HorrorAddicts.net Season 15, Theme Announced

In these uncertain times, it’s important to know what NOT to do to keep yourself safe.  But we aren’t talking about hand sanitizer, face masks, and bleach. We aren’t even talking about the virus. We’re talking about the very real danger of being CURSED.

For the past two seasons (13 and 14) we’ve been telling you all about cursed objects and places, how they got cursed, and what’s happened to people who’ve crossed their paths. Season 15 will bring you cautionary tales of those who have fallen prey to the curse and how NOT to become one of them.

Each episode, we’ll be talking about ways you can protect yourself against curses such as:

*Don’t be a boasting jerk. Learn about the dude who just couldn’t win gracefully and carried his rivals head around to boast about it. The curse got him in the end.

*Don’t board a boat with Violet. Learn about the woman who survived three boat sinkings and the hundreds that died in her place.

*Leave well enough alone. Learn about the dude who missed being shot, but was shot by the same bullet while attempting to remove it from a tree.

Learn these warnings and more during the 13-episode Season 15, coming in April 2020.

Merrill’s Musical Musings – HorrorAddicts.net Season 13’s Best Band of 2019

Greetings HorrorAddicts! This year has already been chock-a-block full of great music, but today we’re going to revisit a highlight from 2019. The Lords of October were the reigning champs in the HorrorAddicts.net Best Band competition from Season 13 and we have a quick interview with them to catch you up on all the latest news. 

How has winning Best Band of HorrorAddicts.net Season 13 changed your life? At the very least, how does this impact you as a band?

We are terrified by and excited for this news! It’s an honor to be recognized for this and to be held in regard by Horror Addicts.net. We feel as though we are on the right track with such a vote and we look forward to making more monster music that will be —hopefully—loved by those who are our brothers and sisters in horror! This, in our opinion, gives us further horror cred and is exactly the type of award we would strive for. We thank you all!

-Uncle Salem

What’s your latest news? Any new adventures? When can fans expect new material?-

The latest music is going on a record inspired by tales of cryptozoology. You know, like hidden creatures and wild mythos and stuff. We have some tunes that are inspired by the Mothman, Loch Ness, the Mongolian death worm and other such things. I have always loved monsters and consider myself a bit of a cryptozoologist, but I was truly inspired after attending the Mothman festival in West Virginia this past summer. It was a lot of fun, but also where the tragic deaths occurred. 

We are always working hard at new ideas and music, always bringing new stuff to the table. For this new one, we are attempting a more collaborative songwriting effort. We shall have a little more of all of us in the entire creative process. So far, I have written 5 songs for it and Aleister has come up with a couple. We will mix and match and see what happens. 

We will probably have it out around fall of 2020. It all depends on the daily goings-on of everyone and what we are able to do. We are always looking to play some great shows and make some new videos. Taking it all a day at a time!

-Lucifer Fulci

Best Horror Movie/TV Show/Book of 2019 in your humble opinion?

I saw It Chapter 2 this year and I thought it was fantastic. Best horror movie of the year in my opinion. The acting was great and Bill Skarsgård’s performance as Pennywise creeped me to the bone.

-October Phoenix

What title would you most like to earn/award you’d most like to win moving forward in your career?

Best KISSfits band ever.

-Aleister Kane

Anything to add?

Lords of October is a hell of a great band and I love to play with these guys. There is a very eclectic influence that plays into some of the styles that you can hear in the music. I enjoy writing music and seeing how these guys interpret it and make it their own. I also like when they bring stuff to me and allow me to add something to it. I have been making music a long time-a lot on my very own and I enjoy the solitude. (I will have a new solo record out in 2020, also- www.LuciferFulci.com) But to play with Lords, its very special. Like, literally and figuratively, I get to come out and play! 

-Lucifer Fulci

Congratulations to Lords of October and we can’t WAIT for more creepily delicious music! 

That’s it for today. Stay Tuned for More Merrill’s Musical Musings…

December Theme: Boogieman and Other Childhood Fears

Boogieman and Kid Fears for December

The Holidays bring out the child in all of us. Or so it is said. This December, we at HorrorAddicts.net are all set to remember our youth. The scary way! All of us have childhood memories; some good, some bad, and some just outright terrifying!

Do you remember your childhood fears? Was there a monster in your closet? A troll under your bed? A frightening Santa at the mall? Or something else that kept you awake at night, and maybe still does? 

Take some time out during this busy time of year to recall the Boogieman and other kid fears of your past along with us!

November Theme : Nightmares

Greetings Horror Addicts!

Provided you didn’t eat too much Halloween Candy or drink too much in honor of the dead, you have awakened on the first morning of November! You might be interested to know that we here at Horror Addicts.net have declared November to be Nightmare Month on the blog.

Nightmares are something that most people have, although we do understand that some people don’t dream at all or at least don’t remember their dreams. For those of us who dream in vivid color and gory detail, nightmares can be some of the most frightening events in our lives. And we can’t wait to share them with you!

Researchers say there are several nightmares which are common among human beings. Falling, losing all your teeth, and being chased seem to be the big three, followed closely by appearing naked in public or someone you love dying.

Then there are frightening superstitions about dreams, such as if – in a falling dream – you actually hit dirt…you will die. Or should you tell your fearsome dream before you eat breakfast, it will certainly come true!

This month is here at HorrorAddicts.net we hope you will join us as our writers and guests share some of their spookiest nightmares, as well as book and movie reviews which will certainly give fuel to your late night freights!

We’d love to hear from you about your most frightening nightmares as well!  Tell us just why they scared you so much! In the meantime, Stay Spooky and keep on dreaming!

Odds and Dead Ends: Scene Analysis – Michael’s escape in ‘Halloween’ (1978)

Most of us have probably seen 1978’s Halloween a million times. When we think of the film’s beginning, we think either of the opening credits, with the long track into the pumpkin’s eye, or the famous long-take opening scene. However, the murder of Judith Myers is just back-story for the film as a whole. The story really begins with Michael Myers, now twenty-one, escaping from Smith’s Grove Hospital. This is the scene I want to examine, taking it step by step, shot by shot, and looking at how Carpenter constructs this famous, if often overlooked, scene.

First to notice is the weather. This isn’t necessary for the scene from a storytelling standpoint, but it adds to the atmosphere, if in a slightly clichéd fashion. It’s an additional air of menace. It’s not up to King Lear levels of pathetic fallacy, but it’s still there, ever present throughout the scene. It also adds some visual interest, in much the same way that Ridley Scott would do four years later, with the shimmering water on the walls of the Tyrell building in Blade Runner. Of final note for the weather, compare the slashing of the windscreen wipers in the rain as a visual foreshadowing for Michael’s slashing knife, with a similar shot in Psycho of Marion Crane driving through the rain, with her windscreen wipers foreshadowing Norman Bates’ knife slashing through the shower. Remember that Psycho is a movie which obviously had a profound influence on Halloween and the budding slasher subgenre.

In the car, we are introduced to Loomis, Michael’s doctor. Pleasance plays him as a brooding and serious, if superstitious, man, bordering on obsession. Alongside we have Marion, who is not only dismissive of the patients she looks after but woefully underprepared, having done “only minimum security” before. This conversation between them not only brings us up to speed as to Michael’s condition, “he hasn’t spoken a word for fifteen years,” but also sets up a motif that will play throughout the movie. Those that don’t take Loomis and Myers seriously, end up attacked and often dead. Loomis says for Marion to “try to understand what we’re dealing with here. Do not underestimate it.”

The line “Do not underestimate it” is one of the most important lines in the scene, and perhaps the entire film, and the following remarks of “Don’t you think we could refer to ‘it’ as ‘him’?” “If you say so,” is crucial to our understanding of Myers. He is not so much a man as a manifestation of evil inhabiting the body. Before we even see the old Myers, he has been taken to a realm beyond the human, back into the land of something much older and more terrifying. Loomis wants Myers trapped forever, but the law, thinking that he is still ‘him’, wants him moved. In later scenes, Loomis shouts that he warned everyone about Myers but nobody listened. Only Loomis, who truly understands what Myers is, knows to keep him locked up. The dialogue between Loomis and Marion is expertly written to give exposition, build character, and raise tension, all in small, economical snippets, and all at the same time. This exchange should be studied further by any screenwriting student to see just how brilliant it is.

Then the headlights illuminate the patients in the white robes walking around in the rain, an eerie sight in itself. The music kicks in, the famous piano and synth combo, which warns of impending danger. We’ve had the build-up, our fears raised, and now the film begins to play on them. When Loomis gets out of the car to open the main gate, a figure clambers onto the roof. Myers strikes when Loomis is out of the way. This begins the cat-and-mouse that the two will play throughout the film. That the rear lights paint Myers in a blood-red glow as he climbs onto the car is symbolic of his intent. He means murder.

What is interesting about this scene is that we begin to see Myers’ method of killing. He isn’t just a hulking mass, but he is quiet, methodical, and will only use brute force if he needs to. When Marion first rolls the window down to see who is on the roof, he brings his hand down to attack her. Only after she drives the car into the ditch, closes the window, and scurries to the other side, does he take to smashing the window. He is like a cobra, striking when he needs to but holding back otherwise.

When Myers does smash the window, it’s interesting to see how Carpenter constructs the scare. He uses Hitchcock’s theory of suspense (affectionately known as his ‘bomb theory’), in that he alerts us to the looming threat of Myers smashing the window before Marion is alerted to him. His hand appears in shot, giving the audience a moment of ‘he’s behind you!’ before it disappears for a few seconds. The tension is raised as we wonder exactly when the attack will be, and then a second or two later, the payoff. This simple, few-seconds scare, is a full construction, methodically thought out in all its beats, has rises and falls in its narrative, and is light-years apart from the false scares of many horror movies.

In horror movies today, one might expect Michael to kill the nurse before escaping. However, this original Michael doesn’t need to kill Marion, because his goal is the car. He attacked Marion when she was inside the vehicle, but now that she’s fled, he doesn’t need to pursue her. She isn’t a threat. This is something that the new movie, Halloween 2018, also subtly picks up on, in that Myers doesn’t just kill indiscriminately; he specifically targets. Evil has its own agenda, and it is perhaps something which makes Michael scarier. If he was just a killing machine, you could deal with it. But there is thought behind his eyes, calculated thought, and death is just one part of it.

In the final moments of the scene, we have Loomis’ line, “the evil has gone”. Described as ‘evil’ for the first time, we have Loomis’ superstitions on full display, and our understanding of the scene catches up. That was Myers, as we feared, and not just a random patient, and the sinking feeling in our stomachs ramps up as it drops another notch. All the precautions Loomis asked for, all the connotations of a silent, deadly mass of inhumanity, that we were given in the car,  has all come to fruition. So awful is this realisation that Loomis doesn’t stay around for much more than “are you alright?” to Marion, before rushing off. Once he knows she’s not in danger, she is disregarded. The evil must be stopped at all costs.

This is a perfect example of a well-constructed scene, with its personal rises and falls, and specific story construction. Attention is paid in all areas to ensuring that the filmmaking and storytelling come together in a beautiful composition with every subtlety pulling its weight. Carpenter has created a wonderful scene that sets loose upon the film a carnage that will terrify us long after the credits have stopped rolling.

-Article by Kieran Judge -Follow him on Twitter: KJudgeMental

Bibliography

Blade Runner. 1982. [Film] Directed by Ridley Scott. United States of America: The Ladd Company.

Halloween. 1978. [Film] Directed by John Carpenter. United States of America: Falcon International Productions.

Halloween. 2018. [Film] Directed by David Gordon Green. USA: Blumhouse.

Psycho. 1960. [Film] Directed by Alfred Hitchcock. United States of America: Shamley Productions.

Shakespeare, W., 2000. King Lear. Second ed. UK: Heinemann.

My Darling Dead: Episode 4 -The Princess

The princess Alasin poked her head out of the canopied carrier and screamed, “GUARDS!”

Immediately the litter ground to a halt. The guards stood rigid, not daring to look at the princess as they strained to maintain their hold on the rain-soaked handles to the carrier. Her litter consisted of a small canopied tent on a platform and required four servants to support the four corners by long poles protruding. Her blonde hair swung in her face as she stood, leaning out of the tent and directing her glare at the guard responsible for the front left of the carrier, who was looking both guilty and apprehensive as the rain battered the ground around them.

“Yes, Your Highness?” The guard had to twist his body in order to meet her eyes.

“Why are we still blundering around out here and not on our way back to the castle with our errand accomplished?” Alasin spat, her fingers gripping the canopy with white knuckles.

“Your order was to find the wizard in the forest, O fair one,” said the guard, unable to keep a hint of petulance out of his voice. “He is proving elusive.”

“And you are at the moment disobeying orders, guardsman,” sneered Alasin. “So if you want to keep your head, I suggest you accomplish your mission and FIND HIM!”

“Look, princess, he’s a flippin’ wizard and if he don’t want to be found we ain’t gonna find him,” the guard whined, giving voice to his chilled bones and soaked feet. “Now why don’t you let us all go back in and look for him tomorrow?”  

Alasin stared at the guard, whose indignation wilted. The blood of the more experienced litter bearers ran cold as her voice turned silky.

“What did you say?”

The guard gulped. “I said–” he began, then stopped. A quizzical expression spread across his face as he looked down at the pearl-handled dagger that was now growing from his chest. He looked back up at the Princess as the litter handle slipped from his grasp, his knees giving out from under him as he crumpled to the muddy earth. The other front bearer shifted to the right, catching the other handle and taking up the extra strain without a word.

“’Ain’t’ is such a filthy word,” sighed Alasin. She snapped her fingers in the direction of the dead guard. “Return my blade to me and let us go on.”

The front guard pulled the poisoned dagger from the chest of his dead compatriot and handed it back to the princess, his one arm quivering as it strove to support the front of the litter on its own. She took it from him and resumed her seat as she gestured. “Onward!”

The litter resumed its rocking motion as it moved forward through the path between the trees, albeit slower now that it was being born by three rather than four. Inside the canopy, the princess settled herself against the fabric throne, grumbling under her breath as she pulled the glass bottle from inside her robes, lifting it by its long silver chain. Normally filled with white powder, the bottle now held only a sprinkle of white at the very bottom. Grinding her teeth, Alasin unscrewed the cap and upended the bottle on the back of her hand. Jamming the hand to her face, she sniffed, inhaling the remainder of the powder in one go. One eye twitched, but that was all. The drugs the wizard had given her, in the beginning, had become so much a part of her life that she physically ached to be without them. She dreaded how she would begin to feel in just a few hours time unless the wizard was found. A pang of fear shot through her at the thought of suffering discomfort and she stuck her head out the canopy.

“Faster, fools!” she shrilled, clenching the curtains with shaking hands. “Unless you all want to end up like your friend back there!”

The pace increased.

The wizard in question was up in a tree seeking mistletoe when he heard the voice of the princess drawing nearer as she berated her litter bearers. He sighed, cutting one last bunch of mistletoe and stowing it in his harvest bag. Climbing down from the tree, he stood beside the trunk under the branches and watched the litter round the corner of the muddy path. The guards all wore identical expressions of weary resignation until the first guard’s face brightened upon seeing the wizard.

“Lady, the wizard Sapius appears!”

The princess ripped open the curtains of the litter and clawed her way down, scarcely waiting for the litter to come to a complete stop and nearly tripping and landing in the mud. The guards made no move to help her, and the wizard was sure he could detect a smile on the face of one of them.

“Wizard!” Alasin snarled, regaining her balance. “What do you do out here in this rain for hours? I have been waiting for your return!”

“I gather herbs and other ingredients, for my potions, Your Highness,” the wizard said with a little bow. “My apologies if I have kept you waiting overlong.”

Alasin scrubbed at her arms. “You have, but no matter. I come for your potions. My, er-” she glanced over her shoulder at the guards who were making quite a business of ignoring what she was saying. She finished in a hoarse whisper. “My medicine!”

A ghost of a smile flitted about the wizard’s own face. “But of course, my lady.” He turned his back to the guards and reached inside his robes, bringing out a duplicate bottle to the one she wore about her neck. “If you would?”

She pulled the slim chain over her head and handed the wizard the empty bottle, taking the full one from him in return. Her eyes lit up as she turned to go, but was stopped by the wizard’s hand on her arm.

“Be warned, lady. This making of your medicine is more powerful than the last bottle you had. You should only take a little for the same effect.”

