Finally Found Inspiration!

0

200w_d

 

Gooooooooooood Morning, Horror Lovers!!! How are we today?

I figured I’d take a step back for a minute and talk about this massive pain in the ass I’ve been struggling with. I’m talking about that bastard known as WRITER’S BLOCK!

I’ve been having trouble getting back into the gory battle that is Horror Writing. At first I thought that it would be nice to take a break and focus on other things. I love you all but I do have a life outside of this blog and twitter. I was focused on finding a job, making sure I had the requirements to go to grad school, helping my mother out with her errands, church, etc. Suddenly I realized that I hadn’t written anything is so long. It got worse when I realized that the flash drive where I stored ALL of my work and been corrupted.

That felt like a punch to the lady nuts! Ouch! I had short stories, novellas, and ideas for novels stored on that thing. I wanted to cry. But I figured that there’s nothing I could do so I left it. I figured that maybe it was an opportunity to start fresh and create some new stories. That didn’t work out either. I just kept thinking about all my unfinished work trapped in a corrupted file. If there’s one thing I absolutely hate, it’s an unfinished project.

Since there was nothing I could really do, I decided that maybe now would be a good time to pick up a book and get lost in it. Damsel Cannibal has often recommended H.P. Lovecraft to me but I never got around to it. So the next time I headed to Barnes & Noble I picked up the first volume of the comic book HELLBLAZER and THE CALL OF CTHULU AND OTHER WEIRD STORIES. I must say I was hooked! I haven’t finished the whole thing yet but so far THE STATEMENT OF RANDOLPH CARTER is my favorite. I also didn’t realize that the ’80s movie REANIMATOR was based off of a Lovecraft story. I have seen that one and I think I’ll review it later.

Anyway, I was reading Lovecraft’s dark tales when all of a sudden I found it. I found my inspiration! Queue “You’re The Inspiration” by Chicago! I realized that while my finished works on my flash drive were gone…I still had the first drafts written down in notebooks. That’s how I like to write. I love taking a pen and putting it on paper. It also allows me to make notes and doodles in the margins. So I pulled out everything I’ve ever written and started marking what I wanted to edit and what I wanted to scrap.

I’m happy to announce that I’m back in the game! I’ve been going back to the short stories that I really loved and giving them the proper attention that they needed. Maybe losing all my work on the flash drive was the Universe saying that it was crap and I could to better. So I’ll be squeezing in time to write and send out submissions.

How about you guys? Have you ever had to wrestle with the Writer’s Block Monster? How do my fellow writers and artists stay motivated?

Advertisements

The Moment I Loved Horror

1

giphy5

I was reminded recently of an article from Glamour magazine that was floating around Twitter. This article basically called all us Horror Lover freaks and that we must’ve had a horrifying childhood to love this genre. Check out the article HERE incase you haven’t seen it.

Anyway, I can’t really tell you the exact moment I feel in love with Horror but I can tell you the important moments that I really came to love it.

The first moment was when I was a little girl. There was a show called WISHBONE that I used to love. It was about a Jack Russell Terrier that would reenact classical literature for kids. I learned about stories like Ivanhoe, Pride & Prejudice, The Odyssey, etc. My favorite story, however, was The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. As a kid I loved the story of how a man wanted to separate the animal within but ended up making himself the monster. Don’t we all wish that we could remove the evil within ourselves so we can have peace?

The second moment I really loved Horror was when I was in my tweens. I LOVED watching Buffy The Vampire Slayer! In my house is was the forbidden fruit of television. My mom believed that Buffy was the devil and that watching that show would invite him in. I watched it anyway. What I loved was this badass chick killing monsters, saving the world, and still having a social life. I also loved the makeup of the show! The way the vampire faces changed was awesome for my tween brain. They were creepy looking but in a good way. I also thought that the backstory of the “Fanged Four” was pretty cool. That’s how I love my vampires…completely unapologetic.

giphy6.gif

The third moment was when THE WALKING DEAD premiered on AMC. My father traveled to Afghanistan for work so we could pay for university. My father and I are really close and I missed him so much. While I was emailing him, I told him about the show and he said to spoil every episode. So every season of THE WALKING DEAD, I would have my laptop out with an email ready. During the commercial breaks I would write everything I just saw and when the episode was over I’d send my message. What we both loved about this show was that it’s not about the zombies, it’s about the survivors. Watching the show you can find a least one character that you can relate to or have your own ideas of how you would survive. My father and I do that all the time. It’s funny how a zombie show was the one thing that my father and I could share while he was so far away.

