Archive for the News Category

Top 10 Old-School Goth Songs

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 24, 2014 by Emerian Rich

Old-school goth… ah… the words send shivers up my spine. For any of you who were in the goth scene in the 80′s & 90′s this music holds a special place in your hearts. Clubs with beds plush with red velvet and chains hanging from the ceiling. Industrial light shows mixed with digitized voices and leather. Men in long skirts and bigger hair than the girls. The next morning raccoon eyes from forgetting to remove your layers of black eyeliner. Some of us still live in this world and the music of that time cannot be forgotten. Some people instantly think of the more popular tracks from bands like The Cure, Nine Inch Nails, Concrete Blonde, Ministry. Others take the lesser known road… Type O Negative, Christian Death, Rosetta Stone. Whatever your old school goth road may be, we want to know. What are your favorite old-school goth songs?

Here are my top ten, never to be forgotten (by me at least), old-school goth songs. For those of you who were there – enjoy. For those of you who missed it, you’ve got some listening to do, baby.

  1. Vampire’s Cry by Nosferatu - Sometimes I hear that whisper in my dreams.
  2. Sugar Babies by P. Vampire - I recently had to rip this from the CD because I can’t find it anywhere to download – what a loss to the community! LOVE this song about a creepy arsonist man watching suburban ballet girls dance – and then burning them up! Morbid, yes, but this song makes it so fun to listen to. 
    “They’re all burned up and their mommies are sad… Sugarbabies.
    The man in the wall gets away in a cab… Sugarbabies.
    The teacher’s on fire, she’s beyond recognition… Sugarbabies.
    Itty bitty femurs all shriveled up like raisins… Sugarbabies.”
    I’ve posted the lyrics here in hopes of waking the dead. P. Vampire, if you’re out there, I love you! Email me!
  3. Paint it Black by Mephisto Walz - An anthem I guess for our generation as this goth band remakes the 1966 song by the The Rolling Stones.
  4. Chain by Switchblade Symphony - Just beautiful.
  5. Iron Helix by Xorcist - Wakes the mutated robot-alien inside me.
  6. Severina – The Mission UK - This has a special place in my heart because I found it after I wrote Severina, my character from Night’s Knights. She is such a strong and beautiful woman and this song appeals to the spiritual side of her when Markham and Julien leave her alone at the castle in England. She sort of goes crazy being alone, but this leads to the challenge to create the perfect vampire.

  7. The Days of Swine and Roses by My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult – “Christians, Zombies, Vampires!” This is me and my husband’s song.
  8. Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by The Damned – “Welcome to the underworld… Two for the price of one.” I love this video because it’s in the vampire heyday. I saw them in the 90′s and they were much older – but still had that great sound and a sexy new devilgirl guitarist. Worth the wait!
  9. Deception by Cruxshadows - Love the hair! Something about this song gets under my skin and makes me feel dirty. Analyse that!
  10. Test My Reaction by Spahn Ranch – Love this song because it’s just goofy. This is my happy goth song. Not sure why there is no video, but I found the audio on their MySpace page. People still go there?
    https://myspace.com/spahnranchmusic/music/song/test-my-reaction-38097211-40241477?play=1

Here are some suggestions from our other staff members:

Dawn Wood I love anything by The Cure, Siouxsie, Depeche Mode, the Smiths, New Order. Those are my old goth song standbys.

Dan Shaurette Shakespeare’s Sister “Stay”, Bauhaus “Bela Lugosi’s Dead”, and Siouxsie and the Banshees “Peek-a-boo”, Inkkubus Sukkubus “Heart of Lilith” and just about everything on that album.

What are your favorite old school goth songs?

Manga Review -Pandora: A Death Jr. Manga by HAI!

Posted in News with tags , , , , on January 21, 2014 by Emerian Rich

pandoreThis is the story of how Pandora from the Death Jr. comics falls down a hole and uses her magical key to open a gateway to the future.  She appears in the future as a teenager only to find out that all her friends aren’t friends anymore.

Being a fan of Death Jr. and falling for the glossy art on the cover, I purchased this item on faith.  I should have known not to because of the announcement on the cover: “Based on the hit video game.”  I’m not saying books about video games are all bad, but it’s rare they get them right.

A few things bothered me about this tale:

  • She’s using a time machine that also happens to age her the precise number of years she’s traveling into the future?
  • Apparently teenagers in the future all talk like Snoop Dog and I quote:  “Yo the teach got pwned!” “Fo shizzle, dawg!”
  • In the past, Death Jr. and Pandora are a couple.  In the future, Death Jr. is attached to this preppy girl in a school uniform.  The preppy chick says, “Stay away from that crazy goth chick.”  And Pandora says, “It takes one to know one.”  What does that even mean?  The preppy chick is clearly not goth and no goth chick would yell a comeback like that.
  • Later on in the book, we find out that the preppy girl is an evil snake woman.  She says a phrase that I thought was outlawed because it had been over done in 1950’s cartoons.  “I’m gonna teach you meddling kids a lesson you won’t forget.”  Pandora responds by kicking her and saying, “Class dismissed.”

Moral of the story? Don’t be fooled by glossy art work and claims of cool darkness inside. My advice is to pass this one by and purchase more Death Jr. in comic format instead.

Haunted House by Mitsukazu Mihara

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , on January 16, 2014 by Emerian Rich

Haunted_House_MiharaHaunted House is a great graphic novel about a “normal” boy who lives in a house with horror enthusiasts. Poor Sabato.  He just wants to fit in at school and have a girlfriend, but his family tortures him by scaring off girls and making him appear a freak to his classmates.  His mother is the reincarnation of Morticia Addams.  His father is the stereotypical Dracula figure with black slicked black hair and a full suit with cape.  His two sisters are goth-loli’s from hell.

“Your mother and I fell in love at first sight.  We met at a movie theater.  It was a beautiful movie.  Bloody Bayou: A Hoedown In Hell.”

Even though all you gloom cookies out there may love to live in such a house, poor Sabato hates it!  And with good reason.  His family is evil!

First they pretend they will play nice when his new girlfriend comes over, but when she walks in, his father has a bullet hole in his forehead that is dripping blood and his mother is butchering a live chicken.  Another day, Sabato wakes up late for school and rushes there, only to find everyone staring at him because he has blood on his face, zombie makeup, and a chilling message scrawled across his forehead: DEAD MAN WALKING!

My favorite part is when Sabato sleeps in one day.  His father says,

“Trying to become completely nocturnal are we?  At this rate you should just become a vampire.  That’d be nice.”  Sabato scowls.  “No! That would not be nice!”

This is a fun read for any horror enthusiast.  You will love the tricks the family play and the reactions Sabato gives.

How I started The Apocalypse Book 2:The Hunger War

Posted in News with tags , , , , , on January 11, 2014 by David Watson

18719473Life wasn’t easy for Chaz. He died too young in a construction accident only to be brought back to life by the government as the world’s first smart zombie. The government decided that the experiment was a bad idea and destroyed the lab and tried to exterminate Chaz. Chaz escaped though and accidentally started the zombie apocalypse in New York City. Chaz didn’t ask for this to happen and he’s not sure how to stop it but Manhattan belongs to the zombies now.

Being a smart zombie has its advantages, the other zombies are now looking at Chaz as a leader and he may be the one to lead the zombies to a new way of life. Also a second smart zombie named Dolores has found Chaz and together the two will lead the zombies into battle against the humans in the Hunger Wars. Can two zombies in love lead a revolution and find a cure for death? How I started The Apocalypse Book 2: The Hunger Wars has your answers.

I loved how this book manages to include action, comedy and horror in the same story. The story starts with a bang as Chaz’s son Peter is running the city streets trying to get supplies for his father, while dodging zombies and trying to escape gun happy humans.The book goes along at a pretty brisk pace with the battle for New York and Dolores’s adventures going from Portland to New York.

What I liked most about the book was the humor in it. Like when Dolores and Chaz are sharing a bowl of toes and Chaz remarks that they are out of finger food. I also liked Dolores leading zombies into a bedroom to help some humans escape and commenting to the zombies: “Come and get it, yummy, yummy in your tummy.” Also just hearing Chaz trying to rally the zombies for their battle against humanity was funny and a little scary at the same time.

There are also some great moments of horror in this book such as towards the end when a boy spots a zombie in his yard after loosing his mother to one. This book also has a zombie sex scene that will be painful if you’re a guy. In the scene I loved how the guy realizes that even in his current state he is not immortal and while he is falling apart, he’s still not sure he likes the idea of death.

All in all I enjoyed this book with some minor exceptions. There was a couple of points where the dialog wasn’t very good. The scenes with Breck Palmer and Chaz’s son seemed unnecessary but I think that was meant to start a future storyline.  Also in the middle of the book the story changes directions as Chaz and Dolores try to rescue some humans. At this point I found myself feeling disappointed, I liked where the story was going but towards the end I did like where the author went with it.

During the last few pages of the book I found myself thinking it would look great to see this on a movie screen and it set up a third book in the series. I’m hoping the character of Lumpy gets a bigger role in the next book. How I started The Apocalypse Book 2: The Hunger Wars is a fun book with a lot of heart and I think zombie fiction fans will really love it.

Good Ghost Gone Bad

Posted in News with tags , , , , on January 9, 2014 by David Watson

16061234What would it be like to roam the earth and not be seen or heard? You could see your loved ones, but they wouldn’t know you were there. Everyone is going on with their lives and all you can do is observe. That may be what ghosts feel like, they are shadows of their former selves and not a part of society anymore. They see everything and have nothing but time on their hands. This is the idea behind Good Ghost Gone Bad by Janiera Eldridge.

Brianna Moreno was a normal 22-year-old woman. She had a family, bills to pay and was trying to start a career. That all changed when she was murdered walking through the park one evening. Brianna’s killer is the only one that can see her and he’s happy to know she will be walking the earth unseen for eternity. She wanders the  streets feeling lonely and wanting revenge, but she doesn’t know how to get it.

Just when Brianna thought things couldn’t get worse, she discovers her killer also plans on murdering her sister.  Brianna has no clue on how she can save her, until she meets her killer’s other victims. The ghosts get together and learn how to use their powers to make their killer pay. Vengeance comes with a price though and Brianna may not like what she becomes.

Good Ghost Gone Bad hits on some interesting themes such as loneliness, love, vengeance and not taking anything for granted. I love the way this story begins, the author makes you feel Brianna’s loneliness by describing her walking down the streets and the wind blowing through her. Then she recounts her brutal murder and how her hopes and dreams came to an end. I liked hearing Brianna tell all the little things she missed about being alive such as reading and sleeping. There is a lot of depth to all the characters in this story and some good action sequences.

There were some grammatical errors in this book that took a little away from the story. Also there were some things that didn’t make sense,  like when the ghosts find a victim being held captive by their killer and don’t seem to care. Than later on a ghost saves a person even though his struggle with the killer had already summoned help. I would have liked to know what happened to the people who came to help.

The positives out weigh the negatives in the story.  The killer’s revelations towards the end really made me think and they were a surprise coming from a murderer. I also found the killer’s double life interesting, along with his wife’s attitude towards him. It was also interesting to see how Brianna changed as a person throughout the book and the decisions she makes towards the end.

There is a lot going on in this novella and Janiera Eldridge does a great job of telling a good story and creating memorable characters. This book may have had some flaws but it was a good read and I found myself looking into Janiera’s other works as soon as I finished. Good Ghost Gone Bad is a different kind of ghost story and a good example of how much depth a horror story can have.

Dead High Yearbook by Dutton Books

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , on January 7, 2014 by Emerian Rich

dead-highDead High Yearbook is a hardcover comic book about a pair of dead teens who create a high school year book by matching live photos with dead photos of teens that have passed on. Each dead photo goes with a story and during this yearbook class, you learn about teens, their obsessions, and how they died. A great concept and one that could go further given the proper imaginative writers to work with. As it stands, the art is well done, but I just didn’t find any of the stories that exciting.

Probably the most interesting story is the one titled “Fear Pressure”.  A fat chick and a wimpy boy like each other. They go to a herbal remedy shop where they are promised their bodies will change to their liking. Soon the chick is losing weight and the dude becomes Arnold Schwarzenegger. Both of them are excited and love their new bodies, but then the remedy goes overboard. The muscle man explodes from the pain of his muscles expanding and the skinny chick dissolves into just an eyeball with a tail. In the end, they are together in separate jars, nothing but alien-looking blobs.

Horror fans may dig this book just for the cover. It looks like a real yearbook with a bloody handprint on the front. Who doesn’t want something cool like this to display in their personal library next to their flesh-like Evil Dead book and vampire coffin kit? As for story, this one is plain eye candy with mildly amusing tales.

How did you start reading?

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 5, 2014 by Emerian Rich

Did you all get books, eBooks, or audiobooks for holiday gifts? I did and can’t wait to rip into them, which got me thinking about how I started reading.

I always loved to read, I was good at it and it was one school subject I could always excel in. I don’t think I would have got into the habit of reading so many books if my parents didn’t start a contest where I would get a penny for every book I read in a year. I remember always striving for a 100 so I would get a dollar. I usually surpassed it, but they quickly put a cap of $1.00 on it. I also remember in Alaska, I had access to a thrift store and was allowed to get any five books I wanted and then switch  them back out when I finished them. Being a poor kid, this was a definite perk! I would stay up late reading because it was light all night during a lot of the year. We had these thick shades over the windows to keep out the light, but I kept mine cracked open a little so I could read all night. I remember being so sad when winter started and it started getting dark all day cause then I would have to try and sneak a flashlight!

The_Outsiders_book

That Was Then This is Now

I don’t remember the name of my first book love, but it was a gothic romance with a picture of a stormy sea, lighthouse, and haunting woman on a cliff. Even though I wasn’t a horror addict then, that sort of dark romance was always a draw to me. I do, however, remember my favorite adolescent series was by S. E. Hinton. The Outsiders; That was Then, This is Now; and Rumblefish were my favorite books in junior high. I wanted to know kids like Ponyboy and Sodapop. I think Ponyboy was my first crush – even though he was just a book character. I didn’t see the movie until I was an adult and even though I enjoyed it, it didn’t come close to the feeling I had reading the book for the first time. The fact that the books had character cross-over was a plus.

728541n11862This love affair with books continued and I have been so wrapped up in a book storyline that I think of it while I’m not reading. Some of my favorite characters feel more like family members or friends rather than fictitious people. In college, I connected with many of Anne Rice’s characters, but when Marcel’s heart gets ripped out by his father’s betrayal in Feast of all Saints, I felt like it was my heart breaking.  Her Cry to Heaven actually had me crying on a city bus as I read. Andrew Neiderman’s Bloodchild entertained me to no end and Poppy Z. Brite’s Drawing Blood made me have the most glorious nightmares. These are just pinpoints in my life that have been changed by authors.

I asked how our Horror Addicts started reading, and here are some of the answers:

David Watson: I remember my mom taking me to library story time as a kid and always having a stack of books for me when it was done. The books I was drawn to the most were always horror, baseball, and superheroes. I’m pretty sure the first adult horror novel I read was Stephen King’s Salem’s Lot.

A.d. Vick: Hmm…I’m not sure what inspired me to start reading, but I do know that I could read a few words before I started school. I don’t remember all the authors I read, but I was into a lot of sci-fi as well as nonfiction.

Kristin Battestella: My dad was building this giant custom entertainment unit, so all the books meant for the future bookshelves were piled in the corner while he worked. There was a set of those big old-fashioned leather bound volumes of classics, and I used to just make forts out of them and build myself in and pick a book off the top and start reading. Some I remember being so disgruntled with at the time. Like what, Jane Eyre isn’t a scary story after all! Paradise Lost ugh, but The Twain, Shakespeare, Poe, Dickens, wow. But primarily, I had a lot of books to play with. I think that inspired me to a life of readership. I don’t really believe in this new tablets for toddlers stuff. I think children should be surrounded by tangibly intangibly things, if that makes sense, not pressing some buttons.

Murdo Morrison: Family lore has it that I was reading before I went to school. I don’t know if that is true but I have been reading since I was a small child. My father, who was not particularly bookish, did bring me books and comics so he was also an influence. For a working class kid though the public library was a great resource. I think you had to be ten to graduate from the children’s section and I couldn’t wait. I have always been an ecletic (and voracious) reader. I was one of those kids who read under the covers with a flashlight. In the summers, when school was out, if I got interested in a book I might read it until dawn came or I finished it, whichever came first. A lot of what I read back then, old classics, are probably not much read by young people today. Today my interests lie more at the non-fiction end of the spectrum, particularly history and science, but I also like biographies.

Steven Rose Jr.:  When I would check out ghost story anthologies at my grammar school’s library or the public library when I was about 8 or 9.

So how did you start reading? What interested you? What is your favorite memory of reading as a child? What author inspired you to read their whole series? What story did you read years ago that has become a part of your belief system, your way of looking at the world? Please share in the comments below, we want to know.

