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Saturday, October 31, 2015

31 Days of Horror Day 31: Keep Reading Horror...All Year Long

My 10yo as a
“Cereal” Killer
Happy Halloween!  I hope you enjoyed my blog-a-thon, and I really hope you learned something about collection development for horror fiction.

But I am not truly successful unless this 31 days fest inspires you to suggest a horror title [to the right patron] at another time of the year.

Today, on the final day, I want to let you know about a few books I have reviewed recently that would work well for fans of dark fiction, as well as point you to some lists that you can use to keep a steady diet of horror in your and your patrons’ hands.

This blog is here 365 Days a year for you-- the Library Worker. It is a treasure trove of horror related information geared to the public library audience. Use it to help someone.

Thanks for following along. And don’t forget that RA for All has posts every week day to help you help all of your leisure readers.

Here are some of my favorite newer horror titles:


Here are some of my favorite lists of scary books that were released throughout the month of October:



Friday, October 30, 2015

31 Days of Horror: Day 30-- Small Presses, a Change in My Archive, and Why You Should Care

Thanks to JournalStone and all of the authors who agreed to complete the interview for this blog.

And thanks to all of you who entered the contest to win one of two free copies of The Gods of HP Lovecraft. I had dozens of entries.  The two winners were picked using random.org and witnessed by my husband early this morning. They have been contacted.

I have worked with JournalStone before and can tell you that I trust the quality product they put out, but they are not the only independent horror publishers worth your time.

I keep a page of the Best Independent Horror Publishers for Libraries in the right gutter of the blog at all times; however, I gave it a major overhaul this year.

Below, I have reposted the updated page, which explains the overhaul,  to remind you that you can use it all year long as part of your collection development of your horror collections.

Back tomorrow for the final day of horror and Halloween!!!

Best Independent Horror Publishers for Libraries (updated 10.15)

There are many specialty, small presses who are dedicated to putting out as many horror publications as they can. As the editors over at Horror Fiction Review once noted, "The horror genre is one of the few genres that even HAS its own small press. Many mass market horror authors were discovered there. I believe the small press is (and actually has been for quite some time) the FUTURE of horror fiction."

I agree and I want to highlight some of the very best of these independent horror publishers. In the past, I have tried to be inclusive and include as many as possible, but I found that this resulted in a list that was too long to be useful to the average American public library as a collection development and purchasing tool. And since that is the whole reason I am here....

Also, in the past few years, a few of the larger independent presses have been consolidating.

So as of October of 2015, I have narrowed the focus of this page to include only the horror independent presses I have found to produce a consistent product worthy of being considered for your public library collections.

So please visit the pages of these publishers and consider ordering some of their books for your patrons.

Here they are in alphabetical order:

Thursday, October 29, 2015

31 Days of Horror: Day 29-- God of Lovecraft Jonathan Maberry Interview

Welcome to The Gods of Lovecraft blog-a-thon within a blog-a-thon.  From the first post:
Over 9 of the next 10 days I will be featuring 10 of the 12 authors in this collection. Each has answered a series of questions from me about their God, why they picked it, what their favorite scary books are, and more.  It’s very similar to the posts I have been running by authors all month, just with a Lovercraftian spin. Expect each day’s post to bring you a handful of new authors and titles to add to your arsenal of books you can suggest to patrons. 
Our final author is Jonathan Maberry. Readers of this blog know that I proclaimed Maberry [along with Joe Hill] as the King of 21st Century horror back in 2012 in my book. I went out on a limb by writing that; in fact, I had to defend it to my editors. Thankfully, I was not the only one to see his potential as all he has done every single day since is prove me right. From winning awards, to becoming a full fledged NYT bestselling author, to landing on the cover of Publisher’s Weekly earlier this year, if you do not know Maberry, you do not know horror. Click here to see the many, many times I have written about Maberry and/or reviewed his work.

Please remember you can also enter for a chance to win one of two copies of The Gods of H.P. Lovecraft by emailing me at zombiegrl75 [at] gmail [dot] com by today at 11:59pm.

Tomorrow I will be back to begin the final 2 day wrap up of this year’s 31 Days of Horror.

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Who are you?
I’m Jonathan Maberry, a New York Times bestselling author, comic book writer and anthology editor. I write for a living, having tried other less charming professions like actor in musical theater (as it turns out, you need ‘talent’), bodyguard (got stabbed, chopped with a meat cleaver and run over), bouncer in a strip club (it’s not at all like they show in the movies), and college teacher (grading papers sucks!). I’ve written a couple of dozen novels, a slew of nonfiction books on subjects ranging from women’s self-defense to the folklore of supernatural predators. I’ve also sold poetry, greeting cards, and a couple of experimental plays.

Who is your favorite horror author [besides Lovecraft]?
I’ve been a fan of horror, in all of its many variations, since I was a kid. I started out reading the old EC comics my brother left when he went off to Viet Nam, and then moved into the Warren books, EERIE, CREEPY and VAMPIRELLA. Around the same time I began devouring everything by Richard Matheson, Robert Bloch, and Shirley Jackson. A bit later I got hooked on Stephen King, Graham Masterton, James Herbert, and William Peter Blatty.

I actually got to know a bunch of the top horror writers of the late sixties/early seventies thanks to my middle school librarian, who was secretary for a couple of clubs of pro writers. I met Ray Bradbury and Richard Matheson –and they mentored me for three years. I also met Harlan Ellison, James Blish, L. Sprague De Camp, and a bunch of others. Most of those guys, knowing that I wanted to be a writer, made a point of bringing me shopping bags filled with books –science fiction, fantasy and horror. And it was through L. Sprague De Camp that I first learned of H.P. Lovecraft.