“Yes, yes, I’ll be careful,” Alasin said, wrenching her arm away and making her way back through the mud to the litter. Climbing aboard, she barked “Back to the castle. Now!”

MARCH IRISH HORROR STORIES MONTH

March Irish Horror Stories Month

by Kate Nox

Sure an’ it’s almost time for the annual ‘Wearin’ o’ the Green” (or orange, depending on your affiliation).

My childhood was greatly influenced by my father. Being of Irish decent, Dad made sure I was rocked to sleep with a bit of, “Too-Ra-Loo-Ra-Loo-Ra”, lilting through my head. He was a great story teller, and many of the fairy tales I learned hail from the old country.

Dad loved to tell us of days gone by and the sparkle in his eyes as he related some faraway scene, created an excitement in my heart to hear more tales of the Emerald Isle. Most of my Dad’s stories started out with “Pat and Mike were walking through the woods one day…” and ended with a hail of his contagious laughter. Once I grew up and started to explore stories on my own, I encountered the much darker, fatalistic side of Irish lore. Ireland, with its rolling hills, and rock cairns standing in the heavy mist just sort of begs for stories of banshees wailing in the night, strange figures in the castle window, and wolfhounds baying out a warning of danger.

The stories are as numerous as those who tell them and every village and town has their own creature of darkness. We hope you will join us in the celebrating Irish Horror Literature Month here during March. It promises to be interesting and possibly fatal!

If you have tails of horror from the Emerald Isle…tell us below or write us at Horroraddicts@gmail.com. We’re dying to hear from you!

Happy Thanksgiving from HorrorAddicts.net!

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?

Happy Thanksgiving from HorrorAddicts.net!

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?

Horror Addicts Guide to Life

 Tis’ the season to be horror-y
Need last minute costume tips?
Or a bevy of pumpkin recipes?
Check out…

Horror Addicts Guide to Life

HAGuide2LifeFrontCoverCover art by: Masloski Carmen

Editor: David Watson

Do you love the horror genre? Do you look at horror as a lifestyle? Do the “norms” not understand your love of the macabre?

Despair no longer, my friend, for within your grasp is a book written by those who look at horror as a way of life, just like you. This is your guide to living a horrifying existence. Featuring interviews with Midnight Syndicate, Valentine Wolfe, and The Gothic Tea Society.

Authors: Kristin Battestella, Mimielle, Emerian Rich, Dan Shaurette, Steven Rose Jr., Garth von Buchholz, H.E. Roulo, Sparky Lee Anderson, Mary Abshire, Chantal Boudreau, Jeff Carlson, Catt Dahman, Dean Farnell, Sandra Harris, Willo Hausman, Laurel Anne Hill, Sapphire Neal, James Newman, Loren Rhoads, Chris Ringler, Jessica Robinson, Eden Royce, Sumiko Saulson, Patricia Santos Marcantonio, J. Malcolm Stewart, Stoneslide Corrective, Mimi A.Williams, and Ron Vitale. With art by Carmen Masloski and Lnoir.

It Came From the Vault: Real Life Horror – Garth Von Buchholz

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The Lady with the Owl Eyes
By Garth Von Buchholz

When I was in college, I had a summer job at a personal care home for the elderly. I was that young kid wheel chairing the snowy-haired old doll into the courtyard, or saying carefully chosen words to the Alzheimer’s patient who wanted to know when her father was arriving, or helping a wizened gentleman in a musty suit and tie mount the stairs to the tour bus. They had their own tour bus that was used for taking residents on outings, provided their state of health was such that they wouldn’t collapse in the middle of a coffee shop in some other town.

The old folks seemed to like me. Occasionally they’d get a little cranky, but that was part of the deal. You get old, your body is sore, and you have a right to bitch at young people like me who could still get out of bed and look forward to the day instead of feeling like they were a wounded infantryman about to climb out of the trenches and onto the battlefield one more time. I liked most of them, too, but my favorite resident was Mrs. V., a Russian immigrant who settled in Canada after the Second World War. She was a cultured woman with round, glassy eyes like an owl, a haughty stance with her chin raised to a 20 degree angle, thick white hair that was styled like a movie star, and an impeccably outdated wardrobe that must have been fashionable once, though I wasn’t sure when. She looked like a living, black-and-white Kodak photo from a half a century ago.

Mrs. V and I would spend time talking after our weekly excursions on the bus. She admitted that she had no interest in most of the destinations that we visited, but simply went along with the group so she could escape her small suite. She was fairly independent, and was allowed to keep a small electric coffee percolator in her room so she could brew her own harsh, metallic java that I had to share with her. She asked me whether I had girlfriends.

“I started dating someone,” I replied.

“Are you having sex with her?” she asked me bluntly. I drank some coffee to collect myself.

“No, it’s not…we’re not at that point right now.”

She shook her head and twisted her mouth as if she had swallowed an insect.

“If I liked a man, I would give him sex,” she said in her percussive Russian syllables. “Get another girl. Don’t waste your time. You grow old fast enough, yes?”

“Yes,” was my meek reply, not certain what we had just agreed upon.

By the end of the summer, Mrs V. was ill with heart problems. She stopped joining the bus tours and started spending more time in bed. I still had my responsibilities with the tours, but I always stopped in to see Mrs. V. afterward, just to keep our little tradition alive.

The last time I saw her before she passed, she was startled as I entered her unlocked room. She had been asleep, and her curtains were drawn. When I spoke to her, she rose up on one arm and stared at me for several moments as if I were a stranger who was slowly transforming into someone she vaguely remembered.

I gave her a moment to primp her hair and sit up in bed with some dignity. I noticed she was holding a small, ornate box in her hand—not quite a jewelry box but more like a fancy pillbox that a child might use to store a baby tooth that had fallen out. She saw me looking at it, and her moonish eyes opened wider.

“It’s a lock of hair from a baby,” she explained. “My daughter.”

I was afraid to ask. “Is she still….”

“No, she died as an infant. An infant!” she emphasized.

I shook my head to show my sympathy.

“Do you know what you must suffer for your children? No, you don’t. You will have a child someday, you are young. Her name was Ekaterina. She was born in 1941, the year the Germans marched into Russia. In July, Stalin was ordering the Russian people to fight back against the Germans. Better to burn your own barns rather than leave them to the invaders, he said. My husband was fighting with the Red Army. I was alone with our child.”

Mrs. V opened the box and beckoned me to touch the hair inside. It was blonde. I didn’t want to touch it.

“One morning, the neighbors came to my door. They were fleeing. ‘The Germans are only a few kilometers away!’ they cried. My best friend, Sofia, told me the Germans were raping women and bayoneting babies to the walls of their homes. She was shaking so badly it made her baby’s little head nod up and down as if it were agreeing with her.”

“Terrible,” I said, for lack of anything else to say.

“I wanted to run with them, but I had valuables, things my husband entrusted to me. If I left without taking them along, he would never forgive me. It was all we had, something to help us start anew after the war. “

Mrs V. stopped and stared at a point just above my head. I could see the memories returning to her, at first like a slideshow and then as the frames started appearing more quickly, a movie.

“What was I thinking?” she asked herself, alarmed by some impending crisis that had, in fact, happened decades ago. “The time flew. As my mother always said, ‘Pray to God, but keep a sharp mind!’ I was tying a satchel and dressing the baby when I heard it.” She stopped and went still.

“Mrs. V?” I prodded. Was she having a stroke?

She looked at me gently, her eyes more glazed than ever.

“I heard my neighbors screaming,” she said. “I heard cars, tanks. The invaders had arrived. They were almost at my doorstep.”

My mouth was open, but I could not speak.

“The women were screaming. And children. ‘Mama, mama!’ I had no where to hide. I could not outrun their vehicles. That was when I knew that I would be raped in a few minutes. Raped. And my baby….” She trailed off.

I glanced at the open box again, and the little lock of golden hair seemed ghoulish, as if I were standing beside an open grave. I was stiffened by the horror of what had become of Ekaterina. It was too much for me to hear. I wasn’t certain I wanted to know what happened next. I tried to fast-forward her story.

“How did you finally get away? How did you survive?”

She laughed. “Oh, yes, it was survival of a sort. We were interned by the Germans, then the Red Army pushed back the German front and freed us into poverty a few months later. Here…” she said suddenly, pressing the little pillbox into my hand. “Keep it. You can throw away the contents, but not until after you leave this building, please. Maybe you give your girl a little ring inside it someday?”

I was aghast at her offer. I did not want the box. I did not want to touch the baby’s hair, ever.

“Please,” she begged. “I have no one left. The people here will put it on the table to be sold at one of those silly craft sales they have here. I want you to have it because you know the story now. Part of the story.”

I nodded weakly. I would accept it, just to honor her wishes. Then I would throw it away the first chance I got. She placed it in the palm of my right hand, and closed my fingers around it.

“The Germans did not kill my baby,” she said. There was a long pause. I counted her breaths: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6….

“Do you understand?” she asked.

I did not.

She whispered. “I would not wait for them to stick my baby on the walls with the tip of their bayonet. My mother taught me how to bleed a goat or a lamb. When I walked into my front yard carrying my child and my razor, Ekaterina’s sweet blood was soaking the front of my dress. It made me go mad. I was smiling because I knew she was in heaven and would never be harmed by those devils.”

I stopped breathing.

“When the Germans saw the crazy woman with the dead baby, the soldiers and their motorcade veered around me. They never even came near me.”

Garth Von Buchholz is an author of dark fiction, poetry, drama and non-fiction. His new book of dark poetry, Mad Shadows, was published in June. Garth is the founder of the Dark Fiction Guild (http://DarkFictionGuild.com) and Poe International (http://PoeInternational.com). He is also the Editor and Publisher of Dark Eye Glances, the eJournal of dark poetry.  Garth lives on Vancouver Island on Canada’s west coast.  Visit his website: http://VonBuchholz.com

It Came from the Vault: HorrorAddicts.net Bonus, Halloween Carol Special

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ha-tag

Horror Addicts Episode# BONUS!

Horror Hostesses: Emerian Rich & Camellia Rains

Intro Music by: Dean Farnell

*******************************

halloween carol special!

Feat. “The Monster’s Ball” by Dean Farnell

Feat. Renee and Evan Roulo

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

horroraddicts@gmail.com

 

b l o g  / c o n t a c t / s h o w . n o t e s

http://www.horroraddicts.net

You Have To Make Up Your Mind

SerialScribbler

As a publisher, I see this every day. People making excuses for not writing.

“I’m very busy.”
“I have kids.”
“I have a full-time job and go to school.

Stop.

No, seriously. Stop. If you have time to post status updates, and catch up on DVR’ed shows and/or movies, you have time to write. I challenge you today to find out how many minutes you spend posting, typing statuses and how many words you’ve typed in the Facebook (or other social media) vortex.

Is that number over ten? You have time.

Are you watching at least one show a night? You have time to write.

Are you vegging out doing nothing for thirty minutes a night? You have time to write.

The real question is, “Is writing a priority to you?”  That’s where you need to make up your mind. Writing takes hard work, dedication, and commitment. There’s no boss over your head most of the time making sure you’re not slacking off. You have to be in it, every spare moment that you have. If you can DVR a show and catch up with it at night or for a few hours on the weekend, you have time to commit, you just aren’t doing so.

If you sit down to write and someone can talk you out of it, you’re not committed to it. They don’t believe it’s a priority because you haven’t set the standard or the boundaries.

Writers that are serious about their craft do not allow interruptions. Friends and family will learn that it’s “Do Not Disturb” time and eventually, you will have time to write.

Recently, with my publishing company we held a meeting and discussed what our slogan for the month would be. We chose, “Are you all in?”

Well, are you?

December: Winter Horror

by Crystal Connor

Lol, I’m sorry I couldn’t help it. This post is about Winter Horror, which is the theme this month on HorrorAddicts.net.

As both a horror author and fan one of my favorite things I enjoy writing about is and being entertained by is the psychological side of horror.

I’m not sure if you know this but I am classically trained as a Marine Diesel Engineer and the 1st time I went to Dutch Harbor I fell to my knees once on the dock. The captain had no idea what was going on and when he asked I replied, “I’m repenting because if I don’t a frozen wasteland just like this will be my Hell.”

If you could have seen the look on his face! Lol. The idea of being trapped and cold in a hell frozen over inspires me to go to confessional, and I’m not Catholic, I’m a Christian … but still. My sinning ass needs all the help I can get.

I think the three greatest contributors which has the potential to make the winter months so truly terrifying are Freezing Temperatures, Being Lost and Isolation, the induction of the fear that follows.

I think this is the reason I am such a fan of trapped environments. My all-time favorite of this troupe is when environment one is trapped in is a vast and open space, hellscapes of snow and ice.

Let’s explore these elements with a little shameless self-promotion served on the side…

Freezing Temperatures:

Barrow, Alaska is one of the coldest and remote settlements in the North America. With wind chill, temperatures can reach almost minus 100 degrees Fahrenheit. I said minus 100 degrees Fahrenheit. Just let that sink in for a moment.

It doesn’t matter if its 65 degrees or God forbid, even colder than that, once I’m cold, I’m cold and the only thing I really think about once I’m cold is getting warm again and I’m in a pretty crappy mode until that happens. And until that happens its safe to say I’m not thinking straight because all I’m always thinking about is how cold I am and longing for the time I spent in warmer climates.

Studies have shown that temperature may sway how much trust people put in one another so it’s not surprising that people link temperature with psychological mindset (cold-bloodied killer)

Being Lost:

Now being lost is completely different from being trapped or isolated. When you’re lost, at least at first, it’s the confusion that interrupts clear thinking. But you can always cling to hope when lost.

If your off hiking somewhere, or take the wrong turn during a road trip and don’t show up when and where you were expected you’re going to be missed and this is what eventually helps a person to stop randomly wandering around and talk themselves into some sort of game plan to get them found or at the very least, help them get their bearings back.

This is where the wisdom of walking along a fence or river or just being still so that whoever is looking for you can actually find you comes in.

But if your judgment has been impaired due to being cold, and you’ve been subjected to the imagination of novelist such as myself, once it gets dark all bets are off. Of course you’ll worry about the bear’s, wild dogs, and other dangerous animals but not as much as you’ll think about the ghosts and strangers lurking between the clumps of trees, no matter how unrealistic these fears may be, and that will more likely than not make a person make drastic decisions that will make their situation worse.

Isolation:

First of all you know exactly where you are and others might too, but when things go wrong you can’t get out and those on the outside who know where you are probably don’t know you’re in trouble and wouldn’t expect it as your exactly where you told everyone you’d be.

And this is the reason I say a person can be cold, scared, and lost … or … cold, scared, and isolated. I’ve never seen or read a book where people where both isolated and lost at the same time.

One of the great things about using isolation as a horror element (Claustrophobia, agoraphobia, taphophobia, merinthophia, autophobia … the list goes on and on) and the adverse psychological effects it has on just basic thinking, not to mention, critical potentially lifesaving decision making is what makes isolation so terrorizing on so many levels. Not only that, but all kinds of studies have been conducted on human subjects in regards to extreme isolation and solitary confinement … the results of all of which is why this type of sensory deprivation is considered torture.

This is the type of subject I can write all day long about so instead of letting this post get out of hand I’m going to give you guys a little homework! lol

Homework for couch potatoes:

Three good reads that I think you should read if you haven’t already (or read again if its been awhile) about winter horror using the elements of isolation are:

Trapped by Dean R. Koontz http://www.amazon.com/Trapped-Dean-R-Koontz/dp/0061050040

The Shining by Stephen King  http://www.amazon.com/The-Shining-Stephen-King/dp/0307743659

In The Foothills of Mt. Empyreal The End is Now by Connor Titus http://www.amazon.com/In-The-Foothills-Mt-Empyreal/dp/1494964198

Three movies using the same elements

Adam Green’s 2010 Frozen 

John Carpenter’s 2011 The Thing 

Antonia Bird’s 2009 Ravenous 

Home work for outdoorsy type:

 If you rather not sit inside all winter and would rather risk your life by actually testing the patience of the gods of winter, you could try (but I am going to suggest that you don’t) your hand at navigating your way through:

 Death zone, Mt. Everest, Nepal

Dudes it’s called the Death Zone, even experienced climbers have perished here, and since rescuing or carrying an injured climber back to basecamp is impractical, they are typically left behind to die. About 150 bodies have never been recovered but despite its names there are worst places to die a wintery death.

