Numbers of the bEast

Open your eyes. Do you see?

The Sign is everywhere—yellow, like caution thrown into an autumn wind that whispers of danger. And Madness. Winding a shadowed path to the places where sane men dare not tread. To a beach of rusted bone. An ancient sea glittering black beneath the woeful glare of violet suns. A forgotten palace, its labyrinthine halls tarnished by aeons of unrelenting plague…

My eyes are open. I have seen. Never one content to merely follow, I pursue.

We meet in the dim, lamp-lit streets of my dreams. He knows me by the sickness burning inside. Recognizes the fever dripping from my fingertips, etching the echoes of unremembered memory upon sheaves of crumbling parchment.

He reaches into his robes. At first I think he’s withdrawn another smoke. Thin. Pale. Tightly wrapped. But he does not press it to his lips. Does not touch fire to its hollow, cylindrical frame. Something else, then. A scroll. Yellow ribbon knotted at its center. He offers it to me like a royal scepter.

Reaching through a veil of silver smoke, I pluck the scroll from his outstretched hand. It pulses, warm and fragile against my trembling flesh. I free the ribbon from its center, slipping the yellow fabric round a bare finger.

Inked upon the scroll a ring of decaying characters.

Open your eyes. Do you see?

Together, they form a sign.

A number.

An invitation.

There were others before me. Their blood stains the steps of the forgotten palace where they hold court in gilded halls—drinking, smoking, and making merry madness—forever…

He smiles. Asks if I can afford the price of admission.

I clutch my number and bleed.

*For Joe Pulver

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Borderlands 6 Update: Cover Reveal and Pre-order

Pleased to announce that the Signed, Hardback Limited Edition of Borderlands 6 is now available for pre-order. This edition is limited to 250 copies, so be sure to get yours before it’s too late.

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Description:

Welcome to the 6th Volume of this anthology of original weird fiction.  Previous volumes in this series have been nominated for or won major genre awards such as the World Fantasy Award and the Bram Stoker Award. Individual stories have also garnered equal acclaim.

This latest volume continues the tradition of publishing fiction that looks for weird tales that go beyond the familiar territory of most genres. If you are looking for storytelling with style and originality, this book is for you.

As in all previous volumes, Borderlands 6 features a cast of writers that span the spectrum of Award-winning writers as David Morrell. Jack Ketchum, Gary Braunbeck, and Steve Rasnic Tem; plus solid veterans including Brian Knight, John McIlveen, Paul Tremblay, and Trent Zelazny, as well as a generous gathering of talented newcomers.

This handsome anthology is limited to 250 copies and is signed by all contributors.

Table of Contents:

“Anton : ) ” – Michael Louis Dixon
“Eye of the Beholder” – John M. McIlveen
“Those Rockports Won’t Get You to Heaven” – Jack Ketchum
“The Last Plague Doctor” – Rebecca J. Allred
“Stinkers” Dan Waters
“Time is a Face on the Water” – Michael Bailey
“Summer Gullet” – John Boden
“Dead Letter Office” – Trent Zelazny & Brian Knight
“Cocoa” – Bob Pastorella
“The Dress” – Peter Salomon
“The Dishes are Done” – Carol Pierson Holding
“Red Rabbit” – Steve Rasnic Tem
“Miracle Meadows” – Darren O. Godfrey
“Lockjaw” – David Annadale
“Window” – Anya Martin
“Shattered” – G. Daniel Gunn & Paul Tremblay
“Mise en Abyme” – Gordon White
“In God’s Image” – Sean M Davis
“Special Delivery” – Tim Waggoner
“The Palace Garbage Man” – Bradley Michael Zerbe
“Consumers” – Gary A. Braunbeck
“The Architecture of Snow” – David Morrell

Nightscript Vol II: TOC

From CM Muller, here is the full Table of Contents for Nightscript II.

“The Carnival Arrives in Darkness” — Michael Griffin
“In the Dark, Quiet Places” — Kristi DeMeester
“Phantom Airfields” — Christopher Slatsky
“En Plein Air” — J.T. Glover
“The Inveterate Establishment of Daddano & Co.” — Eric J. Guignard
“White Elephants” — Malcolm Devlin
“Reasons I Hate My Big Sister” — Gwendolyn Kiste
“Nearness” — Ralph Robert Moore
“This Lonely Hecatomb” — Christopher Ropes
“Apartment B” — Steve Rasnic Tem
“Understairs” — Jason A. Wyckoff
“As Summer’s Mask Slips” — Gordon White
“And Elm Do Hate” — Nina Shepardson
“A Silence of Starlings” — Kurt Fawver
“Aycayia” — Rowley Amato
“The White Kisses” — Charles Wilkinson
“Down by the River” — H.V. Chao
“Arena” — Daniel Mills
“From the Fertile Dark” — Rebecca J. Allred
“No Abiding Place on Earth” — Matthew M. Bartlett
“Pause for Laughter” — José Cruz

I’m beyond thrilled to be a part of this publication, and I hope you’ll pick up copies of both volumes of this amazing anthology. Nightscript II will be available October 1, 2016. Nightscript I is currently available on Amazon.