Manga Review: Deus Vitae by Takuya Fujima

Posted in News with tags , , , , , on January 3, 2014 by Emerian Rich

deus_coverDeus Vitae first called to me because of the awesome cyber art on the covers.

In 2068 A. D., one of the last humans on earth, Ash, destroys a great city full of androids and saves an android named Lemiu from destruction because she shows human emotions.  This is not a manga for your young niece or nephew. It’s rated 16+ and for good reason. There are many erotic scenes, body shots, and adult themes.

The story starts with a sort of android bible excerpt talking about the ultimate weapon, Leave, being created by the Argus Computer, programmed to protect humanity. Leave is now the mother of all androids.

“…and Argus said to Leave, go forth, and manufacture.  Leave begat four parent bodies- our blessed mothers, free from defect.  Free from impurity. And thus followed the era of a superior mankind, a being of higher intelligence and greater strength.”

Deus Vitae is a sexy, erotic, trek through a post apocalyptic landscape.  The art is so detailed it’s almost as if the work of H. R. Giger came alive with color. This manga features extremely intricate battle drawings that you could spend hours studying.  The fashion is very high-octane, video game-inspired, space station fun.

Extras: Volume 1 has a four pages in full color on glossy paper.

All three mangas are a fun read, and #3 is an extra thick edition.

Happy New Year from HorrorAddicts.net!

Posted in News with tags , , , , on January 1, 2014 by Emerian Rich

Happy New Year from HorrorAddicts.net

HappyNewYearMonsters-sm

Whether you’re spending the New Year cozy by the fire, out partying with friends, working, or snuggled up in bed, we at HorrorAddicts.net want to wish you a very Happy New Year!

We are taking a much-needed deep breath,
before 2014′s horror befalls us!
Hopefully it will be in the form of cool ghoulish books
and not horrible natural disasters!

Here are some of our New Year’s ideas.

Kbatz: Stay Scary!

David Watson: I plan on eating healthier, exercising more, being more positive, and finally reading The Stand since I’ve been saying I was going to read it for the last 35 years.

Emz: I want to do more, publish more, write more, just everything… MORE! I always feel like the clock’s at my heels and I’d like to feel like I’ve gained a few blocks this year so I can stop and have a cup of tea every once in awhile! Time is my monster!

What do you hope for the New Year?

What resolutions have you made?

Any predictions you’d like to share?

And now, a silly video for all of you Monster High lovers.

Happy Boo Year!

Horror Addicts Writer’s Workshop – CLOSES TODAY!

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , , , on December 31, 2013 by Emerian Rich

CLOSES TODAY!

Horror Addicts Writer’s Workshop Announcement!
Deadline: 
December 31st, 2013, 11:59pm PST.

This is an opportunity for aspiring horror or like-genre writers to have their work critiqued by professional writers based on story structure, plot, style, and character development. One lucky writer will have their work produced for a HorrorAddicts.net show for Season 9 in 2014.

Submission criteria:

1)      This workshop is free

2)      You must state you if you are under 18 at the time of submission. If you are a minor, you will be entered in the junior league workshop. We will not accept stories from children younger than 15.

3)      By submitting to the workshop, you are stating this work is yours and yours alone and that you may submit it legally without publication ties. The work cannot be previously published in any form.

4)      Stories must be Gothic, Horror, Steampunk, Clockpunk, Fetish, Dark Fantasy, Horror Romance, or have a horror element of some kind.

5)     All submissions must be emailed to horroraddicts@gmail.com no later than December 31st, 2013, 11:59pm PST.

6)      Submissions can be excerpts from a novel, up to 4,000 words, or can be a complete short story, no more than 4,000 words. Excerpts from a novel, must include the first chapter.

7)      Manuscripts must be presented in the following format:

a)      Font size 10 or 12 point

b)      Font style Courier or Times New Roman

c)      Double spaced

d)      1st page header to state: author name, email address, type of story, and word count.

e)      Following pages header to state: author name, story name, and page number.

f)       Your manuscript must be in either PDF or RTF Format.

g)      No more than 4,000 words.

h)      In the body of the email, give us 100 words or less about you – a bio.

i)       In the subject of the email state: HA WRITER’S WORKSHOP

8)      We will review the first 20 manuscripts absolutely, after that, it is based on the number of pros available. Manuscripts are first come, first serve. If you do not receive an email stating your manuscript was received within two weeks, please send a polite query to:  horroraddicts@gmail.com.

9)      For any other questions, please leave a comment here or email:  horroraddicts@gmail.com

The Fool’s Illusion

Posted in News with tags , , , , , on December 30, 2013 by David Watson

Fool's Illusion BookCover FrontThere are a lot of illusions in our lives. Books, movies television and advertisements all ask us to believe in something that is not necessarily true. Sometimes they say the illusion is real. While other times media is just asking us to suspend our disbelief. If we believe in an illusion we are a fool.  For example we might think people who believed in ancient mythology are fools. Some people who don’t believe in bigfoot might call people who believe in him, fools. There are also times that we create our own illusions like when we dream and wake up thinking the dream was real.

Another  example of a fool believing an illusion is when you see a magician sawing a women in half. It might look like the woman is really being cut in two, but its a magician’s trick. One person may know its an illusion but another may believe it. Illusions are all around us, even what we think is reality may really be an illusion.

Figuring out the difference between illusion and reality can make for great storytelling. This is the main theme in The Fool’s Illusion by Steven Rose Jr. This anthology begins with a great non fiction piece on what illusions are, which was well written and really set the mood for the following stories. I really liked Steven’s observations on how sometimes we think something will make us happy and in reality they don’t and how we deceive ourselves with drugs or television to escape everyday life. In the intro Steven points out that everything is an illusion and its up to us how we interpret it.

I thought all the stories in this collection were good but there were five that really stood out. The first one was The Inheritance. This was a horror story about a man who inherits the family estate and  has to deal with the curse that comes with it. He is warned to ignore the sounds coming from the cellar but curiosity gets the best of him and he finds the reason why college students around town are dropping like flies. This story mixes humor and horror with a great protagonist.

Another story I liked was Coming Out. Puberty is a rough period in your life and its even worse when you have a second one and become a different thing all together. I really enjoyed the relationship between the young boy and girl in this one and watching him figure out what he truly was. I would love to see this one expanded into a novel.

I also enjoyed Digital Love At First Sight which is about how one person manages to fall in love with someone who is a billboard model and not a real person. There is  a good theme here about how you can’t have love without pain. My favorite in this anthology was the futuristic Planet Of The Dead which is about a murder mystery on a cemetery planet. I’ve never read a story that combines Science Fiction and gothic horror but this one manages to do it.

Another one not to be overlooked is The Bazaar which takes a humorous look at mass consumerism.The Fool’s Illusion has a little something for everyone.  I enjoyed the concept behind this anthology and look forward to seeing more fiction and non-fiction by Steven Rose Jr.

Horror Addicts Writer’s Workshop – Closes in 2 Days!

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , , , on December 29, 2013 by Emerian Rich

Horror Addicts Writer’s Workshop Announcement!
Deadline: 
December 31st, 2013, 11:59pm PST.

This is an opportunity for aspiring horror or like-genre writers to have their work critiqued by professional writers based on story structure, plot, style, and character development. One lucky writer will have their work produced for a HorrorAddicts.net show for Season 9 in 2014.

Submission criteria:

1)      This workshop is free

2)      You must state you if you are under 18 at the time of submission. If you are a minor, you will be entered in the junior league workshop. We will not accept stories from children younger than 15.

3)      By submitting to the workshop, you are stating this work is yours and yours alone and that you may submit it legally without publication ties. The work cannot be previously published in any form.

4)      Stories must be Gothic, Horror, Steampunk, Clockpunk, Fetish, Dark Fantasy, Horror Romance, or have a horror element of some kind.

5)     All submissions must be emailed to horroraddicts@gmail.com no later than December 31st, 2013, 11:59pm PST.

6)      Submissions can be excerpts from a novel, up to 4,000 words, or can be a complete short story, no more than 4,000 words. Excerpts from a novel, must include the first chapter.

7)      Manuscripts must be presented in the following format:

a)      Font size 10 or 12 point

b)      Font style Courier or Times New Roman

c)      Double spaced

d)      1st page header to state: author name, email address, type of story, and word count.

e)      Following pages header to state: author name, story name, and page number.

f)       Your manuscript must be in either PDF or RTF Format.

g)      No more than 4,000 words.

h)      In the body of the email, give us 100 words or less about you – a bio.

i)       In the subject of the email state: HA WRITER’S WORKSHOP

8)      We will review the first 20 manuscripts absolutely, after that, it is based on the number of pros available. Manuscripts are first come, first serve. If you do not receive an email stating your manuscript was received within two weeks, please send a polite query to:  horroraddicts@gmail.com.

9)      For any other questions, please leave a comment here or email:  horroraddicts@gmail.com

Manga Review: Doors of Chaos by Ryoko Mitsuki

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , on December 28, 2013 by Emerian Rich

doorsofchaosI happened upon Doors of Chaos by accident while on vacation in Los Angeles, visiting a store called Anime Love. This manga by Ryoko Mitsuki is about twin sisters who control the four doors that protect their world from descending into chaos. Clarissa is the key to open the doors. Mizeria is the key to close the doors. On their “coming of age” day, their guardian and teacher, Rikhter, kidnaps Clarissa and begins to open all the doors through which demons pour through. Mizeria, the sister left behind, is suddenly introduced to a race of people who have been sent to protect her. She is completely confused. She thought she was the less powerful sister and that Rikhter was noble. She soon finds he is using her sister Clarissa for his own gains and that Mizeria is the only one who can stop the destruction of her world.

This manga’s art stays true to the intricate goth-loli style. The girls are clad in multiple petticoats and long hair in ribbons with elaborate tattoos trailing all over their pale skin. The men of this world are clothed in a mix of traditional Victorian frock coats with ascots and French Renaissance breeches with knee boots. The other worldly creature that comes to protect Mizeria is more of an anime waif with bandages like Rei Ayanami from Neon Genesis Evangelion. He wears what looks to be animal skins, chains, and sports the same sort of tattooing the girls do. There’s also a freaky guy cloaked in what can only be called a trenchcoat length straightjacket.

The art in this manga is top shelf. If for no other reason, pick this up to stare at the excellent artistic style of this manga. It doesn’t have much of those annoying reiterations that some anime books have when the chapters switch. The story is good and the dialog makes sense. There is a touch of the slave fetish in this book as well as very mild nudity. Demons are a touch gorier that normal, but violence is nothing out of the common way.
I recommend this manga for any anime reader and one of the few I would read a traditional novel about.

Clocks, keys, demons, and an excellent story, what more can you ask for in a manga?

A Vampire’s Guide To New Orleans

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , on December 27, 2013 by Horror Addicts Guest

A VAMPIRE’S GUIDE TO NEW ORLEANS

By

Steven P. Unger

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I wrote this article on New Orleans as an homage to one of my favorite cities, one still fresh in my mind and heart after a long-postponed revisit there as an invitee to the Vampire Film Festival’s Midsummer Nightmare last year.

All of the photos in this article are my own, except for the portrait of the Compte de St. Germain and the two pictures otherwise credited.  Most of the text is a compendium of others’ words and research.  With apologies to anyone I may have inadvertently left out, my online research for this chapter led me to articles from hubpages.com; Kalila K. Smith (whose Vampire Tour I can recommend from personal experience—see http://www.zoominfo.com/p/Kalila-Smith/178024410); New Orleans Ghosts.com; GO NOLA; Brian Harrison; Haunted Shreveport Bossier.com; and Frommers.com.  I’ve borrowed freely from all of these sources and recommend them highly to those who would like to delve more deeply into the secrets of this unique city.

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If you have ever walked the dark, rainy streets of the French Quarter at night, you have seen the voodoo shops selling their gris-gris and John-the-Conqueror Root.  You’ve seen the old woman in the French Market whose pointing finger foretells your death  And if you know the right person to ask and you ask in the right way, you’ll be shown to the vampire clubs.

I’ve been in those clubs and seen people who believe with their heart, body, and soul that they are real, live vampires.  And some of the people in those clubs are scared to death of a select group of vampires who have only appeared there a few times, and always in the darkest of night.

By day, of course, the vampire clubs are closed and locked or turned back into regular tourist bars . . .

–Crazy Horse’s Ghost

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St. Louis Cemetery (Photo Courtesy of David Yeagley)

Like the Spanish Moss that drapes the trees of the nearby bayous, mystery and the occult have shrouded New Orleans since its birth.  For hundreds of years, families there have practiced a custom called “sitting up with the dead.”  When a family member dies, a relative or close family friend stays with the body until it is placed into one of New Orleans’ above-ground tombs or is buried.  The body is never left unattended.

There are many reasons given for this practice today—the Old Families will tell you it’s simply respect for the dead—but this tradition actually dates back to the vampire folklore of medieval Eastern Europe.  First, the mirrors are covered and the clocks are stopped.  While sitting up with the deceased, the friend or family member is really watching for signs of paranormal activity, e.g.,. if a cat is seen to jump over, walk across, or stand on top of the coffin; if a dog barks or growls at the coffin; or if a horse shies from it, these are all signs of impending vampirism.  Likewise, if a shadow falls over the corpse.  At that point, steps are taken to prevent the corpse from returning from the dead.

Ways to stop a corpse—especially a suicide—from becoming a vampire include burying it face down at a crossroads.  Often family members place a sickle around the neck to keep the corpse from sitting up; stuff the mouth with garlic and sew it closed; or mutilate the body, usually by decapitating the head and placing it at the bottom of the feet.  But the most common remedy for impending vampirism is to drive a stake into the corpse, decapitate it, then burn the body to ashes.  This method is still believed to be the only sure way to truly destroy the undead.

THE CASKET GIRLS

Ask any member of the Old Families who the first vampires to come to New Orleans were, and they’ll tell you the same:  it was the Casket Girls.

Much of the population that found their way to New Orleans in the early 1700s were unwelcome anywhere else:  deported galley slaves and felons, trappers, gold-hunters and petty criminals.  People who wouldn’t be noticed if they went missing.

Sources vary on the specifics, but the basic story is that the city’s founders asked French officials to send over prospective wives for the colonists.  They obliged and after months at sea these young girls showed up on the docks, pale and gaunt, bearing only as many belongings as would fit inside a wooden chest or “casquette,” which appears to have been the 18th Century equivalent of an overnight bag.  They were taken to the Ursuline Convent, which still stands today, where the girls were said to have resided until the nuns could arrange for marriages.

Some accounts say they were fine young women, virgins brought up in church-run orphanages; some say they were prostitutes.  But there are many who swear they were vampires, vampires who continue to rise from their “casquettes” on the third floor to break through the windows and hurricane shutters—windows and shutters that always seem to need repairing after the calmest of nights—to feed upon the transient crowds that for centuries have filled the darkened alleys of the Quarter.

Finally in 1978, after centuries of rumors and stories, two amateur reporters demanded to see these coffins.  The archbishop, of course, denied them entrance.  Undaunted, the next night the two men climbed over the convent wall with their recording equipment and set up their workstation below. The next morning, the reporters’ equipment was found strewn about the lawn.  And on the front porch steps of the convent were found the almost decapitated bodies of these two men.  Eighty percent of their blood was gone.  To this day, no one has ever solved the murders.

LE COMPTE DE ST. GERMAIN

 

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Le Compte de St. Germain and the Balcony at Ursuline and Royal

If there is one person who encapsulates the lure and the danger of the vampire, it is the Compte de Saint Germain.  Making his first appearance in the court of Louis XV of France, the Comte de Saint Germain endeared himself to the aristocrats by regaling them with events from his past.  An alchemist by trade, he claimed to be in possession of the “elixir of life,” and to be more than 6,000 years old.

At other times the Count at claimed to be a son of Francis II Rakoczi, the Prince of Transylvania, born in 1712, possibly legitimate, possibly by Duchess Violante Beatrice of Bavaria. This would account for his wealth and fine education.  It also explains why kings would accept him as one of their own.

Contemporary accounts from the time record that despite being in the midst of many banquets and invited to the finest homes, he never ate at any of them.  He would, however, sip at a glass of red wine.  After a few years, he left the French court and moved to Germany, where he was reported to have died. However, people continued to spot him throughout Europe even after his death.

In 1903, a handsome and charismatic young Frenchman named Jacques Saint Germain, claiming to be a descendant of the Compte, arrived in New Orleans, taking residence in a house at the corner of Royal and Ursuline streets. Possessing an eye for beauty, Jacques was seen on the streets of the French Quarter with a different young woman on his arm every evening.  His excursions came to an abrupt end one cold December night, when a woman’s piercing scream was heard coming from Jacques’ French Quarter home.  The scream was quickly followed by a woman who flung herself from the second story window to land on the street below.  As bystanders rushed to her aid, she told them how Saint Germain attacked and bit her, and that she jumped out of the window to escape.  She died later that evening at Charity Hospital in New Orleans.

