Midnight Echo and After The Fire

ME9_cover-724x1024Not to long ago I had the privilege of reading and reviewing Midnight Echo magazine issue 8. Midnight Echo is the official magazine of the Australian Horror Writers Association. Midnight Echo comes out about twice a year. Each issue contains over 100 pages of horror literature, art, poetry, a regular column on understanding poetry, author interviews, articles on movies and a  vampire comic called Allure of the Ancients which is illustrated by the author from episode 91 of Horror addictsGreg Chapman.
The theme for issue 9 of Midnight Echo is mythology.  The issue contains an article on Russian mythology and every story in the magazine deals with mythological creatures. Some of the stories in this magazine include Changeling by Jonathan Mayberry which is about shape shifters, The Wee Folk by JG Faherty about a group of little people who live in the woods and kill those who bother them and there is another great story by the name of Little Boy, Little Girl Lost In The Woods by Mark Patrick Lynch which gets into witches and Hansel and Gretel. This story shows how much fun fairy tales can be with a horror twist thrown in.

My favorite story is The Fathomed Wreck To See by Alan Baxter which takes a look at the myth of Sirens. This story is so amazingly good that I’m dying to ruin it so I can talk about it, but I won’t because I really think you should buy Midnight Echo issue 9 and read it for yourself.  The story is about a man named Dylan who is having problems with his wife and a Siren who wants Dylan to herself.  This is a love story but it looks at the dark side of love and is not one of those make you feel good kind of love stories.

Proving that Midnight Echo is not your normal horror magazine is the regular column called Tartarus by Charles Lovecraft which helps explain how metre and resonance are used in dark poetry. There is also a great article on movies based on Australian myths including films about a haunted house and one about an Aboriginal spirit that feeds on animals, women and children called the Bunyip. The magazine also includes articles on Middle Earth mythology, an interview with the creator of the comic Killeroo and an interview with author James A Moore.

Midnight Echo is an excellent horror magazine. This magazine is for the hard-core horror fan, the type that can’t go to long without reading a good horror story or watching a horror movie. It’s also for the people who are always on the look out for great horror fiction, art, and interviews with the people who make them. If you’re not a hard-core horror fan you might not be able to appreciate it, but If you live and breathe horror,  you owe it to yourself to buy a copy.

18144958I also recently read After the Fire by D. Alexander Ward. Things started simple enough, two boys named Frankie and Lane at the age of 12 decide to go on a little adventure. There is a house in their town known as the witch house and they decide to explore it while the witch is out-of-town.

They break into the witch’s house and see things that they’ve never witnessed before. They hear a noise in the attic and decide to investigate and see something that makes their worst nightmares seem tame. In a rush to escape the witch’s house they knock a candle down and start a fire and Lane is killed in the blaze.

As an adult Frankie is plagued by constant nightmares of that day. Some horrors never go away and have a tendency to ruin your life. Will he come to terms with what he saw in that house, and the death of his friend or will the nightmares haunt him for the rest of his life?

After The Fire is a psychological horror story that looks at how one horrific event can affect your life forever.  There is some great and disturbing imagery in this book. The way the witch’s house is described was excellent, including the pictures of post death Victorian corpses that the house contains. This is a good tale about redemption and confronting your personal demons. Its also a short read with great characters, a lot of action and enough spooky atmosphere and gore to keep horror fans happy.

Press Release: Midnight Echo – Australia

MIDNIGHT ECHO TO DISTRIBUTE CEMETERY DANCE MAGAZINE/ ISSUE #9 TABLE OF CONTENTS RELEASED

Midnight Echo magazine is now the official Australian distributor of Cemetery Dance Publications, the world’s leading specialty press publisher of horror and dark suspense. “Cemetery Dance Publications is thrilled to be working with our friends at Midnight Echo to make it easier and more affordable for collectors and readers in Australia to order our books.”

Brian Freeman, Managing Editor, Cemetery Dance Publications Readers can visit the Midnight Shop page on the ME website to see all the titles now available, or to place a pre-order for upcoming books: Midnight Echo Magazine Shop

“For those living in Australia, this deal means you no longer have to pay the expensive international shipping costs when you order CD books. And don’t forget that you can also order the latest copy of Dark Discoveries magazine from us, too,” ME Executive Editor Marty Young said. “Also, it’s party time in the Midnight offices as the goblins release the Table of Contents for the upcoming Midnight Echo Issue 9, edited by Geoff Brown and due for publication on May 31. “Please note we also have a few advertising spots left, so please read on for details, but you’ll need to be quick.”