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Publication Announcement: From the Fertile Dark

I’m pleased to announce that my story, From the Fertile Dark, will appear in the forthcoming anthology NIGHTSCRIPT II, edited by C.M. Muller. I can’t begin to express how blown away and honored I am to find myself alongside some of the the other writers who are appearing in this volume. I will post a complete list of authors and stories once the final ToC is announced.

If you haven’t read the first volume of this yearly anthology, you can pick up a copy here.

 

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Borderlands 6 – Author Lineup

Message from Borderlands Press editor Tom Monteleone:

“Sending out the the limitation pages to be signed by all the contributors to our *Borderlands 6* anthology of imaginative fiction… As is always the case with our series, we are very happy to have a nice mix of award-winning legends, solid professionals, and very new writers you’ve probably never read before.”

As one of the latter, I’d like to share the full author lineup for Borderlands 6. It’s amazing. Still can’t believe I’m part of this.

Rebecca J. Allred
David Annandale
Michael Bailey
John Boden
Gary A. Braunbeck
Sean M. Davis
M. Louis Dixon
Darren O. Godfrey
G. Daniel Gunn
Carol Pierson Holding
Jack Ketchum
Brian Knight
Anya Martin
John McIlveen
David Morrell
Bob Pastorella
Peter Salomon
Steve Rasnic Tem
Paul Tremblay
Tim Waggoner
Dan Waters
Gordon White
Trent Zelazny
Bradley Michael Zerbe

 

Click the banner below to purchase earlier volumes in this series and stay tuned for information regarding the upcoming release of Borderlands 6.

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NEW SECTIONS OPEN for October local and videoconference workshops!

I’ve been part of this workshop since June, and have found it incredibly helpful both as a driving force to keep myself producing new material and as a means to make that new material better once it’s written. There are a number of sessions open to accommodate almost any schedule, so if you’ve been thinking about joining a writers workshop, I’d highly recommend checking this out.

Cheers!

Publication Day: A Lonely & Curious Country

Now available on Amazon.

When a traveller in north central Massachusetts takes the wrong fork at the junction of the Aylesbury pike just beyond Dean’s Corners he comes upon a lonely and curious country.” –HP Lovecraft

Horror can lurk in the most unlikely places: from the secluded cottage to the teeming metropolis. Lovecraft knew that terror could be rooted in the geography of a place as much as in an uncaring cosmos or a man’s soul. In these 17 brand new tales of chilling Lovecraftian horrors by leading authors, discover new lands of terror. Learn the truth about the glories of Y’ha-nthlei and what really happened to Erich Zann. Discover the fate of Tillinghast’s monstrous machine and do a deal with Nyarlathotep down in the byways of Mississippi. Sometimes that lonely farmhouse, brooding silently in its isolation, can be more terrifying than forgotten monoliths on an uncharted Pacific island.

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If you pick up a copy, please consider leaving a review. 🙂

 

Movies I’ve Seen: THE CANAL

The Canal

“The master wants her…”

“You’re like me…”

David, a film archivist, and his pregnant wife, Alice, move into an old home near a canal. Five years later, David is asked to review old police footage and discovers that their home was the site of a grizzly murder, and that the man who killed his unfaithful spouse later escaped prison and drowned his two children in the nearby canal.

David is unnerved by these revelations, and begins seeing a spectre that threatens both him and his family. To make things worse, he suspects his wife is having an affair. When Alice disappears and her body is later found in the canal, David becomes the prime suspect. Desperate to prove his innocence and protect his son, he digs deeper, discovering a series of unsolved murders that have occurred in or near his home over the past century. With the help of his coworker, Claire, David must solve the mystery or risk history repeating itself.

While not necessarily new on ideas, The Canal was well acted and heavy on atmosphere with an effective twist ending that did the film justice. In my opinion, it’s definitely worth checking out on Netflix.