Muir Snowfield, Mt. Rainier, WA

Like they say, there’s no place like home! Rainier’s summit requires a formidable alpine climb, and more than 90 mountaineers have slipped or frozen trying to reach 14,410 feet. But a whopping 294 fatalities have occurred elsewhere on the mountain

Right in my own back yard, Willamette National Forest, Oregon

A staggering 189 men and 51 women officially remain listed as missing since 1997 by the Oregon Office of Emergency Management after trekking into Oregon’s wildest places, said Georges Kleinbaum, search and rescue coordinator for the office. “It only takes a mile before you get totally turned around and don’t know which way to go,” said Kleinbaum, adding that 1,036 search and rescue missions were conducted across Oregon last year.

 Bonus

You really can’t talk about the horrors of winter without mentioning Christmas. My 2nd favorite all time sub-genre of Horror is Religious Horror and actually I think that might be 1st.  As a believer there is nothing more frightening to me than the idea of God turning his back on you, succumbing to temptation and forfeiting your admission to Heaven.

If you don’t have a weekend to spend reading a book but a have a few hours to kill check out Christopher Borrelli’s 2007 Whisper besides the child being the offspring of Satan, the religious undertones are subtle

However if you prefer your Christmas horror to be terrifying and religious-less I highly recommend Paul Andrew Williams 2008 The Children which is part of the 8 Films to Die For franchise. You can watch them both on either Amazon Video or Netflix

If you like your horror in quick short dosages I have something that fits the bill, clocking in at just 12 minutes and 9 seconds this little audio gem will fit nicely in your standard 15 minute coffee break The Christmas Wish http://podiobooks.com/title/and-they-all-lived-happily-ever-after/

And on that note, happy holidays you guys and as always thanks for stopping by! See you all next year!

Books

Washington State native Crystal Connor has been terrorizing readers since before Jr. high School and loves anything to do with monsters, bad guys, rogue scientific experiments, jewelry, sky-high high heel shoes & unreasonably priced hang bags. She is also considering changing her professional title to ‘dramatization specialist’ because it’s so much more theatrical than being just a mere drama queen. Crystal’s latest projects can be found both on her blog and Facebook fan page at:

http://wordsmithcrystalconnor.com

http://www.facebook.com/notesfromtheauthor

Download your free copy of …And They All Lived Happily Ever After! audiobook from Podiobooks.com and see why the name Crystal Connor has become “A Trusted Name in Terror!”

http://podiobooks.com/title/and-they-all-lived-happily-ever-after

Come meet us at BayCon 2015!

 Come to the Horror Addicts Guide to Life book release party!

Friday, May 22nd

@ Baycon 2015

8:30 PM in the Stevens Creek

Hyatt Regency, Santa Clara, CA

Freebies at the door and door prizes to boot!

Plus, don’t miss getting all these signatures on your very own copy of the book.

habayconbanner

Come meet Emerian Rich, H.E. Roulo, Laurel Anne Hill,

J. Malcolm Stewart, Loren Rhoads, Sumiko Saulson, and Lillian Csernica at

BayCon 2015

FinalFrontCoverHorror Addicts Guide to Life

Don’t miss the door prizes, favors, and your chance to see all these amazing horror personalities together in one place! 🙂

Books will be on hand for signing and purchase.

Come meet us at BayCon 2015!

 

 

Come to the Horror Addicts Guide to Life book release party!

Friday, May 22nd

@ Baycon 2015

8:30 PM in the Stevens Creek

Hyatt Regency, Santa Clara, CA

Freebies at the door and door prizes to boot!

Plus, don’t miss getting all these signatures on your very own copy of the book.

habayconbanner

Come meet Emerian Rich, H.E. Roulo, Laurel Anne Hill,

J. Malcolm Stewart, Loren Rhoads, Sumiko Saulson, and Lillian Csernica at

BayCon 2015

FinalFrontCoverHorror Addicts Guide to Life

Don’t miss the door prizes, favors, and your chance to see all these amazing horror personalities together in one place! 🙂

Books will be on hand for signing and purchase.

HorrorAddicts.net – KIDNAPPED!

halogokidnappedIt’s that time of year again when all the little Horror Addicts here at the home office travel to BayCon to see those of you in person that can attend. We always have a wonderful time and we encourage you to join us this year especially for our Horror Addicts Guide to Life release party! Check the program for details.

For those of you left behind, don’t worry, we didn’t forget about you! From May 10th – June 6th, you will not go horror-free. OH NO! We have a group of horror aficionados here to entertain you.

May 10-16 = Michele Roger

micheleMichele Roger is the author of “Dark Matter” and “The Conservatory”; both horror novels.  She also hosts her own podcast of short stories called “Something Wicked This Way Strums”.  When Michele isn’t writing, she is performing as a solo harpist as well as in the ensemble “Bellissima Musica”.  You can find both her writing and her music at https://www.facebook.com/michele.roger.5

May 17-23 = Selah JanelselahWhen Selah isn’t on her soapbox about genre, she’s usually trying to write it, hoping someone will take her seriously. Check out her blog, or find her on Facebook or Twitter.

 May 24-25 = Jaq D. Hawkins

229085_6404925951_5488_nJaq D. Hawkins was originally traditionally published in the Mind, Body, Spirit genre, but moved to indie publishing soon after releasing her first Fantasy fiction novel. She currently has five novels released which include the Goblin Series (Dark Fantasy) and The Wake of the Dragon (Steampunk Adventure). A dark science fiction novel is in progress, as well as further writings in occult subjects, some of which continue to be traditionally published while others are destined for the indie market.

May 26-30 = Rebecca Besser
Rebecca BesserRebecca Besser resides in Ohio with her wonderful husband and amazing son. They’ve come to accept her quirks as normal while she writes anything and everything that makes her inner demons squeal with delight. She’s best known for her work in adult horror, but has been published in fiction, nonfiction, and poetry for a variety of age groups and genres. Find out more about her: www.rebeccabesser.com
May 31-Jun 6 = C. A. Milson

Picture of me 7C.A.Milson grew up in Brisbane, Australia. He is the author of 5 books; Indie Film Director/Producer; Publisher; and Marketing Consultant. His books include; “Rise Of The Darkness”; “Bloodline Of Darkness”; “Pick Up The Phone” (Under his real name of Chris Jackson); Izbranny (Russian version); and “Not So Ordinary Girl” (which he co-wrote with well-known sports entertainment writer, J.D.Rebel).

Come meet us at BayCon 2015!

habayconbanner

Come meet Emerian Rich, H.E. Roulo, Laurel Anne Hill,

J. Malcolm Stewart, Loren Rhoads, Sumiko Saulson, and Lillian Csernica at

BayCon 2015

May 22nd-24th

Hyatt Regency

Santa Clara, CA

Program details coming soon, but don’t wait to buy your tickets.

We will be having a big HorrorAddicts.net BOF and

release party for our book:

FinalFrontCoverHorror Addicts Guide to Life

Don’t miss the door prizes, favors, and your chance to see all these amazing horror personalities together in one place! 🙂

Books will be on hand for signing and purchase.

Horror Addicts Guide to Life – Available now!

FinalFrontCoverHorror Addicts Guide to Life

Available now! 

Cover art by: Masloski Carmen

Editor: David Watson

Do you love the horror genre? Do you look at horror as a lifestyle? Do the “norms” not understand your love of the macabre?

Despair no longer, my friend, for within your grasp is a book written by those who look at horror as a way of life, just like you. This is your guide to living a horrifying existence. Featuring interviews with Midnight Syndicate, Valentine Wolfe, and The Gothic Tea Society.

Authors: Kristin Battestella, Mimielle, Emerian Rich, Dan Shaurette, Steven Rose Jr., Garth von Buchholz, H.E. Roulo, Sparky Lee Anderson, Mary Abshire, Chantal Boudreau, Jeff Carlson, Catt Dahman, Dean Farnell, Sandra Harris, Willo Hausman, Laurel Anne Hill, Sapphire Neal, James Newman, Loren Rhoads, Chris Ringler, Jessica Robinson, Eden Royce, Sumiko Saulson, Patricia Santos Marcantonio, J. Malcolm Stewart, Stoneslide Corrective, Mimi A.Williams, and Ron Vitale. With art by Carmen Masloski and Lnoir.

 

“Dark is the Sea” by Heather Blanchard

Hello fellow Addicts!

This week I bring an offering of witchcraft and mermaids in the form of “Dark is the Sea” by Heather Blanchard.

Rowan Munro was ten years old when she was kidnapped by a man whose face she doesn’t remember.  She managed to escape, although the how is also missing from her memories.  When her mother disappears months later, Rowan’s father moves her to London, far from her home in the Scottish village of Dorchay.  Years later, she returns to stay with her aunt and discovers her heritage is a very unique one.  She also rekindles a friendship with her best friend Violet, a young witch being trained by her aunt, and falls in love with another childhood friend named Blake.  Amidst all of this, a mysterious and powerful entity, known as The Hunter, has set his sights on her.

In many ways, this book reads like the Twilight series of books, only without the vampires.  There is a very clear romantic theme throughout the book, as well as plenty of paranormal goings on.   From The Hunter to a castle haunted by shadow creatures, this does have a lot to keep any reader’s interest.  If there are any faults to it, it’s Rowan’s reactions to certain key events.  It is a good read, but more so if you are a fan of paranormal romance stories.

Until next time, Addicts.

Donald “D.J.” Pitsiladis

Season 9 Finale Guests

My dark children, I am so sorry to say goodnight to you this weekend for 2014, but I am excited to introduce you to our Season Finale Guests!

MUSICIANS: Midnight SyndicateMidnight Syndicate

For almost two decades, composers Edward Douglas and Gavin Goszka have been known as Midnight Syndicate, creating symphonic soundtracks to imaginary films that facilitate a transcendental and adventurous escape into the secret dimensions of the mind’s eye. To many of their fans, they are Gothic music pioneers brewing a signature blend of orchestral horror music and movie-style sound effects. To others, they remain the first “haunted house band” that forever changed the Halloween music genre and became a staple of the October holiday season. And some know them as the duo that created the first official soundtrack to the legendary Dungeons & Dragons roleplaying game. Their critically-acclaimed works are reminiscent of sweeping, complex masterpieces by artists such as James Horner, Danny Elfman, Black Sabbath and King Diamond and have been featured as a part of groundbreaking films, television shows, video games and at haunted attractions, amusement parks and live performances worldwide.

AUTHOR: Emily Goodwin

emilygood

Emily Goodwin is the international best-selling author of the stand-alone novel STAY, The Guardian Legacies Series: UNBOUND, REAPER, MOONLIGHT (releasing 2014), The Beyond the Sea Series: BEYOND THE SEA, RED SKIES AT NIGHT (releasing 2015) and the award winning Contagium Series: CONTAGIOUS, DEATHLY CONTAGIOUS, CONTAGIOUS CHAOS, THE TRUTH IS CONTAGIOUS (Permuted Press)

“I wasn’t afraid of death. If I died, it would be over. My worst fear wasn’t of dying, it was of living. Living while everyone around me had their flesh savagely torn from their bodies to be shoved into the festering and ever-hungry mouths of zombies. It terrified me, right down to my very core, to be alive while the rest of the world was dead.”

contagiousThe award winning Contagium Series is a four book saga, published by Permuted Press, that follows Orissa Penwell on her journey through a post-apocalyptic world killing the dead, saving the living, and deciding if love is worth the risk.

Contagious was the winner of the 2014 best horror book, voted at the Contagious Reads Horror Con. Contagious was also recognized for having the best  gore, best zombies, best bad-ass female lead, best team/couple in a horror book, and best overall series.

HORROR HOST: Miss Miserymm5

Press has dubbed Horror Hostess Miss Misery as the Queen of horror in the bay area. She is hostess of The Last Doorway Show, a show dedicated to promoting the independent horror artist. She also hosts those late night bad horror films on Movie Massacre; which will be coming to your television set very soon.  So get ready for a two hour delight of terror!

She also has a segment on Creepy Kofy Movie Time called Web of Insanity. Where she hosts 3 minute and under short horror films! You can even catch her at the end of the show dancing with Balrok, No name, and the hot Cave girls.

Miss Misery hosts several events around the San Francisco, Sacramento area including Zombie Proms, Shadow casts, and Film Festivals.

If you think that wasn’t enough Miss Misery will soon be coming out with her own line of comic books which she hosts tales of death of revenge called “Forgotten Tales” not only does she host these awesome stories but she also writes them. Get inside her head with these up coming comic books from Comic Book Divas.

Sometimes you can catch her having Bloody Mary’s with her gal pal Ms. Vampy!!

BEST IN BLOOD:

We will be revealing the winner of Best in Blood for last season, season 8. This is a good one, you won’t want to miss!

SEASON 9 FINALE / HALLOWEEN SPECIAL

Don’t miss the ghouls, the goblins, and the gals as we ring in the Halloween season with the best special yet! Costume talk, Halloween jokes, and your favorite drinking word, all packed in to a show you won’t forget!

Join us for episode #110, airing October 18th.

Meet Writer Wm. A. Yandell, #107

williamFor episode #107, our very own David Watson will be reading Wm. A Yandell’s “Cross Back.” “Cross Back” is a chapter from William’s novel, coming out next year. It is a story about a doctor who is investigating if people can return from the dead and describe their experiences. He uses convicts and the terminally ill, bringing them back from the other side.

HA: What is your most recent work for sale and what is it about?Containment Breach Cover front
William: Coming soon is Containment Breach. It is set in the near future, in a world of diminishing freedom. A genetic scientist has created a new life form. He is following the work of another scientist who he believes has made the same discovery, then mysteriously disappeared. This has given him a good reason to hide his discovery. He is brought in by the military to now help fight the creatures his predecessor has indeed created who are now killing every human they can find.

HA: What was the spookiest night of your life?
William: It was actually a day where I was at a chess tournament at a downtown university. Between matches I would go up to the roof to clear my mind before I would meet my next opponent. After getting on the elevator I noticed someone had pushed all the top floor buttons before getting off. Deciding I did not want to go through this I hit the button for the next floor and got off. As I went to push the button in the floor lobby to catch another elevator, I found the button did not work. I decided to take the stairs only to find the door locked. I found myself locked into a 6 ft by 15 ft elevator lobby with only a window on the closed for renovation 12th floor. After pounding on the steel fire door and trying to get the elevator doors open for about a half an hour I opened the window. Looking down only to find the next level roof to be about six floors down. Being a Saturday I knew the first time someone might be one the floor would be Monday, it got really spooky. I finally got the attention of a police man who did not believe I was anyone but a college student performing a stunt. Once I crawled out on to the window ledge he got the campus maintenance to take the elevator up and check on where I was. When those elevator doors opened I was out of that room in a blink of an eye. No one could explain how that could have possibly happened, only that it did.

HA: How do you create stories? What is in your writers tool kit?
William: I use a spiral note book once a story forms in my mind. I will sit down at a coffee shop or even a fast food place, typically late morning, to write out the story outline. I then take off with the outline on the computer. My first computer was an Apple 2E which I got handed down to me and I have used one ever since.

HA: What era do you feel most at home in?
William: I like the near future, it gives me the most liberty. I prefer to take our world and twist it up so to speak.

HA: Who is one person you’d like to meet, living or dead, and why?
William: Nostradamus, he could see the future and I would love to understand him.

HA: What is your favorite horror flick?
William: The first Halloween flick, it was not predicable. You did not know what was going on and the ending was fantastic.

HA: If you were to battle a hoard of zombies, who would be your dream team fighting next to you?
William: All terminators, even the early Arnold version. Artificial intelligence drones are one of the scariest things to me, like zombies they never give up and lack moral pause.

HA: What is the most horrifying costume experience you’ve ever had?
William: I went to a costume party in a high rise and got in the elevator with a women who was terrified of clowns. Of course I was dressed as a clown and as soon as the door closed she started screaming. No matter what I said she was in full freak out. I got out of the elevator as soon as I could and left the building and did not go to the party. A couple of days later I talked to my friend who said, “Was that you? Her husband had the cops come upstairs to find you.” She called after to apologize for her husband calling the police and for flipping out on me.

HA: Where can the addicts find you?
https://www.facebook.com/william.yandell.71?fref=ts

Best Band Season 8: Unveil

Logo Unveil - Web

The dark rock band, Unveil was featured on episode #91 of HorrorAddicts.net, Season 8 and then you the listeners voted them Best Band. Unveil was formed in 2004 by Eric Lee on bass, Eric Pomerleau on drums, and Alain Robitaille on guitar. In 2011, they played a special fund raising event and invited their friend, Joelle Nolin on vocals. Ever since that magic night, she has been part of the band.