Why do you like to write horror?
Horror allows us to explore the complexities of our minds. We are fearful creatures by nature. We come into the world totally helpless, and much of out life is spent trying to understand life’s mysteries, protect against its threats, and build walls of personal security. Even a guy like me –six-four, built like Bigfoot, and an 8th degree black belt—feels fear of one kind or another every day. Anyone who says they are totally fearless is either lying or delusional.

So in fiction we get to take our fears and examine them, deconstruct them, play with them, understand them, and even have some fun with them. We get to pose ‘what if’ questions about threats large and small. And we can write that story all the way to a point of closure –and the real world doesn’t always allow that.

This is not to say that horror should always have a tidy ending or a happy resolution. Not at all, but in the process of writing the story we take ownership of it. We control the fearful elements and direct those forces elsewhere.

And, also, let’s face it, we all like to stretch out hand out to the fire or lean a little too close to the tiger’s cage. Fear is also a great stimulant. I didn’t start skydiving because I liked the geographical perspective. I was in it for the adrenaline rush. The thrill. The fear.

Which “God” did you focus on in the Anthology? What features of this god do you find most interesting?
I wrote about the Night Gaunts. They’re sly and creepy, and Lovecraft never really let us climb inside their heads. They are guardian spirits, but they’re also monsters and like most Lovecraftian cosmic beings, not at all to be trusted. Also, one of the first Lovecraft drawings I ever did was of a Night Gaunt. Wish I still had it, but I gave it to a girl a long time ago. I’m sure the fact that she broke up with me a few weeks later had nothing at all to do with it.

Please share some of the authors you are reading and enjoying now.
These days most of my friends are horror or suspense writers, so it’s hard to pick favorites. At the top of my must-have lists are Christopher Golden, Tim Lebbon, Joe McKinney, Weston Ochse, Joe Lansdale, and a slew of others. Horror makes up a huge chunk of my reading list, and any slate of favorites I name will be woefully incomplete.

What other works do you have out now?
Prior to 2006 I was a nonfiction writer, doing a ton of magazine features, columns, reviews, how-to manuals, college textbooks, and mass market nonfic books. My first novel, GHOST ROAD BLUES, debuted in 2006 and was followed by two sequels, DEAD MAN’S SONG and BAD MOON RISING. They were straight horror set in a small Pennsylvania town. Since then I’ve jumped around through different genres. I like the fast-lane and I have a very energetic agent. I write the Joe Ledger thrillers, of which PATIENT ZERO was the first and the recent PREDATOR ONE is the 7th. I just finished the 8th and am doing research on the 9th; and we’re in development for a feature film. I wrote five books of the ROT & RUIN post-apocalyptic zombie series for teens (also slated to be a feature film); two adult zombie novels –DEAD OF NIGHT and FALL OF NIGHT; the novelization of the remake of THE WOLFMAN; and a standalone Steampunk alt-history supernatural western, GHOSTWALKERS, based on the Deadlands role-playing game. I created the V-Wars shared world vampire series, which is in prose and comic book form and is in development for TV. My most recent anthology was THE X-FILES: TRUST NO ONE.

What are you working on currently?

I’m in the busiest phase of my career right now. I’m writing a space travel novel for older teens, and stacked up behind that are several projects including DOGS OF WAR (Joe Ledger #9); a teen bodyguard thriller, WATCH OVER ME; and GLIMPSE, a standalone horror-suspense novel for the mainstream audience. I’m editing several anthologies, including OUT OF TUNE Vol II (stories inspired by classic folk ballads), SCARY OUT THERE (teen horror), V-WARS volumes 4 and 5; and two more volumes of THE X-FILES short stories. I also have several comic book projects in early development. And a board game version of V-WARS debuts this Christmas.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

31 Days of Horror: Day 28-- Gods of Lovecraft Rachel Caine Interview

Welcome to The Gods of Lovecraft blog-a-thon within a blog-a-thon.  From the first post:
Over 9 of the next 10 days I will be featuring 10 of the 12 authors in this collection. Each has answered a series of questions from me about their God, why they picked it, what their favorite scary books are, and more.  It’s very similar to the posts I have been running by authors all month, just with a Lovercraftian spin. Expect each day’s post to bring you a handful of new authors and titles to add to your arsenal of books you can suggest to patrons. 
Next up, Rachel Caine. I particularly like who answer to the question “Why do you like to write horror?” 

Please remember you can also enter for a chance to win one of two copies of The Gods of H.P. Lovecraft by emailing me at zombiegrl75 [at] gmail [dot] com by 10/29 at 11:59pm.

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Who are you?
Rachel Caine, author of about 45 novels and many short stories. My principal series include #1 internationally bestselling Morganville Vampires series in young adult and the Weather Warden series in urban fantasy. I'm a longtime lover of horror fiction who grew up reading the classics of the genre, and got a lot of worried looks for reading Stephen King when I was ... uh, 12. If you need the boring details, you can find me at the following places:
@rachelcaine on Twitter
rachelcainefanpage on Facebook

Who is your favorite horror writer (besides Lovecraft)?
I have a lot of favorites, but I'd probably point to Shirley Jackson for her unsettling, beautiful style and quiet, creeping darkness. On the flip side, Robert McCammon is also one of my favorites, as is Joe Lansdale. Both seriously underappreciated in this country, I think.

