Adventures in Terror…

I was just flipping through some of my documents folders and came across the mock-Fangoria cover I did for a section that got cut out of Adventures in Terror: Mostly the 1980s, and ended up being re-worked and published in Apex Magazine.

I love this cover – one of my favorites. And I still love Adventures in Terror; it’s a better book than Sewerville, in my not-objective opinion, and I wish more people bought it. But alas, more people did not buy it, which is why the sequel to Sewerville will come out a lot sooner than the sequel to Adventures in Terror.

Maybe I had too much of myself in it, I don’t know. Sometimes as a writer, you can get too close to things. Or, maybe I just didn’t know how to sell it. It could probably use a better title, one that better evokes the spirit of the book, which is much more Steven Spielberg-Stranger ThingsSomething Wicked This Way Comes than it is horror. It’s not scary. It wasn’t meant to be scary. It was meant to be a book about growing up in the hills with ghosts, and it’s just that. I’m glad.

Fango000

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Hello?

It’s been a while since I posted anything, but fear not. I write on.

In the meantime, highly recommended: Stranger Things season 2, Thor: RagnarokIt (if you haven’t seen it yet), Dark Nights: Metal.  Not recommended: The Walking Dead, which seems to be out of gas right now.

Later.

Logan

This isn’t book related, but still something you need to know: go watch Logan as soon as possible. It’s big time. I won’t say anything else… but it’s big time. Hugh Jackman, Patrick Stewart, and Dafne Keene are spectacular.

A lot of huge movies coming out this year (Kong: Skull Island is up next) but I’m hard-pressed to believe anything will top what we saw in the theater yesterday. Maybe Fox can finally learn something and make better X-Men and Fantastic Four movies. There have been a few good X-Men films already but there also have been some really terrible ones. Hope lives, for now.

For starters.

“A dog will look at the ground when he’s done you wrong. A snake will look you in the eye.”

I can’t remember where I heard that saying — it wasn’t that long ago, I’m pretty sure  — but at any rate, these are the first words of Sewerville: The Dark and Bloody Ground, and they ought to tell you something about where the story’s headed.

And, the first chapter is about a former U.S. Senator. That ought to tell you something, too.

So there you go.

Forgot to mention…

One small thing. Sewerville II. I forgot to mention this earlier, but I changed the name. It’s now called The Dark and Bloody Ground, or if you want to be completely accurate, it’s now called Sewerville II: The Dark and Bloody Ground. I like the “II”; it makes it sound like a movie. And everybody knows the 2nd movie is always tough on the good guys — see Empire Strikes Back, Godfather II, Captain America: Winter Soldier, Wrath of Khan, etc..

If you’ve never heard, “the dark and bloody ground” is the mythical translation of the Indian name Kentucke. While that now appears to be a bit of a, shall we say, historical embellishment, it’s nonetheless fitting for Kentucky in the late 1700s, and in some ways, Kentucky of the 21st century. Certainly the Kentucky of Sewerville.

Go Cats.

 

Update on SEWERVILLE II

Heads up: a substantial portion of Sewerville: The Gentlemen from Kentucky takes place between the last 2 chapters of the first Sewerville novel. The story starts immediately after Boone’s climactic hospital showdown with the Slone family, and tells the story of both his run to freedom and his fight against Walt Slone’s supporters. Some of those supporters are of the criminal variety, others strictly legal. Friends in high places. The such.

Something else. One of the main ideas behind Sewerville was the scourge of meth and pills on rural America. Sewerville II moves on to more current cancers: heroin, and politicians. Here’s a brief excerpt reflecting both:

*

“The heroin called, the veins answered. Trawley pushed the hypodermic into his skin, drove the plastic plunger downward, and released, warm, beautiful joy straight into his body. Not long after, he closed his eyes and felt as though he swam in golden honey, his very soul drifting through the world and around it and above it all at once, without any anchor holding him.

“Somewhere in the distance, not just miles but light years away, a faint electronic cadence pulsated, calling him like a signal fire from an extraterrestrial location. Mars, Andromeda, Centaurus A, galaxies and quasars, planets and moons. Somewhere out there. He felt vibrations, saw a pulsating green light from a faraway star. Cosmic tremors. Slow. Slow. Coming in. Slow. The universe spun about him, and he sensed himself at the center not just all existence but also all possible existence, as if everything that ever had been or might be now breathed together at that moment, harmonious inside his soul.

“The light. The vibrations. The signal fire, the cosmic tremors.

“The realization dawned that both the light and the vibrations emanated from the same source: his cell phone, which rested on his right leg. He looked down, saw blurred letters on a white screen, and deciphered them well enough to know he should pick up regardless of the opiate haze overtaking his senses.

“So he did.

“’Hello, Senator,’ he said, smiling as he put the call on speaker.”

A new audio story

The good folks over at Dead Oaks podcast have released a new audio reading of “Me and Jasper Down by the Meth Shack”, which you can listen to here. It’s a great production, but don’t just take my word for it. Check it out for yourself.

The story is from Mostly the 21st Century, the second volume of Adventures in Terror which is mentioned at the end of the first. That “coming Soon” listing from Mostly the 1980s was really just meant as a lark, and there’s no timetable for publication of the whole book, but some of the stories do exist so I’ll probably get them together sooner or later.

Don’t wait for that, though – go check out Dead Oaks now! They’re doing some fun, interesting stuff and you can listen to more of their work at DeadOaksPodcast.com.