I was fortunate to sit down with Alain and discuss the band, their sound, and what they have coming up next.

Unveil 2HA: Tell us about your band. Who writes the music?
ALAIN: I write most of the music but Unveil has no dedicated lyricist. The lyrics of the first album were written by me and Erich Langlois, a good friend of mine who writes lovely dark poetry. He gave me several texts when I started the band. I simply built a universe around his words. Writing of the second album is moving along smoothly. I have a good idea of the direction I want to take. It will include several texts of my own. Joelle, our new vocalist, also brought-in several solid texts. And I still have a few things left over from my “Erich” stash. As the album is in the writing stage, more contributors may appear in the future.

HA: What singers or bands inspired you growing up? Who are your favorite artists today?
ALAIN: My teen years were in the 70’s, so I learned to play electric guitar listening to vinyl records. My favorites were Rush, Black Sabbath, The Mission, Pink Floyd, The Cure, and countless others. Since those days, the Internet has opened up a floodgate of incredible music. To catch my attention, a band has to have a dark edge. Some of my favorite artists these days include The Birthday Massacre, Emilie Autumn, Lacuna Coil, Chelsea Wolfe, and Die So Fluid.

HA: How did you find out about HorrorAddicts.net? How does it feel to be chosen as Best Band?
ALAIN: I’ve been faithful HorrorAddicts.net listener since season 4. I must admit, I don’t remember exactly how I find out about Horror Addicts. I believe it was through Grave Concerns Ezine. I’m always web crawling for new and exciting music, authors, photographers… We were up against so many great bands, to be named “best band” is a totally unreal. It’s like being included in a family that you have loved for many years.

HA: What non-musical things inspire your music? Is there a place where you go to be inspired?
ALAIN: Since a very young age, I have had a fascination for vampires. The setting of the first album is deliberately inspired by this. The songs are not about vampires, but are written from a vampire’s perspective. Songs about loneliness, death, disgrace, fear… Unveil is all about subtlety, so don’t expect bats, coffins or blood sucking. I don’t have a special place where I sit down and wait for inspiration. I often find my best ideas when I am doing something else. The trick that works for me is: pen and paper. Whenever an idea pops-up, I write it down. So when I’m ready to write new lyrics or a story, I flip through my notes looking for building blocks.

HA: What’s been the greatest achievement of your band? Where is the coolest place you’ve played?
ALAIN: Unveil’s greatest achievement is without a doubt: “The Story of Sarah”. An event that mixed a rock concert and a short film. This project actually included the writing of two short tales: The Story of Sarah & The Story of Anna. The bridge between the two tales is a character named “The Stranger” whose story is revealed through the lyrics of the songs. It’s fun to play the “standard” gig, but what I love is bringing music to places you don’t normally see a live band. In 2010, we played a full set in a gothic fashion store. But the definitively coolest place we had the pleasure of playing has to be at a Zombie Walk where we played to a horde of zombies. A videoclip of the event can be seen on Unveil’s YouTube page. Having fun is always the number one goal at any Unveil gig. If we don’t have fun playing the show, the crowd won’t have fun watching it.

HA: What are your favorite horror movies?
ALAIN: Vampire movies. Some of my favorites are: Fearless Vampire Killers, Fright Night, From Dusk Till Dawn, Bram Stoker’s Dracula, and The Addiction. I also enjoy horror-mystery movies such as: Stigmata, Prince of Darkness, The Omen, The Others, and The Ring. I’m also a big fan of the Tim Burton. I think he did a mesmerizing job in retelling Sleepy Hollow.

HA: What was the scariest night of your life?
ALAIN: When I was young, my father was a movie theatre manager. So he had access to 16mm reels of major theatrical releases. He would regularly take out his projector to present the latest movies on a wall in the house or even in the backyard. Keep in mind that this was in the 70’s, before the coming of the VHS cassette. I remember one night in 1974, I was 8 years old. That night, he did a private screening of the movie “The Exorcist” for family and friends in the basement at our house. At the end of the evening, when everyone went back to their houses, I was left alone to sleep in that same basement.

Unveil 5HA: What is available now that the listeners can download or buy?
ALAIN: Last year, we released a first official EP called “Codex Noctem”. Physical copy can be ordered through CdBaby. If you prefer downloads, you can go to BandCamp, iTunes, Amazon and many others. You can also listen to “Codex Noctem” through streaming services like Spotify, Deezer, Rdio.
http://www.cdbaby.com/Artist/Unveil http://unveil.bandcamp.com
You can also find Unveil on many social medias such as, Facebook, Twitter, ReverbNation, MySpace… A web search for “unveil616” will find most of them.
The best place to get all the latest news is our FaceBook page at: http://www.facebook.com/unveil616

HA: If you could play anywhere in the world, where would it be and who would be your opening band?
ALAIN: Finland would be great! They have a thriving music scene with so many great artists. But the ultimate “dream gig” would be Las Vegas; a big production with showgirls in black feathers raven costumes and massive stage props. Or maybe a midnight acoustic set at Stonehenge? The opening band would be One-Eyed Doll from Austin, Texas. Lead by Kimberly Freeman’s amazing stage presence, this duo puts on a rockin’ high energy show.

HA: What are you working on now for future release?
ALAIN: For now, we are working on a second album. We still have no release date at this time, but we are aiming spring 2015. We will be making local shows to try out new ideas. I also want to create a stage show around a new story set in the world of ghosts and spirits. I have been doing paranormal investigations with my friends of the web series “Ghosts in Time” to get into the mood.

Meet Writer Bob Nailor, #106

Bob Nailor Photo 5x7For this week’s show, we’ve got author, Bob Nailor, who is co-author of Ancient Blood: The Amazon. He’s the author of Three Steps: The Journeys of Ayrold and 2012: Timeline Apocalypse and also a contributing author to Mother Goose is Dead, The Complete Guide to Paranormal Novels and many other anthologies.

Bob brings us the story “The Dark Sun’s Blood” which is about a baron who wishes to have eternal life and live with his love, the virgin chambermaid. A mystic from the East is willing to grant him his wish but wants a certain jewel in return.

Let’s learn some more about Bob as he answers questions about his horror likes and dislikes.

AncientBloodAmazon_5x8What was the spookiest night of your life?
Halloween

What is your favorite horror flick?
Psycho. Hitchcock is the man.

If you were to battle a hoard of zombies, who would be your dream team fighting next to you?
Arnold Schwartzenegger, Rocky, Captain America and Pippi Longstocking (the sacrificial lamb)

What is the most horrifying costume experience you’ve ever had?
A zipper that wouldn’t unzip so I could go to the restroom.

How do you create stories?
Laptop. What’s in my tool kit? My brain.

What era do you feel most at home in?
Current.

Who is one person you’d like to meet, living or dead, and why?
Vincent Price – because he has the ability to generate fear with his voice.

What is your most recent work for sale and what is it about?
A novel, Ancient Blood: The Amazon which involves newly discovered vampires in the Brazilian Amazon jungle.

Where can fans learn more about your work?
Twitter – @bobnailor
www.bobnailor.com

Master of Macabre #5, Solomon Archer

Surface Tension by Solomon Archer
Location: New York City
Item: A teddy bear
Creature Origin: An oceanic trench

*~*Judging panel has not altered/edited this text.*~*
*~*Text is posted as sent by the author.*~*

Surface Tension

by Solomon Archer, Ph.D.

 

JOSEPH SNAPPED VIOLENTLY AWAKE from a restless sleep by a series of hard bumps as the tiny Cessna hit pocket after pocket of turbulence. As the jet shook and rattled, he could barely hear the pilot over the deafening roar inside the cabin.

“What’d you say?” he yelled. The pilot pointed toward the window.

“Ten miles to the starboard!” he shouted over his shoulder. Joseph looked out the small oval window at the vast ocean below them. The glare from the surface of the sea made it difficult to tell what he was looking at but when the sun momentarily ducked behind a bank of clouds, the mass came into full view. Even so, it took him a few moments to register what he was seeing.

“Oh my God,” Joseph muttered. The pilot nodded his head in agreement at the pile of floating debris covering an area approximately the size of Manhattan.

“You people are out of your minds,” the pilot muttered.

 


Joseph had been hired by Brooklyn Salvage in the past. He liked working with them, though he was not looking forward to being away from his daughter Abby for almost a month. His mother volunteered to look after her while he was away and for that Joseph was eternally grateful.

The crew of the ship, a 75-meter tug named the Cloudburst, was typical for a salvage operation with the exception of a marine biochemist, a cartographer, and two divers.

Joseph was somewhat disappointed that his skills as an underwater welder weren’t needed on this job, but he couldn’t argue with the money. Thirty thousand dollars for a three-week expedition was hard to turn down.

During the initial mission briefing the experts gave an overview of the expedition. The cartographer, whose name Joseph didn’t catch, used colorful maps and bathymetric charts to highlight the currents the garbage island had followed for nearly a decade before stalling over an area known as the Java Trench, a submarine depression in the Indian Ocean four and a half miles deep.

Kim Chen, the biochemist, explained that recent tectonic plate movements had created a vast array of volcanic cones along the lip of the trench. The cones, which were essentially like underwater chimneys, had been churning out a stew of toxic chemicals and debris from as far down as the earth’s mantle.

“What kind of chemicals?” asked one of the salvage crew.

“Well, sodium and calcium, of course. You find that everywhere in the ocean. But these things are also spitting out hydrogen sulfide, silica, chloride, and manganese, just to name a few. It’s a really poisonous mess and it’s coming out hot.”

“How hot?” Joseph asked.

“320 degrees Celsius,” Chen answered.

Joseph frowned, trying to convert that number to Fahrenheit. “And how hot exactly is that?” he asked.

“Hot enough to melt lead,” Chen answered. She must have detected the unease in his voice and quickly added, “Oh don’t worry. All that heat is lost before it gets anywhere near the surface. No, what worries me is the fact that toxic stew seems to be feeding your island.”

“You know, I’m gonna be knee deep in that crap starting tomorrow morning. You got any words of advice?” Joseph asked.

“Yeah,” she said after a moment. “Wear boots.”


It was early afternoon on the second day when their ship approached the floating island. He heard one of the other crew members refer to the island as “continental afterbirth,” and Joseph thought that description was quite fitting. The pile stretched out as far as he could see and appeared to be made up of several countries-worth of garbage. Its surface consisted of a frothy mix of plastic bottles, milk jugs, cardboard boxes, aluminum siding, and acres of discarded paper products. Dotted throughout were thousands of trash bags – some bloated from decomposition under the relentless sun, others ravaged by the sea and scattered about like ghostly mourners. Rivers of torn clothing and shredded linens meandered through the mass like serpents and the entire tableau was kissed by a layer of white foam.

Occasionally Joseph caught a glimpse of something more exotic: a stuffed white snow leopard that looked covered in mange, its fur faded and frayed by the elements; a ten-by-fourteen foot replica of Van Gogh’s Starry Night peeling from a weathered frame freckled with tar; a congealed mass of melted pink flip-flops that scarred the surface like some ocean-borne strain of Rosacea.

Perhaps strangest of all was what looked like a human torso, hirsute and pale, bobbing up and down in the current, one perfectly severed stump blindly scanning the surrounding sea like a bloodshot eye. The captain had radioed the Coast Guard about that last find, but the exchange consisted of little more than a relay of coordinates. It was unlikely that anyone would be declaring the area a crime scene.


Over the course of the next several days, he and another deckhand named Michael, got into a rhythm of sorting the debris into piles based on whatever language they could find on the items.

At one point he came across a teddy bear fr that was surprisingly intact, other than being waterlogged and a little faded.

“Whatcha got there, Joe?” Dr. Chen asked as she waved a Geiger counter over a nearby pile. He handed it to her, shrugging.

“Some kid’s stuffed toy, looks like,” he replied.

Kim turned the teddy over in her hands. “Huh,” she mumbled. “Mind if I run some tests? I’ve got a decontaminant I’ve been dying to try out if you don’t mind?”

“Knock yourself out, doc,” he said and returned to the pile.

When she was gone, Michael sidled up to him and, looking over his shoulder to make sure no one else was around, showed Joseph a watch he had found. The hands were frozen at 2:25 and it was missing a diamond at the 12:00 o’clock position, but otherwise looked to be in good shape.

Joseph whistled. “Is that a Rolex?”

“Score, right?” Michael beamed.

“You gonna tell the captain about it?” Joseph asked, already knowing the answer.

Michael snorted. “Hell no! I don’t know about you, but I’ve got bills to pay. I mean, 30 grand is great and all, don’t get me wrong. But this piece could be worth a couple thousand easy.” His smile faltered for a moment. “You’re not gonna say anything, are you?”

“’Course not,” Joseph reassured him. “Finders keepers. Congratulations. But if I were you I’d think about having Dr. Chen decontaminate it first.”

Michael smiled as he pocketed the watch. “Yeah, I’ll sure give that some thought.” Joseph nodded knowing Michael would do no such thing and the two returned to sifting through the trash.

By the time the Cloudburst finally docked at the Southeast Brooklyn Marine Terminal in Hudson Bay and Joseph had made it back to his apartment, it was nearly midnight and all he wanted to do was kiss his daughter, take a shower, and sleep for two weeks. As he unpacked his overstuffed duffel, he was surprised to find a clear plastic bag containing the teddy bear he had found at the site several weeks earlier and a note from Kim.

“Success!” the note began. “The decontamination worked better than I expected. Not even a trace of toxic chemicals or radiation. For providing me with my first test subject, you win a teddy bear! Signed K.”

Joseph examined the bear and had to admit Kim had done a damn fine job. It looked brand new with a shiny fur coat and it smelled like it had just come out of the wash. Abby would love it.

He popped his head into his daughter’s room found her asleep in her crib. He placed the teddy bear next to her head and was delighted to see her roll over, wrap a tiny arm around its neck, and start chewing on the animal’s ear.

 


Joseph went to the bathroom and stripped off his clothes and stood under the scalding stream for over ten minutes watching the water gradually get lighter as it circled the drain. He might have fallen asleep had not the high pitch of overworked metal pipes started screaming in protest. Joseph jumped at the racket coming from the wall and quickly shut off the water. But the squealing did not stop and it struck him that the sound was not coming from the pipes. He stood naked for a moment trying to figure out what it was when an inhuman shriek threatened to tear the bathroom door off its hinges.

He raced from the bathroom toward his daughter’s room, which seemed to be the source of the commotion. He was not at all prepared for what he saw when he opened the door.

In the dim pink glow of the nightlight, Abby was flailing in her crib and at first he thought she had somehow bitten into an electrical cord. He flipped on the light and raced to the crib, stopping short when he peered over the edge.

The skin from her face was entirely melted away, leaving a pulsing white and red mass of bone and tissue underneath. Her lips slid off her chin and dropped in a pile of blood, spit, and teeth on her chest, which was vibrating erratically. He thought crazily that she was having a seizure until the wet hole that used to be her mouth produced a bubbling cry followed by a fit of ragged wheezing as Abby desperately tried to fill her lungs with air.

Something in Joseph’s mind broke when he saw the skin of her neck tear open and he recoiled instinctively as several hundred worms, some more than four feet in length, bored through her throat. Red, orange, and black dots glistened on their shiny albino bodies and they moved impossibly fast as they engulfed her entire head. The sickening sound of his daughter’s skull cracking was enough to jolt Joseph to action.

He shot his arms forward grabbing Abby beneath her armpits, intending to pull her from the crib. It was last time he would ever touch her.

The moment his hands locked behind her back, her arms were torn from her body by a second wave of worms that had emerged from a gaping hole in her chest. He slipped in the growing pool of gore oozing out of the crib.

As he scrambled to get to his feet, he felt the first of them enter him through his ankle. He nearly blacked out from the pain as worm after worm burrowed into his legs and snaked into his body. They tore through flesh, bone, and muscle as they spread throughout. A few that had been devouring the contents of his last meal penetrated his bladder and exited his body through his urethra like a stream of lava. Some of the creatures had discovered his trachea and in their frenzied feast produced screams Joseph did not even recognize as his own. The last two things he ever saw in this world were the teddy bear, its stuffing teeming with what looked like albino maggots and the inside of his skull as his eyes were pulled into his head.

After that, he knew nothing more.