Why do you like to write horror?
It's an uniquely intense experience. Horror is a claustrophobic literary experience--one where as a writer I feel just as trapped as the characters, just as unable to escape. Horror stays with me long after I finish a story. There's also an element of control that appeals to me; we have no control over the horrible things that happen in the world, for the most part. We can control every detail of our fiction, and make the incomprehensible into something approachable.

Which "God" did you focus on in the Anthology? What features of this god do you find most interesting?
I wrote about The Great Race, which is a story that always haunted me since I first read it. The revulsion and horror Lovecraft's character Peaslee experiences on being transported into the body of one of the Great Race, while the alien roams the earth in his own form, is very real ... and yet, as observers in the story we can also see that it's amazing. The aliens aren't cruel ... just alien. The real terror is something that even The Great Race fears. Aliens who can run anywhere in the universe in space and time, and hide in many lifeforms, are scared of something worse. That, in itself, is a huge story.

Please share some of the authors you are reading and enjoying now.
So much! It's a great time for books, whatever flavor you prefer. I think horror is making a strong comeback, and you can find it in young adult aisles as well ... check out HIT by Delilah Dawson, SLICE OF CHERRY by Dia Reeves, I HUNT KILLERS by Barry Lyga, THE NATURALS by Jennifer Lynn Barnes. I recently really loved SWERVE by Vicki Pettersson, which nicely walks the line between thriller and horror. And, always, Joe Hill.

What other works do you have out now?
My most recently book, INK AND BONE, launched in July. It's a world in which the Great Library of Alexandria never burned, and now it's illegal to own personal books. My main character, Jess, is the son of a book smuggler. Lots of elements of SF and horror in it, as well as fantasy. I'm also honored to be included in several anthologies coming out this year and next.

What are you working on currently?

I'm at work on the second book of my Great Library series, PAPER AND FIRE. I also just turned in stories for 3 anthologies this month, including Jonathan Maberry's second volume of X-FILES: THE TRUTH IS OUT THERE.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

31 Days of Horror: Day 27-- Gods of Lovecraft Seanan McGuire Interview

Welcome to The Gods of Lovecraft blog-a-thon within a blog-a-thon.  From the first post:
Over 9 of the next 10 days I will be featuring 10 of the 12 authors in this collection. Each has answered a series of questions from me about their God, why they picked it, what their favorite scary books are, and more.  It’s very similar to the posts I have been running by authors all month, just with a Lovercraftian spin. Expect each day’s post to bring you a handful of new authors and titles to add to your arsenal of books you can suggest to patrons. 
Next up, one of my personal favorite authors, Seanan McGuire. I have talked at length about her wonderful [both to read and to suggest to a wide range of patrons] Newsflash Trilogy, published under her horror nome de plume, Mira Grant.

Please remember you can also enter for a chance to win one of two copies of The Gods of H.P. Lovecraft by emailing me at zombiegrl75 [at] gmail [dot] com by 10/29 at 11:59pm.

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Who are you?
I am Seanan McGuire, California resident and horror movie fan.  I spend a lot of time in the corn.

Who is your favorite horror author [besides Lovecraft]?
Stephen King.

Why do you like to write horror?
I like to read horror, and I tend to write what I like to read.

Which “God” did you focus on in the Anthology? What features of this god do you find most interesting?
I got the Deep Ones and Dagon, and I had a wonderful time.  I love how, by their very nature, the Deep Ones are in a position to comment on humanity, through their inevitable rejection of it.

Please share some of the authors you are reading and enjoying now.
Currently I'm reading Lilith St. Crow, Alex Bledsoe, and Jeffrey Craymor.

What other works do you have out now?
Oh my gosh that is a list.  The best plan is to visit my website, at www.seananmcguire.com; there's a Bibliography there that requires scrolling, because I do not sleep.

What are you working on currently?
I just finished a modern fantasy novel about alchemy and destiny and blowing shit up.  So right now I'm working on taking a few deep breaths before I start the next thing.

Monday, October 26, 2015

31 Days of Horror: Day 26-- Gods of Lovecraft Douglas Wynne Interview

Welcome to The Gods of Lovecraft blog-a-thon within a blog-a-thon.  From the first post:
Over 9 of the next 10 days I will be featuring 10 of the 12 authors in this collection. Each has answered a series of questions from me about their God, why they picked it, what their favorite scary books are, and more.  It’s very similar to the posts I have been running by authors all month, just with a Lovercraftian spin. Expect each day’s post to bring you a handful of new authors and titles to add to your arsenal of books you can suggest to patrons. 
Next up, Douglas Wynne. [Click here for reviews of other books by Wynne and his previous guest post on the blog.]

Please remember you can also enter for a chance to win one of two copies of The Gods of H.P. Lovecraft by emailing me at zombiegrl75 [at] gmail [dot] com by 10/29 at 11:59pm.

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Who are you?
I’ve been trying to figure that one out for a while now. According to Buddha I'm a continuity of consciousness arising from an endless chain of causes and conditions. I’m also Douglas Wynne: writer, musician, husband and father, and a guy who likes loud guitars, cake, and microbrew beer. 

Who is your favorite horror author [besides Lovecraft]? 
It's hard to pick only one, but if I must: Clive Barker.