By the time the New Orleans police kicked in the door of Saint Germain’s home, he had escaped.  However, what they did find was disturbing enough.  The stench of death greeted the nostrils of the policemen, who found not only large bloodstains in the wooden flooring, but even wine bottles filled with human blood.  The house was declared a crime scene and sealed off.  From that evil night to the present day, no one has lived in that home in the French Quarter.  It is private property and all taxes have been paid to date, but no one has been able to contact the present owner or owners.  The only barriers between the valuable French Quarter property and the outside world are the boarded-up balcony windows and a small lock on the door.  Whispers of Jacques sightings are prevalent, and people still report seeing him in the French Quarter.  Could it be the enigmatic Compte checking up on his property?

 

ANNE RICE AND THE VAMPIRE CHRONICLES

 There is no one who has done more to bring the vampire into the New Age than Anne Rice, born and bred in New Orleans, with her novel Interview with the Vampire and the films and books that followed.  Those who have profited mightily from the popularity of True Blood and Twilight owe her a great debt.

The ultra-retro St. Charles Avenue Streetcar will take you close to Lafayette Cemetery No. 1, the gravesite of Louis de Pointe du Lac’s (Lestat’s companion and fellow vampire in Rice’s The Vampire Chronicles) wife and child and where Louis was turned into a vampire by Lestat.

The Styrofoam tomb from the film Interview with the Vampire is gone now, but you can easily find the site where it stood, the wide empty space in the cemetery nearest the corner of Coliseum and Sixth Street.

During the filming of Interview with the Vampire, the blocks between 700 and 900 Royal Street in the French Quarter were used for exterior shots of the home of the vampires Louis, Lestat, and Claudia, trapped  through time with an adult mind in the body of a six-year-old girl.  In fact, the streets there and around Jackson Square were covered in mud for the movie as they had been in the 1860s when the scenes took place.

The perfectly preserved Gallier House at 1132 Royal Street was Anne Rice’s inspiration for the vampires’ house, and very close to that is the Lalaurie House, at 1140 Royal Street.  Delphine Lalaurie, portrayed by Kathy Bates in American Horror Story:  Coven, was a real person who lived in that house and was indeed said to have tortured and bathed in the blood of her slaves—even the blood of a slave girl’s newborn baby—to preserve her youth.  She was never seen again in New Orleans after an angry mob partially destroyed her home on April 10, 1834.  There is a scene in American Horror Story where Delphine escapes from the coven’s mansion and sits dejectedly on the curb in front of her old home. A private residence now, some locals still swear that the Lalaurie House is haunted, and that the clanking of chains can be heard through the night.

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Built in 1789, Madame John’s Legacy (632 Dumaine Street) is the oldest surviving residence in the Mississippi Valley.  In Interview with the Vampire, caskets are shown being carried out of the house as Louis’ (Brad Pitt) voice-over describes the handiwork of his housemates Claudia and Lestat:  “An infant prodigy with a lust for killing that matched his own.  Together, they finished off whole families.”

RESOURCES FOR VAMPIRES

 

As a service to this most vampire-friendly city (http://www.vampirewebsite.net/vampirefriendlycities.html), the New Orleans Vampire Association describes itself as a “non-profit organization comprised of self-identifying vampires representing an alliance between Houses within the Community in the Greater New Orleans Area.  Founded in 2005, NOVA was established to provide support and structure for the vampire and other-kin subcultures and to provide educational and charitable outreach to those in need.”

Their Web site also points out that “every year since Hurricane Katrina, the founding members of NOVA have taken food out on Easter, Thanksgiving, and Christmas to those who are hungry and homeless.”  (See http://www.neworleansvampireassociation.org/index.html.)

FANGTASIA, named with permission from HBO after the club featured in True Blood, is an affiliation of New Orleans-based musicians and film and TV producers who for three years have presented a multi-day vampire-centric event of the same name, the first two years at 1135 Decatur and last year at the Howlin’ Wolf.  You can follow their plans and exploits via their blog athttp://www.fangtasiaevent.com/fangtasia-blog/.

Next year FANGTASIA hopes to create “the South by Southwest of Global Vampire Culture” at an as yet undisclosed location in Greater New Orleans.  As they describe it:

Moving beyond this third consecutive year, FANGTASIA is building a broader international draw that will bring fans to not only party at club nights, but also attend conferences, elegant fashion shows, film & TV screenings, celebrity events as well as an  international Halloween/party gear buyers’ market.

Participants will experience gourmet sensations, explore our sensuous city and haunted bayous… as well as epically celebrate the Global Vampire Culture in all its sultry, seductive, diverse and darkly divine incarnations.  Additionally, FANGTASIA is strategically poised months prior to Halloween to provide corporate sponsors and vendors a perfect window to connect with their core demographic.  This also allows FANGTASIA to actively support and promote existing major Halloween events in New Orleans and beyond.

On the subject of vampiric Halloween events, for 25 years the Anne Rice Vampire Lestat Fan Club (http://arvlfc.com/index.html) has presented the annual Vampire Ball (http://arvlfc.com/ball.html), now as part of the four-day UndeadCon (http://arvlfc.com/undeadcon.html) at the end of October; and on the weekend nearest Halloween Night (for example, November 1, 2014) the Endless Night Festival and New Orleans Vampire Ball takes place at the House of Blues (http://www.endlessnight.com/venue/).

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The Boutique du Vampyre (http://feelthebite.com/boutique2013.html) is a moveable (literally—they’re known to change locations on short notice) feast of vampire and Goth-related odds and ends, many of them locally made.  There are books as well—you may even find a copy of In the Footsteps of Dracula:  A Personal Journey and Travel Guide if they’re not sold out.  Their Web site itself holds a surprise treat:  a link to a free video cast of the first two seasons of Vampire Mob(http://vampiremob.com/Vampire_Mob/Vampire_Mob.html), which is just what the title implies.

Finally, no visit to the Crescent City would be complete, for Vampire and Mortal alike, without a taste of absinthe (http://www.piratesalleycafe.com/absinthe.html), or even more than a taste.  There is a ritual to the preparation and serving of absinthe that should not be missed; one of the sites that does this authentically is the Pirates Alley Café and Absinthe House at 622 Pirates Alley.

***

            Steven P. Unger is the best-selling author of In the Footsteps of Dracula:  A Personal Journey and Travel Guide, published and distributed by World Audience Publishers (http://www.amazon.com/Footsteps-Dracula-Personal-Journey-Travel/dp/1935444530/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1262485478&sr=1-1).

            In the Footsteps of Dracula can be ordered from your local bookstore or online atwww.amazon.com,. www.amazon.co.ukwww.barnesandnoble.comwww.amazon.fr,www.amazon.dewww.amazon.com/Kindle, or with free delivery worldwide fromwww.bookdepository.co.uk.

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https://www.amazon.com/author/steven_p._unger_wordworker

Happy Holidays from HorrorAddicts.net

Posted in News on December 25, 2013 by Emerian Rich

Happy Holidays to all you non-hibernating addicts… or those of you who have opened one eye to check the feed… It’s okay, it’s not spring yet, go back to sleep.

Here is what some of our staff are saying about what they do to celebrate.

Dan Shaurette We watch The Nightmare before Christmas, naturally. We have in the past decorated black Christmas trees with gothy ornaments. We’re in a new place this year, so I don’t know what the plans are for this Xmas. Jack Mangan‘s Santa Thing is a great read/listen for horror Xmas tales.

Click to listen to Jack’s Santa Thing:


David Watson Every Christmas someone always gets me a DVD of public domain horror movies so I spend the day after Christmas watching cheesy horror films. Last year it was a Full Moon marathon.

Kristin Battestella Snouffer Last year was the first time I didn’t do it in 6 years, but I usually read A Christmas Carol every season. Keeps me in the macabre holiday mood.

Mimielle Marek LeFauve Plastic spiders in the tree. It’s horrid, it’s mean, and it’s so damn funny! I do it every year, sometimes when visiting or in public trees…you know the little ring party favor black spiders from Halloween? Those. I put a clean one in someone’s cocoa once. Only once.

Emerian Rich For Yule, I decorated our balcony with scary icicle lights that look like a Abominable Snowman will emerge from it! I need to get or make a huge Bumble now, so he can scare the kids walking by. I love to watch classic kids shows like Rudolph and The Year Without a Christmas to see the horror aspects of these shows. In Rudolph the Bumble is the best part! And I like the Heat Miser/Snow Miser songs. The little mini-me’s in this classic are creepy and the characters are not huggable, loveables, they are creepy almost monsters that live in caves and love torturing people!

So, however you celebrate (or don’t), have HAPPY HOLIDAYS! Do you have a unique way of “horrifying” your holidays? We want to know. :) Comment below.

A Christmas Carol Vision by Willo Hausman

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , on December 24, 2013 by Horror Addicts Guest

A Christmas Carol

VISION

Director: Willo Hausman 

Melancholy Lurking 2Being a director who is smitten with ghosts and monsters I was immediately drawn to taking on the job of directing a theatrical version of Charles Dickens’ haunting tale.  When I think of A Christmas Carol I go immediately to the world that the author so clearly created in this classic story. None of the schmaltzy over-bright happy-go-lucky stuff that is so often presented in this traditional holiday fare.

The Undertaker Man_Samuel Millard

So the first rule of thumb in taking on this endeavor, was that I would be allowed free rein to stick to the original story with all it’s strange and ominous intent.  The elements that make this novel intriguing and caused its incredible success depict frightening ghosts (four of them to be precise), depressing poverty and illness, the permanence of death and a central character that is an incredibly mean-spirited man, living his life in miserly bitterness. It is only at the very end that Scrooge is redeemed and if we have gone through this truly dark journey alongside him, experiencing all the nightmares that he does, then we too will rejoice in his enlightenment, as well as our own.

Bob CratchitI first pitched the idea of putting up A Christmas Carol to Steve Coleman, The Throckmorton Theater’s fabulously gifted set designer. After realizing that we were kindred artistic spirits and connected creatively in numerous ways, the notion of putting up this play burned that much brighter in my mind.  I felt even more driven to direct this piece on that particular stage, surrounded by such appropriate ambiance. There is a very old-fashioned charm to this space (it began as a cabaret in the 1920s) and it really rang true for the vision I had in mind for this production. This inspiration was fueled even further after reading a certain version of the script, written in England (by Charles Ludlam) and true to the original tale; shadowy, mysterious, witty and finally, upbeat.

The Bag LadyAs Scrooge enters the realm of his memories, confronts the truth of his present and imagines a future without hope, we learn what truly matters; truth, kindness and heart. What better way to impart lessons then with spooky apparitions, intense imagery, haunting realizations, rich dialogue and in the end, utter spectacular joy? Dickens does it best with his original intent, just as the fairy tales of old were wont to do. With this production we planned to stick as close as possible to the real message within the authors words and use his inventive tactics to present them.

Bag Lady Pomegranate

We ended up with a terrifically twisted and authentic set (which ultimately went through 18 shifts during the show, carried out primarily by the performers themselves); a talented cast of 25 (aged 7-77), consisting of both professionals and amateurs; old-fashioned stage trickery (we used black-lights and human-made sounds to announce the arrival of Marley’s ghost); new-fangled elements (9 fantastic projections depicting Scrooge’s memories and ghostly travels, filmed by the masterful Mark Bowen) and mesmerizing Ghost Girllive sound fx (Steve Kirk, our composer, designed an incredible cinematic score, which underlined the action and added to the shadowy mood). We also mixed in a few modern day splashes via our fantastic costume designer, Morganne Newson, who brought some steam-punk hues to her slate of Victorian clothing and then topped it all off with fantastically unique looks created by Maya Lopez and Leonie Meissner, our hair and make-up designers, who worked their magic on our diverse set of characters.  Many of the actors played up to three roles each and needed to change looks fairly rapidly.  After the initial opening night jitters, the play acquired a great rhythm and the audience (including Robin Williams) laughed and appeared in awe at all the right places.  Happily, I even heard reports of some folk being rather frightened by the eerie specters and mesmerizing illuminations.

The Nephews Party

Currently in the works are a grand scale version of FRANKENSTEIN, a theatrical trilogy of GRIMM and a play based on the intriguing life of my mother, actress Diane Varsi. In active development are two feature films: CLARE, a murder mystery revolving around a clan of modern-day clan witches living in the midst of a bustling metropolis (screenplay by Maria Bernhard) and AMONG THE WONDERFUL (based on a novel by Stacy Carlson); a vintage circus tale set at Barnum’s NYC museum circa 1842 with a giantess and a taxidermist at the center of the mix.  Also on the slate are a sitcom THE VIBE (written by Jon Mosher), an Edward Gorey based film, a Buster Keaton bio-movie and a documentary film about mental illness.

Willo Hausman Bio

Director WilloAfter graduating NYU with a BFA in acting, Willo was the Founding Artistic Director of NRG, a theatre company in NYC which primarily employed a film-based crew and performed verite’ style throughout Manhattan.  NRGS’ most notable endeavor, THE HOBBYWOOD CANTEEN, was performed on a soundstage at Culver Studios in LA where it received much kudos and notoriety.  While attending he Tisch School at NYU Willo was also honored with the opportunity to perform in a few David Mamet movies where she honed her skills as an actor.  Willo enriched her film knowledge by continuing training on many high-powered film sets, working in a multitude of capacities, including NOBODY’S FOOL (Stand-in/Perdiem-Envelope-Stuffer and Art Department Production Assistant), FAMILY THING (Set PA and Casting Assistant), PEOPLE VS. LARRY FLYNT (Extras Casting Director), TWILIGHT (No, not That Twilight, a different film with Paul Newman and Susan Sarandon) as a Producer’s Assistant and MAN ON THE MOON (Camera Assistant).  Willo also spent many years working by her father’s side at his NY-based production company, CINEHAUS.

FAIRIE was Willo’s filmic directorial debut. A fantastical tale about 9 fairy creatures celebrating the new millennium at the Hollywood sign. Willo also shot and directed LAST DAY AT CINETEL, a short work in the reality genre, humorously revealing the inherent frustrations of being an artist trapped in a menial job. Recently, Willo directed a well-received and elaborate theatrical production of A CHRISTMAS CAROL, combining cinema, an original score, Victorian Steampunk costumes and an exquisite gothic-hued set. She has also helmed an innovative stage version of DRACULA.

Willo is the founder of GRYPHON PICTURES, a LA and SF-based film company.

MY COMPANY WEBSITE

www.gryphonpictures.com

http://www.gryphonpictures.com

FACEBOOK PAGE-GRYPHON PICTURES

https://www.facebook.com/gryphonpictures

Press Release: Exoskeleton

Posted in News with tags , , , , on December 23, 2013 by Horror Addicts Guest

16086863A convicted felon is given a choice following his sentencing… Serve a twenty-five year conventional prison term, or spend 365 days in a new, experimental corrections program… He opts for the latter, only to realize he has made a horrible mistake.

A dark tale of science spun dangerously out of control, EXOSKELETON will leave even the most jaded of readers quaking in their boots.

” … a cleverly executed [blend] of science fiction, suspense and horror. … a certified dark journey into madness.” – David Gammon, HORROR NEWS

“Stadler – an experimental physicist by trade – effectively uses his background working in government and defense labs in painting vivid, appropriately clinical looks at the very base concept of torture. He spins it, however, into a horrifying tale of supernatural vengeance, one wrought with complex questions of faith, spirituality, and the after-life.”- Chris Hallock, CHIZINE

“Exoskeleton utilizes several science fiction and horror tropes: the medical experiment gone horribly wrong, the malevolent secret government organization that will stop at nothing to achieve its aims, vengeful spirits against which the fleshbound have no defense, [still] Stadler never lets the story devolve into cliche, but instead uses these tropes with originality and energy.” – Tracie McBride, EXQUISITE CORPSE

Find EXOSKELETON online: http://www.darkhallpress.com/exoskeleton

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Shane Stadler is an experimental physicist. He has worked at numerous government research and defense laboratories, and is currently a professor of physics at a major research university. EXOSKELETON is his first novel.

ABOUT DARK HALL PRESS:

Dark Hall seeks to promote a diverse body of quality works, advancing the tradition of Horror storytelling as well as providing exposure for up-and-coming writers.

Our list includes works of supernatural and non-supernatural horror, as well as cross-genre pollinations (sci-fi/horror, fantasy/horror, noir/horror, etc.) and experimental works.

Horror novels for Christmas

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , on December 22, 2013 by David Watson

HA tag

Hey Horror Addicts,

Christmas is very close and hopefully you have gotten your shopping done already. Just in case you haven’t though, we here at horroraddicts.net have you covered. Instead of going to the mall and finding something, why not consider getting that special someone an eBook. There are a lot of good horror eBooks out there, the list below is one that deals with authors that have been featured on Season 8 of the HorrorAddicts.net podcast.

