October Horror Movie Recap

My good friend, Jaime Burchardt, hosts  HorrorFest every October. It’s a semi-interactive (via Twitter) month-long movie marathon composed of new theatrical releases, recent video releases, and old classics. I do my best to keep up, but Burchardt is a movie machine! Nevertheless, there is no better time to consume horror flicks than the greatest month of the year, so I shoved a total of twenty-two dark films into my eyeballs over thirty-one days—almost all of them new to me. Below is a poster compilation of every movie I watched last month.

There are only a few titles I’d recommend against (Goodnight Mommy tops my list of flicks to skip), but I’d like to call your attention to THE INVITATION and THE TAKING OF DEBORAH LOGAN. I wasn’t very turned on by the description of either of these films, but because they came recommended by folks I trust, I dove in. DEBORAH LOGAN is hands down the best possession film I’ve seen since REC, and although THE INVITATION features a paint-by-numbers plot, the final moments of the movie make the whole uncomfortable, predictable viewing experience worth it.

DEAD TONGUES is a student film that premiered at the H.P. Lovecraft Film Festival in Portland, Oregon. I really hope this film gets picked up by an indie studio, because it was fantastic. Equally great was THE CREATURE BELOW. This film also screened at HPLFF, and as soon as you can get your tentacles on a copy, I recommend you do so.

October may be over, but it’s never too early or too late to consume horror. If you missed any of these films, check them out, and feel free to tell me about your favorites in the comments.

My Writing Process Blog Tour

While I’m in the process of transferring some of my content from blogger to wordpress, I thought I’d take the opportunity to make “My Writing Process” the first blog post on my new site.

Thanks to David Shakes (@shakes72) for tagging me. You can find his content here.


What Am I Working On?

I’m working on a number of projects at the moment, the most ambitious of which is a novella entitled Aletheia that I hope to have completed by October. The rest of my projects lie safely within the realm of flash and short fiction, although I’m still looking for a shiny idea that might carry me through NaNoWriMo this year.

How Does My Work Differ From Others of Its Genre?

It doesn’t apply to everything I write, but a great deal of what I put to paper has distinct medical undertones (and overtones; subtlety is not my strong suit). That said, my goal is to write in such a way that a medical background is not required to understand and enjoy my stories. Only my readers can say whether or not I succeed.

Why Do I Write What I Write ?

I write dark fiction because I’m still afraid of the dark. I write dark fiction because the only way to survive darkness is to understand it and to know what lurks inside it. I write dark fiction because when I sleep, it is the darkness that whispers dreams to me.

How Does My Writing Process Work?

This isn’t a rock solid formula (I’ve been known to deviate from the recipe from time to time), but more often than not, writing a story goes a little something like this:

Step 1: Idea (often while driving in my car, shampooing my hair in the shower, trying to formulate a comment for a report at work, or working on an unrelated story)

Step 2: Magic (seriously, magic – though it sometimes takes a long, long time to conjure)

Step 3: Story (happy dance!)

Step 4: Editing (self-doubt)

Step 5: Editing (self-loathing)

Step 6: Beta-readers

Step 7: Editing (consider throwing the whole thing in the garbage and giving up on writing all together)

Step 8: Beta-readers: Round 2

Step 9: Editing (agonize over every single word, change key words 6 or 7 times, decide to keep the original word)

Step 10: Submit and wait for the crushing heel of rejection (repeat ad infinitum)

Step 11: Idea

Introduction to 3 Other Writers

I’d be remiss if I didn’t tag at least one of the folks who participate in my weekly flash fiction challenge at The Angry Hourglass. They show up week after week and in a period of 36 hours, create vivid, engaging, super-short fiction based entirely on a randomly chosen photograph. That’s damn impressive, I don’t care who you are.


First up is Jaime Burchardt (@jaimeburchardt)


Jaime writes and occasionally judges for The Angry Hourglass. His passion in life is film, and he writes primarily screenplays with aspirations of one day being a director. Having spent almost a year sharing creative material with Jaime, those are some movies I’d definitely like to see. You can read his blog here.


Next up is Taylor Scheid (@TaylorLScheid)


Taylor has the great misfortune of living in the same area and thus attending the same writers group as I. This means she’s subject to the fallout of every step of my writing process as outlined above. She’s also a good writer and keeps me on track with regard to grammar and punctuation. She deserves chocolate. Lots and lots of chocolate. Read her blog here.


and last but not least, Gordon B. White (@GordonBWhite)


I met Gordon on LitReactor, and since he isn’t a malpractice attorney, we get along just fine. He writes dark fiction that makes my skin crawl and does some beta reading for me from time to time. This is lucky for me, because Gordon is a much better writer than I, and I can use all the feedback he can give me. You can read his blog here.


Well folks, there you have it! Now I’m going to go inside and get back to work. There are some very large insects out here and…

Step 1: *IDEA*