forward to it. I needed the break to get those creative bloody juices flowing again. Actually they never stopped... I have been working hard on other projects and want to finish them up. Although, the perpetual 36 hour days probably have something to do with it too. Regardless, expect the clown back very soon...Thanks for bearing with me and expect to see my new stories at various outlets real soon. I'll let you know where and when...

Monday, May 2, 2011

The Future...

Well my horror fiends, May looks to be a rather busy month for me. And, to be perfectly honest, I wouldn't want it any other way.

First off, my editor for "Twitch," Ashley Kay McConnell is simply wonderful. She is quick, meticulous, creative, and accessible. All the things a writer needs. So, it’s now the bottom of the first and I’m up to bat…this is going to be fun.

I just finished a short interview with Ginger Nuts of Horror for their Hellfire page. I’ll let you know when it’s posted. Also, while were on the subject, my interview with Michael Wilson’s Read Horror blog will be coming soon. I’ll be sure to let you know about it too. And, although it may sound like a broken record, I am to be interviewed in the near future by R.A. Evans (author of Asylum Lake) for his “Seven Deadly Questions” blog series, as well as for the blog of Robin Renee Ray (author of Bloodbreeders).

What’s coming up besides Twitch? At the present, “The Horrors of Easter” is in April’s edition of Suspense Magazine and “Don’t Forget the Fingers: A Guide to the Perfect Zombie Family Picnic” will be included in May’s edition. In August, “The Pumpkin Patch” will be in the NorGus Press anthology “Look What I Found.” By the way, speaking of NorGus Press, have you had the chance to check out their first anthology “Strange Tales of Horror?” If not, you should. And, they are seeking a cover artist for the anthology. But, you better hurry...May 15th is the deadline.

And then there’s “The Daily Death.” I really enjoyed writing this series and planned on ending it on May 1st. However, due to popular demand, and because I’m enjoying it so much, I’m going to indefinitely continue it. Of course, I still have a number of co-workers still alive too. But, not for long…heh heh…

However, I do also have a number of other unfinished tales I like to finish telling. Therefore, in order to be able to accomplish it all, I will have to limit the macabre death tales to Friday’s only. Of course, I may sneak one in throughout the week too so, we’ll have to wait and see. Only time will tell.

Some of the tales I’m referring to so far are - And No Grits Either, Snowball, New Year’s Day, Rudely Yours, The Smell of Flowers, How Green is Your Lawn?, Aftermath, The Dark, Treaty, and an untitled marionette piece. I also have roughly 60k words down on a novel too, a horror / science fiction type piece. All are in various stages, and rest assured, they will be finished. Of course, this isn’t taking into consideration all the rough ideas I constantly have and have noted. A couple of them I plan to submit to Hellfire Publishing. As far as the others are concerned, who knows?

Coincidently, I also have another little humorous zombie piece I’m working on, and I suspect I'll put something on The Campfire, Hellfire Publishing's blog. 

By the way, did I happen to mention that I also work?

They do say…”no rest for the wicked,” and, I guess it’s true…MWOOOHAHAHAHAH!!!!