First of all there are books from our staff that would make great gifts:

Night’s Knights by Emerian Rich is about vampires on a quest for knowledge attempting to make the perfect offspring.

The Vampire Family by Kristin Battestella. This is the first in a series of vampire books that looks into an ancient vampire family.

Lilith’s Love  by Dan Shaurette is about the vampire Lilith and combines Science Fiction, horror and romance.

Silhouette by Mark Vale is about a kid who moves into a home and finds that something sinister may be living in the back yard.

Season 8 of Horror Addicts had a lot to offer including the featured author from episode 85. The Darkness: The Spectrum Trilogy Book 1 by Crystal Connor is a story of witchcraft, alchemy and power.

Episode 87 featured former Horror Addicts staff member Ed Pope who had a story in our horrible disasters anthology and has written the hard core horror story: The Herd.

Episode 88 featured Rick Kitagawa who has art and some short fiction available on his website.

Episode 89 featured Julianne Snow who has written the zombie novel Days With The Undead.

Episode 90 featured Rish Outfield author of The Calling which is about a religious cult and a sinister calling.

Greg Chapman was our featured author in episode 91. He has several stories available including one about a seventy year old man who dreads Halloween but he is about to relive his nightmarish past when a trick-or-treater knocks on his door in: The Last Night In October.

Denise Verrico was our author on episode 92 and she has written a vampire series called Immortyl Revolution. Annals of the Immortyls is a good intro to the series and includes short stories featuring the vampires in her books.

Episode 93 highlighted are Masters Of the Macabre contest one author who has not been mentioned already is Donald Pitsiladis who has a story in the vampire anthology Fresh Blood.

Episode 94 featured the wicked women writers contest. This episode included 13 female authors who all have products available on amazon.com. To find out more about them listen to the episode.

Episode 95 featured Shana Abe’ who has several books available including The Sweetest Dark about a girl in Victorian England who finds out she is much more than she thought she was.

Episode 96 included author and storyteller Patricia Santos. Her book is called The Weeping Woman is a police mystery that is based on an old Mexican ghost story.

Episode 97 was our season finale and it included Dan Shaurette’s interview with Lucy Blue. Lucy Blue has a vampire series called Bound In Darkness which includes the book Dark Angel.

If you can’t find any good Christmas gifts in this post take a look back through are past blog posts on horroraddicts.net and you will surely find something that your loved ones would like for Christmas. Merry Christmas from all of us at HorrorAddicts.net.

HorrorAddicts.net Flashback – Holiday Horror

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , , on December 21, 2013 by Emerian Rich

Our very first episode with holiday horror was Michele Roger’s Santa Claws, way back on episode #13. That episode has been locked in the vault ever since we switched to Libsyn… I will try to dig that out and re-post, but for now, there are several other holiday related shows I am going to post here in case you need some HorrorAddicts.net Holiday fun.

#52 Jack Mangan, Holiday Horror Theme

“Jack Mangan’s Santa Thing is a great read/listen for horror Xmas tales.” ~ Dan Shaurette


#53 Cal Miller, Holiday Horror Theme

“Cal Miller’s Scary Santa is just the thing to make you rethink the big red guy.” ~ Emerian Rich


WWW Challenge Special – Holiday Horror Challenge

 “It never ceases to amaze me how great a job these women do with holiday horror!” ~Rhonda R. Carpenter


Press Release: The Carnival 13

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 20, 2013 by Emerian Rich

TheCarnival13_FrontCover_FinalThe Carnival 13
Come one, come all! Step right up and join thirteen masters of macabre literature as they take you on a journey unlike anything you’ve ever traveled. We’ve got freaks, fantasy and fear; all lined up waiting to take your breath away.

Will you be tempted by the Freaks of the Flesh? Astounded by the Freaks of Fantasy? Baffled by the Freaks of the Mind? All this and more await you for just the small price of three tickets… and your soul.

Featuring all-new and exclusive chapters from John Everson; Jason Darrick; Dan Dillard; Charles Colyott; Dale Eldon; James Garcia Jr.; Matt Schiariti; Anne Michaud; Rebecca Besser; Armand Rosamilia; Jon Olson; Brent Abell; and Julianne Snow – this twisted tale will leave you gasping until your last breath.

Available at:

Amazon: US, UK, Canada, Germany, Spain, Italy, France, Brazil, Japan, India, Mexico

CreateSpace

Smashwords

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All proceeds to benefit Scares That Care! – here’s some information about them:

Scares That Care! is an IRS approved 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that provides money, toys and other items to help sick children. We have two other programs consisting of Scares For Pairs, where we help women fighting breast cancer; We also have partnered with horror icon Kane Hodder, and we created the I Helped Kane program, where we provide assistance to those children who have suffered serious burn injuries.

Led by horror film director and retired police officer Joe Ripple, this benefit will utilize the fan base of the horror, haunt and Halloween genres to raise funds and awareness for those in need. We plan to have a GREAT time holding benefits, by showing films, having silent auctions and maybe getting lucky enough to have a few celebrity appearances along the way. Our success depends upon YOU.

Won’t you please help us make someone’s dream come true? Come on, Horror Fans! Unite for a common cause! WE ARE AN ALL VOLUNTEER ORGANIZATION, WHICH MEANS THAT 100% OF YOUR DONATION GOES TO THOSE WHO NEED IT!

Manga Review: The Qwaser of Stigmata by Hiroyuki Yoshino and Kenetsu Sato

Posted in News with tags , , , , on December 19, 2013 by Emerian Rich

1427816743.01.LZZZZZZZWhen I first saw these books on the shelves, I got excited. Qwaser (even though spelled differently) brought up images of space and the Red Dwarf episode (Waiting for God) when Rimmer mistakes the garbage pod for a quazar warrior. Stigmata is of course the legendary story of the bleeding wounds of Christ on humans.

This story has shades of that, but is so much more. I enjoy religious conspiracy as much as the next guy, but this tale was a bit much even for me. If you are sensitive to sexualized stories, especially mixed with religion, you will not enjoy this series.

Not only is there the normal large boob and crotch shots that come with most manga of this kind, there is religious meaning to breast feeding and feeding people much older than babies going on.

The story goes like this…

There is a Russian Orthodox kind of religious sect that are sworn to protect a girl and there are others coming to kill her. Every time the baddies come to kill her, her protector must suckle power from her breasts to defeat them. Sasha, the warrior protector is pretty cool. His weapon of choice is a scythe, he has a large scar across his face, and is not the worst guy to have drinking your breast milk.

Although I liked the general concept, the breastfeeding got old really fast. I also didn’t like the shots of young girls being tied up, tortured, and raped against their will. Even Sasha, who is portrayed as this hot young guy, has no interest in the girls sexually… he just uses them for their milk and otherwise ignores them.

If you are in to S&M, you might want to check it out, although I think it may have too much back-story to be enjoyable to you. If you are in to religious conspiracy, you may want to skip this one.

While the warrior, priest, and baddies can be cool sometimes, it wasn’t enough for me to want to go past Volume 2.

Tanya Paoli – Model, Singer, Budding Scream Queen

Posted in News with tags , , , on December 17, 2013 by kbattz

Tonight Kbatz is chatting with the lovely but still scary local actress, model, and entertainer Tanya Paoli!

Growing up in Delaware and based now in Philadelphia – an area not necessarily known for its filmmaking – when did you decide you wanted to be in front of the camera? How did your first film work come about?

 

I always had a fascination with acting, and having my picture taken. I took drama in high school, and had lots of practice, because my father was pretty strict(haha). I learned to be quite the actress. I feel that it comes naturally for me. I always had a vivid imagination, and would play out scenarios I imagined and created as a child. In a way it also kind of started with me being a singer in an all girl punk band called the Impatients. I got over feeling nervous singing in front of a large crowd, and grew to feel very comfortable with myself as a performer. I had a friend tell me that this woman, Kat Lehmer was making a film in Wilmington and Philadelphia about vampires. She had told me that Kat was looking for people to play vampires, and my friend had thought of me. I was completely intrigued. I had never acted in a film before, but wanted to dive in headfirst at the chance. I auditioned for the part of Ava in Kat’s film Mortal, and got the part. I had a lot of fun working with Kat and the rest of the cast and crew. Kat knew I didn’t have much experience at the time, but I think she saw something in me that she knew would be perfect for Ava, and she became a mentor to me, and a close friend. I learned so much from working with her.

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You work mostly in horror and grindhouse style projects with a lot of skin and gore.  What won’t you do for the camera? What type of material crosses the line?

I have given this some thought before, and I know that I am pretty open minded which makes me a good person to be in horror films. I’d rather not set limitations for my self without knowing what is being asked of me. I’ve never been asked to get naked on film, and I’m not sure what I would say. I suppose it depends on the script. I wouldn’t do something I wasn’t comfortable with. I’m not so much into gore as I am classic suspenseful horror so I am hesitant to take on certain things. I say this, but I still try to keep an open mind. I could see myself probably working on a couple movies that I will have to close my eyes on a few parts when I actually do see them for the first time.

 

Tell the Addicts about your latest film ‘Flowers’.  Was it fun or grueling to be trapped in a killer’s crawlspace? Have you ever had any real scares on set?

 

Flowers has been quite an amazing experience. We are still in production. Phil Stevens is amazing to work with, and very inspiring. I absolutely love working with him, and his whole crew. Being trapped in the crawl space was not only an intense workout physically, but it started to feel real after a certain point. That scene took 6 hours and I just fell into character, and let myself go to that dark place. This experience was unlike any other scene I have done. The set itself was very realistic looking. I remember by the end of that scene feeling like it was all too real. To me it’s like a recurring nightmare that you just can’t wake up from. It’s quite surreal. I would say the biggest scare I’ve experienced on the set is a man almost drowning in a gorilla suit in a swimming pool on the set of Mortal. It was scary, but also very funny. He had about 5 guys jump in to save him so he was ok, but there was definitely a moment of panic.

 

 Who are you Horror Film Favorites?

 My horror film favorites would have to be some of the classics like The Exorcist, The Omen, Halloween, Nightmare on Elm Street, Suspiria, Night of the Living Dead, Candyman, The Shining, Gremlins, and Psycho. I grew up watching all of those. David Lynch is my ultimate favorite filmmaker.

 

Do you wish to remain local and build the budding Philly film community or go grand, like New York or Hollywood?

 I like being local. I don’t know what will happen with the work I do, but I do like being free to choose my own projects, and make my own decisions. I feel like Indie films are more…real. There are less limitations. I enjoy the whole D.I.Y aspect of everything. It makes the finished product so much more rewarding when you know how much blood and sweat went into it, because you were there and you are a part of it. I’ve made some amazing new friends on set just working together in a way that I doubt is the same in Hollywood. I’m not saying I’m not open to Hollywood, but I think I have far more respect for low budget Indie filmmakers. Everyone dreams of being famous. I think that could be an added bonus, but I truly just enjoy doing what I love when I can make enough time for it.

 

You also dabble in writing and music, with singing and bass playing! Which pursuit is you first love?

My first love is acting. I think that what I loved most about being in a band was singing. I’ve tried to form a couple bands since the first, but I found it too frustrating trying to organize multiple people’s schedules. I found myself focusing on finding new projects, and have met quite a few interesting talented people in the Independent film scene. Sometimes I make ambient music on my computer at night, and some of that will be used as soundtrack music in a couple different movies. I find that both are good for a creative release of energy, but to me acting is more fulfilling. I mess around on the bass a little, and I love playing the piano, and writing, and singing. Acting comes the most naturally for me, and I am always hungry for more projects.

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What advice do you have for other macabre ladies looking to break into the horror industry?

I would say for anyone looking to step onto the horror scene check out some auditions and have some fun! If you aren’t having fun then what is the point? Always make sure you read your scripts before you accept a role to avoid putting yourself in a compromising position. Don’t be afraid of a little blood Horror conventions are a great place to network and meet people. Facebook can prove useful if you join some of the local acting groups. There are always local screenings happening, and those are also great places to network.

 

What are you doing next and where can fellow freaky folks see your work or find you online?

I was recently asked to be in a music video, and am considering it. The much anticipated “Mortal” by Kat Lehmer should be out over the next few months. Daisy Derkins Dogsitter of the Damned by Mark Mackner will be screened for the first time in September. Flowers will premiere in December. Here are the links to follow these flicks on Facebook to stay updated on screenings, and release dates. I will be doing voice work for a Szczepaniak film once Flowers is finished production. I am currently working on my web page as we speak.

Flowers: https://www.facebook.com/Flowersthemovie?hc_location=stream

Mortal: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Mortal-Vampire-Movie/178441615541657

Mortal Trailers (with Tanya Singing!): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HJL4umBnt8E

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jpfEPK_wNR4

Daisy Derkins, Dogsitter of the Damned: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Daisy-Derkins-Dogsitter-of-the-Damned/118962131469417

Frank Horror Ms. June Calendar Shoot : http://www.frankhorror.com/

https://www.facebook.com/tanya.paoli.58

 

 Thanks again for taking time out to chat with Horror Addicts.net, Tanya!

 

Press Release: His Haven

Posted in News with tags , , , , , on December 16, 2013 by Horror Addicts Guest

From Secret Cravings Publishing: His Haven is a paranormal/historical 18241661romance set in Victorian England. It is the first book in a three part series by Harper A. Brooks.

Ignorance isn’t always bliss…

Handsome and diligent Avrum Brenin should have died in the fire with his mother and older brother. Instead, he is saved by the powerful and wealthy immortal, Lord Henri. Placed under his care, Avrum shares in his world of endless splendors. He must do one thing in return—look after Haven, a human and Lord Henri’s newest rescue.

The simple task proves to be more complicated than it seems. Haven is disobedient, ungrateful, and hostile, yet she is beautiful and mystifying at the same time. One night, when Avrum stumbles across Haven barely clothed and bound at the wrists, the world he has trusted in unravels before his eyes. He soon discovers that no one—from Lord Henri and Haven to his closest friend, Lysander—are who they seem to be.

Now faced with the truth, will Avrum choose to surrender to the man who rescued him, or will he have the courage to save the woman who captivated him?

Harperabrooks@wordpress.com

Horror Addicts Writer’s Workshop – Closes in 2 weeks!

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , , , on December 15, 2013 by Emerian Rich

Horror Addicts Writer’s Workshop Announcement!
Deadline: 
December 31st, 2013, 11:59pm PST.

This is an opportunity for aspiring horror or like-genre writers to have their work critiqued by professional writers based on story structure, plot, style, and character development. One lucky writer will have their work produced for a HorrorAddicts.net show for Season 9 in 2014.

Submission criteria:

1)      This workshop is free

2)      You must state you if you are under 18 at the time of submission. If you are a minor, you will be entered in the junior league workshop. We will not accept stories from children younger than 15.

3)      By submitting to the workshop, you are stating this work is yours and yours alone and that you may submit it legally without publication ties. The work cannot be previously published in any form.

4)      Stories must be Gothic, Horror, Steampunk, Clockpunk, Fetish, Dark Fantasy, Horror Romance, or have a horror element of some kind.

5)     All submissions must be emailed to horroraddicts@gmail.com no later than December 31st, 2013, 11:59pm PST.

6)      Submissions can be excerpts from a novel, up to 4,000 words, or can be a complete short story, no more than 4,000 words. Excerpts from a novel, must include the first chapter.

7)      Manuscripts must be presented in the following format:

a)      Font size 10 or 12 point

b)      Font style Courier or Times New Roman

c)      Double spaced

d)      1st page header to state: author name, email address, type of story, and word count.

e)      Following pages header to state: author name, story name, and page number.

f)       Your manuscript must be in either PDF or RTF Format.

g)      No more than 4,000 words.

h)      In the body of the email, give us 100 words or less about you – a bio.

i)       In the subject of the email state: HA WRITER’S WORKSHOP

8)      We will review the first 20 manuscripts absolutely, after that, it is based on the number of pros available. Manuscripts are first come, first serve. If you do not receive an email stating your manuscript was received within two weeks, please send a polite query to:  horroraddicts@gmail.com.

9)      For any other questions, please leave a comment here or email:  horroraddicts@gmail.com

Midnight Syndicate’s Monsters of Legend

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , on December 14, 2013 by Dan Shaurette

MOL

If you are a fan of the classic Universal monster movies, like Dracula, Frankenstein, and the Wolf-man, then I think you will enjoy Midnight Syndicate’s latest album, Monsters of Legend. Listening to the tracks, one cannot help but feel the stirring moments from these classic films. In fact, as an experiment, I watched the great silent classic “Nosferatu” with this album in the background acting as a soundtrack, and I thought it provided some amazing atmosphere. It just lends itself so well to the genre, no matter what was playing.