Madeline had been searching online for an anniversary gift for over an hour and had nearly settled on a tactical barbeque vest when she struck eBay gold: a Rolex Oyster Perpetual Datejust. She considered herself to be something of a connoisseur of men’s fashion and other than missing a diamond at the 12 o’clock spot, the watch was in near pristine condition and at $1500 this one was a steal. She hesitated over the “buy” button for only a second before confirming her purchase. She couldn’t wait to see the look on her husband’s face when he tried it on. It would be memorable – of that much she could be sure.

****************

To vote for this story in the 2014 Master of Macabre Writing Contest, send an e-mail to horroraddicts@gmail.com
Voting ends: September 9th, 2014

Master of Macabre #4, D. J. Pitsiladis

The Samaritan by D.J. Pitsiladis
Location: Angkor Wat
Item: Running Shoes
Origin: Meteor Site

*~*Judging panel has not altered/edited this text.*~*
*~*Text is posted as sent by the author.*~*

The Samaritan

By D.J. Pitsiladis

Gary jerked himself upright and muttered an apology to his sour faced neighbor.  The man muttered something in Cambodian before he turned his attention back to the window.  The American received similar reactions since his arrival in Bangkok, Thailand, the day before, and he thought about how it differed from the pro-tourism ads he saw while planning the pilgrimage.  As he popped open the third energy drink of the long bus trip, Gary promised himself, “Next time I take the window seat with all the fresh air.”

 

A bright flash lit up the sky seconds before the bus shuddered and began to roll on its side.  Gary bounced off his neighbor’s body before he hit the floor and smacked his head against one of the benches.  Pain blossomed behind his eyes from the impact before everything went black.  He didn’t know how long he was unconscious for, but when a hand pushed on his shoulder and a girl’s voice said, “Wake up,” he tried to open his eyes.  They remained shut until he felt another nudge, “Please wake up.”  The American’s eyes fluttered open to find a young Thai girl’s tear streaked face as it broke into a relieved smile.  Nausea washed over him like a wave and he laid his head back down until the girl whimpered and pushed his shoulder again.  “Please, mister, you need to wake up.”

 

Gary sat up and winced when he touched the top of his head.  “Probably have a concussion,” he thought as another wave of nausea hit.  The girl, meanwhile, placed her hands on his shoulders to help steady him while he checked their surroundings.  “Are there any others alive?” he asked.  She lowered her gaze and shook her head with a sniffle.  He swore under his breath, but then grabbed the side of the bench above him and pulled himself to his feet.

 

While he waited for his balance to steady, Gary checked out the girl for injuries.  She wore a stained yellow t-shirt and tan slacks with dark patches of blood, but no obvious signs of injury.  What really caught his attention were her clean running shoes.  He looked around at the other passengers and saw a considerable amount of blood and debris mixed in with pale bodies.  With all of that, he didn’t know how she managed to keep them so clean.  He meant to ask her about it when a noise from the outside grabbed his attention.

 

With careful steps, they made their way to the shattered front window and peeked outside.  Two of the temple complex’s five towers stood tall over a large pile of rubble while toppled trees burned around it.  They stepped from the vehicle and stared in amazement.  “How are we not dead?” Gary asked in disbelief.  Men yelled for help off in the distance, and he took a look at the girl and made a decision.  “Stay here,” he said.  “Help will be here soon.”  She opened her mouth to protest, maybe even beg him to stay until it did, but he worried that people might die if he did.

 

Military helicopters appeared within seconds and began to circle the fiery crater.  Gary wondered about what crashed there, but thought, “There’ll be plenty of time to find out after the injured are safe.”  Three armored personnel vehicles sped past the temple entrance and he jumped back to get out of their way.  He didn’t see the girl behind him until she bounced off his back and fell to the ground hard.  When she finally got her feet back under her, the girl headed for the temple with her left arm clutched tight against her chest.  Gary watched in disbelief as the military vehicles swerved to drive around her.

 

Once inside the outer walls, two monks saw them and yelled for help from a nearby pile of rubble.  Gary managed to free one of the men from the rocky trap, and let girl drag him out of the way while he turned his attention to the second monk.  It took a little longer to free the second holy man, but when he did, neither the girl nor the other monk were anywhere to be found.  When he didn’t find them, he checked the man’s leg and knew at first sight it was shattered and needed more care than he was able to offer.  When the girl finally walked around the corner, he asked, “What happened to the other guy?”

 

The girl looked around at the piles of debris and said, “He went to help more of his people.”  She met Gary’s gaze and pointed at the monk on the ground, “What about him?”  The expression on her face looked weird, but he let it go given the stressful situation.

 

“He’s not going anywhere,” Gary replied.  “His leg is badly shattered and we don’t have any way to move him.”  She turned her full attention on the man and went to his side.  The way she stared at the man looked more like hunger than concern, but, as much as his instincts told him to stay, he needed to go find more survivors.  “Can you stay here with him?” She nodded and he jogged around the opposite corner.  He didn’t get far before his gut told him to go back.  When he rounded the corner again, the scene he found terrified him.

 

The girl sat astride the monk’s chest with her knees on each arm, her left hand clamped tight over his mouth, and some kind of flat red disk against his forehead.  He realized when she pulled it away that the device was actually her hand.

 

“I can explain,” she said in a raspy voice.  Gary stared in horror as her once young and beautiful face shriveled into an opaque nightmare.  She took a tentative step toward him and added, “Then again, I don’t think you’ll understand the explanation any more than you can understand my hunger.”  The girl took another step toward him, “My kind needs blood for sustenance, but I spared you to help me find safety.”  His gaze lowered to the shriveled dead man behind her and realized not everyone on the bus died from the crash.  It proved enough to break his paralysis and he darted behind the pile of stones and headed for the soldiers.

 

Gary saw the bridge that led to the army, but didn’t see the girl until she slammed into his back and sent him to the ground hard.  Before he regained his breath, she rolled him over and sat on his chest with her knees firmly on his arms.  “All of that running made me hungry, and you look kind of tasty.”  He opened his mouth to shout for help, but her hand clamped over it as she laughed like a snake.  “Don’t worry.  I’m sure those soldiers will be happy to help.  After all…”  The girl’s image shifted back to the teenage girl and she said, “How can anyone resist a young girl in distress?”  He closed his eyes as her other hand rested on his forehead and she began to feed.

****************

To vote for this story in the 2014 Master of Macabre Writing Contest, send an e-mail to horroraddicts@gmail.com
Voting ends: September 9th, 2014

Master of Macabre #3, Rish Outfield

Lighthouse View by Rish Outfield
Location: A lighthouse
Item: A camera
Creature Origin: Volcano

*~*Judging panel has not altered/edited this text.*~*
*~*Text is posted as sent by the author.*~*

Lighthouse View

Rish Outfield

 

Carly arrived at the lighthouse just before ten in the morning, and the old man was already waiting for her.

“News lady?” he asked, putting down his large print Louis L’amour collection.

She had the camera and tripod on one shoulder, her sound bag in the other, but still said,  “That’s me.”

He slowly rose to his feet.  “You know you prolly made this trip for nothin’?”

“It’s not for nothing.  I get to see your beautiful lighthouse.”

“Ain’t been beautiful in years,” he grumbled.  He was an ancient-looking man with a white beard, a sailor hat over a bald head, and about a million wrinkles.  “View’s nice, though.”

She followed him into the old building.  It surprised Carly Page to find so few lighthouses on this part of the coast.  Her internet search had classified the one at Puente Dormido as being “Closed.”  Turned out the old man who ran it years before had bought the disused relic, and lived there now.

When she’d tracked him down on the telephone, he’d guessed what she was after.  “There’s prolly a one in a thousand chance the monster comes here.”

“Good enough for me,” she’d said, sitting in front of her computer, satellite photos on the screen showing a tail, a bulbous head, and a long body, though not in the same shot.

The monster, or Quetzalcoatl, as CNN had dubbed it, had emerged from a volcano in the Pacific two days before.  It seemed to be a giant snake or worm that either swam or flew–depending on if you thought the smudge in one photo was wings or not.  Scientists argued about whether it would head for the mainland, go to an island, or never be seen again, perhaps burrowing back into the sea.  Carly didn’t know why, but she had immediately thought of a lighthouse, and found the closest one.  If the monster came here, she might get some great footage, if not, she would interview a fascinating old man.

The lighthouse was damp and foul-smelling, and had fallen into disrepair inside and out.  “You okay?” The way he was breathing, she worried he might topple backward onto her.

“Just old,” he wheezed.  Well, that was an understatement.  Her grandfather had looked better the last time she’d seen him, and that had been in a funeral parlor.

On the upper level was a living area, with a sofa, several shelves lined with books, and a little radio.

“You say you’re from Channel 8?” he asked her, pausing to catch his breath.  Above them, the stairs continued another ten feet or so to a thick door leading to the roof.

“I was.”

He squinted at her.  “You got a face for the TV.  What’s the problem?”

She figured the interview would go better if she earned his trust, so she told him.  “The regular anchor had a baby, so I got the job to fill in for her.  On my second day, I read a story with the word knickerbocker in it.  Only I didn’t say it like that, exactly.”

“So, nobody caught the error?”

“Oh, about a thousand viewers did,” she said, though the calls and emails had actually numbered about twenty.  “TV news is live.  Goes out as you say it.  They wanted me to apologize on the next show.  I wouldn’t.  On Wednesday, there was a new guest anchor sitting in for me.”

“So, gettin’ a picture of the killer snake monster will put you back on top.”

They emerged onto the upper terrace.  The view was spectacular.  Blue, grey, and white ocean water as far as the eye could see, a cool and refreshing breeze.

“The radio said the coast guard spotted it,” she said.  “How far from us was that?”

“About eighteen mile from here.”

Carly’s odds of seeing the creature had just gotten better.

As if reading her thoughts, Walter said, “Eighteen is a lot of miles, Miss Knickerbocker.  Don’t think we’ll be hostin’ a monster party today.”

They stood in silence, Carly and the old man searching the horizon for anything more interesting than a boat.

Finally, she turned the camera on him.  “How old a man are you, Mr. Walter?”

“Ninety-one,” he said.  He definitely looked his age.

“Does this discovery make you question your understanding of the world?”

“Stuff with the snake, you mean?”  Walter gave her a wink.  “Nahh, I fought Hitler and Benito, I always believed in monsters.”

She smiled at that.  He was a charming man, even if he wasn’t very photogenic.

They left the terrace and went slowly down the creaking stairs.  Carly wondered if this building would still be standing ten years from now.

She set up the camera in front of the man’s couch.  The question she had asked him had been on a lot of minds since Quetzalcoatl emerged from the eruption.  Many took the monster as a sign that the Biblical end times were finally upon us, many took it as evidence that God did not exist.  Some were now worshiping the flying serpent like the Maya of old.

She sat Walter down with a microphone and adjusted the camera angle to best capture his craggy face.  “State your name and spell it for me.”

“Alec Walter Junior.  Eye-tee,” said Walter, and grinned for the lens.  It made him look like a bearded skeleton from a Disney pirate movie.

“Mister Walter, could–”

“Call me Alec.”

“Alec, could you tell me when you first saw this lighthouse?”

“Oh, surely.  I was six years old.  My pappy had decided–”

And then Carly heard the sound of a helicopter through the microphone.  It sounded close, getting closer.

Carly wrestled the camera off its tripod, and carried it up the stairwell with as much speed as she could muster. The old man followed, almost disappointed about the interview.

On the terrace, he saw the helicopter hovering over the water only half a mile away–a big ugly military vehicle.   Carly was filming something beyond the helicopter.  White water sprayed where an enormous shape moved fast through the ocean to the northwest.

“I can’t believe it!” she laughed, and it was infectious, the delighted laughter of the young.  “This is it!  I’m back in for sure now!”

“Hope you got enough film in that thing.”

A moment later, the helicopter rose higher.  The monster exploded out of the water and into the air.  The damned thing did have wings.

“Did you get that?” he asked, but the way she was beaming, he knew that she had.

The monster angled toward the shore.  Its wings were tiny, flapping so fast they were a blur, like a bug’s wings.  And as its body became more visible, a pale flying caterpillar, he realized that it looked a bit like his home.

“Here it comes!” Carly called in awe.

Alec Walter grabbed the girl’s thin arm and gave it a pull.  “We need to go.”

She looked away from the creature, just for a moment.

“Move!” he shouted, clutching her arm as tightly as he could manage, and pulling her in the direction of the stairs.

She thought of recording the creature’s truck tire-sized grey eyes.  Maybe, while she’d been looking at it, it had been looking at her.

She moved.  The old man focused on descending the stairs, and halfway down, he stumbled.  She steadied him with her free arm.  He was gasping, his whole back wet with sweat.

There came a sound above them–a skittering noise that insects made in the woods–but it was much, much too loud.  “Go!” Walter coughed.  But she kept supporting him until they finally made it to the bottom of the lighthouse.

He burst out the front door, but Carly didn’t want to leave the protection of the building.

“Come . . . on!” he managed, putting out his hand to her.

“We’re safer inside th–”

“It doesn’t . . . want us,” he coughed, and she ran to his side, helping him again as they moved away from the foot of the lighthouse.

The chittering stopped, and Carly saw Quetzalcoatl as it hovered next to the lighthouse.  It darted in the air, seeming to dance.

Beside Carly, the old man collapsed onto his knees, then rolled to a sitting position, where he could see the monster.  “Are you alright?”

“Yeah, yeah,” he got out.  He was barely getting any breath in, but she heard him whisper, “Shoot your camera.”

Quetzalcoatl kept bending its lower body toward the building, like a wasp about to sting.  “It thinks the lighthouse is an enemy,” she marveled, raising the camera–which had never stopped recording–to catch the full body of the flying worm.

“Ain’t mad,” Walter laughed, surprising Carly.  “It’s horny.”

She looked at its body language anew, and realized he was right.  The monster, though smaller than the lighthouse, was shaped very similarly to it, and was shaking its tail like a . . . well, like anybody who shook their ass for a suitor.

The helicopter slowly circled the top of the lighthouse, the only other witnesses to the giant worm’s dance.  Then the creature rotated itself 180 degrees, and landed on the side of the lighthouse.  She heard the building groan with the added weight, and saw brick drop off where the monster’s body connected.  Its tail was now right at the top of the edifice, where the terrace was.

Carly saw through the camera lens something wet and yellow emerge onto the top of the tower.  “It’s . . . laying eggs!”

“Now I’ve seen everything,” Walter mumbled beside her, and Carly felt an almost overwhelming affection for the old man.  If she hadn’t been holding the camera, trying to catch each sticky sphere as it came out and stuck in a pile, she would surely have hugged him.

Carly slowly panned onto the monster’s big flat face.  Later, she would remember it looking right at her, as though aware it had an audience.

Finally, the worm’s opaque wings began to vibrate again, and it disengaged itself from the lighthouse.  There was a cluster of twenty or so eggs up there, and Carly’s heart now thumped from exhilaration.  She had a big grin on her face, and the smile never faded as Quetzalcoatl’s wings blurred into motion again and it—she–turned and plunged into the ocean once again.  The military helicopter followed, trying to keep up.

She held the shot a moment more, arm aching from keeping the camera steady, and finally stopped recording.  “Yep,” she said, lowering her right arm.  “That will probably make me a–”

She turned and stared at the old man.  Alec Walter Junior was laying back, his mouth and his eyes both open a slit.  He no longer stirred, no longer breathed.

“Now you’ve seen everything,” she sighed.

 

****************

To vote for this story in the 2014 Master of Macabre Writing Contest, send an e-mail to horroraddicts@gmail.com
Voting ends: September 9th, 2014

Master of Macabre #2, Ricky Cooper

A Contrast of Worlds by Ricky Cooper
Location: An Italian restaurant
Item: A human skull
Creature Origin: Deep Space

*~*Judging panel has not altered/edited this text.*~*
*~*Text is posted as sent by the author.*~*

A Contrast in Worlds

 

Clattering filled the air, wry smiles etched their lips as they lifted  the cups and sipped, a hum of gratification filing the space between them.

‘It’s certainly good here; best we have found so far I’d venture to say.’

A soft chuckle tickled the air as they set their cups back on the small saucers.

‘It certainly is, but I must say the heat is dreadfully oppressive.’

‘Agreed, but dear we must remember, this place is as new to us, as we are to it. We will eventually adapt, we always do.’