Why do you like to write horror?
Horror is more of an emotional tone than a genre, so it feels more wide open to me than the other labels you can put on a book. Under the banner of horror I can dabble in fantasy, SF, crime and suspense with as much or as little supernatural and sexual content as is fitting for the story at hand. It can also be a very literary genre. Horror is generally gritty and realistic and preoccupied with questions of the nature of reality and an urgent sense of mortality. Where else can you get all that? 

Which “God” did you focus on in the Anthology? What features of this god do you find most interesting?
Yig, the Father of Serpents. I like the folkloric aspect of the curse of Yig, but there are a lot of stories you could tell from that jumping off point. A reader at a signing event  recently told me that she thought theme anthologies were the work of the devil because  writing is art and you should be able to write whatever you want. I fully agree with the  importance of striving for originality and trying to make genre elements our own. But  thinking about it after the fact, I wished I had told her that the execution is far more  important than the premise, and you can always make a story uniquely your own in the  execution. I tried to do that with "Rattled". Sure, it's a horror story about a snake god,  but it's really about the distance a boy feels when his best friend is growing up faster  than he is. It's about coming of age and finding your tribe.

Please share some of the authors you are reading and enjoying now.
I loved Paul Tremblay's A Head Full of Ghosts. I'm also currently reading Charles  Stross's Laundry Files books and revisiting Ray Bradbury and Shirley Jackson.

What other works do you have out now?
My latest book is Red Equinox, a Lovecraftian urban thriller. My other novels are The  Devil of Echo Lake and Steel Breeze. 
 
What are you working on currently? 
I've finally cleared my calendar of all other deadlines and am starting work on the next book in the SPECTRA series, the sequel to Red Equinox. I'm going for a quieter, creepier tone with this one. Should be fun.  

Sunday, October 25, 2015

31 Days of Horror: Day 25-- Gods of Lovecraft David Liss Interview

Welcome to The Gods of Lovecraft blog-a-thon within a blog-a-thon.  From the first post:
Over 9 of the next 10 days I will be featuring 10 of the 12 authors in this collection. Each has answered a series of questions from me about their God, why they picked it, what their favorite scary books are, and more.  It’s very similar to the posts I have been running by authors all month, just with a Lovercraftian spin. Expect each day’s post to bring you a handful of new authors and titles to add to your arsenal of books you can suggest to patrons. 
Next up, David Liss [Yes that David Liss. The one who you librarians know as a historical thriller writer; well he also writes horror.]

Please remember you can also enter for a chance to win one of two copies of The Gods of H.P. Lovecraft by emailing me at zombiegrl75 [at] gmail [dot] com by 10/29 at 11:59pm.

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Who are you?
David Liss, writer of historical fiction by day, writer of horror, comics, dark fantasy, and  science fiction by night.
 
Who is your favorite horror author [besides Lovecraft]?
Joe McKinney

Why do you like to write horror?
I grew up reading a lot of horror.  It was probably 50% of what I tore through in middle  and high school.  As an adult, and as a professional writer, I think a lot about what I liked about it at the time and what I liked about it now.  For me, all good fiction is character  driven fiction, and horror is a great vehicle for putting characters to the test and \ exposing them to the most extreme and unsolvable of situations. Horror is like  mainstream fiction on steroids.  
 
Which “God” did you focus on in the Anthology? What features of this god do  you find most interesting?
I opted for Shub-Niggorath, the black goat of the woods with a thousand young, for two
reasons.  First, because how can you say no to a sobriquet like that?  Secondly,  because she is referenced in several Lovecraft stories, but only obliquely.  We actually  know virtually nothing about Shub-Niggorath, so I thought that writing about her would  give me a lot of wiggle room.  I could make her just about anything I wanted.
 
Please share some of the authors you are reading and enjoying now.
I'm a huge fan of style and character driven writers who have a strong command of craft but who also don't shy away from genre conventions.  Some of my favorites are David Mitchell, Haruki Murakami, and Michel Faber.
 
What other works do you have out now?
I currently have nine novels out, most recently Randoms, a self-referential science fiction novel for middle grade readers.  I also have multiple comic book trade paperback  collections out.
 
What are you working on currently?
I'm currently working on the sequel to Randoms as well as my next book for adults, a  work of historical fantasy.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

31 Days of Horror: Day 24-- Gods of Lovecraft Brett Talley Interview

Welcome to The Gods of Lovecraft blog-a-thon within a blog-a-thon.  From the first post:
Over 9 of the next 10 days I will be featuring 10 of the 12 authors in this collection. Each has answered a series of questions from me about their God, why they picked it, what their favorite scary books are, and more.  It’s very similar to the posts I have been running by authors all month, just with a Lovercraftian spin. Expect each day’s post to bring you a handful of new authors and titles to add to your arsenal of books you can suggest to patrons. 
Next up, Brett Talley. [Brett has been a guest on the blog before.]

Please remember you can also enter for a chance to win one of two copies of The Gods of H.P. Lovecraft by emailing me at zombiegrl75 [at] gmail [dot] com by 10/29 at 11:59pm.

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Who are you? 
My name is Brett J. Talley, and I’m the author of several horror novels, most of which have Lovecraftian overtones. That’s particularly true of my most successful books, That Which Should Not Be and He Who Walks In Shadow.  

Who is your favorite horror author [besides Lovecraft]? 
Manly Wade Wellman. I often say Wellman is Lovecraft with hope. He takes the same fear of the unknown, of the ancient, of that which was and may be again, but he puts a twist on it where a righteous man or woman just might be able to stand against it. And I love that stuff. It’s the same idea that informs my writing, and I’m so glad to have discovered Wellman in recent years.  