My other Midnight Syndicate albums typically get played only around Halloween, and it is obvious this one will join them in such a rotation. However, I think a good classic horror tale can be watched anytime, and I dare say the same can be said for this album.

It’s very hard to pick out a favorite track on a collection like this. I will say that all of the tracks have been very inspirational for background while I am writing. This is something I have done with other Midnight Syndicate records, but this one by far has the most cinematic feel of them all and lends itself the most in my mind.

Edward Douglas and Gavin Goszka have outdone themselves with this album, and after all of the years of gothic goodness they have produced, that fact really shines. Whether you are a new fan or old of Midnight Syndicate, or you are a fan of classic horror movies, Monsters of Legend will not disappoint.

Midnight Syndicate

Mangas NOT To Waste Your Money On

Posted in News with tags , , , , , on December 13, 2013 by Emerian Rich

Some of you might think I like all manga.  The reason that I don’t usually review mangas I dislike is because I’d rather not give them the attention.  I feel like they don’t deserve my time if they have not done their job and entertained me.  In this post, I’m going to warn you about three books I did not enjoy.

bizBizenghast, Volume #1 by M. Alice LeGrow
I was first attracted to this manga by the spooky gothic artwork on the front of a girl whose body is a violin.  The cover stopped me in my tracks as I perused the manga aisle.  The artwork inside is just as breathtaking, but with such beautiful artwork, you would assume the story would be just as chilling.  Sure there was a graveyard, lost souls, riddles, and keys, but somehow it wasn’t as scary as I had hoped.  I may, in time, decide to return to this series and give it another chance, but at this time it will stay on my shelf.

darkhungerDark Hunger by Christine Feehan, Illustrations by Zid & Imaginary Friends Studio
I have not read any of Christine’s novels and  am sure they are good by the reviews I’ve heard from some of her fans.  This book seems like a mistake made by the publishing company.  It was overly illustrated, not like a manga at all.  I felt like I was reading some 1980’s comic out of the back of my mother’s Redbook.  This was definitely a stab by the publisher to try and get in on the manga market, but it was done very badly.  The underlying plot was very interesting, so I don’t fault the writer.  I think it was probably just made by people who have never read a manga before in their lives.  Perhaps it will interest Christine’s fans to own a copy of the manga just to say they have the whole collection.  I doubt it though, as the fans I’ve talked to have said things like, “I don’t read those weird manga things.”  So, if the publishers were trying to corner the manga market, they missed it by a long shot.  I’m glad I only paid a dollar for it from the sale aisle. For a book-to-manga translation done well, check out Vampire Kisses by Ellen Schreiber

luvhalloweenI Luv Halloween, Volume #1 by Keith Griffen & Benjamin Roman
I really wanted this to be a great book.  Halloween is my favorite holiday.  The art promises greatness when you see kids dressed in costumes and spooky jack-o-lanterns around.  How can you get that wrong?  Well, they did.  I think perhaps you would love this book if you were a ten-year-old boy who likes boob jokes and farts with the intention of grossing out friends.  Reading this manga is like being trapped in a station wagon with pre-teen boys all the way across the Great Salt Lake.  No one wants to do it and once you reach Nevada, all you can think of is leaving them at the pitstop so you don’t have to listen to their nonsensical chitter chatter any longer.  I pitched this book out of my house the first chance I got.

GhostTalkersDaydream1Ghost Talker’s Daydream, Volume #1 by Saki Okuse & Sankichi Meguro
I almost bought this book, but thankfully for a long line at the register, was saved from the disappointment I was sure to experience if I had purchased it.  This cover was so beautiful, I was about to be fooled again!  If there is one thing these manga companies are getting right, it is the glossy cover art.  If you get a chance, check out the cover at a store because the photo online does not do the cover art justice.  When I saw the cover, it reminded me of spooky Japanese movies I’ve seen where there is some sort of ghost presence in the closet waiting to kill you.  Something I awe at when reading manga is that the artists are able to redraw the characters in so many different moods and poses, but they still look like the same character.  This manga’s art was very inconsistent and the characters even sometimes ugly.  The lead girl pictures were sometimes so different, I had trouble knowing it was her.    There was a parental guidance label on the cover, which was warranted because of the strange “up the skirt” shots the artist chose to depict at weird angles.  At times these shots were awkward and not in pleasant proportions. The reason I finally put it down was that although they had the parental advisory, talked about the lead having a job at an S&M club, and showed various vulgar shots of her womanhood, they didn’t allow her to say the name of her body parts.  Perhaps they thought is is more x-rated to PRINT the word than to see it displayed on the page in art?  I have no idea, but didn’t want to find out.

If you’ve read these mangas and have another view, I’d love to hear it.  I’d like to know if there is something I missed.  Feel free to comment here and let me know.

The Dead Have Ruled The Earth For 200 Years

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , on December 11, 2013 by David Watson

15944997It’s over for the planet earth. The zombie apocalypse has happened. The human race is destroyed with the exception of a few people living in spaceships and inhabiting colonies on Mars and the Moon. The humans have movies and music to remember what life was like on Earth, but they left the most important thing behind and now three people are returning to Earth to get it.

It won’t be easy, there are zombies everywhere and these aren’t like the zombies you see on TV, they’re much more vicious. Also, if you bash a zombie it will die then reform and come back more terrifying than before. If a group of zombies are huddled together, they will form into a different creature all together. So in addition to zombies, there are other giant monsters roaming the planet wanting to devour living flesh.

The Dead Have Ruled The Earth For 200 Years by Noah Mullette-Gillman is not your average zombie story. I loved how the zombies formed into giant unstoppable monsters. This book is full of non-stop action and the reason behind the zombie epidemic was believable. Even with all the action, it still managed to have a decent story to it. Society is gone, but the humans left still long for things they left on earth and need them for the new society to last in space.

There are only four characters in the book and what makes the story interesting was how similar each character is, but different at the same time. If you read it, you’ll understand. The character  I was able to relate to most was Dix . He is shown as not being as smart as the others, he feels inferior to everyone else, and has a short attention span. He is left to guard a passageway where the others are searching for the thing they came for. He watches a movie instead of standing guard and things go down hill quickly. Despite Dix being shown as an idiot,  I found myself rooting for him and hoping he would redeem himself and become the hero.

My favorite part of The Dead Have Ruled The Earth For 200 Years was when one of the  characters named Anya asks Dix to pretend he is someone else so she doesn’t feel alone. I could relate to Dix feeling down about not being appreciated by someone he cares for and I loved what eventually happens to him in the story. Another thing I liked was the description of  what Earth looks like 200 years after humanity is destroyed.

The only question I had about Noah K. Mullette Gillman’s book was, what did the zombies eat? It’s stated that they only eat living flesh but there are no humans left on the planet so I wondered if the zombies just ate animals because they didn’t eat each other. There was a lot to like here, though. I liked the protective suits that the humans had and I have never read a zombie sex scene before. The revelation that the characters made at the end also made this a great read. If your tired of zombie fiction then give The Dead Have Ruled The Earth For 200 Years a shot. This book was an original take on the zombie genre.

Kbatz: Black Christmas

Posted in News with tags , , , , on December 9, 2013 by kbattz

Black Christmas Still a Frightfesting Good Time

By Kristin Battestella

blackxmasWe watched this original 1974 holiday horror classic this past Halloween as part of our yearly October horror fests. Regardless of the calendar, however, this wintry slasher heavyweight still offers plenty of fright to any festivity.

College roommates Jess (Olivia Hussey), Barb (Margot Kidder), and Phyllis (Andrea Martin) are remaining at their sorority house with Mrs. MacHenry (Marian Waldman) as Christmas is fast approaching.  Amid the drinking, carolers and parties for the kids, the girls receive repeated prank phone calls from someone named Billy. When sorority sister Clare (Lynne Griffin, Wind at My Back) is reported missing by her father (James Edmond), Lieutenant Fuller (John Saxon) and Sergeant Nash (Doug McGrath) investigate the disappearance in connection to the increasingly obscene phone calls. Unfortunately, the police’s suspicions are automatically directed at the girls’ boyfriends Peter (Keir Dullea) and Chris (Art Hindle) as the body count rises.

Well here’s a melancholy holiday viewing for you! Director Bob Clark (A Christmas Story, Porky’s) very smartly uses perspective camera work, shadowed and claustrophobic scenes, sharp angles, and foreboding tracking shots to build scares and sustain the suspense and peril through the well paced picture.  Some contemporary moviemakers do use these tricks, but anymore the smoke and mirror effects are more about the sake of using them or for the shock of the effects themselves- and as a result, the scary just isn’t there.  Writer Roy Moore (She Cried Murder) creates drama and character development for another often-underutilized horror layer, too.  Yes, we’re in a sorority house, but its not naked silicone pillow fights or heavy sex scenes as we define sorority naughty today.  Unexpected real life issues and then taboo topics such as abortion, marriage, unplanned pregnancy, and alcoholism are weaved in nicely.  Most of the gore in Black Christmas actually happens off camera or is all talk in nasty phone calls, leaving a lot of the juice, kinky, and disturbed speculations up to the audience. Of course, some of the mystery elements and police investigations will have you screaming at the television, but I like the notion that folks in seventies horror films were unaware of the budding rules of the genre and at worst, act damn stupidly.  Even with these hiccups, this is a finely told, steady thriller that will keep you guessing until the end and then some.

While it doesn’t seem as though she is that prolific an actress, we all seem to know who Olivia Hussey is thanks to Romeo and Juliet- or if you’re really a horrorphile, Psycho IV.  Of course, she is lovely as always here. Even if Jess is a little snotty to start, she’s a likeable and easy to get behind heroine thanks to her honest portrayal of relationship issues- not to mention these crazy holidays and killings happening all at once!  Today, there will be some who might think the boozing Barb is merely Margot Kidder (Superman, The Amityville Horror) just playing herself, but no no no. Kidder looks damn good, sexy, and effortless, and Barb adds both seriousness to Black Christmas with her drinking and levity thanks to her fun and wisecracks.  Likewise, Marian Waldman (Deranged) is a riot as the liquor stashing, cranky old lady who’s supposed to be in charge of this crazy house. Of the boy toys, I have to say Keir Dullea (2001: A Space Odyssey) and Art Hindle (Invasion of the Body Snatchers) are nothing that special. Like the wasted Andrea Martin (SCTV), they serve more as assisting foil or red herrings as needed, and one very hokey hockey scene doesn’t even make the cut for me.   It’s not that they weren’t developed or done poorly; just the male plots are dropped aside for the scream queen action.

Thankfully, John Saxon, now of A Nightmare on Elm Street fame, is excellent as the caring cop hoping to provide support and safety for the ladies.  On the job, he technically isn’t helped too much by Doug McGrath’s (Pale Rider) idiot sergeant. However, McGrath provides several critical scenes of incredible wit and total detective foolhardy. It’s not all out Dewey from Scream or full on Scary Movie Doofy spoof, but again, the holiday humor and real world stupidity add more grim entertainment to Black Christmas.  We shouldn’t laugh at the seasonal ignorance, sexual implications, or failed law enforcement, but it is real and freshly handled here in a demented and humorous way. He doesn’t seem to have done much else, but James Edmond as Mr. Harrison is also delightfully well played.  He’s a bit of a prude, a stuffy relic compared to the sorority girls, but we don’t often see the fear and tragedy consequences in horror films.  It’s a nice touch of sympathy that the audience can completely understand, a solid to hold on to as the slasher hysteria rises.

But my gosh does that wallpaper look so bad!  While the seventies long, straight hair and breezy, peasantry costumes look almost medieval revival lovely, the men in huge fur coats and white folks trying on afros are, however, just…no.   Fortunately, the Christmas décor, I have to say, is near awesome. The big, great old wreaths, that tacky white seventies tree, those big old colored bulbs- an underlying sprinkling of holiday music and carols are also present in unexpected, even disturbing ways. This nostalgia of the sights and sounds of an older Christmas celebration adds heaps of atmosphere.  Not only are their no cell phones, computers, gadgets or crafty but useless holiday themed deaths, but there is also no shop shop shop and bland Xmas obsession. Black Christmas is old fashioned and traditional, even homely to us like grandma’s apple pie. So when the murder and mayhem elements do kick in, it furthers the twistedness of it all. Many folks find the holiday season as the most depressing time of year- all the visual and oratory cheer should have us thinking happy thoughts, right? No, this is a horror movie, without a doubt.  Black Christmas can be watched anytime of year, for sure. It just happens that there are extra scares and spices because this horror movie takes place at Christmas.

You would think more horror films would take place during the holidays. Not perils with winter and snowscapes- we get plenty of those, especially recently it seems- but with the idleness of the season breeding scares or the violation of December sanctities causing terror.  Only one other example immediate comes to mind, and that is the also exceptional “….And All Through the House” segment of the 1972 anthology film Tales from the Crypt.  Perhaps only adults or wiser youths can appreciate the mix of retro holidays and scares, but there’s actually little to deter Black Christmas from any audience.  There are a few vulgarities and drinking innuendos, but today’s tweens and up are probably already aware of all that. Again, the audience suggestion and what you take from the film is paramount here.  The blu-ray is also quite delightful, with features and restored magic.  However, there are no subtitles, which could go a long way in helping hear the exact naughty in Billy’s phone calls. But alas, that might also be the point in not having captions, too.

Even with some plot confusions or character inconsistencies, and doubtless Black Christmas’ conclusion will also anger some viewers, this vintage slasher is unlike any subsequent slice and dice drivelry thanks to its telephone twists and Christmas charisma.  Ring in the season with Black Christmas or get nostalgic any time of year.

(You’ll also notice I didn’t mention the 2006 remake.  Pfft!)

Exsanguinate

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 7, 2013 by David Watson

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In the world of an online role-playing game anything can happen and for Cheyenne O’Cuinn, a Halloween Scream Park adventure is about to become a supernatural reality. Cheyenne is given the task to watch, record and study fear. Her job is to find out what causes people to run screaming out of haunted attractions while peeing their pants. The three O’Cuinn sisters know horror, they live for horror trivia, and have developed a horror themed online role-playing game called ExanguiNation.

Things are not going well for the O’Cuinn family, while at the theme park, two of the sisters have been kidnapped by vampires to breed warmongering dhampires and its up to Cheyenne to save them. To do that, she has to play the game and solve riddles or her sister’s body parts will be mailed to her one by one.

Cheyenne is not alone though, she has a dragon, werewolf and a vampire to help her. She also has a virtual lover who has secrets of his own. Can their love survive? Who can Cheyenne trust in this virtual world and can the vampire apocalypse be stopped? Find out the answer to all of these questions in Killion Slade’s Exsanguinate.

When I first heard about Exsanguinate I was excited. I always like to read books that create their own  mythology and  combines it with reality. This one goes one step further, adding a virtual computerized world to the mix which happens to be more real than anyone knew. Part of this story takes place in a virtual world and the book includes links that go to extended animated scenes on the book’s website or if you buy the print book it has a code you can enter. I thought this was a great idea that added a lot to the book, it was like looking at special features on a blu ray movie.

Killion Slade takes the mythology of vampires, werewolves and dragons and changes it just enough to make everything fresh and original. One of my favorite scenes was when four of the characters go into a supermarket that is geared towards supernatural beings. The supermarket is cleverly disguised as an old warehouse and it has supplies for witches, blood donors for vampires, spas, restaurants, and items for creatures that no one knew existed.

Another thing I liked in this book was how it blends humor and horror. There was one funny moment where a vampire stakes a human and talks about selling humans on a stick at the state fair. I also liked when the werewolf in the story is eating bacon flavored dog treats, much to the disgust of a vampire. Exsanguinate has some great moments of horror as well. The description of the room where human women are impregnated and give birth to dhampires (a human, vampire hybrid) is chilling. Another scene is when one of the characters battles a rogue vampire in a Halloween haunted house. This scene was great because at first you’re not sure if its real or not.

Exsanguinate flawlessly blends horror, fantasy, romance, action and humor into one entertaining read. This book has it all and fans of all genres will enjoy it. This is the beginning of an epic series that has a lot of different types of creatures to work with.

www.worldofblood.com

www.killionslade.com

Making Philly Macabre – Frank Horror

Posted in News with tags , , , , on December 5, 2013 by kbattz

Who knew Pennsylvania was such a hot bed for Independent Horror Film? Kbatz chats with Frank of the the aptly name Frank Horror Independent Film Production Company tonight!

When did you start making scary independent films? What are the pros and cons of working and filming in the Philadelphia area?

My first film, The Visitation, was shot in November 2011 and released in 2012 under the banner of my production company, Frank Horror.  The second film, Dig, was shot in Spring of 2012, is in the final stages of post-production, and will be released for a limited local run in the coming months. While each of these films runs within the thirty-to-forty minute range and is a self-contained story, they will be released along with a third short to create a feature-length horror anthology with the title, Openings.  Filming has wrapped for Openings as of June 2013, so anticipate a release for this horror trilogy sometime in 2014.