The fourth moment came to me recently. I watched THE TRAIN TO BUSAN and I was amazed by how well this Korean zombie movie was made. I won’t spoil anything because I’ll write a review for it later. But I will tell you that it had me at the edge of my seat and even made me cry. Not because I was terrified but because I came to love the characters and it hurt to see some of them die. You see, horror movies can bring out a number of emotions if it has the right cast and the right script.

To me the horror genre is more than just boobs, blood, and gore. Although those are entertaining too. If this glamour magazine writer used half her brain, she would know that horror is filled with symbolism and various themes. I think Glamour Magazine needs to stick with the hair and makeup tips with articles of “love your body” right next to the picture of the size zero supermodel.

What was the moment for you guys? When did you love horror? Which moments stuck out to you the most?

 

Calling Women Of Horror!!

0

It’s probably a little early to announce this but it’s time for the Women in Horror Film Festival!

That’s right! This festival is all about the ladies and their dedication to the horror genre. This will be an awesome film festival where artists from every avenue like make-up, directing, writing, producing, acting, and music can come together and show that they can keep up with the best of them.

So if you have a film or a screenplay that you want to share with the world, please go to the website HERE and follow the instructions. The submissions to the festival are open! Don’t waste an opportunity to show us what you got.

There will also be awards given out which include Best Horror Documentary, Best International Horror Film, Best LGBTQ Horror Film, and many more!

I’d rather you all check out the website HERE and get your questions answered or go to their Twitter HERE.

I’ll write about this again as we get closer to the festival’s date in September.

How many of you are planning on going? Any of you going to take the plunge and submit your work? Let me know what you think!

Submission Call! Interfictions

0

Have a New Weird cross-genre rotting on your hard drive? You have until 8/31 to submit it to Interfictions Magazine. Up to 5,000 words, paying .10 cents/word.

Rather than defining “interstitial” for you, we’d like you to show us what genre-bending fiction looks like. Surprise us; make us see that literature holds possibilities we haven’t yet imagined. We’re invested in helping to foster a diverse and inclusive literary culture, so work from writers of traditionally underrepresented backgrounds is welcome. Previously unpublished stories only, please. We prefer stories under 5,000 words, but are open to submissions of up to 10,000 words long. Pay rate is 10 cents/word USD. We accept simultaneous submissions. Please submit only one story during this window.

A little froufrou, yes, so I recommend checking out archived issues before submitting. But 10 cents/word is not bad, fam! Good luck!

Spook Lights: Southern Gothic Horror

0

Southern gothic horror is uniquely (under-appreciated!) American literature, and too often written by white men. Imagine my surprise when stumbling across Eden Royce’s self-published anthology collection on GoodReads. A  black horror author with roots in Hoodoo/Conjure. Yasssss. I downloaded her book without hesitation and read it while listening to my old delta blues records. The proper way to enjoy a southern gothic is on a porch swing while the sweet, idle songs from grasshoppers rise up from the brush. Unfortunately, congested, downtown Chicago makes that impossible. So listening to Skip James was the next best thang, y’all. I’m also a little homesick and I miss my Gulf side of Texas. Reading “Spook Lights” was the perfect escapism for this reluctant city gal.

Connect with the author on

@edenroyce on Twitter  or her website, edenroyce.com, or blog

Or better, just buy her book on Amazon  or Lulu

There are 12 short stories in all, but my three favorites were “Doc Buzzard’s Coffin,” “Hag Ride,” and “The Choking Kind.” Royce’s melodic writing is full of texture, atmosphere, and characters that invoke the South. I felt the swelter and stale, human sweat rise through each word. Descriptive language meets Black folklore to create a leisurely atmosphere. Think ghost stories told around the campfire. Think of the fairytales your grandmother read to you when you were a child. Reading Spook Lights is more of an experience best enjoyed when not rushed. The horror element is subtle, often ironic, and I found myself able to predict most of the stories’ conclusions, however, the author’s charm and folksy delivery kept me squirming in my seat until the end of them. Most of the short stories are cautionary tales, where the main character often does something stupid, only to be punished or chastised by a vengeful spirit or magical spell later. There’s Hoodoo, Voodoo, murders driven by passion, and quests for revenge.