Why do you like to write horror? 
I like the magic that we find in horror.  That probably sounds strange, but we live in a world that has lost much of its mystery, and that mystery has been replaced by the cold, calculated, mathematical precision of science.  But there is still magic in horror.  There is still that sense of the unknown.  Humans are explorers, and horror allows us to explore a world that is often far more interesting than our own.  Plus, there is something comforting about horror.  Terrible things happen in the real world, but the answers are never as simple as they are in the world of fiction.  Things are never as black and white, good and evil is never as clearly defined, and there is no guarantee that the good guys are going to win out in the end.  The monsters that my characters face are truly horrible, but they can be defeated.  That's not always true in the real world.   

Which “God” did you focus on in the Anthology? What features of this god do you find most interesting? 
I wrote my story about Tsathoggua, the sleeping god who most resembles a giant toad. I love this guy for a bunch of reasons. First, he’s not Lovecraft’s invention; he’s Clark Ashton Smith’s. But Lovecraft liked him so much he incorporated him into the mythos. That really speaks to the collaborative nature of Lovecraftian fiction, one that is nearly unique in literature. I also love him because the stories of Tsathoggua are usually a little more lighthearted than Lovecraft’s other gods. I always enjoy injecting some humor into the story, and you can really see it in my contribution to the anthology—The Apotheosis of a Rodeo Clown.  

Please share some of the authors you are reading and enjoying now. 
Two guys, one horror and one not. My favorite living horror writer is Ronald Malfi, and I am currently reading his newest book Little Girls. It will be hard to top the last one I read by him, December Park, but it’s good so far. And I’m reading Haruki Murakami, who is obviously not horror, but his style of writing is both beautiful and captivating in a way that can evoke real emotion. We need more of that in horror.  

What other works do you have out now? 
My big current offering is He Who Walks In Shadow, which is the sequel to the Bram Stoker Nominated That Which Should Not Be. It starts immediately after TWSNB ends, with Henry Armitage and Carter Weston’s daughter, Rachel, seeking to understand his disappearance and find the Incendium Maleficarum. That takes them on an adventure around the world, where they are haunted by demons both spiritual and personal.  

What are you working on currently? 
I’m working on a Lovecraftian book set in modern times that centers around the Sons of Dagon, the biker gang featured in Apotheosis of a Rodeo Clown. Keep your eyes out for it next year, hopefully.  

Friday, October 23, 2015

31 Days of Horror: Day 23-- Gods of Lovecraft Christopher Golden and James A. Moore Interview

Welcome to The Gods of Lovecraft blog-a-thon within a blog-a-thon.  From the first post:
Over 9 of the next 10 days I will be featuring 10 of the 12 authors in this collection. Each has answered a series of questions from me about their God, why they picked it, what their favorite scary books are, and more.  It’s very similar to the posts I have been running by authors all month, just with a Lovercraftian spin. Expect each day’s post to bring you a handful of new authors and titles to add to your arsenal of books you can suggest to patrons. 
Next up, the dynamic duo of Christopher Golden and James A. Moore.

Please remember you can also enter for a chance to win one of two copies of The Gods of H.P. Lovecraft by emailing me at zombiegrl75 [at] gmail [dot] com by 10/29 at 11:59pm.

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Who are you?
CG:  New York Times bestselling author Christopher Golden. Novelist, comic book writer, editor, and screenwriter.  Among other things.

JM:  James A. Moore (But call me Jim). I write novels, short stories, novellas and occasionally comic scripts. I've done some editing with more on the way. 

Who is your favorite horror author [besides Lovecraft]?
CG: I’m a King loyalist. I always say his was the narrative voice of my youth, but he’s still my favorite. The list below him is long, of course, and it includes many writers who cross genres on a regular basis, the late Graham Joyce and my friend Tim Lebbon come immediately to mind.

JM: Robert E. Howard, Stephen King, Edgar Allan Poe, Joe R. Lansdale, F.Paul Wilson. Oh, wait, you said choose one?

Why do you like to write horror?
CG: Many years ago in an interview in Fangoria, Robert R. McCammon talked about the fact that horror is the most versatile of genres. Within its parameters, you can write about love, hate, sex, vengeance, heartbreak, cowboys, demons, time travel… McCammon didn’t say that bit about cowboys and time travel. I’m elaborating. But you get the point. When I was young, my mother asked me why I didn’t write something “nice.” I said I’d written science fiction stories, western stories, fantasy stories, but somebody always died. Horror fiction gets in the blood. It’s how we face the shadows. Not that we’re less afraid than other people, but we know them more intimately because we’ve spent time exploring there. It eases the mind. 

JM: Why do people like roller coasters? I have an undying love of Halloween and things that go bump in the night. 

Which “God” did you focus on in the Anthology? What features of this god do
you find most interesting?
CG:  I collaborated with James A. Moore on a story about the Mi-Go.  My favorite Lovecraft stories always have people poking around where they don’t belong, often getting the attention of things whose attention they really do not want.  There’ s a certain desperation inherent in the mythos about the Mi-Go, an element of obsession in the humans who seek them or run across them.  Lovecraft was always great with that sort of thing.

JM: I also love them because, they're more driven than most of Lovecraft's critters. They have an actual agenda aside from sleeping for a few Aeons. But, as Chris said, they're a creature a person has a chance against, however slim.