Aside from Openings, I just completed a fourth short film titled, Diaries.  Filming for Diaries took place in June 2013 and marks Frank Horror’s first film working with the Screen Actor’s Guild.  Stay tuned for more information on its release.

All of my films have been made locally in Philadelphia and surrounding areas, including parts of New Jersey.  The benefit of being based around Philadelphia is that there is a thriving independent film industry here.  I’ve found that if you have a strong script and you know how to network, it’s very easy to find and assemble a competent crew willing to devote their time and their skills to help pull off the project.  I feel really indebted to my crew and all the behind-the-camera folks who helped make my films a reality.  There is also a strong acting community locally whose members, as a whole, are very close with and supportive of one another.  I think that’s a plus.  The only drawback that I see to filming in Philadelphia is that there doesn’t seem to be enough of a market to sustain local actors full-time, so you have dedicated actors who put in whatever available time they may have on nights, weekends, etc. and as a filmmaker the challenge is to find creative ways to work around everyone’s schedule and pull the film off in a timely manner.  I would say that scheduling is the most difficult aspect to negotiate with independent film.

Watch the film trailers now: http://frankhorror.com/films.html

The Visitation Poster (with credits)

You make shorts and features, quiet horrors and carnage. How do you decide what length or tone is needed for a picture? Does the plot dictate the production or the gore?

Well honestly, my first film was a learning process so I felt it would have been way too ambitious to start right off the bat with a feature-length script.  So there was a conscious decision to make The Visitation approximately a half-hour in length.  That first film really dictated the length of the next two films, since I wanted to make three separate stories but ultimately tie them together into a feature.  So I guess the process for me is to initially determine the scale of the film that I want to make and then develop the story to fit within that framework.

As in any good story, absolutely EVERYTHING must come from the characters.  The plot is determined by the characters, not the other way around.  I don’t know any way you can boil the creative process down to one specific formula to follow because that formulaic approach to creating becomes stale and stilted – I think the best way to describe my process of screenwriting is to start with some ideas for pieces of scenes, snippets of interesting dialogue and maybe an overall theme about what I generally would like to write and the mood I’m trying to invoke with it.  Then characters are developed and their goals, motivations, weaknesses, struggles – those are the aspects that give life to the actual plot and storyline. So the story feels organic and driven by the characters rather than just setting down a plot and having two-dimensional characters jump through plot hoops.  I cannot stress enough how important it is to have three-dimensional characters that the audience can relate to and care about, because that’s how you get to them.  That’s how you scare the audience: you make them invest themselves in your characters and then put those characters in some horrifying situations. There are a lot of independent horror films out there who rely upon gore and explicit nudity to carry their films, and that style of trash cinema has its own niche but I don’t create those types of films.  I think that gore and nudity is all too often used as a crutch for otherwise weak writing.  Now that’s not to say that I’m some kind of a prude or don’t appreciate gore and nudity; they certainly are tools that can be used very effectively in a horror film, but they need to be used sparingly and at the right moments to increase their impact.  I believe in creating suspense first and foremost and then, when the moment is right, hitting the audience with a particularly visceral scene or a bit of carnage, but that absolutely has to come secondary to the suspense.

Plus, it’s human tendency to fill in the gaps of what they don’t see in a film with their imagination, and the horrors that the imagination can conjure always prove to be more frightening than anything you could possibly show them on the screen.

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Tell us about your recently wrapped feature DIG.  Was it a difficult shoot and production considering the onscreen secrets and family isolations?

Dig is all about secrets.  It tells the story of one woman struggling against herself and her own inner demons.  On the surface she works diligently to maintain the plastic veneer of the wife and mother with an ordinary and happy family, but the secrets she keeps threaten to spiral out of control.  After filming The Visitation, I decided to pivot and write a decidedly different type of story as a follow-up.  Unlike The Visitation, which is a supernatural film that relies on suspense to invoke scares, Dig is a psychological thriller that follows more of a pattern set forth by movies like The Exorcist or David Cronenberg’s The Fly – rather than provoke fear, the film provokes dread.  And by that, I mean that in the very beginning of the film we’re telegraphing to the audience exactly where we’re going with this film and they are left to wonder how do we get from this point to that ending?  So the audience watches as things deteriorate and get worse, and dread builds as you move towards the ending.  Dig was the first script that I’d written to follow that particular story trajectory, so it was a bit of a challenge for me, but I believe it was ultimately executed really well, both in the writing and by the actors who had to step into the skins of these characters.

As far as the filming process itself, we shot a lot of it late at night outdoors in a large yard that was ringed with woods, so the biggest difficulty we faced was ticks and mosquitoes.  That, and the scene demands dictated that the crew and myself were constantly digging holes, filling them back in, digging more holes, filling them back in – we all got to be quite competent with shovels.

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You also shoot “unsettling” photo series and have some slightly saucy photos on your website. What is it about the ‘not for the faint of heart’ type material that appeals to you? Are there any horrors that make you squeamish or plots that cross the line?

Nothing crosses the line.  There is no line — there can’t be for me, anyway.  Horror is all about finding societal taboos and pushing them to make the audience feel unsettled, uncomfortable, horrified, shocked.  There can be nothing off-limits when you want to achieve that.  The trick is to do it tastefully and in the context of a strong story – if you can pull that off, you can keep the audience along for the ride no matter where it goes.

What appeals to me about this is the ability to move an audience emotionally.  A comedian tries to accomplish this by evoking laughter.  But my aim is to evoke fear or dread – that’s not to say that a good horror film may not draw out other emotions throughout the course of the story, but the ultimate goal is to frighten.

You also have a web store of calendars, t-shirts, and other Frank Horror wares. Are you interested in branching out into other merchandise or media? Or do you prefer to remain film focused, local, and independent?

I’m always interested in opportunities for new markets and mediums, but my main focus right now is film.  There’s a certain collective magic in seeing a script that you write transform into a finished film.  From the actors to the Director of Photography to the editor to everyone involved, each person lends their talents and their efforts with their own interpretations and skill sets until you have this thing of yours — this script that you gave birth to and watched grow into a greater beast because of all the collective input.

That creative collaboration that I like to foster on my projects is a luxury that comes along with running an independent film company, because I ultimately have the freedom to run a production however I want.  Certainly I would entertain offers to work with the backing of a studio or a bigger film company in order to create horror films on a grander scale, but in the meantime I enjoy running the productions myself and ensuring that everyone involved has a voice in the finished film.

2014 pinup horror calendars available now: http://frankhorror.com/store.html

Teaser cover

What are you working on next and where can we follow Frank Horror online?

Well, I continue to post ongoing horror photo series in the gallery page of my website (http://frankhorror.com/gallery.html) and I’ve got two films that are in editing right now.  In the meantime, I’ve got two feature-length film scripts in development and I’ll be looking to bring on investors for those films.  I have a couple of other exciting collaborations potentially in the works, but I’m going to stay hush on those for the time being.  Better to whisper past the graveyard until those fresh horrors are ready to rise.

To stay abreast of all the new developments and releases at Frank Horror, visit http://frankhorror.com/ and make sure to check out the online store for dvd’s, the 2014 horror calendar and horror art prints: http://frankhorror.com/store.html.  You can also follow us on facebook to get updates, behind-the-scenes pics and other little terrors!

Thanks for taking the time to chat with Horror Addicts.net!!

Thank you! See you in nightmares.

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Meet Frank Horror when DIG has its world premiere at the Tropicana Casino & Resort in Atlantic City, NJ  as part of the Bizarre AC weekend December 13 -15.  For ticket information, visit bizarreac.com.

Holiday Horror Viewing!

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , on December 3, 2013 by kbattz

Holiday Horror Hits

By Kristin Battestella

Looking for something to do with yourself after surviving the horrors of unending holiday dinners, hyperactive family drama, and the fruitcake that will not die?  Take in these classic horror hits and worthy recent scarefests.

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Antichrist – Director Lars von Trier’s 2009 disturbing and controversial family horror drama opens with a bizarre and unique sex scene/baby death montage and gets weirder from there.  Only Willem Dafoe (Platoon) can make dead babies seem so casual- and I say that in a good way!  Although von Trier’s distorted cutting, angled filming, and scribbled chapter plates may be jarring to some, these visual cues akin perfectly to the unreliable feelings of distortion and downward spiral that such grievous loss can bring.  Cannes Best Actress winner Charlotte Gainesburg (I’m Not There) is a little annoying as well, but then again obviously understandable as a mother who was shebanging when she should have been looking after her child.  The altered perception of time, responsibility, and indifference bounces between the leads nicely as we progress towards plenty of violent sex, mental scares, and kinky creepy.  It’s all a little uppity considering the dirty subject matter, and certain audiences will definitely be alienated by the material-but the performances here win against the saucier distrubia. Put the kids to bed for this one.

Bride of Frankenstein – Despite its short length, over the top style, and bad science effects, this 1935 Universal sequel is a classic for a reason.  Boris Karloff (The Mummy) returns with Elsa Lanchester (Witness for the Prosecution) for director James Whale’s (The Invisible Man, Showboat) stylized tale in the spirit of Mary Shelley’s infamous creation.  The theatrics at hand add to the spooky atmosphere and morally ambiguous, hair raising drama and provide plenty of scary hijinks for both young and old.  Even the score is wonderful as well, being tragic when needed and even spiritual and bittersweet. Love, tragedy, death, angry mobs, misunderstood monsters- there’s something for everyone here!  Long time classic horror fans can always enjoy the great, campy classic quotes and old school iconography.  Educate the family while taking in all the subtext, layers, and quality storytelling here.

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Child’s Play If you want to scare the kids out of wanting THE toy of this holiday season, then this is the film! Though dated, some of the 1988 scares may indeed be too much for the super youngins.  However, nostalgic folks can chuckle with Chucky’s naughty wit courtesy of Brad Dourif (Lord of the Rings, Dune) and enjoy the more intelligent mystery and suspense aspects here.  While the sequels certainly have their ups and downs, Chris Sarandon (Fright Night, Dog Day Afternoon), and Catherine Hicks (7th Heaven) have some fine moments here.  Die hard marathoners can continue with Jenny Agutter (Logan’s Run) in Child’s Play 2 or go really crazy with Jennifer Tilly’s (Bound) send up in Bride of Chucky and Seed of Chucky.  Child’s Play 3 isn’t that bad, but Chucky run amok on a military base is a bit much, even for this zany franchise.

Trick ‘r Treat This 2007 pseudo horror anthology is kind of comical- a diminutive pumpkin boy Sam (short for Samhain) pursues naughty Halloween rule breakers? Some segments here are pretty bad, even stupid and just preposterous beyond belief.  Somehow, however, writer and director Michael Dougherty’s (X2, Superman Returns) quirky style and lighthearted irony keep these tales- among them twisted school principal Dylan Baker (Kings, Thirteen Days) and seemingly innocent and Red Riding Hood-esque Anna Paquin (True Blood, X-Men) – on the bemusing side.  The ridiculousness is actually quite refreshing; especially against other recent horror pictures that try to be sardonic and miss or those copycat sequels and remakes that just take themselves too dang seriously.

 

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 The Watcher in the Woods Although this 1980 Disney thriller might be a little too scary for the super young Santa set, older kids and the young at heart who grew up on this spooky charmer can delight all over again in young Lynn Holly Johnson (Ice Castles, For Your Eyes Only) and crotchety Bettie Davis (What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? Hush, Hush Sweet Charlotte) as they try to solve the haunting events and disappearances in the forest about their grand English manor.  Yes, it’s a little marred by Disney’s influence and maybe some of the events here are a fairly typical now. However, some scenes are still as scary now as they were to me back then.  When my mother wanted to frighten me indoors from the woods surrounding our own home or prevent me from staying up to watch an eclipse, she’d yell, “Do you want to end up like Karen in The Watcher in the Woods?!”

 

Horror Addicts Writer’s Workshop – Closes in 31 days!

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , , , on December 1, 2013 by Emerian Rich

Horror Addicts Writer’s Workshop Announcement!
Deadline: 
December 31st, 2013, 11:59pm PST.

This is an opportunity for aspiring horror or like-genre writers to have their work critiqued by professional writers based on story structure, plot, style, and character development. One lucky writer will have their work produced for a HorrorAddicts.net show for Season 9 in 2014.

Submission criteria:

1)      This workshop is free

2)      You must state you if you are under 18 at the time of submission. If you are a minor, you will be entered in the junior league workshop. We will not accept stories from children younger than 15.

3)      By submitting to the workshop, you are stating this work is yours and yours alone and that you may submit it legally without publication ties. The work cannot be previously published in any form.

4)      Stories must be Gothic, Horror, Steampunk, Clockpunk, Fetish, Dark Fantasy, Horror Romance, or have a horror element of some kind.

5)     All submissions must be emailed to horroraddicts@gmail.com no later than December 31st, 2013, 11:59pm PST.

6)      Submissions can be excerpts from a novel, up to 4,000 words, or can be a complete short story, no more than 4,000 words. Excerpts from a novel, must include the first chapter.

7)      Manuscripts must be presented in the following format:

a)      Font size 10 or 12 point

b)      Font style Courier or Times New Roman

c)      Double spaced

d)      1st page header to state: author name, email address, type of story, and word count.

e)      Following pages header to state: author name, story name, and page number.

f)       Your manuscript must be in either PDF or RTF Format.

g)      No more than 4,000 words.

h)      In the body of the email, give us 100 words or less about you – a bio.

i)       In the subject of the email state: HA WRITER’S WORKSHOP

8)      We will review the first 20 manuscripts absolutely, after that, it is based on the number of pros available. Manuscripts are first come, first serve. If you do not receive an email stating your manuscript was received within two weeks, please send a polite query to:  horroraddicts@gmail.com.

9)      For any other questions, please leave a comment here or email:  horroraddicts@gmail.com

Manga Review: Book of Friends by Yuki Midorikawa

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , on November 30, 2013 by Emerian Rich

bokNatsume is an orphan who sees spirits called yokai. In Japanese folklore, Yokai are a class of monsters that are mostly portrayed as humans, but can shape shift into other forms. In Book of Friends, they are interchangeable as demons or spirits.

Not only can Natsume see them, but he has been tortured by them all his life. One day, Natsume meets a demon named Nyanko who is trapped in a lucky cat statue. Nyanko can also change into his natural form which is a giant cat three times the size of Natsume. It’s pretty scary when he stands over Natsume while he sleeps, wondering if he should eat him. Gives new meaning to waking up with a cat on your chest!

Nyanko tells Natsume his grandmother used to play games with demons. She saw the supernatural too and for reasons he is yet to understand, she locked hundreds of demon promises in a book called the Book of Friends. Whoever owns the book may call the demons and they have to obey their orders. Nyanko follows Natsume and kind of helps him because he wants the book himself to control demons. Natsume tells Nyanko he can have the book when he dies.

Just like any good hero, poor Natsume doesn’t want to own demons. He just wants to get rid of them so they stop trying to kill him. By calling the demon’s name, stuffing the paper with their name on it in his mouth and clapping, the demon promise is released from the book and therefore, the spirit is free to live their life without fear. However, if Natsume tears, burns, or in any other way destroys the page with their name on it, the demon will tear, burn, or die in whatever means the paper did.

During Natsume’s quest to free the demons, he meets many different, strange spirits. They remind me of the minister creature at Beetlejuice’s wedding. One spirit he meets (and eventually frees) is Tsuyukami, the God of Dew. Once worshipped by many, he has only one worshipper left, an old lady with little time to live. As his worshipper’s dwindle, Tsuyukami gets shorter and smaller until he is now just the size of Snap, Crackle, and Pop. He peeks around Natsume’s bowl one morning and asks him to be free.

Each spirit is different and I enjoyed finding out who Natsume will meet next! Some are sweet, like the one who used to be a swallow bird, and just wants to see the man who picked her off the pavement and put her back in her nest, but others are horrifying. This is a fun read for anyone into demons or spirits.

This manga is available at Amazon, for Kindle or print.

Happy Thanksgiving from HorrorAddicts.net!

Posted in News with tags , , on November 28, 2013 by Emerian Rich

For those of you living in Thanksgiving land, we hope you have a great one! We present for your viewing pleasure a very memorable Horror Addict celebration… You gotta love Wednesday.

Kbatz: We like to watch a Godfather Marathon.

Emz: We tend to watch all Harry Potter movies in succession. It wasn’t long when it first started… now I’ve lost count! 7 movies now? 8?

So many of us spend this day overeating, fighting with family, and napping. What do you do?