A slight nod greeted the softly worded admonishment. As the heat rolled over them, handkerchiefs patted at perspiration soaked brows. The quiet whisper of silk filled the air as, with delicate motions and supple fingers, the handkerchiefs were folded and once more tucked into the cuffs of their sleeves.

‘So darling how old did you say this colony was?’

‘Well, it’s taken us one hundred and fifty years to get this far.

‘When one thinks that we didn’t even know this world existed until those signals started coming through.

‘Even as faint as they were, they gave planning a reason to brush the dust off our old search probes.

‘The probes were launched and all the while we waited and listened. The signals were getting stronger and more frequent. The inevitable conclusion was that for the first time we had found another sentient race in the universe. The prize was within our grasp.

‘So with the information collated and analysed the first ships were sent out. I know that travelling halfway across the galaxy in stasis is a crazy thing to do but we were absolutely desperate for extra space, a civilisation can only survive on one planet for so long without exhausting the ecosystem to the point of collapse.

‘ Then when we arrive the place is empty. No signals. Nothing.’

‘And with that in mind my dear, I’d say it’s a good idea for us all to pay careful attention to the signs we were left by those that came before. You know as well as I that waiting a few hundred years more will not damage things. Besides the rest of the settlers will be needing a head counsel to oversee the ownership rights in this territory.’

A warm gust of air made their heads tilt. Eyes slid closed and nostrils flared, a short guttering gasp left them both as they stood, chairs clattering against the cobbled floor.

‘Come with me, I want to show you something, it was unearthed a few weeks ago.’

Their tapping feet filled the quiet street as they listened to the bustle of shoppers and families only a few yards away, the soft tremor that shivered through their feet made one pause, a soft gasp of fright flirting with his companion’s ears.

‘Darling, fear not, it’s just that beastly mountain again, damned thing has been gurgling and smoking ever since I was transferred here.’

Glancing back over the top of the buildings around them, the monolith of fire and heat smoked and rumbled sending a shiver down his spine as he hastened his pace and caught up to his slowly disappearing comrade.

‘So where exactly are we going dear?’

A small smile broke his partners lips as they drew level. Hands clasped behind their backs they moved out into a vast courtyard. The central fountain burbled echoing the gentle call of small birds that flitted above their heads.

‘We’re heading to the one place in this heat blasted world where we can see what became of this planet’s indigenous species and I for one would wish that my partner saw them just once before he is whisked away again.’

A gentle hand tugged at his elbow as the fluttering of wings filled the air and the sky was assaulted by a swarm of feathered bodies.

‘Now that was a pleasant and rather beautiful surprise.’

A soft hum echoed from his partner as they both watched trees empty of their twittering cargo.

‘Yes my sweet, it certainly was.’

They paused studying the glittering water as it bubbled and splashed over the cut glass pebbles and turquoise tiles.

‘Apparently my sweet this fountain here, although it has been restored numerous times, pre-dates nearly everything around us; from the tiles on the roofs to the relics we are unearthing on a daily basis. Now if you look at its size, this sculpted expanse, despite its complexity, has been constructed using the simplest of hand tools. Those that made it were twice if not three times our size, tall, broad and extremely muscular.

‘Those large plots of land not far from here with their quaint little temples honouring their fallen have a very handy system of rows and markers that, I must say, has made excavation quite an easy process. It shouldn’t be long before we have sufficient information on this planet’s aborigines. ‘

With a small nod of his head, he guided his partner to the furthest side of the courtyard and through a high archway, the weather worn stone casting a fine dust upon their heads as they passed through the frescoed alleyway.

‘Ah blessed cold, that heat was making me boil in my suit.’

A liquid filled chuckle echoed down the corridor, the chill air making them both shiver as they stopped. They paused a moment to bask in the shaded avenue before heading out in the blistering, heated air once more.

‘We only have a short way to go my dear, then we can sit in the blessed cool of the air conditioned viewing halls. I think you will truly appreciate what we have found. It is the only intact example we have been able to unearth from site six.’
****
The small dark eyes stared fixedly at the centre of the small table, the hollow gaze sending a chill through the already frigid air.

A skull sat in pride of place, the brightly lit pedestal rotating as its menacing stare slowly moved through all corners of the compass.

‘And here we have it my dear, such a lovely specimen, the ridges and brow lines are astounding. Many of the others we found collapsed into dust the moment we pulled them from the earth.

‘I have seen the way they endeavoured to preserve their dead and it is clever if a little archaic. Nothing like we have, but it shows a clear love of preserving beauty.

‘And as you have seen they applied that to the entire world around us, cities and park lands all pristine. This world has but two main land masses and is more than ninety percent covered in water but it was in a lovely condition when we found it, the last owners were wonderfully careful with things.

‘Although I have to admit my curiosity has been peaked at what drove them to extinction, these Homo sapiens were certainly a clever lot, it’s a shame really, they would have made such wonderful neighbours.’

His partner came up beside him, scaled skin cool against his lover’s neck.

‘They certainly would have been my love, certainly would have been.’

****************

To vote for this story in the 2014 Master of Macabre Writing Contest, send an e-mail to horroraddicts@gmail.com
Voting ends: September 9th, 2014

Master of Macabre #1, Stephen Kozeniewski

The Thing Under the Bed by Stephen Kozeniewski
Location: London
Item: Gasoline
Creature Origin: A Child’s bedroom

*~*Judging panel has not altered/edited this text.*~*
*~*Text is posted as sent by the author.*~*

THE THING UNDER THE BED

by Stephen Kozeniewski

 

“I’m going to eat you and your whole family.”

The girl didn’t say a word.

“I know you hear me up there,” The Thing Under the Bed said, “You can pretend to ignore me but I’m still going to devour you.”

An involuntary gasp escaped from the girl’s throat.  She clapped both of her hands over her big fat mouth, but it was already too late.  The monster chuckled.

“I knew you were awake.  I’ll tell you what: I’ll make you a deal.  If you come down here by choice, I’ll kill you before I eat you.  Then you don’t have to feel anything.  How does that sound?”

She clenched Captain Bundrick under her armpit.  She had taken the poor rabbit’s head off twice before by squeezing him in just that manner, and yet she didn’t care now.  Mum would grumble, but she would take him into the sewing nook for doll surgery as she always did.  That is, assuming Mum or anyone else would be left alive in the morning.

The blanket began to shift, slowly, inexorably being tugged downwards.  Obviously The Thing Under the Bed had caught hold of a corner and was pulling, but gently.  The goal was to scare her, not to catch her.  Nevertheless, she scrambled out from under the covers and planted her bottom on her pillow.

The Thing chuckled again.

“Look, it’s the best thing for you just to give in.  What’s your plan anyway?  What’ve you got up there?  A pillow?  And that desiccated old bunny?”

“My Da’ll be home soon enough,” she spouted defiantly.

“Tha’s a nice voice you’ve got.  Very pretty.  I think your vocal cords shall be very tasty.”

“Well, you’re just a big bully.  If you’re so tough, whyn’t you come up here, then?”

So she had finally shut The Thing up.  She grinned over her little victory.

“I’m afraid it doesn’t quite work like that, little pet.  No, you have to come down here.  And you will.  Soon enough.  Along with your Da and your Mum and everybody else.”

She hung her head, trying desperately not to let a mournful tear strike her mattress.  To distract herself, she turned and looked out of the window.  Big Ben seemed to be wearing the moon as a halo.  She had not learned Roman numerals and she still struggled with reading an analog clock, but after a moment’s counting she saw that it was three…something.  Sometime after three in the morning.  Her father would be home from his shift any moment now.

“Why not call out to your Mum?” The Thing whispered in the darkness, “I’ll bet she’d be delicious.  I mean…a big help to you.”

The girl couldn’t tell whether the monster was teasing or not, but the sounds of her Mum’s piggish snoring from the next room betrayed that she had spent another night deep in her bottles.  The girl might call and call for hours but never wake her mother.

She rubbed her forearms.  Without the blanket she was getting cold, but she feared being sucked down into the writhing darkness underneath the bed if The Thing decided to start tugging on the sheets again.

“Why don’t you just be quiet?”

A wave of laughter from beneath the bed splashed the girl’s face like cold water.

“Oh, Mum!” The Thing called out, “Mummykins!  Mother dearest!”

With each word The Thing’s slimy, spectral voice grew louder and louder.

“Quiet!  Quiet!” the girl cried, her heart now beating solidly in her throat.

“It doesn’t matter!  She can’t hear!  She’s soused.  It’s just you and me, my darling.  Now come down here and cuddle.”

At that moment the telltale noise of the door of the flat opening filled the air and a wave of relief washed over her.

“Da!  Da!”

She dared a peek over the side of the bed.

“Not so eager to yell now, are you?”

The Thing held its peace.

“Da!  Da!”

“Oi, what is it?” her father’s voice replied from the foyer.

“Come quick, Da!”

She leaned far out over the side of the bed.  The writhing tentacles of darkness that seemed to slither out from under the bed, forever on the periphery of her vision, had disappeared.  And from the monster, not a peep.

Her father appeared at her doorway, a silhouette in the moonlight.  He flipped the switch and light filled her room, making her blink in surprise.  Finally illuminated, she could see his kind face, smiling eyes, and cracked lips.

“What’s all the racket then, little bit?”

All at once she felt foolish.

“There’s a…there’s something under the bed.”

His right eyebrow shot up, nearly rocketing through the roof.

“What kind of a something?  A shoe?  A ball?”

“No, Da.  A…a monster.”

He smiled deftly, his toothy grin suddenly overtaking the rest of his face.

“Oh, is that all?  Let me run out and get me sawed-off then.”

He turned to leave.

“No, Da!  Da!  Don’t go!  There’s really something under there!”

Her father nodded and went to his knees before her bed, as though he were praying, the same way she did every night.

“Let’s see what’s under here.”

Her father lifted the dangling blanket and stuck his head under the bed.

“Ohhh, I don’t see anything,” her father’s muffled voice reported back, “No, wait.  What’s this?”

Suddenly a sound like a whirring blender filled the room.  She stared down at her father’s kneeling form.  His leg began to twitch.

“Da?”

In an instant his twitching leg turned into a kicking leg, like a grasshopper’s.  Then his whole body began to writhe and shake.  The whirring grew louder and louder and then in the space of a split-second his entire body was sucked under the bed, only his screams and the strange buzz of the devouring monster filling the air.  A plume of blood exploded out from under the bed an instant later, spraying the floor, her Sunday shoes, and the wall.

The girl began to scream.  She began to scream loudly, not caring what the neighbors would think.  Not caring what her Mum would think, if it broke through her drunken torpor at all.  She screamed and screamed for all she was worth at the horrible, bloody demise of her father.

“Enough of that.”

The voice caught her off guard.  It didn’t belong to the monster.  It was far too refined.  And somehow it sounded…smaller.

She glanced down at Captain Bundrick, the stuffed rabbit.  The captain was standing of his own volition and staring at her.  His button eyes didn’t blink, but otherwise he seemed fully alive.

“Cap’n…how are you…?”

“Never mind,” the stuffed rabbit said, “Perhaps you’ve gone mad.  But that’s not what’s important now.  What’s important is that The Thing Under the Bed doesn’t escape.”

“Don’t listen to him,” the monster intoned, “He’s clearly a delusion.”

“If you toss me through the doorway,” Bundrick continued, pointing, “I know where your father keeps the gasoline and matches.  You and your mother won’t survive.  But most of the people in this building will have time to escape.  And more importantly that thing will burn up, too.”

“I’ll make you a counter-proposal,” The Thing said, “If you come down here of your own choice, I’ll leave your Mum alone.”

“There’s no good decision,” Bundrick said, “But there is one correct decision.”

She grabbed the stuffed rabbit and tossed him with all her might through the doorway.  A moment later, the smell of gasoline filled the air.

The next day, the Evening Standard reported a wholly different explanation for the fire.

 

 

THE END

****************

To vote for this story in the 2014 Master of Macabre Writing Contest, send an e-mail to horroraddicts@gmail.com
Voting ends: September 9th, 2014

Meet Writer Pembroke Sinclair, #104

Jessica Robinson 2 BWOur featured author this week is Pembroke Sinclair. She is an author who enjoys writing zombie fiction and likes creating fantastic worlds and memorable characters. She is also a member of the Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers and is on a committee to create membership criteria for iPAL, which is a sister group to the Published Authors Liaison group and focuses on independent and self-published authors.

This week, Pembroke Sinclair shares with us her story, “Silver Plantation”. It is the story of a man who feels he was wronged by the woman he loved, so he takes her and her new boyfriend to his plantation house to kill them.

So, let’s get to know Pembroke.

HA: What is your most recent work for sale and what is it about?

Pembroke: My most recent work, although it’s not for sale yet, is a nonfiction book about zombies called Undead Obsessed: Finding Meaning in Zombies. Using film, literature, and interviews with experts, it examines how zombies portray real-world fears such as epidemics, mind control, what may or may not exist in space, the repercussions of playing God, and the science behind the fears.

HA: What was the spookiest night of your life?

Pembroke: I used to date this guy who lived in a basement apartment. I always had horrific nightmares when I stayed there, and the upstairs neighbors had told us stories about a ghost that haunted the place. One night, I woke up in the middle of the night and saw a large shadowy figure right outside the doorway. I closed my eyes and told myself it wasn’t there, and when I opened them again, it was crouching next to the bed right in front of me.

YIKES!

The-Appeal-of-Evil-HRHA: How do you create stories and what is in your writers tool kit?

Pembroke: I use both pen/paper and a computer. It all depends on where I’m at and what is available. I don’t really have a writer’s tool kit. With a family and a full-time job, I squeeze writing in wherever, whenever I can!

HA: Who is one person you’d like to meet, living or dead?

Pembroke: Only one? There are so many people I would like to meet. At the moment, I would have to say it would be George Romero. I think an interview with him would be awesome for my nonfiction book.

HA: What is your favorite horror flick?

Pembroke: Aliens

HA: If you were to battle a hoard of zombies, who would be your dream team fighting next to you?

Pembroke: Robocop, some Terminators, the Predator, Ripley, and Arnold Schwarzenegger. We would totally kick some zombie ass!

HA: Where can Horror Addicts chat with you?

Pembroke: Facebook, and I’m on there under Jessica Robinson/Pembroke Sinclair.

Thank you, Pembroke for the chance to check out your work. Listen to her story on #104 of HorrorAddicts.net and to find out more about her, go to: pembrokesinclair.blogspot.com

Flash Fiction Friday: Jeremiah Donaldson

One Vote
By Jeremiah Donaldson

Marvin’s sweaty hand made the registration card soggy. He’d never voted. Anticipation twisted his gut. Soon, he’d help decide the country’s fate for the next several years or longer.

He forced himself towards the booth.

Christ. What party did I register with?

Just vote. It didn’t matter who he voted for. Besides, the politicians worked for the same corporations anyway.

He ducked into the booth, almost bowling over the touch screen sitting on a wooden pedestal. Sweat stung his eyes and his vision blurred, so he randomly reached out.

Huge letters flashed: ‘THANK YOU FOR VOTING’.

Done. He’d voted.

Marvin hurried out the front door.

He got in his truck and spun some gravel pulling out of the church lot. The static filled radio coming from one good speaker made him wish that the Eight Track player hadn’t died 25 years before.

“We interrupt normal broadcasts for a special weather alert…”

He frowned and changed the station.

“Cuba has joined NATO…”

He twisted the knob again.
“Wall Street brokers have started a fund to benefit low income…”

Again.

“We will start pulling troops out of the Middle East immediately…”

The radio died with a final blast of static and left him with the noisy muffler.

Black storm clouds had gathered by the time he pulled into his driveway. He got out and a gust blew the driver’s door shut so hard the window rattled. Trees lining his yard creaked while leaves swirled down.

Massive raindrops pelted him like stones. Something squishy landed on his shoulder and moved to his neck. Marvin shuddered, flicking at the rubbery thing crawling up the back of his head. It fell to the ground and hopped away.

He stomped on the weird blue frog, then looked up and shivered.

Must have fell from the tree.

A thud prompted him to turn. A red frog lay exploded in the middle of the bashed in truck hood.

Dots too large for rain fell from the sky. Something slammed into his forehead, knocking him backwards. He stumbled several steps before tripping to the ground with fluids running down his face. He blinked, wiping thick slime and cold blood off with his shirt while getting up.

A red frog smashed to the ground beside him as the truck windshield shattered.

A small blue one landed on his shoulder. It hopped away and joined other survivors among the bodies in the purple yard.

