Early in 2015, we released High Strange Horror, which continues to be our best online-selling title. It’s an anthology featuring authors that took on the subjects of cryptoterrestrials, aliens, men in black, UFOs, and government conspiracies. I’m very proud of the work, and consider it our flagship release of 2015. While Spooklights was our first release back in 2014, I believe we upped our professional and editorial chops with this book.
The Devil’s Engine by Robert Stava is a fun YA horror yarn about secret Nazi technology, the occult, and three teenagers unlucky enough to activate a semi-sentient, bloodthirsty locomotive. It’s a fun, short little ride, perfect for the young (and young at heart) horror fan.
I was honored that The War Writers’ Campaign published my debut novel Flight of the Blue Falcon. It’s not horror or weird – but it’s a deeply personal book about the Afghanistan War, based on my time serving with the U.S. Army. If you have any interest in what the Long War was (is) like for so many servicemen and women, please consider picking up a copy. All proceeds benefit the Campaign, which is a nonprofit dedicated to publishing veteran literature and war writing. Communication is the best form of therapy, and writing this novel helped me exorcise more than a few ghosts of my own.
Just before Halloween, Literati Press Comics & Novels released my second novel, The Hillbilly Moonshine Massacre. This is a horror-science-fiction-conspiracy-theory-pulp adventure tale about a war veteran who returns home to find his rural ski town community grappling with UFOs, police brutality, and an outbreak of violence triggered by psychotropic moonshine. Of course, not everything is as it seems, and only the paranoid part-time county sheriff (who happens to be the host of a late night call-in paranormal talk show) knows what’s really going on. It’s X-Files meets Trailer Park Boys; Ghostbusters on magic mushrooms and cheap local beer. It’s a book I had a blast writing, and if secret societies, local crime, and alien abductions are your thing, I think you’ll love it, too.
We also significantly expanded the blog’s content and review catalog. While we can’t review everything that comes out in the horror and weird fields, we covered a lot. My favorite books of the year, in no particular order:
Scott R. Jones edited an incredible collection of stories centered on the resonator device from H.P. Lovecraft’s classic tale “From Beyond.” I loved this book from beginning to end.
Alectryomancer and Other Weird Tales by Christopher Slatsky was one of the best single-author collections I read. I love conspiracy theories and alternative history, but Slatsky’s knowledge and use of the esoteric in horror settings puts me to shame. I can’t wait to see more from him.
Orrin Grey’s end of year collection Painted Monsters blew me away. There was not a single story in here that didn’t keep my attention. No other writer does such a great job of translating the cinematic weird to the page, marrying an obvious love for horror film with literary talent.
As for 2016, we’re staying busy. We’ll continue to do interviews with authors and reviews of horror and weird fiction and film. We have at least three releases slated for the year, including two novellas from first-time authors, and a short story collection from a very prominent new voice in the weird.
Stay tuned, and stay spooky.