Charla by Alex Beresford

Posted in News with tags , , , , , on November 27, 2013 by David Watson

13826052There are two things that really drew me to  Charla by Alex Beresford. The first item was a warning in the beginning of the book that said you shouldn’t read the demonic summoning at the end of chapter two. Because if you do an unwanted demon will come into your life. The second item was the first line of the story which was: “She always hated her daughter.” That got my attention right away how can a mother hate her daughter. Well Charla hates her daughter Amelie and has since day one. Amelie is now an adult and Charla has decided that its time for her to destroy Amelie once and for all. She does this by summoning a demon to ruin Amelie’s life.

Things start off slowly, the demon starts doing things like making noises, showing small glimpses of itself and then he causes Amilee to hurt herself. Little by little Amilee starts to lose her mind and then things get even worse. Amilee has no idea that her mother is the cause of all her problems or that her mother hates her, she gets some help from a friend but it may not be enough to stop the demon or her mother.

Charla is one disturbing read. It starts as psychological horror and then turns into a hard-core horror fest. This novel is excellent but it’s not for everyone. If you like romance don’t look here, if you like comedy, don’t bother, if you like sunshine and happiness forget about it. If you want a well written novel with fascinating characters and great pacing that keeps you on the edge of your seat, then Charla is for you.

I loved how the action builds slowly throughout the book and the atmosphere was creepy. There is one scene I enjoyed where Amilee and a friend uses a Ouiji board on a stormy night that was subtle but scary. You knew something was going to happen but instead of the author delivering a big scare he hints at things to come by having a spirit communicating with them and then showing a glimpse of something which makes Aimilee question her sanity. I felt the scariest part of the book was how Aimillee starts questioning everything she believes. There is nothing scarier then doubting your sanity and Charla really showcases that fear. I think even if you took the demon out of this book, it still would have been a great psychological horror story.

Another thing I loved about this book was the depth behind the characters. You kind of want to feel sorry for Charla after you hear her life’s story but then you see what she does to her daughter and you can’t. You also see Charla react to her husband wanting to divorce her and you can relate to her, but at the same time her attitude about how life has wronged her and how she reacts makes you hate her. Then there is Amilee who on the surface seems to have everything going for her, but then you see how insecure she is and you see how wrong her mother’s perceptions of her daughter is and you feel sorry for her.

If you read Charla your still going to be thinking about it long after your done with it. I think it’s a powerful novel that takes your worst fears and brings them to life. If I had a list of favorite horror novels Charla would have to go on it, but its not for the faint of heart.

Manga Review: Nightmare Inspector by Yumekui Kenbun

Posted in News with tags , , , , on November 25, 2013 by Emerian Rich

ninspecAt the end of the Taisho era in Japan, a small tea house draws patrons to Hiruko. He is a Baku-he or “Eater of Dreams.” It is said Hiruko can enter a nightmare and release the victim from suffering. He can put people to sleep with the wave of his cane and accompany them into the nightmare.

The stories in this manga are very odd and don’t seem to make much sense. In one case, a boy walks into the tea house and asks for help. It turns out he is a weather vane. I’m confused how a weather vane could walk into a tea shop and how do weather vane’s have nightmares?

Another tale features a girl who always writes the same thing in her dream. She asks him to change it, but when they get to the part where he can, she ends up writing the same thing. There is a secondary character in the tea house who sometimes asks Hiruko what happened and his explanations don’t make much sense either.

There are also repetitive chapter beginnings which are common in mangas that were serialized in magazines.  I always think it is better for the editor to cut these out when composing the manga book.

I absolutely love the art in this manga. It’s a very interesting sort of steampunk/cosplay mix with long art deco lines. The styling of the Baku-he is awesome.

In back, there is a short letter from the author. The best thing is a full page illustration/explanation of Hiruko’s cane by the friend of the author. It’s hilarious and informative. It makes me wonder what sort of manga would come from the author and best friend collaborating.

Over all, I’d say, check it out for the art, but don’t hold out much hope for the story.

Underwood and Flinch: Bonded In Blood

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , on November 22, 2013 by David Watson

18209165The last time we heard from Underwood and Flinch in Resurrection, Flinch discovered he has no choice in being Underwood’s guardian. He also can’t stop Underwood from killing people.  In Underwood and Flinch: Bonded In Blood  by Mike Bennett, the story picks up right after the first one ended.

With David and Lord Underwood both knowing where each other stand, Underwood decides to find out what the local nightlife of Almacena is like. They go to a bar, owned by friends of Lydia, and Underwood sets his sights on the wife of the bar’s co-owner, Michelle.  Underwood wants a new mate, but things are not that easy as David and Lydia do not approve of his choice.

To make matters worse, the Russian mafia is hunting down the owners of the bar and Michelle’s husband does not want to give up his wife. Also, Lydia has plans of her own to get Underwood to make her and the other members of the Black Circle into vampires, even if she has to trick her master to do it. There is also the question of whether David can handle the  job of being Underwood’s guardian.

That’s not all you get in Bonded In Blood. This book also talks about how Underwood  became affiliated with Flinch. His origin story starts in the early 18th century and explains how Underwood was forced to become a pirate and how his escape attempt lead him to become a vampire. The story shifts seamlessly from the present to the past and then back to the present.

Mike Bennett has a great story here and the book was hard to put down. I think what I liked best about the book was how it worked as drama, horror, action and comedy. I loved when Underwood starts talking about butts and also when Underwood starts dancing to Motorhead with Michelle.

There were also some great horror scenes such as when four pirates are being stalked by something in the dead of the night and when Underwood looses his cool in a strip club. Mike Bennett adds a lot of different ingredients to his story and it works well even if you’re not a horror fan. There were also some great fight scenes throughout the book and the story itself is very deep.

This story also looks at the theme of redemption, loyalty, love, and friendship. You get to see Underwood and Flinch’s relationship change throughout the book and even when they don’t see eye to eye, they still work great together. Even some of the minor characters in Bonded In Blood get some great scenes. One part where the Russian Mafia shows up at Michelle’s bar is memorable and there is a scene where even though both Michelle and her husband are under Underwood’s influence, they still manage to show their love for each other.

The only thing that bothered me a little was the ending. It made sense and kept true to the themes of the book, but there was one loose end that needed to be tied up. There are more books scheduled in the Underwood and Flinch series and I hope Mike Bennett does as good with the next book as he did on the first two. Bonded In Blood is a good example of how great vampire fiction can be. Even if you don’t like vampires, you will find something to like here.

Underwood and Flinch: Resurrection

Posted in News with tags , , , on November 20, 2013 by David Watson

18209151David Flinch is a recovering alcoholic that has made a decent life for himself. He is a an English teacher and has a nice girlfriend named Lisa. David’s family has a dark history which he wants to escape, but you just can’t walk away from the family business. When David gets a letter stating that his older brother, John, is dying of cancer, he has no choice but to go to Spain and take his rightful position as servant and guardian to the vampire, Lord Underwood.

David doesn’t want to be the guardian, but he swears to his dying brother that he will do it, much to the disappointment of his sister Lydia who wants the position herself. Now that David is guardian he vows to stop Underwood from killing and turn him into a kinder, gentler vampire.  But how do you stop a vampire from killing and how will he stop Lydia from taking his job and using Underwood for her own plans?

Underwood and Flinch Resurrection by Mike Bennett is an excellent horror novel that shows books about vampires never get old. I was hooked on the story right from the beginning when you get to see the relationship between Underwood and Arthur Flinch who is David’s father. They are a team and work well together. I loved the part when Arthur and Lord Underwood have a conversation on the meaning of life right before Underwood goes into a casket for a 50 year hibernation. Mike Bennett did a good job of creating multi-dimensional characters and creating a vampire that you can’t help to root for.

Flash forward to the present and you have David who is the opposite of his father. He looks at the family business of taking care of a vampire as evil and wants no part of it. You see when he is introduced, he has trouble with relationships and doesn’t trust people. He wants to make a difference in the world, but his past  is dictating his future and his life is not his own.

There seems to be a theme in Resurrection of how everyone is a shade of gray. Lydia and Lord Underwood both look at themselves as evil, but both of them show several times how they have a conscience. Lydia feels guilt when someone close to her dies even though she says it was for the greater good. Underwood kills two people and then apologizes for it, saying he had to do it. David threatens to kill his neighbors at one point, but he still wants to stop Underwood from killing. All of the characters in this book are fascinating and not what they first appear to be.

What I liked most about Underwood and Flinch Resurrection is how it blends comedy with horror. Leading up to the resurrection scene, the exchange between the three people who are reviving Underwood was funny along with Underwood’s worshipers who try to get a closer look at the resurrection. I also liked how all the followers run off when they discover that Underwood may not be the savior they thought he was. Underwood And Flinch Resurrection is an excellent vampire tale that has everything you could want in a horror novel. I’m looking forward to what Mike Bennett has in store for us in his the second Underwood and Flinch novel called Bonded In Blood.

Happy Halloween Addicts!

Posted in News on October 31, 2013 by Emerian Rich

Happy Halloween Addicts!

We hope you are enjoying the season.
Here’s a refresh for all of you who want to play the Finale at your parties!

Halloween Special! #97


And from all of us at HorrorAddicts.net, have a happy, safe, and scary Halloween!

~Emz, Horror Hostess

Finale8Poster

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Parting is such sweet sorrow, dear Addicts. Enjoy these hallowed days and I’ll be stalking… er, I mean, seeing you all again soon! Here’s to a Happy Halloween and Naughty Nightmares! Darkly yours, Dan Shaurette.

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Happy Halloween addicts. Don’t forget to light your jack-o-lantern to keep the evil spirits away and remember to eat some candy and leave a comment to tell us what you did to celebrate the best day of the year. ~ David Watson

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Have a spooky and wonderful Halloween my lovely fellow Addicts. Send us your Halloween costume and makeup photos if you want to share a look that features your creative ideas. Keep your questions on fashion and beauty coming in, I can’t wait to dish more Dark Beauty with you soon! Stay Beautiful! ~ Mimielle

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May Your Harvest be Blessed, your Respect of the Dead True, Happy Halloween and Boo to you!  ~ KBatz / Kristin Battesella

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Happy Halloween Addicts! ~ Sapphire Neal, Blog Editor

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Have a Happy Halloween, and let the bed bugs bite addicts! ~ Marc Vale

Fresh Blood

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 28, 2013 by Dan Shaurette

Fresh Blood

In the finale, you heard Dan Shaurette interview Lucy Blue and talk about a new anthology of vampire tales called FRESH BLOOD. That book is now available in print, Kindle, and other eBook formats.

The Vampire Writers Support Group proudly presents FRESH BLOOD, an eclectic collection of short stories set in a dark, bloodsoaked world full of vampires.

The authors gracing our pages are Daven Anderson, Matthew E. Banks, Lucy Blue, Jessica Cage, Danielle DeVor, Drusiana, Donna Fernstrom, Donald L. Pitsiladis, Karen Plaisance, Selene MacLeod, Brian Patrick McKinley, Dan Shaurette, Tabitha Grace Smith, Emma Rawlin, and Jay Wilburn.

The net proceeds from all sales will be donated to the National Hemophilia Foundation.

The book is on sale now at Amazon.com (as paperback and for Kindle) as well as from Smashwords.com as an eBook in many formats. The paperback currently sells for $9.99 USD and all eBook versions sell for $3.99 USD.

However, Dan has provided the coupon code “NG33B” for his fellow Horror Addicts to use at Smashwords to download the eBook for only 99 cents before November 1st!

HorrorAddicts.net 097, Lucy Blue, Frank H. Woodward, Dr. Rotz

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 19, 2013 by Emerian Rich

Finale8PosterHorror Addicts Episode# 097

Horror Hostess: Emerian Rich

With Guests: Camellia Rains and Ari DaWintre

Intro Music by: Cancer Killing Gemini

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10 days till Halloween!

lucy blue, frank h. woodward, dr. rotz, versailles, translyvania 6-5000

halloween traditions, type-o negative, bloody kisses, translyvania 6-5000, jay hartlove, the chosen, the wickeds, horrible disasters, dr. rotz interview, vampire nurse candy, midnight syndicate, mimielle, goth fashion, zombie george washington, wheelman press, brian herbert, the chef’s table, best band season 8 poll, versailles, free fiction friday, bite club, hal bodner, david books, charla, alexander beresford, frank h. woodward interview, black magic, kbatz, atlantic city zombie walk, most wicked announced, wicked women writers, winner, rick kitagawa, writer’s workshop, events, dead mail, haunted place to go, lucy blue interview

Goodbye, my darklings, until next year. Please be safe and stay spooky!


Find all articles and interviews at: http://www.horroraddicts.net

Don’t miss the vampire anthology:

The Vampire Writers Support Group proudly presents FRESH BLOOD, an eclectic collection of short stories set in a dark, bloodsoaked world full of vampires.
https://www.facebook.com/FreshBloodAnthology

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Write in re: ideas, questions, opinions, horror cartoons, favorite movies, etc…

horroraddicts@gmail.com

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h o s t e s s

Emerian Rich

s t a f f

Sapphire Neal, David Watson, Dan Shaurette, Marc Vale, KBatz, Mimielle

Want to be a part of the HA staff? Email horroraddicts@gmail.com

c o n t a c t / s h o w . n o t e s

http://www.horroraddicts.net

m u s i c

http://www.graveconcernsezine.com

Are you a Big Tease? Or maybe just a Little Rat…

Posted in News with tags , , on October 19, 2013 by Mimielle

Tune in to the Season 8 Finale to hear thoughts on the hairy topic of ratting your ‘Do with minimal damage. Listener Sherrie from TX asks about this Fuzzy Area of Gothic Hair Care, and of course, we have some interesting resources…
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Hair Ratting How-tos

Basic Ratting: Mooky Chick always has the goods!

Video of Fake Hair Trickery in action.

Brittany at Va-Voom Vintage is a lovely and informational one-woman show! Her tutorials never fail to get things ‘just right’.

Vivian at Quaintrelle Life takes it Old School…all the way back to the historical roots of rats…

Big in Japan? Yes. Another blast from the past with a photo of the legendary band XJapan, pioneers of Visual Kei and their even more legendary hair…
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Transylvania 6-5000 with Jay Hartlove

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , on October 18, 2013 by Emerian Rich

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Listen to Jay Hartlove on the Season Finale of HorrorAddicts.net, #97, and tell us what your favorite thing about Halloween is below. Every comment on this post is entered to win Jay’s book! Good luck!

MSDTRSI EC001

WheelMan Press

Posted in News with tags , , , , on October 18, 2013 by Sapphire Neal

Zombie George Washington leads an army of Zombie Soldiers in a siege of Washington DC

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October 1, 2013 – Stockbridge, GA. WheelMan Press releases novel Zombie George Washington: The Zombie President and His Zombie Army March to Retake DC – Zombie George Washington: The Zombie President and His Zombie Army March to Retake DC

The government hatches a secret plan to resurrect dead war veterans to create an army of zombie super-soldiers, and they bring back two of America’s greatest generals, President George Washington and General George S. Patton, to lead them. But when the two leaders discover just how corrupt the government they once so loyally served has become, it leads to deception, death, destruction, and a zombie army laying siege to Washington, DC, with the long-dead former President at its head.

Disabled African American author, GB Banks, sufferer of Osteogenesis Imperfecta, has been wheelchair- and home-bound and cared for by his parents for all of his 48-years. He hopes to make Zombie George Washington a success so that he can better his life, give back to his parents for everything they have done for him throughout his life, and free himself of the fear of being left alone and placed into a nursing home when they are gone. Banks’ disease, one that has caused him to have extremely brittle bones, stunted his growth, and left him dealing with frequent respiratory issues, but has never allowed his illness to deter him from having big dreams.

 

Zombie George Washington: The Zombie President and His Zombie Army March to Retake DC, is an epic zombie war tale that can be compared to the films World War Z combined with the film Olympus Has Fallen. It is available through distributors Ingram, Baker & Taylor, and from most major bookstores and ebook retailers worldwide. To contact the author, you may send him an email at:author.gbb@gmail.com.

Psycho Trail – South Jersey’s Best Haunt!

Posted in News with tags , , , on October 18, 2013 by kbattz

Tonight, Dear Addicts, Kbatz is chatting with Frank and the gang from Psycho Trail, a haunted attraction right here in my own South Jersey backyard!

Good Evening!

Hi.

 

You promise rare scares with zombie themes, demented clown escapades, and more surprises as part of the Psycho Trail.  How do you decide what themes and thoughts to include in the attraction?

 

We plan all year and start the year before on what themes and what we are going to change up or try something different.


How much planning goes into the production? How many actors, props, and effects do you use or go through in a season?

 

We have 30-40 actors. Many of the actors do more then one scare. We start building new sets and props usually in March as the weather breaks. We plan over a year for the Oct month. Once for this year is all set up usually end of Sept we start go thru ideas for the 2014 season etc.

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 Do you rotate the themes and haunts each year or stick with the tried and true scares you know works in terrifying your attendees?

 

We do try to change things up each year. This year we changed more of the haunt then any other year.