He made it to the porch before something surprisingly firm slammed into the center of his back. He stumbled, and caught himself with the handrail, stopping long enough to punt the huge blue frog into the yard. He pushed through the front door and leaned against it protectively, as though the amphibians could have turned the knob. His heart pounded so hard he feared a heart attack.

Pots banged against one another as his wife called out. “So, who did you vote for?”

———————————-

Jeremiah Donaldson lives in London, Ky with his daughter and pets. He’s currently working on multiple projects, including two that will be available later in 2014. He can be found at his home on the web at: www.ephiroll.com

Meet Writer Jay Hartlove, #103

Hartlove HeadFor HorrorAddicts.net, #103, we have author of the Isis Rising Trilogy, Jay Hartlove. I met Jay at BayCon (a Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror Convention) a few years ago. Last season he was on the show as part of our “Answer Five Fast” author quiz. For #103, he’s bringing us a short story called, “A Day with Daddy.” It is a Twilight Zone style story about the power of familial love.

Let’s find out a little more about him.

HA: What is your most recent work for sale and what is it about?

Jay: Daughter Cell is the second book in the Isis Rising trilogy. It continues the adventures of our detective Sanantha Mauwad, the Voodoo psychiatrist from The Chosen. This story starts out as a medical thriller but quickly turns into a very dark exploration of the soul and the nature of evil. I am now writing the third book in the series, Isis Rising. Desiree Macklin, the survivor of the cloning disaster in Daughter Cell comes into her own destiny opposing pure evil. Love my evil. Love my souls. Love my strong female protagonists.

HA: What was the spookiest night of your life?

Jay: Spooky would have to go back to night when I scared the hell out of myself with dark imaginings as a child. Let me tell you about creepy and awesome much more recently. A few years ago I was driving home late at night from the Benicia Clocktower where I was in charge of decorating for a huge fantasy ball. The wind was blowing off the bay so hard it actually howled. There was a full moon with clouds racing in front of it. I was exhausted, fighting to keep my car on the road. My head was already filled with fantastical visions from the work I was doing. So I turned on the radio to keep company, and what comes on? Metallica’s “Enter Sandman.” I cranked it up and let the moment overtake me. Living the dream..

HA: How do you create stories and what is in your writers tool kit?

Jay: I prefer the computer for its word processing. If I can’t get to one I use my smart phone to make notes. If I have time and no computer, then I use paper. I found myself in a hotel room with a couple hours to kill recently and I grabbed a legal pad and ripped out another chapter of Isis Rising. I wrote my first novel (an embarrassingly autobiographical sword and sandal fantasy that will never see the light of day) entirely in spiral bound notebooks. Of course that was so long ago I did not have a computer. Once I was done, I went and got a computer and used it to edit the book. The experience of seeing it the second time strictly as an editor was very enlightening.

Daughter CellI do a lot of research for my writing. The Isis Rising Trilogy is a secret history, with the events of the story inserted into real world events between 2001 and 2009. So I do lots of reseach to get it right. I also draw on many religions and history in my writing, and that needs research too. So when you talk about a writer’s toolbox, for me it’s more about resources than equipment.

I am inspired by music. When I can find the right song that feeds my conception of a story, then that touchstone keeps me going. For The Chosen the song was “The Who’s Behind Blue Eyes.” For Daughter Cell it was The Scorpions’ “Loving You.” For the mermaid romance I am writing as an online serial, Mermaid Steel, the song is The Plain White T’s “Rhythm of Love.”

HA: What era do you feel most at home in?

Jay: I wouldn’t want to live in any other era, if only because of the medical and communications technology we have now. When I am playing on paper, I love going places where people feel and react based on what makes sense for them where they are. I have a lot of fun in ancient Egypt, mountainous Haiti, and jungled Malaysia in the Sanantha books. I have a Jules Verne project I love to toy with, so I get the appeal of Steampunk. And I am having all kinds of fun in my mythical mermaid village.

HA: Who is one person you’d like to meet, living or dead, and why?

Jay: Michael Crichton. His courage to combine genres and break whatever molds he needed to tell the the stories he wanted to tell has been an inspiration to me my whole writing career. I consider it the highest praise I could get when a critic said my work reminded him of Crichton.

HA: What is your favorite horror flick?

Jay: Pumpkinhead. About as dark and personal a fairy tale as can be told. And it introduced me to Lance Henrickson.

HA: If you were to battle a hoard of zombies, who would be your dream team fighting next to you?

Jay: Ernst Blofeld, Anton Phibes, Erik Lehnsherr (aka Max Eisenhardt), Darth Vader, and throw in Megatron for good measure. Supervillains know how to get the job done.

HA: What is the most horrifying costume experience you’ve ever had?Reading pic

Jay: I had myself sealed up in a mummy suit for a couple of hours for a stage presentation. There was no ventilation, and the temperature continued to rise the whole time. The presentation was a huge success, but by the time my roadies cut it open, a cloud of steam hit them. Me steam. I was delirious but thankfully not permanently harmed.

HA: Where can readers/listeners chat with you?

Jay: I hang out a lot on Facebook. I’ve got pages for all my current projects up there. Jayhartlove, Chosenthebook, Mermaidsteel, Snowwhiteplay. And I’m on Twitter @jayhartlove.


To find out more about Jay, visit his blog at: jayhartlove.wordpress.com. And to find out about The Isis Rising Trilogy, check out jaywrites.com where he has posted the research that went into the books in a series of essays that are under Tarot cards you flip over. Lots of interactive fun there. Don’t miss his reading of “A Day with Daddy” coming in episode #103.

Wicked Women Writers Challenge 2014

Beauty & the Beast Wicked Women Writers Challenge 2014

Who Will It Be?  2014 Most Wicked

2014 Theme: Beauty & the Beast

Premise: There is something both fearsome and attractive in a wild thing, be it man or beast. From creature legends told around ancient campfires, to modern tales of King Kong and crypto zoology, critters have always captured our darkest imagination. Get your Beast on.

Challenge: Create a 10 minute horror podcast that contains four story elements, plus your written story. Registration closes 4-13-14. Audio and text are due on 5-13-14.

Story Elements: Each of our Wicked Belles will be assigned a location, a blessing, a curse … and a Beast. Your story must include a lady in peril and these four elements:

Location:  Anywhere in the world is fair game. A private zoo? A Japanese Nightclub? Kindergarten Show ‘N’ Tell? You are the game. We’ll give you the board.

Blessing:  A helpful item to tame the danger in your tale. We couldn’t have you stalked by a Werewolf without at least giving you a silver locket to melt down. Use your item wisely, Wicked. Even a trivial thing can save your life.

Curse:  An untimely disability. You can’t skip through this one without feeling a bite of a fang on your ass. The Norns can be quite evil with this element.

Beast:  Beasts will be drawn from the 12 animal signs of the Chinese zodiac: Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Goat, Monkey, Rooster, Dog, or Pig. The Beast may be a main character in your story, or may be represented in other creative ways… a tattoo? An advertising logo? A supernatural brute? Freak of nature? You name it, as long as you include it. Any genre of horror is welcome, but this ain’t Lassie, my Wickeds. Not unless she rips out your throat!

Dates to Remember:
Contest Opens –  March 4, 2014
Registration Closes – April 13, 2014
Audio & Text Due  – May 13, 2014
Elimination Round to 5 Wickeds – May 24, 2014
Voting Begins June 13, 2014
Voting Ends July 28, 2014
2014 Winner Announced August 23, 2014

WARNING: The Norns are majorly p.m.s.ing this year. This challenge involves shotgun-quick writing & recording skills. The squeamish need not apply!

If you would like to compete, send an e-mail to: Horroraddicts@gmail.com –We’ll send you the complete set of rules and assign your story elements. Remember, the sooner you respond, the more time you’ll have to write and produce your podcast.

GOOD LUCK, MY WICKED, AND MAY THE ODDS BE EVER IN YOUR FAVOR!

Maggie Fiske - Most Wicked 2013

Margaret Fiske, our 2013 Wicked Women Writer Winner, will contact you for further challenge details and timeline. Deadline to enter the 2014 Wicked Woman Writer Challenge is April 13, 2014.

Please note: The earlier you enter the challenge, the longer you’ll have to prepare, write, edit, and produce your contest entry before the deadline. Contest slots fill up fast!

Horror Addicts Writer’s Workshop – CLOSES TODAY!

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Happy Thanksgiving from HorrorAddicts.net!

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?

Horror Addicts Writer’s Workshop Announcement!

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

Wicked Women Writers Challenge

Click to listen:

Who Will Be “Most Wicked 2013?” Thirteen Wicked Women Writers Compete for the Coveted Title beginning on September 7th.

This year, the WWW Challenge theme is How Will You Survive? Each of our WWW was assigned an apocalyptic disaster, a location, a helpful object, and an untimely disability. Voting starts September 7th and ends October 7th. Stories will air on podcast #95 September 7th on the http://www.horroraddicts.net show. To vote, email horroraddicts@gmail.com. Put “WWW” in the subject line.

wwwposter2013

***CAUTION*** We Strongly encourage you to listen to ALL the stories. Just when you think you have chosen your most wicked story, there’s another story ready to slap you into the face of fear once again. You can also read along with the stories and catch words you might have missed on horroraddicts.net. Be sure and listen to all 13 stories before casting your vote!
The winner will be announced on the October 19th Finale of Horror Addicts.net podcast show. Break a Leg, Wickeds!
The wicked entrants are listed in order of submission for their completed podcasts. Twenty-five entered and only thirteen rose up out of the ashes and completed the challenge. We are pleased to introduce to you the 2013 Wicked entrants.

Contestants:

Leigh M. Lane has been writing for over twenty years. She has ten published novels and over a dozen published short stories divided among different genre-specific pseudonyms. Her traditional Gothic horror novel, Finding Poe, was a 2013 EPIC finalist. Her other novels include The Hidden Valley, World-Mart, and Myths of Gods. You can learn more about Leigh at http://www.cerebralwriter.com/.

Leigh’s story is “Enter the Corruption” Apocalyptic Disaster – Nano tech Invasion | Location – Bullet Train | Helpful Item – Hand Sanitizer | Disability – Extreme Itchiness

*****************

Shauna Klein – I’m a freelance writer, website designer, photographer and overall Jill of all trades that lives in sunny and stormy Florida. Shauna Klein is my pen name and I’m married with children that have fins, feathers and fur.

Shauna’s story is “Static” Apocalyptic Disaster – Terrorist Invasion | Location – Greenhouse | Helpful Item – Skateboard | Disability – Migraine Headache

*****************

DM Slate – Danyelle (aka D.M. Slate) resides in Colorado, where she completed a business degree at the University of Northern Colorado. She’s married to her high school sweet-heart, and together they have a young daughter and son. D.M. Slate’s first publication was released in 2009.

Danyelle’s story is “Veil of Darkness” Apocalyptic Disaster – Strange Matter/Anti-Matter | Location – Interstate Freeway | Helpful Item – Gas Mask | Disability – Elderly Parent

*****************

 Chantal Boudreau is an accountant/author/illustrator who lives in Nova Scotia with her husband and children. A member of the Horror Writers Association, she has had stories published in a variety of horror anthologies. She also has two series published through May December Publications, Fervor and Masters & Renegades. http://www.writersownwords.com/chantal_boudreau/

Chantal’s story is “A Wing and a Prayer” Apocalyptic Disaster – EMP Blast | Location – Airplane | Helpful Item – Rubber Tubing | Disability – Pregnant

*****************

Chantal Noordeloos is a writer from the Netherlands who1999 graduate from the Norwich School of Art and Design (UK) with a major in creative writing. Apart from work, motherhood and a busy social life that also includes -playing in and organising of- regular LARP (live action role play) events, she has been writing stories and honing her writing skills through workshops, seminars and a lot of writing. Chantal lives in The Hague with her family.

Chantal’s story is “Out of a Storm” Apocalyptic Disaster – Super Storm | Location – Haunted Hotel | Helpful Item – Rope | Disability – All Alone

*****************

Rebekah Webb is a freelance writer from California. When she isn’t working on frightening stories or wild comedies about cellophane wearing ladies’ men, she enjoys cooking and various other things, possibly including training squirrels to take over the world. The reason she writes instead of some other creative endeavor is because of one simple truth: Writing rocks.

Rebekah’s story is “Prey” Apocalyptic Disaster – Super Virus | Location – Restaurant | Helpful Item – Baseball Bat | Disability – Allergic reaction

*****************

Anastasia Marie Robinson is a young woman from St. Louis who has a passion for the macabre. She has a strong interest in the paranormal and is also a studying folklore expert. As well as being a published horror fiction writer she also writes reviews and original content for several websites. AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B00BAGSPS2

Anastasia’s story is “Motherhood” Apocalyptic Disaster – BUGS! | Location – Circus Helpful Item – Backpack | Disability – Small child or baby to care for

*****************

Rebecca Snow lives in Virginia with a dwindling herd of geriatricats. Her short fiction has been published in several small press anthologies and online. You can find her on facebook and twitter @cemeteryflower.com and has an online journal at cemeteryflower.blog.com.

Rebecca’s story is “Hazard” Apocalyptic Disaster – Bio- Terrorism | Location – Golf Course | Helpful Item – Scissors | Disability – No Medicine

************************

Julianne Snow is the author of Days with the Undead: Book One. An author of speculative fiction with roots deep in horror, she has pieces of short fiction in publications from Sirens Call Publications, OpenCasket Press as well as forthcoming anthologies from Hazardous Press and the Coffin Hop Charity Anthology. http://dayswiththeundead.com/

Julianne’s story is “Not All Jacks are Created Equal” Apocalyptic Disaster – Super Volcano | Location – Commuter Train | Helpful Item – Bottle of Jack Daniels | Disability – Naked

**************************

R.L. Weston lives in Utah amid what her husband refers to as a refugee camp for stray animals. She is a member of the Horror Writers Association and participates in the online critique group critters.org.

R.L’s story is “Drug Z” Apocalyptic Disaster – Dirty Bombs | Location – Zumba Class | Helpful Item – Workout Towel | Disability – Children Alone in Gym Daycare

*****************

Maggie Fiske is a secretary, caregiver, musician, creature of the night. I live in Omaha with lunatic cats & a filching ghost.

Maggie’s story is “A Quarrel for Jimmy Lee Killscrow” Apocalyptic Disaster – Solar Flares/ or Gamma Rays | Location – Hunting in the Mountains | Helpful Item – Crossbow | Disability – Hungover

*****************

Sumiko Saulson is the author of three sci-fi/horror novels, “Solitude,” “Warmth”, and “The Moon Cried Blood, and short story anthology “Things That Go Bump In My Head.” Born to African-American and Russian-Jewish parents, she is a native Californian, and has spent most of her adult life in the Bay Area.

Sumiko’s story is “A Birthday Present” Apocalyptic Disaster – Sinkholes | Location – Bowling Alley/ Pool Hall Bar | Helpful Item – Cue Stick | Disability – Lost Glasses

*****************

Amy K. Marshall is a former archaeologist and curator (among many other things), current Director of The Craig Public Library on Prince of Wales Island in Alaska, I am also the author of THE FISHING WIDOW (Alaskan Gothic Press 2013). I am an Associate Member of HWA and a member of their Library Committee.

Amy’s story is “Paternoster” Apocalyptic Disaster – Loss of all fuel sources | Location – elevator | Helpful Item – Swiss army survival knife | Disability – sprained swollen ankle

*****************

My name is Killion Slade, the reigning 2012 Wicked Woman Writer. It has been my sincerest pleasure to meet these talented ladies and be a part of their journey this year. One thing is clear, when it comes to scary – women know how to rock it!
We look forward to you listening to all of these amazingly creepy stories and choose who will be your next Most Wicked for 2013. Find out more about Killion’s work at http://www.killionslade.com.

MMM Contestant 3: Donald Pitsiladis

The following text is posted as part of HorrorAddicts.net‘s annual Master of Macabre contest.
This text is presented as is, from the author, with no editing.
Contestants should be judged on text, audio, and use of the challenge items listed. Please read the bottom of this post for voting instructions. Audio is playing at HorrorAddicts.net, #93.

Donald Pitsiladis
Location: Old School House
Item: text book

*******

Memories

By

Donald L. Pitsiladis

Barry pulled his car into a parking spot and closed his eyes.  He didn’t need to see the shattered windows or the broken door to know what they looked like.  The decayed building had been a recurring place in his dreams for many years, but he never believed it to be real until just then.  Fear and guilt flooded his mind when he opened his eyes and saw the building stare at him from the rear view mirror.