There’s also strong thread of female (often motherly) wisdom and jilted love in this collection. I appreciated the strong female protagonists of color. The women were often victims of their own making, but learned along the way how to find themselves. You don’t have to be from the south, Black, or a woman to understand the overall concept of this book, which I love. The author does a lovely job blending mythology for contemporary tastes. This is a book to kick back with and savor, bit by bit. It’s down-to-earth, like crackling bacon grease in a hot pan or like cold, tap water from the kitchen sink. Let the stories do the heavy lifting for you–Royce’s subtlety is masterful.

I enjoyed Spook Lights for its storytelling, not necessarily for innovation, horror, or plots. That said, I’m giving this anthology collection a solid 5/5. I heartily recommend Spook Lights to those looking for an enjoyable read rich with Southern atmosphere and non-traditional folktales told from Native American, Black, and a Caribbean perspective. Eden Royce’s ability to entertain is a dream. I will be reading more of her work.

 

Submission Call: Mothership Zeta!!!!

0

Mothership Zeta is OPEN FOR SUBMISSIONS from July 12 – July 25. They’re particularly interested in horror and sci-fi from diverse authors. What constitutes diverse?

Mothership Zeta welcomes submissions from writers of all backgrounds. We are especially interested in seeing more submissions from people of backgrounds that have been historically underrepresented or excluded from traditional publishing, including, but not limited to, women, people of color, LGBTQ or non-binary gender people, persons with disabilities, members of religious minorities, and people from outside the United States.  Our goal is to publish fiction that reflects the diversity of the human race, so we strongly encourage submissions from these or any other underrepresented groups.

Submissions up to 6,000 words. Paying $0.06/word for original short stories and $30 flat rate for original flash fiction.

They do NOT want:

  • Graphic horror
  • Erotica
  • Fanfiction
  • Rape, torture, child abuse, etc.

So…get cracking this weekend, minions! May the odds be ever in your favor. Check out the links for more information and good luck. 🙂

Let’s Get Our Science On With “Brave New Girls”

0

BRAVE NEW GIRLS cover

 Website: http://bravenewgirls.weebly.com/

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Brave-New-Girls-Tales-Gadgets-ebook/dp/B00Z1YV1KI

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/brave-new-girls-mary-fan/1122080802?ean=9781512325614

Could it be? Could there actually be a book out there that shows off intelligent girls saving the day? My mind has been blown! For too long Young Adult fiction has been all about shy naive girls who only find completion when they get a boyfriend. But no more! Here we have this cute anthology that seeks so show our future female engineers, inventors, programmers, etc. that they’re allowed to dream of bigger and better future. Did I also mention that proceed from sales will be donated to a scholarship fund through The Society of Women Engineers?

I’ll review a couple of the stories so you get an idea of what I’ve been enjoying.

Overview

This collection of sci-fi stories features brainy young heroines who use their smarts to save the day. Girls who fix robots and construct superhero suits, hack interstellar corporations and build virtual reality platforms. Who experiment with alien chemicals and tinker with time machines. Who defy expectations and tap into their know-how-in the depths of space, or the bounds of dystopia, or the not-too-distant future-to solve despicable crimes, talk to extraterrestrials, and take down powerful villains

Stories by: Martin Berman-Gorvine, Paige Daniels, George Ebey, Mary Fan, Kimberly G. Giarratano, Valerie Hunter, Evangeline Jennings, Stephen Kozeniewski, Jason Kucharik, Kate Lansing, Tash McAdam, Kate Moretti, Ursula Osborne, Josh Pritchett, Aimie K. Runyan, Davien Thomas, Lisa Toohey, and Leandra Wallace

Artwork: Hazel Butler, Ken Dawson, Adrian DeFuria, Evelinn Enoksen, Mary Fan, Christopher Godsoe, Kayla Keeton, Jason Kucharik, Jennifer L. Lopez, Tash McAdam, and Josh Pritchett.

One of the reason I love science fiction is because of the inspiration it can give for the reader. For example, one of the stories I liked was The Keys to the Starts by Stephen Kozeniewski, was about a young girl having a close encounter with a friendly alien. She learns that colonization/invasion isn’t just an Earth thing and that the best chance that Earth has is to change for the better. We’re always told that children are the future, but it’s refreshing to see that scenario play out.

