It was a challenging year for me in a lot of ways, so I didn’t get to spend as much time writing as I would have liked. However I did get a few stories published thanks to some generous folks who saw them as something more than just the paranoid rantings of a burned-out conspiracy theorist who’d had too much of the local Colorado crop. (I mean, sure, they ARE that, but maybe also something more.)
“The Order of the Night Moose” explored the indoctrination and machinations of the Baal-worshipping occultists behind everything from the Iraq War to the construction of Denver International Airport. It appeared in CJ Miles’ The Book of Blasphemous Words. The good Order has been a running thread throughout much of my fiction, most notably as major players in The Hillbilly Moonshine Massacre.
Tom Breen gave me the opportunity to exorcise the demons of Millenial employment insecurity in Orford Parish Books’ Letters of Decline. “A Capable Man” is about a down-on-his-luck nobody who takes an entry-level job at a mega-corporation’s New England campus. For fans of ritualized humiliation, psychological warfare programs, people wearing animal masks, and feeling worthless when you’re unemployed. Remember, folks: Millenials are screwed because they’re lazy, not because they graduated into an economic and cultural garbage fire or wasted their formative professional years serving in pointless, grinding, immoral wars overseas.
I’m a huge fan of Scott R. Jones’ Martian Migraine Press, so I was delighted to see “Sonata” make the cut for the A Breath From the Sky anthology. This was my first work about the Afghanistan War in several years. I guess I had a few more things to say about it… along with topics like night terrors, numbers stations, UFOs, and occult numerology.
Muzzleland Press saw only one release this year, but it was a big one. Terror in 16-bits features 15 spooky levels of video game-inspired horror, from the best roster of authors I’ve ever assembled. I consider this our flagship title going forward. It was a beast to get out on time, but I’m immensely proud of it.
There’s some big releases on the horizon. Mer Whinery’s bloody and pulpy horror-western Trade Yer Coffin For A Gun is on track for a spring release. It’s unlike anything I’ve read in years. For fans of grindhouse films and the work of Lucio Fulci. It will also be our first title to feature art from the talented Mat Fitzsimmons.
I’ll be writing a meta-novel slasher for Turn to Ash called Camp Ghoul Mountain Part VI: The Official Novelization. If you’re a fan of Jason, Freddy, Michael, and the rest of the gang, you’re in for a treat. But it’s much more than just a slasher novel(ization) of a cult film… It explores the secret history of a visionary director who saw the future… and tried to warn us about what was coming.
Just in time for Halloween will come a double-barrel shotgun of paranoid adventure. Sheriff Kotto returns in the hybrid anthology Freaky Tales From the Force: Season One, a 12-“episode” book featuring some great authors putting the good sheriff through his paces as he faces supernatural evil and government cover ups at every turn. That will be paired with Mississippi Bones‘ new album, Radio Free Conspiracy Theory, an audio adventure through Sheriff Kotto’s last radio broadcast as he shuts down Kotto’s Kreepies and devotes himself to his aforementioned TV show full time. I’ve already heard some early mixes of the songs and am hard at work on the sketches. It’s going to be something very special.
Finally there’s a project that will come at the end of 2018, maybe the start of 2019: Behold the Undead of Dracula. It’s a mini-anthology inspired by the creaky horror films of William Castle, Roger Corman and Vincent Price, and the Hammer Gothic horror revival. This one will be a bloody good time.
If you bought a book from us, shared a review, listened to our podcast Spooklights, or didn’t block me on social media for my awful opinions about classic JRPGs and the Star Wars prequels, thank you. I mean it. It’s a lot of work running a micropress out of your home office on the weekends, but having good folks like you along for the ride makes it worth it.
Merry Christmas, and have a Happy New Year.
Keep watching the skies… and see you in 2018.