He stared at the school, unsure of what to do.  The building reached for him and, before he realized it, Barry found himself at the foot of the stairs.  “Come inside,” a little voice whispered, and he climbed the stairs without another thought.  Once through the door, it slammed with a bang that sounded a lot like a gunshot.  It knocked him to the ground hard enough to throw dust into his face and he began to sneeze uncontrollably.  He tried to open the metal door to get some fresh air, but no amount of force got it to move. The only option left was to venture deeper into the school and look for another way out.

The further into the school Barry went, the stronger his feeling of excitement and dread became.  He remembered attending the school when he was the poor fat kid and the torment and torture his classmates inflicted.  Tears welled in his eyes at the whispered insults when a door opened and the voices beckoned him.  “Go inside.  See the surprise we have for you.  You really need to see it.  Go on in.”  Barry entered the room and saw a gray haired man in a bow tie and white lab coat pace the room with a smile.  It was his favorite teacher, Mr. Jenson, the only teacher to treat him with kindness.  When the gentle man’s eyes met his, the smile fell away and an explosion of red blossomed from his chest.  He fell back in slow motion with arms flailing like a kite tail, while the students erupted into motion when they realized what happened.  Then, two bigger boys sprawled to the ground with similar wounds in their backs before things faded to the empty, dust-covered classroom.  Barry felt the rapid beat of his heart as he tried to make sense of what he saw.  A chilled hand gripped his left shoulder, but nobody stood next to him.

A sound of shuffling feet drew Barry into the hall where he found only undisturbed dust and debris on the floor.  “Keep moving,” a disembodied female voice whispered, so he walked on.  Not long after, a bright flash and muffled boom drew his attention to a dented locker a few feet to his right.  A blond girl with a large gaping hole between her once perky breasts slammed into it.  Her confused eyes met his for a moment before she slid down the length of the door and her head sagged to her chest.  “I loved you,” the female voice whispered and he felt arms envelope his body in a cold embrace.  Barry tried to wrap his arms around the girl, but found empty air instead.  Tears welled in his eyes and he moved on to the next room in his spree.

He found himself in the cafeteria after a short walk. There he pulled up a chair and looked around the room full of unaware students and teachers.  His best friend Jamie entered the large room from the far door and, with a look of disbelief on his face, ran towards him.  “Don’t shoot!” he shouted. “You don’t need to do this!”  The pleas drew people’s attention, so Barry pulled the trigger.  Three people fell before a football player grabbed Jamie and pulled him in the line of fire.  Before the first clip emptied, both boys lay on the ground.

“You killed us,” Jamie said and appeared next to Barry with blood oozing from the holes in his chest.  “Why?” the dead boy asked as his face drew near Barry’s.  “Why did I die, Barry?  I was your best friend.”  The blond girl appeared with her arms still around Barry’s body, “Margaret wanted to be your girlfriend. What did she do to cross you?”  The middle-aged teacher gripped his shoulder tighter as he materialized.  “What about Mr. Jenson?  You were his favorite student.  He treated you better than any other student in his classes.”

Barry’s bottom lip quivered and he stammered, “I… I don’t know.”  He looked at Jamie and said, “I didn’t mean to shoot you.  It was that stupid football player’s fault.  He pulled you in the way.”  When he looked at the other two, his eyes squinted in thought and admitted, “I don’t remember.”  Margaret pulled away from him with a hurt expression that stabbed into him.  “The hospital I went to after made me forget a lot.” He took a step toward her with an apologetic smile, but the look on her face remained unchanged.

“That’s quite all right, my boy,” Mr. Jenson said in his jolly way.  “We’re here to help you remember.”  He led Barry to a desk in the middle of the cafeteria and gestured for him to take a seat.  Jamie plopped a textbook in front of him and opened it to the first page.  “I’m sure this will trigger some of your lost memories,” the teacher said as they looked at his body in a pool of blood.  The gaping hole in his chest and the empty eyes drew Barry’s attention to the photo, and then he noticed how a small trickle of blood from the corner of the teacher’s mouth led to a caption which read “Victim Number One”.  As Barry paged through the book and saw the lives he either ended or destroyed, Mr. Jenson walked behind the counter and returned with the same gun used so many years ago.  “This will be your final exam.”

Margaret sat down next to him and pulled Barry tight against her.  “We want to make sure you’re ready for your afterlife when it is time for your Judgment,” she said with a comforting smile.  Barry felt the comforting grip of his best friend’s hand as it grasped his right shoulder.  The whispers of the dead beckoned him to study.

*******

To vote for this story, send an email to: horroraddicts@gmail.com with the subject line: MMM. Voting ends September 24th, 2013, 11:59a, PST.

MMM Contestant 2: Rick Kitagawa

The following text is posted as part of HorrorAddicts.net‘s annual Master of Macabre contest.
This text is presented as is, from the author, with no editing.
Contestants should be judged on text, audio, and use of the challenge items listed. Please read the bottom of this post for voting instructions. Audio is playing at HorrorAddicts.net, #93.

Rick Kitagawa
Location: Double Wide Mobile Home
Item: black and white television

*******

Uncle Neal’s House

by Rick Kitagawa

http://www.rickkitagawa.com

 

 

The house that had previously belonged to Jason’s late uncle was a double-wide mobile home – a surprisingly well-kept number painted a cobalt blue with a bright white trim.  A thick ridge of cardboard-colored pine needles formed a perimeter on the edge of the gently sloping shingled roof.

When Jason walked out of the small uptown law office two weeks earlier, he was more confused than anything else.  He had barely known his Uncle Neal, yet apparently Jason was the only family member who was both invited to the reading of the will or mentioned in it.

All Jason knew about his Uncle Neal was that his uncle had always been a bit of a black sheep of the family, living off the grid in the Sierra Nevada foothills and never really bothering to keep in contact with anyone.  Now Jason was the new owner of his uncles house and Jason had taken a long weekend to go check it out.

Jason crouched on one knee and peered under the house and laughed.  While the house looked to be in fair condition, his uncle had neglected to remove the axles and wheels from the foundation.  Large wooden wedges had been shoved under the wheels to prevent the entire thing from rolling down the gently sloping cliff it was perched on and off into the gorge that only lay about twenty feet south of the house.

Jason walked to the edge of the cliff and looked down.  The gorge dropped a few hundred yards, sharp rocks protruding from the steep cliff face the entire way to the bottom.  He kicked a few rocks off the edge and listened as they ricocheted their way down.  As he watched the pebble careen further and further away, he realized that there was something shiny and black at the bottom of the gorge.

“Well, I guess that’s where the trash bags go.”  Jason chuckled and snatched the keys from his jeans pocket.  “Now, let’s see what’s behind door number one.”

The first key turned easily, the deadbolt snapping back into the door.  The second key took a bit of jiggling, but soon Jason stepped inside.  He flipped the light switch and was greeted with your typical back-country decor.  Fish mounted on plaques.  Boots lining the hallways.  Beige carpeting and worn crocheted rugs over the parts of the hallways that were linoleum.

Jason went back out to his car to get his backpack and duffel bag.  As he reached into the trunk, he suddenly felt like he was being watched.  He looked up quickly.  No one.  The only thing moving was the curtains gently swaying to and fro.  Jason shrugged it off as the wind and gathered his things.

Feeling grimy from the long drive, Jason pulled his ziplock of toiletries from his bag and grabbed a towel from the hall closet and headed to the shower.

As he stepped into the narrow bathroom, Jason noticed a bunch of paint flakes on the bathtub floor.  As he bent to scoop up the paint, he hit his head on the shower wall, making a voluminous “donk.”

Jason bunched up his face and raised an eyebrow.  He looked at the bathroom again – it was indeed very narrow.  Unnaturally narrow.  He knocked on the shower wall, and the sound reminded him of knocking on a ripe watermelon.  Jason set the towel on the sink and walked out of the bathroom.  On the other side of that shower wall was his uncle’s bedroom closet.  Upon inspection, this closet was very narrow as well.

Jason walked back and forth between the two rooms, counting his steps.  They didn’t add up.

Confused and slightly suspicious, Jason went back into the bathroom and stared at the wall.  The shower wall did look like it was a slightly different shade of white than the rest of the room, and the paint was cracking and peeling at the edges.

“Well, it is my house now, I guess,” Jason muttered and gave the shower wall a good kick.  The drywall gave easily, and as Jason looked into the deep blackness, a strange odor seeped out.  It was alien, yet familiar, ancient and salty, but not altogether unpleasant.

Jason began to rip off pieces of the drywall, kicking at it when necessary.  After a few minutes of struggling, a small crevice of a room lay before him.

The room was only about two feet deep – a closet really, but the interior was painted entirely black.  There was nothing extraordinary about this tiny space, save for the pile of strange gold sculptures on the floor.  Jason bent over and gingerly scooped up a handful.  His heart began to race.   The sculptures were often intricately carved in the shapes of things that seemed aquatic but yet bore the full resemblance to nothing on this earth.

Jason felt a hand on his shoulder.  He suddenly spun around, but there was nothing there.  Jason’s eyes darted around the bathroom.  No one.  Rising quickly, Jason rushed into the living room.  Still no one.

“Hello?”  Jason called out.  The front door was still closed, and the windows were still shut from before he had arrived.  Jason’s face went white.  If the windows were closed this entire time, what made the curtains move earlier?

Jason moved quickly to the kitchen, only now realizing that he held one of the grotesque gold statuettes in each hand.  He set one down, and drew a large kitchen knife, then hesitated.  He set the knife on the counter, stuffed the golden figurine into his pocket, then picked the knife back up.

“Whoever’s in here – I’m armed!  Just show yourself and I won’t press charges.” Jason was breathing heavy now, and his nerves were charged.  He strained to listen for any signs of movement.  Just the sound of his heart racing and his rapid breathing filled the air.

Jason slowly creeped over to the door of the guest bedroom.  He quickly pushed the door open.

All Jason found was a bed stripped of its linens.  No place to hide in here.  Jason pulled the door shut.

Out of paranoia, Jason rechecked the bathroom again, then closed the door.  Although he had just recently gotten a towel from the hall closet, he checked that as well.  Still nothing.  Soon, Jason was standing in the hallway, gold idol in one hand, eight-inch kitchen knife in the other.

Jason stuffed the small octopoid figure into his pocket and opened the door to what used to be his Uncle’s bedroom.  There was yet again, nothing there.

“Give us our lives back.”

Jason spun around.  He had clearly heard a woman’s voice behind him, but there was just the empty living room.

“Repent.”  The voice said.  “Repent.”

“Where are you?  Jason took the knife is both shaky hands.  “What do you want?”

Silence.

The old black and white television that sat in the living room suddenly clicked on.  Jason stared at the unplugged machine as the static snow’s buzz filled the air.  Jason felt a hand on his waist and he spun again, slashing blindly behind him. The knife silently cut through air as the hiss of the television grew louder.

“Give us our lives back.”  This time the voice was clear, and as Jason slowly faced the living room, the digital noise of the static began to coalesce into a woman’s face.

“You have what belongs to us”  The face was angry now.

Jason’s eyes grew wide.  He ran back towards the bathroom and dropped his knife on the floor.  He began to shovel the gold trinkets into his pockets, and when they were full, he began to stuff the bottom of his shirt with them.  Sweat began to run in rivulets down his face, and his hands began to shake.

“They’re mine.  They’re mine, and you can’t have them.”  Jason feverishly began to waddle towards the front door when he stumbled and some of the blasphemous figurines fell to the floor.

As he knelt to pick them up, Jason spilled even more of them.  Jason spied his duffel bag and while he clutched his shirt tightly with one hand, he fumbled with the zipper to the bag.  As he began to empty his shirt’s contents into the bag, he could feel scaly hands pulling at his hair and trying to work their way into his pockets.

“No!”  Jason trashed about, but the hands persisted.  He took up his bag and ran for the door, but something grabbed his leg and he tumbled headfirst into the adjacent wall and crumbled to the floor.

 

Jason was outside suddenly, the sky bright with stars.  He saw his Uncle Neal carrying something large wrapped in black plastic trash bags slung over his shoulder.  Jason watched as Uncle Neal, with bloodstained hands, tossed the long package over the edge of the cliff.  Jason seemed to then float above it all as he watched his uncle make four more trips, with four more black lumps.

Jason was then deep in the woods. His uncle was standing in the center of a large circle of blood, placing a plate covered in hearts in the center of the circle.  Uncle Neal stepped out of the circle and lit seven black candles.  Soon, the beating of leathery wings could be heard, and from the cloudless sky descended a faceless, horned monstrosity.  This hideous thing landed soundlessly, then released a deafening, otherworldly shriek.  It snatched up the hearts, and as it lifted off into the air, it dropped a small satchel that landed heavy in the dirt with a clink.

 

Jason managed to open one eye. Something was sticky on the side of his face, and there was a throbbing pain that clouded his already limited view.  Jason immediately reached down to confirm that his golden statues were still safely tucked into his pockets.

He gingerly touched his head, and as he pulled his hand back he found his fingers coated with blood.  It was then he felt the trailer move.  There was a low groaning, and then a high pitched whine.  He could hear something heavy being dragged through leaves, and as he looked out the window, he saw the wheel blocks sitting next to his car.

Suddenly, Jason was flung back to the floor, as the entire house jerked and began to pick up speed as it rolled over the gravel and onto solid dirt.  Jason tried to stand, but his vision was blurry and the room started to spin.  He continued to fumble for his bag and tried to stumble to the front door.

Jason pulled himself up to one knee and watched at the deadbolt on the door slid into place on its own.

Jason began to crawl to the door, then used the doorknob to steady himself as he stood.  He struggled with the deadbolt, but it wouldn’t move.  He began to throw his shoulder into the door, pain arcing through his head with every impact, but the door was surprisingly solid.  As he tried to back up to gain more momentum, he was thrown to the ground as the first pair of wheels went over the edge of the cliff.

Jason slid towards the side of the house tipping over and as he looked through the nearest  window, he could see five women standing at the bottom of the gorge who appeared to be looking up at him.

It was then the house tipped over completely, and as he began to go into freefall, Jason did all he could do – he clutched the bag of golden idols to his chest and closed his eyes.

 *******

To vote for this story, send an email to: horroraddicts@gmail.com with the subject line: MMM. Voting ends September 24th, 2013, 11:59a, PST.

Masters of Macabre Challenge Coming!

mmmcontest2013

It’s that time of year again Addicts, time to be entertained by three of our Masters of Macabre!

This year’s challenge is Haunted Houses. They come in all shapes, sizes, and locations with as wide a variety of ghosts, ghouls and poltergeists. See how our Masters handled their particular challenge by listening to the show airing this week at HorrorAddicts.net.

Our entrants this year are:

Rish Outfield

Location: The White House

Item: An unopened letter from 1842

Donald Pitsiladis

Location: Old School House

Item: A text book

Rick Kitagawa

Location:  Double wide mobile home

Item: A black and white television

Listen to or read their stories this week on HorrorAddicts.net and vote to win a HorrorAddicts.net prize pack!

HorrorAddicts.net 092, Denise Verrico

Horror Addicts Episode# 092

Horror Hostess: Emerian Rich

Intro Music by: Cancer Killing Gemini

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denise verrico | alkemic generator | hotel transylvania

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

81 days till Halloween!

| evil dead musical | hotel transylvania | rich and roulo 1: desire |

| gargoyle beth barany | devil-m | new music | blood thrist l.a. freed |

| books midnight echo | after the fire d.alexander ward |

| alkemic generator | black magic | the bride | creepiest job |

| events | dead mail | emz slayer garlic pizza | writing advice |

| denise verrico |

———————–

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

horroraddicts@gmail.com

————————

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

Movie Quiz & Prize Contest : The Raven

the_raven_(2012)_wallpaper (1)Answer ONE of these questions (that has not already been answered)
in the comments and be entered to win a Poe Prize Pack from HorrorAddicts.net.

  1. Who plays Edgar Allan Poe in… The Raven?
  2. What city did Poe live in at the end of his life?
  3. What famous poem does Poe give to Emily?
  4. What is the name of the paper Poe writes for?
  5. What stage play do the police barge in on to stop the murderer?

Comment below to be entered into the drawing for a Poe Prize Pack from HorrorAddicts.net.