The details on ME#9 are as follows:

Cover art by Mel Gannon

Interior art by Greg Chapman

The Table of Contents:

Literature

Changeling by Jonathan Maberry

Black Train Blues by James A Moore

Black Peter by Martin Livings

The Road by Amanda J Spedding

Coffee Rings by Kristin Dearborn

The Wee Folk by JG Faherty

From the Forebears by Steven Gepp

Little Boy, Little Girl, Lost in the Woods by Mark Patrick Lynch

The Fathomed Wreck to See by Alan Baxter

Poetry ganesh by Talie Helene

Comic Allure of the Ancients: The Key to His Kingdom – story by Mark Farrugia, illustrations by Greg Chapman

Special Features The Mythology of Mid-World by Robin Furth (non-fiction) Russian Field of Mysteries by Tony Vilgotsky (non-fiction) An Interview with Jonathan Maberry An Interview with Mel Gannon Regular Features A Word from the AHWA President – Geoff Brown Tartarus – Danny Lovecraft (poetry column) Pix and Panels – Mark Farrugia (comic column) Black Roads, Dark Highways #4 – Andrew McKiernan (column) Sinister Reads (all the latest releases from AHWA members) Pre-orders for the limited print edition are now being taken. Please visit http://www.midnightechomagazine.com for full details.

Midnight Echo Issue 8

Cover-for-ME81In the last year, Journalstone publishing has grown to be a major publisher of  horror and speculative fiction  in the United States. Over the last year they have published several new novels, taken over the Hell Notes horror blog and bought Dark Discoveries Magazine. In addition to that they also have become the US distributor for Midnight Echo, the official magazine of the Australian Horror Writers Association.

Midnight Echo issue 8 has just been released and has something that all horror fans will like. It contains 130 pages of dark literature, poetry, comics, interviews, art work, editorials, book reviews  and  non fiction pieces on mysterious locations in Australia.  Just looking through Midnight Echo magazine, you can see that it was a labor of love to put this magazine together.  The artwork is beautiful and the writing is excellent. The Australian Horror Writers Association does a great job of promoting horror art and literature in Australia, and they prove it in this magazine.

There are 12 short stories in this magazine with subjects ranging from zombies to an insane over protective mother. One of my favorite stories was A Visit With Friends by Joe R Lansdale. This story takes place in the future when people who didn’t get flu shots start to turn into zombies. There are four main characters, two of them have started to trap zombies and torture them which leads the other two to decide if the zombies deserve compassion or are they mindless creatures. I loved how the end leaves the reader thinking about what is morally right or wrong.

Another good story here is Blissful Ignorance by Matt Wedge which is about a very religious, overprotective mother and is told from a young girl’s prospective. The ending of this one is shocking and may be hard to read if your a guy. A lot of the the stories in Midnight Echo are by Australian writers or take place in Australia.  I think this makes Midnight Echo different then other horror magazines and gave things a local flavor.

Issue 8 of Midnight Echo also contains 3 poems and an article on understanding poetry written by Charles Lovecraft. Since I find most poetry goes over my head, I found the article very helpful. Other non fiction material in Midnight Echo includes an article about diseases in horror films written by Gary Kemble, an art column that explores the world of horror comics and interviews with Jack Ketchum, Lee Battersby and Glen Chadbourne.

The people who put together Midnight Echo aren’t satisfied with bringing you fiction and interviews, they also have some great artwork by Glen Chadbourne , Chris Mars, who did the cover and David Schembri.  The magazine also includes an ongoing comic series about vampires called Allure Of The Ancients, The Key To His Kingdom written by Mark Farrugia and illustrated by Greg Chapman.

Looking through the pages of Midnight Echo magazine, its obvious that everyone involved in the creation of the magazine has a passion for what they do. In the opening of issue 8 the editors say they want to publish “hard-edged-horror that pushed the boundaries and also blurred the distinction between right and wrong. ” I think they have succeeded in making  readers feel scared and entertained at the same time. Midnight Echo is a magazine for horror lovers by horror lovers and I think if your into horror you should give this magazine a shot.

Midnightechomagazine.com

Australianhorror.com