Please share some of the authors you are reading and enjoying now.
CG:  I’m currently reading the brand new, yet to be published novel by Rio Youers, who I think is absolutely one of the most talented writers that most people have never read. Similarly, I recently read Bracken MacLeod’s upcoming horror thriller STRANDED, which is his first full-length novel and is terrific. And Paul Tremblay’s A HEAD FULL OF GHOSTS is brilliant.

JM: I'm also a big fan of Tremblay's A HEAD FULL OF GHOSTS, and I'm currently reading THE BIG BOOK OF GHOST STORIES edited by Otto Penzler, which has a wide array of chilling tales. Lately I'm on a ghost kick. 

What other works do you have out now?
CG:  My new horror novel, DEAD RINGERS, will be out in November.  Right before that, in October, my new anthology SEIZE THE NIGHT will be out. It’s the best anthology I’ve edited.  The list of contributors alone should convince horror readers to pick it up.

JM: My novel CITY OF WONDERS (book three in the SEVEN FORGES series) is out in November. I've got novellas coming out in the latest SNAFU anthology and BLURRING THE LINES another anthology that should be fun.

What are you working on currently?
CG:  A screenplay for an existing film franchise that I can’t mention, and a new horror thriller for St. Martin’s Press called ARARAT.

JM: The fourth and final novel in the SEVEN FORGES series, THE SILENT ARMY, and a mosaic novel called INDIGO. 

Thursday, October 22, 2015

31 Days of Horror: Day 22-- GET BOOKED with Book Riot and ME

On Monday, I recorded an episode of the new Book Riot "Get Booked" podcast with Amanda Nelson. From a previous post on RA for All:

Get Booked is a brand new podcast from Book Riot and it is perfect for all of you who provide RA service.  Here is their description of what they are going to do:
"We’ve got a new podcast coming your way! Get Booked will be a biweekly write-in show for personalized book recommendations, whether they’re for you, your great Aunt Sally, or anyone else in your life! Want to know what to read to fill the Harry Potter void? We’re here for you. Need a bookish gift for your dad? On it. Want a list of excellent romance novels for your book club? I’ve got your back. I’ll be hosting the show, and each week I’ll have a new guest host to help me."Click through to the Book Riot site here to listen to episode 0. You can also send in your request for a book recommendation with a form on that same page.
Here is the permalink for my horror episode: Get Booked Episode #4: Haunted by Horror

You can click here for the archive of all Get Booked Podcasts.

We had a lot of fun answering your questions and gave AWESOME suggestion (imo).

Happy listening.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

31 Days of Horror: Day 21-- God of Lovecraft Laird Barron Interview

Welcome to The Gods of Lovecraft blog-a-thon within a blog-a-thon.  From the first post:
Over 9 of the next 10 days I will be featuring 10 of the 12 authors in this collection. Each has answered a series of questions from me about their God, why they picked it, what their favorite scary books are, and more.  It’s very similar to the posts I have been running by authors all month, just with a Lovercraftian spin. Expect each day’s post to bring you a handful of new authors and titles to add to your arsenal of books you can suggest to patrons. 
Next up, Laird Barron.

Please remember you can also enter for a chance to win one of two copies of The Gods of H.P. Lovecraft by emailing me at zombiegrl75 [at] gmail [dot] com by 10/29 at 11:59pm.

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Who are you?

Laird Barron. An expatiate Alaskan, I currently reside in New York State

Who is your favorite horror author [besides Lovecraft]?

Ted Klein, Peter Straub, and Cormac McCarthy

Why do you like to write horror?

The Old Testament was a favorite around the Barron household. With a childhood like that, it's not much of a stretch I became a horror writer.

Which “God” did you focus on in the Anthology? What features of this god do you find most interesting?

Azathoth. The Demon Sultan is a vast, seething well of protoplasmic malignancy at the heart of the cosmos. Much like the Christian deity, this figure is most clearly defined by its servitors, agents, and worshipers. That leaves significant room for interpretation. The contradiction of the unmitigated alien and the excruciatingly intimate is compelling.

Please share some of the authors you are reading and enjoying now.

Stephen Graham Jones, Livia Llewellyn, and John Langan. These are three of the finest writers of contemporary horror.

What other works do you have out now?

My latest book is a collection--The Beautiful Thing That Awaits Us All. I also recently guest-edited Year's Best Weird Fiction, Volume 1.

What are you working on currently?

A new collection called Swift to Chase will arrive in 2016. I'm working on several novellas and a novel.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

31 Days of Horror: Day 20-- Gods of Lovecraft Aaron French Interview

Welcome to The Gods of Lovecraft blog-a-thon within a blog-a-thon.  From the first post:
Over 9 of the next 10 days I will be featuring 10 of the 12 authors in this collection. Each has answered a series of questions from me about their God, why they picked it, what their favorite scary books are, and more.  It’s very similar to the posts I have been running by authors all month, just with a Lovercraftian spin. Expect each day’s post to bring you a handful of new authors and titles to add to your arsenal of books you can suggest to patrons. 
We begin today with the editor of this collection, Aaron French.

Please remember you can also enter for a chance to win one of two copies of The Gods of H.P. Lovecraft by emailing me at zombiegrl75 [at] gmail [dot] com by 10/29 at 11:59pm.

----------------------------------------------------

Who are you?
Aaron J. French, editor-in-chief of Dark Discoveries magazine, editor of various other anthologies too, as well the editor of many novels with JournalStone Publishing. I also write my own dark fiction, a blend of supernaturalism, surrealism, and esoteric spirituality—plus some good old fashion straight-up horror thrown in.