Despite the medical warnings on your website, have you ever had patrons faint, get sick, or ill while going thru the Psycho Trail? Is that the reaction you desire or is there a line of bad taste you won’t cross?

 

We have many people that get sick, ill etc over the years. We know that it means we did our job but the safety of our guests are most important. We don’t want to go too far over the line.

 

Although the Psycho Trail is not for kids, you also do family friendly parallel safety events with fire trucks, trick or treating, and daytime activities for children. Why?

 

We try to do a little of every thing for younger kids and families that don’t want to do the haunt at night. We are strong in the community and want as many people around the area to enjoy the season and have fun with there families.

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 Psycho Trails runs weekends in October. How did you get started in the haunting biz? Do you want to grow into a big year round spectacle or do you like to keep it Halloween and intimate?

 

I started doing a small home haunt when I was younger back in 1994, and got bigger and more of a event year after year. My home haunt attracted 1000′s and was a multi night event. I would like to do year round events not just Halloween in Oct. we have a lot of plans in the work for down the road and have already set things in motion for other projects.

 

Readers of the local newspaper have voted Psycho Trail the Best Haunted House in South Jersey 3 years running and you’ve been featured on The Travel Channel. Why do you think fans keep coming back? Why do you like to scare people?

 

We are a high intense low gore haunt. People in this area wait all year to check us out. Besides the haunt Psycho Trail does a lot with the community. We were a sponsor for the Medford fire works. We donate to numerous charities and benefits around the area, and so on.

 

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Where can we find ticket information and Psycho Trail Treats online?

 

Tickets are only $5 this year for 3 separate attractions.

https://www.facebook.com/thepsychotrail

http://psychotrail.com/

http://twitter.com/psychotrail

 

Thanks for taking some scary time out to chat with Horror Addicts.net!


Monster Mash with Versailles

Posted in News with tags , , , , on October 17, 2013 by Dan Shaurette

For our Finale, we have the versatile vocal stylings of Versailles and her song “Queen Of The Sinister Freaks”. I wanted to save this one for last because it reminds me of our Hostess of Horror, Emz!

Versailles is the solo project of Dianna St. Hilaire. Though she does write and produce all of her music, she said “I do have musicians play live with me though. Usually just a guitar player at this point.  My amazing boyfriend Francis Gonzalez does my stage designs and is now helping me create the music video ‘Queen Of The Sinister Freaks’.”

Versailles

Her publicist, Giddle Partridge, describes her music as “intoxicating, dark synth, sexual-based gloomy yet erotic adventure into an orchestra”. Diana described her style as “dark and melodic.  I have very intense melodies.   Some is intense piano almost a classical feel and others is a more darkwave sort of sound with lots of synths.” She has also been referred to as the “Gothic Tori Amos”, which is saying something, as personally I would consider Tori Amos’ music to be dark and gothic. (Don’t judge me.)

She wrote the song “Queen Of The Sinister Freaks” with Kim Fowley. “It means a lot to me because I consider Kim to be a very good friend and I haven’t co-wrote many songs in my life.  Also because I am in the process of creating a new music video for the song and I want people to hear it.  ‘Queen of The Sinister Freaks’ is a representation of me and my life in the way that Kim Fowley sees it.”

The name of her band has changed a little over time. “I love the name Versailles.  It came to me years ago.  At first I was Versailles’ Suicide.  Which is probably more suiting, but in 2003 I changed it to Versailles.  The reason behind the name was the history of King Louis.  First of all I have relatives that fought for the Palace of Versailles.  But my main interest was King Louis’ obsession with destroying the monarchy through social death.”

Diana has had the opportunity to tour and play her music at some gigs that stand out. “I’m based out of Los Angeles.  This is not my hometown.  I’m from Albuquerque, NM.  I moved out to Los Angeles about 10 years ago to pursue music.  I think living in LA has influenced my music a lot.  I think that before I came here I was a bit of a newbie and I didn’t realize how far I could really take my music.  LA has pushed me in so many ways to be a more competent artist.  I have played throughout most of the US.  Maryland, Savanna, NOLA, San Antonio, Houston, Lubbock, Austin, Albuquerque, Denver, Chicago Joplin and many others.  I would sadly say that I have not played NEW YORK yet.  I would love to play in New York!  I have had some very interesting fans.  I had a fan once drive from Mexico in the middle of the night to Hollywood just to see me play.  I have had people bury their relatives with my music.  Gigs that stand out to me would be my latest gig at Boardners bar in Hollywood.  It was a beautiful night and I had quite an amazing stage set up thanks to Francis.  People loved it.  There were at least 100 people there which was great for a Tuesday night in Hwood.”

Targets

“Queen Of The Sinister Freaks” is one of the songs from her current album, Targets, produced by Kim Fowley. “I would say the opportunity to work with Kim Fowley was the inspiration on that one.  How often is it that someone gets to work with a man like that?  Also I just did a new music video for my song ‘Cold’.  This was written and produced by me.  This music video was inspired by my recent trip to Puerto Rico.  Very excited about this.  Beautiful place.  The hardest part of creating my albums has been the mixing part.  That part always drives me crazy.  The most fun part is always the composition.  I love creating new things.  Creating an album makes me feel that I have accomplished what some  people believe to be the impossible.  There are people I’ve met that have been working on their albums for years.  Right now I’m starting a new project and it is working with Dubstep.  This is something I’ve wanted to do for a while and finally have gotten the chance to do.  It’s quite challenging thus far because it is something I’ve never worked with before.”

Diana has been playing music since she was a little girl.  “I taught myself how to play piano and compose my own music at a very young age.  I believe I was around 6 years old.” Music is only one part of her life.  “I paint, I do acting.  Right now I am trying to put my head around creating an iPhone app.  Let’s just say I’ve finished the interface drawings.  I do web programming and graphic arts.  That would be about it.  Oh and I like hiking and running.” She does also listen to some podcasts.  “I have spent some time listening to the Darkest Hours and Stench Radio.  There is also one called BlackRose Radio.”

What advice do she have for new bands?  “Tour, tour tour.  It is fun and worth it.  More worth it than playing crappy dive bars in your home town.”

You can find her homepage at VersaillesBand.net, and find her music in all the usual haunts, like iTunesCDbaby, as well as on services like Spotify, YouTube, and Geezer. You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter, and MySpace.

Zombies Taking Over Atlantic City!

Posted in News with tags , , , , on October 16, 2013 by kbattz

‘Ello My Undead Friends! Tonight Kbatz is having a little exercise with Charlotte and the team from the Atlantic City Zombie Walk!

How, when, and why did this annual “organized public gathering of people who dress up in zombie costumes” begin? What’s the Haunted Tales Theater, presenter of the Zombie Walk?  

Zombies are HUGE in pop-culture right now.  Between the hit series, “The Walking Dead” and Brad Pitt’s movie, “World War Z”, even if you’re not “in” to zombies, you can’t help but notice they’re everywhere.  This is Atlantic City’s official 1st Annual, Atlantic City Zombie Walk.  It’s a city-wide, weekend long event, starting on Friday, October 18th with a Zombie Golf Tournament, and our “main event” , The Zombie Walk” on Saturday.  After the walk, zombies are set free to roam about the city, using their purchased wristbands to receive discounts, at all our participating businesses, until Sunday evening.  In addition to having a fun party for zombie enthusiasts all weekend long, our goal is to help raise money for  the Humane Society of Atlantic County .  It will also help boost local businesses, since our busy season has come to a close.  Russ Eisele, the Owner of Haunted Tales (a special effects theater on the Boardwalk, that comes to life as the stories unfold) came up with the idea to have a zombie Walk in Atlantic City. 

ZombieWalk2013_6 5x10 (2)

Your goal is to make a spectacle of pillage amid the Boardwalk and beyond. How do you keep the antics in the macabre spirit whilst also keeping the event family friendly?

Keeping the antics in the macabre spirit is easy…It’s a cult following that people really get into.  Costumes, make-up, gore and different aspects of creativity go a long way.  Not to mention, it’s only 12 days before Halloween!  There are a lot of children out there who are really into the zombie craze.  It’s like a mass Halloween party!  It can get a little graphic, with the special effects and make-up some people use.  We have to trust that the parents of these children know whether or not their child is “ready” to experience the sights that they will come across that weekend.  It’s a peaceful, fun environment for all ages to enjoy, if you like zombies, blood and gore.  We’re gonna have zombie contests, a live band, one of our local radio stations will be there, etc.  Like I said, it’s gonna be like a mass Halloween party, theme being “Zombies”. 

What do the beach folk, casino fans, and other normal folk think about zombies talking over Atlantic City for a day? Why is this kind of post-season, post-Sandy event good for the local community and businesses?

So far, we’ve gotten a great response from everyone we’ve mentioned this to.  People are excited for this event.  Major cities around the world have been having zombie walks, runs, proms, etc. for years, and it’s usually for a charity.  It’s important to “pay it forward” or to “give back”.  That, and human spirit.  It’s about time that we have one as well.  Not to mention, it’s something different that this city has never seen before.  This post-season event will help businesses who normally do most of their business for the year, during the summer season.  Depending on the weather, it can be a struggle to keep things afloat, the rest of the year.  Putting money back into the local economy is instrumental in keeping people in business, having jobs, etc.  Sandy took it’s toll on a lot of people, but, we are fortunate that we have bounced back and doing what we do best; offering a variety of dining, shopping, nightlife, attractions and entertainment options for all ages.  

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Beyond the Walk, you offer other contests, radio hosts, music, even a Zombie golf event.  Winners of the Best Makeup and Overall Zombie will also be featured in Walking Dead Films next project Zombie Death Camp. How much is too much? Have there ever been any scary encounters or problems with zombiefolk getting out of hand?

How much is too much?  That’s a good question!  We’re a city.  We have lots to choose from, lots of variety.  You may prefer to visit your favorite spots, or try something new.  Either way, options are always better than the alternative.  If everyone were the same and liked the same things, this world would be a boring place.  We want people to have great memories, lots of FUN and for them to tell people about their experience.  That, and we want our zombies to multiply, year after year.  As far as zombiefolk getting out of hand, we hope not.  It’s supposed to be a fun environment.  You can have fun or you can have drama….which FEELS better?  For me, fun ALWAYS feels better!     

A portion of the event proceeds goes to the local Atlantic County Humane Society No Kill Shelter.  How did this association come about?

The owners of Haunted Tales are HUGE animal lovers, myself included.  We wanted to pick a charity that was close to our hearts.  Animals are helpless in a lot of ways.  When they’re domesticated, they rely on us to take care of their needs.  They can’t speak and say “Hey, I don’t like how you hit me or starve me.  Why do you neglect me?  Why do you tie me up in the backyard and I can’t play?  I can only walk around in an 8ft. radius and BTW, I’m thirsty and I can’t reach the water bowl!”  It’s very sad.  We wanted to do what we could, to help an organization who wanted to save these lives.  Not extinguish their lives, just because the shelter was getting crowded.  A life is still a life, and a life is meant to be lived! 

Make up artists will be on hand to trick patrons out in their undead best, and your website provides tips on how to dress like a zombie – from cut up old clothes and zombie brides to walking the walk and grotesque limbs.  Why do you think zombies and zombie themed events are so popular today?

Honestly, I have no idea why zombies and zombie themed events are so popular right now.  It’s just one of those things…  There are Car Clubs, Elk’s Clubs, Red Hat Societies, Elmo Fans, Star Wars, Comic and SyFy Fans, just to name a few.  Why not Zombies?  Why not BRAAAAAAINS? 

Where can we find you online?

Online, you can find us on our website:  ACZombieWalk.com
On FaceBook:  2013 AC Zombie Walk
Twitter:  @ACZombieWalk
We’re also on Foursquare!

Thanks for taking the time out to chat with Horror Addicts.net!

Thank YOU! :)

Daughter Cell

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , , on October 16, 2013 by David Watson

9781629290379Randy Macklin woke up in Malaysia with no memory of the last four months of his life. His wife has died in a car wreck and his daughter is in a coma after a poisonous snake bite. Randy is currently living with his friend and business partner Young Nae, together they had been working on a way to use genetics to make people look younger, but their work has not been approved by the FDA and their project is now on hold.

To get his memory back Randy visits psychiatrist Sanantha Mauwad to fill in the missing memories of the last four months. Sanantha and Randy discover that there is more to this situation then meets the eye and not everyone is who they appear to be. There are conflicting reports on the death of Randy’s wife, she may have been murdered and Randy’s daughter’s coma may have been caused by one of Young Nae’s rivals. To make matters even more complicated someone has been spotted that looks oddly similar to Randy’s deceased wife.

Daughter Cell by Jay Hartlove is the second book in the Isis Rising Trilogy, the first book was The Chosen and both books are self -contained stories. Daughter Cell is a medical thriller that takes a look at loss and forgiveness and how far are you willing to go to be with your true love again.  This is a Frankenstein type story set in an exotic location with voodoo mythology, black magic martial arts, spirituality and  poisonous pufferfish.

What I really liked about this book was how the mystery unfolds slowly.  I also like how it was shown through their dreams that something wasn’t quite right. Daughter Cell also wrestles with the themes of ethics and morality. In the beginning both Randy and Young Nae talk about how they have no problems manipulating genetics to make people’s lives better but Sanantha has her doubts and you get to see how playing god effects all the characters.

What I enjoyed most about Daughter Cell was how both Sanantha and Randy turn to their faith in a time of crisis. Sanantha is from Haiti and gets comfort from voodoo when things are bad, while Randy listens to classic rock. I liked hearing about the character’s different belief systems and how the two main characters work together. I also liked how Young Nae tries to get more in touch with the spiritual god within him. Other scenes I enjoyed was when Randy had to choose between two people he loved even though one of the two was no longer the same and I liked when Randy knows that the person he most wants to talk to is right in front of him but he will never get to say what he wants to say.  Jay Hartlove makes his characters suffer and some of them come out stronger in the end.

The only thing I didn’t like about the book was that I wanted more time spent on the genetic creation. The scenes with the creation in it were great and I enjoyed how I wasn’t able to predict what would happen. This book is not your normal medical thriller, it has a lot of heart and makes you question a lot of things such as if you could be with a younger version of the person you love after they are gone would you take it? If you like horror that really makes you think then you will enjoy Daughter Cell.

Free Fiction Friday: Bite Club

Posted in News with tags , , , , on October 11, 2013 by David Watson

39216This week’s Free Fiction Friday selection is Bite Club by Hal Bodner. West Hollywood California was once a nice place to live if your gay but things have changed. Muscular young men are turning up dead. their bodies have been tortured, drained of blood and some are missing body parts.

The city coroner calls on an old friend who is an expert in serial killers who shows up with his friend to investigate the murders. The trio soon finds out that something not human is hunting these young men down and it can’t be stopped. Bite Club is a vampire novel that combines horror, romance and comedy.

Bite Club was originally published in 2005 and was followed by a sequel. Reviews that I read called this book campy, funny and an enticing work of modern gay fiction. If you want to win this book be the first to email us at horroraddicts@gmail.com.

Master of Macabre 2013: Rick Kitagawa

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , on October 10, 2013 by Sapphire Neal

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Congratulations to our Master of Macabre 2013, Rick Kitagawa!  For his submission, Rick was given a location of a Double Wide Trailer Home and his item was a black and white television.

Rick is very excited to be named the newest MMM. “It feels great!  To be honest, I was really surprised, as the competition was stiff indeed, but I’m very grateful that I was able to squeak out the win and am stoked the fans voted for me.”

I was curious if there was anything that Rick would like to have changed about his submitted story, Uncle Neal’s House? “A few more rounds of editing would always have been nice, but considering the amount of time I had (on top of all the other deadlines I was juggling), I’m pretty happy how it turned out.  I had to edit out about another 2,000 words, so I’m not 100% sure if I like this tighter, leaner version better than what I consider the original (more backstory and set-up was involved), but since the story worked maybe that says that the extra text wasn’t necessary?”

In regards to next year’s challenge, Rick isn’t too sure on what he is wanting, but he does know one thing. “I want there to be more monsters.  Take note, everyone!” He also wanted to send a shout out to all of the other MMM Contestants. “I want there to be more monsters.  Take note, everyone!”

Fans of Rick, be sure to keep an eye out on this guy as he has several projects in the works. “I have almost too many ideas to boil down into anything concrete to talk about, but besides just writing more creepy stories and painting creepy art, I’m launching a course called Artrepreneurism 101, which is designed to help budding artists (including writers, musicians, etc.) develop an entrepreneurial spirit and start hustling their art to make a living off of it.  You can sign up for the class (it’s local now, a web version is in the works) at www.artofhustlingart.com. Additionally, I’m still plugging away at the comic The Siren’s Call (the first few pages are up on my website) and I hope to publish a collection of short stories by early next year.”

And if you haven’t read Uncle Neal’s House, you can find it here.

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