Interested in time travel? I enjoyed Blink by Kate Moretti which is about a girl with a time machine named Fitz and her struggle to keep Fitz from her friends and the school bully. I think we all remember that one mean bitch that did everything in her power to make high school hell. But this heroine didn’t let it bring her down! Instead she used Fitz to help preserve the Timeline! It was fun to read. I actually smiled and giggled throughout the story.

Anyway, I’m giving this Four Stars instead of Five because this is a Young Adult anthology. Not saying that as an adult you shouldn’t read Young Adult, but I haven’t been a teen in a while so I found it hard to connect with the characters sometimes. But I’m totally going to recommend this to my niece! So pick up your copy today!!

Trailer:

Jonathan Strage & Mr. Norrell

0

Catch Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell on Saturdays on BBC!

I am not an anglophile like Damsel Bruja. I find most popular British television marketed to American audiences incomprehensible, but Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell is refreshing, compelling, and dare I say, exciting? The first two episodes aired on BBCAmerica so you can catch up if you start now. I think English viewers are already on episode six?

Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell is an alternate historical story set during the Napoleonic Wars. The main characters, Jonathan and Norrell are two very different magicians destined to make magic respectable in England again. No longer the stuff of parlor tricks, magic can be applied to aid the war effort. Norrell is nervous, introverted, and socially awkward where Jonathan is a likable idiot whose failed attempts to win over his lady friend are used for comic relief. I’ve never seen anything like this! (No, it’s nothing like Harry Potter–thank god) There’s necromancy, supernatural deities, prophecies, and an unusual wit about the whole thing.

Not a fan of BBC? That’s OK. Apparently Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell is based on the bestselling book of the same title by British fantasy/specfic author, Susanna Clark. I’ve only watched the first episode, but my fondness for female sf/f/h/specfic authors will probably lead me to the library this week. Fun fact: it took Susaana Clark TEN YEARS to finish the novel and several failed attempts to get it published. She was told her book was “unmarketable.” Ha. Showed them, right? I love author success stories like these and I can’t wait to read the book.

It’s rare I come across a series with original, refreshing material, but THIS is it. And I’m excited to sink my teeth into Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell. Set your DVRs, run to your library and watch/read with me. Trailer below.

Sinister Grin Press is Calling for Support!

0

Alrighty, y’all! Let’s see what we can do for Sinister Grin Press! They’ve recently launched an Indiegogo campaign seeking support for their press. They’re looking to reach a $4,000 goal. So far they only have $185. That’s kinda sad and time is running out! The campaign closes in 28 days.

So what do you get for helping Sinister Grin Press? You mean besides helping a press out? Well depending how much you donate, you can get different gifts. From a mention on their website as a supporter to receiving 14 paperback copies of their current books plus 10 paperback copies of future books they publish! That sounds like an awesome deal to me.

So if you’re interested visit the websites below! I’m sure they’ll appreciate your generosity!

Sites:

https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/sgp3-sinister-grin-press-pernicious-promotional#/story

https://twitter.com/SinisterGrinPre

http://sinistergrinpress.com/

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Sinister-Grin-Press/192775404110112

Guest Post With The Damsels!

0

dwc2

Got a horror project you want to spread the word about? Is it a new film? New book? Or something completely glorious that will drive horror nerds nuts? Let us know! We are open to guest post articles, signal boosts, submission calls, and tips. We want to hear from you. The indie horror community is important to us, Damsels, and without cooperation and support from you our little blog can’t work. Thank you all for continuing to follow us! 🙂

If you’d like to submit an article (be it a review, self-promo, or interview, or whatever!) don’t hesitate to email us at:

damselswithchainsaws@gmail.com OR vicycross@gmail.com

OR send us a request via tweet at @DWCHorror or down below in the comments.

Make sure your guest post relates to the horror genre and is edited and is under 500 words. If we like it we’ll post it. It’s that easy. This is a “for the love” and “honor system” we have going here, guys, okay? So please, no spam or icky stuff.

Cool? Yeah? Good.

The Damsels look forward to hearing from you!

~Damsel Cannibal & Damsel Bruja