Who is your favorite horror author [besides Lovecraft]?
In terms of weird fiction, it’s Arthur Machen. He’s a master and there are no other authors in that subgenre who match him. But I also like Thomas Ligotti, Philip K. Dick, and Stephen King. Oh and Chelsea Quinn Yarbro, Tanith Lee, and Storm Constantine.

Why do you love horror?
For me, it’s the presence of the supernatural. Slashers and super gory thrillers don’t represent the horror genre to me. The presence of that unknown, “above-nature” encounter with a world beyond the ordinary, with which the characters of the book must grapple, is what I like about horror. It forces readers to remember that the world around them isn’t as it appears to be, that it’s much more mysterious than we as human beings, in our arrogance, believe the world to be when perceived only with our five senses.

Which “God” did you focus on in the Anthology? What drew you to this character?
Well I picked all the gods for the anthology, actually. But I got a lot of help from Donald Tyson, and also a little help from ST Joshi, in making the final decision about which “gods” were to be included. I feel the book has the best representation of Lovecraft’s bestiary.

Please share some of the authors you are reading and enjoying now.
With all the editing I do, I’m fortunate enough to get to read a lot of contemporary authors in the field. At the moment, I’m really digging Laird Barron, Brian Evenson, Elizabeth Hand, Mark Valentine, Richard Gavin, Nnedi Okorafor, and Graham Hancock (GH is writing fiction now).

What other works do you have out now?
At the moment, I have an Omnibus collection of my first two anthologies, Monk Punk and The Shadow of the Unknown, out with Hazardous Press. JournsalStone released my latest anthology, Songs of the Satyrs, all-new tales about mythical satyrs. My single author collection Aberrations of Reality is out from Crowded Quarantine Productions, and it features many of my best tales in the vein of supernaturalism, dark surrealism, and esoteric horror.

What are you working on?

I’m working on a very super-secret new anthology with a colleague of mine, and my novella The Dream Beings will be out in January of 2016 with Samhain Publishing.

Monday, October 19, 2015

31 Days of Horror: Day 19-- The Gods of Lovecraft Intro, Review Tease, and GIVEAWAY!

Today I am beginning a smaller series within this 31 day horror fest.  In December, JournalStone is releasing a book that EVERY PUBLIC LIBRARY needs to buy.  


From the publisher: 
JournalStone Publishing (JSP) President, Christopher C. Payne is pleased to announce The Gods of H.P. Lovecraft, a brand new anthology that collects the twelve principal deities of the Lovecraftian Mythos and sets them loose within its pages. Featuring the biggest names in horror and dark fantasy, including many NY Times bestsellers, full of original fiction and artwork, and individual commentary on each of the deities by Donald Tyson, author of Grimoire of the Necronomicon and Alhazred. 
Lovecraft’s bestiary of gods has had a major influence on the horror scene from the time these sacred names were first evoked. Cthulhu, Azathoth, Nyarlathotep, Yog-Sothoth—this pantheon of the horrific calls to mind the very worst of cosmic nightmares and the very darkest signs of human nature. The Gods of H.P. Lovecraft brings together twelve all-new Mythos tales from: 
1. Cthulhu (Adam Nevill) 2. Yog-Sothoth (Martha Wells)3. Azathoth (Laird Barron) 4. Nyarlathotep (Bentley Little) 5. Shub-Niggurath (David Liss) 6. Tsathoggua (Brett Talley)7. The Mi-Go (Christopher Golden & James A. Moore)8. Nightgaunts (Jonathan Maberry) 9. Elder Things (Joe Lansdale)10. Great Race (Rachel Caine)11. Yig (Douglas Wynne)12. The Deep Ones (Seanan McGuire)
This book is not coming out until December but I have seen an ARC and can give you multiple reasons as to why you should pre-order this book now.

First, look at that list of authors. There are many NY Times bestselling authors there, and a few that are the biggest young names in dark fiction right now.

Second, this collection serves as an excellent introduction to the Mythos for novices. Most readers interested in horror have read about Lovecraft, but I have found many of them haven’t found a good entry point to Lovecraft’s world for themselves.  They are overwhelmed by the breadth of the fandom. let alone the original works themselves. Well, here it is.

Third, this collection is also great for Lovecraft fans. Even those who are well versed in the Mythos will enjoy seeing these Gods reinterpreted by many of the best of today’s horror writers.

And fourth, the commentaries by Donald Tyson are enlightening in and of themselves. You can learn about each god and why he or she was important to the Mythos with or without having read the story in which that God was featured.

I will have a full, more official review of the collection in a future edition of Booklist, but for now, I still have a few treats in relation to this book up my sleeve.

Over 9 of the next 10 days I will be featuring 10 of the 12 authors in this collection. Each has answered a series of questions from me about their God, why they picked it, what their favorite scary books are, and more.  It’s very similar to the posts I have been running by authors all month, just with a Lovercraftian spin. Expect each day’s post to bring you a handful of new authors and titles to add to your arsenal of books you can suggest to patrons. 

As if that wasn’t a huge gift, JournalStone is also providing 2 free copies of The Gods of H.P. Lovecraft that I will give away here, on the blog.

So between now and 11:59 pm on 10/29, you can email me, 1 entry per person, at zombiegrl75 [at] gmail [dot] com to be eligible. I will have a reminder each day and draw the winners on 10/30.

I hope this multi-day feature will not only introduce you to the world of Lovecraft, but also, allow you to see why some of today’s best horror writers love horror. And both of those things will make you better at helping your horror readers find their next good read.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

31 Days of Horror: Day 18-- Crowd-Sourced list of #HalloweenReads to Use All Year Long

Sick of my suggestions and those by the authors who are working with me? I get it. We are librarians and we know that using only 1 source is never the best idea.

So today, I have a great, super-sized, crowd-sourced horror reading list for you.

I am loving the titles people are offering up with the #HalloweenReads hashtag on Twitter. [I have heard from many of my readers that they are not on Twitter, so this is a reminder that you do not need to be a registered user of Twitter to access this conversation. Simply click here and you will have a nice long list of suggested spooky and scary reads for you and your patrons.]

What I like about the suggestions that have been coming through in droves is that the titles are classic, backlist, and brand new-- a very nice mix.  The range of title is also from children to adult, and all levels of scary from simply atmospheric to straight out gore fests. That is because so many more people, from all reading tastes, are looking for #HalloweenReads right now.  You get the very best mix of options from this list, drawing from a very wide pool.

Other times of year, only us crazy, horror obsessed freaks are offering up scary book suggestions, but right now, everyone wants a piece of the creepy action.  As a result, October is the best time to make a reading list of horror titles that you can enjoy for the next twelve months.

Gather up a to-read list and then spread out the terrifying fun throughout the year. Or, even better, just save the link.  You can access the #HalloweenReads list anytime, anywhere. It stays on Twitter and won’t move from that url. Not only will you learn that horror is a great read anytime of year (for you and your patrons) but also, you will be so much more prepared next year when those horror craving patrons start attacking you at the service desk. [I jest, but it is like clock-work each year. 10/1 rolls around and they literally start to come out of the woodwork.]

Back tomorrow with a giveaway and the beginning of the home stretch on this blog-a-thon.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

31 Days of Horror: Day 17-- Three Guys With Beards-- Authors and Podcasters

For the third day in a row I am featuring horror authors whose works you should know about who also podcast.

Listening to authors talk about their work and the horror genre in general is a great way to be introduced to their works.

So today’s podcast I am featuring is Three Guys With Beards. Those three guys are horror authors Christopher Golden, Jonathan Maberry, and James A. Moore.

I am not going to spend too much time talking about these authors because all three also going to have a guest post on the blog as part of a special feature within 31 Days of Horror that I will be running beginning on Monday. It involves multiple NY Times Bestselling authors (not just the ones here) and a giveaway too.

Stay tuned.  While you wait, listen to their podcast or the others I have mentioned in the last two days.

Friday, October 16, 2015

31 Days of Horror: Day 16-- Librarians...Brian Keene Wants to Thank You With a Free Appearance This Summer

Readers of this blog know that I am a big Brian Keene fan.  You can click here for more from me on Keene, but for all of you library workers out there the short version is-- his novels are a perfect fit for ALL PUBLIC LIBRARY collections.

This summer he has a hardcover  release coming [you can already pre-order for your collections] called PressureFrom the publisher:
Off the coast of tropical Mauritius, an ecological catastrophe with global implications is occurring. The ocean's floor is collapsing at a rapid rate. World-champion free diver and marine biologist Carrie Anderson joins a scientific expedition determined to discover the cause-and how to stop it. But what they uncover is even more horrific. Deep beneath the surface, something is awake. Something hungry. Something...cold. Now, the pressure builds as Carrie and her colleagues must contend with the murderous operatives of a corrupt corporation, an unnatural disaster that grows bigger by the day, and a monstrous predator that may spell the extinction of all mankind. 
Jaws meets Alien in this hot new thriller from bestselling author and World Horror Grandmaster Award winner Brian Keene. Pressure is the perfect summer read for fans of Michael Crichton and Douglas Preston.
This looks fantastic!  The book is getting a big push by the publisher. Brian plans to go on his largest book tour ever and he wants to come to your library! FOR FREE!!! All you have to do is buy 10 copies of the book. That is way cheaper than most major author fees.

There are no other strings here.  Brian is a huge supporter of libraries and really wants to thank us for supporting him over the years. And, this is going to be a huge summer read. It is a book people will be talking about. Why not take advantage now and set up a visit.

[By the way, this is exactly how I nabbed Gillian Flynn at my old library for free. I noticed the early buzz on Gone Girl and contacted her [we had met once before at a Karin Slaughter event and she lives in Chicago], set up an appearances, and....it turned out she was at our library the week the novel hit #1. Video of our interview here.]

You can click here for Brian’s original post where explains how you get in on this deal. I have also embedded the post below.

But first, one final note, Brian also has a weekly podcast-- The Horror Show With Brian Keene. Brian and his friends have a lot of fun during these recordings [and curse freely for those of you who that might bother] but they also provide great content.  You can hear Brian and his guests, all of them horror authors worth knowing, discuss books, the genre, the state of the publishing world, and much more.  If you want an inside look at publishing and the life of authors, IN ANY GENRE, this is a great insider resource.

I particularly enjoyed their interview with Paul Tremblay, author and juror for the Shirley Jackson Awards [an award I have professed my love for many times], and then, in a later podcast, their spoiler filled discussion of his book, A Head Full of Ghosts.  It was a real discussion of the book, its writing, its appeal, and its meaning.

Attention all librarians, you should have A Head Full of Ghosts in your collections. You should be promoting it to readers. It is this year’s Bird Box.

One more “authors who podcast” post tomorrow. But please scroll down to read Brian’s full offer.