New Discordant Sounds From Aborym

The industrial black metal band will soon offer up more nightmare writing fuel

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aborymIf you listened to the “Empty” soundtrack, you may recall hearing the track “Across The Universe” from Aborym’s previous album “Dirty.”

I was beyond stoked to learn this morning that a new album is on the way from this Italian genre-mashing band, coming later in 2016 via Agonia Records.

For those not familiar, Aborym mixes black metal with heavy industrial and electronic music, creating a disorienting and discordant combination.

The band doesn’t usually disappoint on the disturbing front either, making for excellent writing fuel. Can’t wait to hear “Shifting.negative” and who knows – maybe it will show up on a soundtrack to a future book release?

The Light Dawns In 2017

New dark fantasy novel set for release next year!

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It all comes full circle! My first published short story “The Trade” established a dark, low-fantasy world where the gods most certainly do not have mankind’s best interest at heart.

While the nameless hunter from that story will not make a direct appearance, the themes and background characters from “The Trade” have now been expanded out into a full-length novel that examines a different area of the world.

Coming in 2017 via Mirror Matter Press, “Light Dawning” revolves around four main characters as they deal with the living hell of life under occupation by a brutal military force. It turns the typical fantasy tropes on their head, offering a very different look at a world where the supernatural runs rampant. Don’t expect any chosen one farm boys, wise old wizards, or brash-but-lovable rogues saving the day.

There’s a whole lot more news about the book set to be revealed in the coming months, from the release date to the cover artwork and even advance teasers of several chapters introducing the main characters.

In the mean time, it’s my pleasure to give an advance taste of what to expect with a soundtrack utilizing music that was on rotation while I penned the novel over the course of a year.

Much like with the soundtrack to “Empty,” there will be a full breakdown of each song and why it matters to the story coming in the future. For now, simply plug in your headphones and listen in at Spotify here  or through the player below get an idea of the tone and themes on display with “Light Dawning,” and stay tuned for much more exciting news coming soon!

 

A Chat About The Dark Side Of Cinema

The Horrific Network caught up with me about horror movies, the inspiration behind “Empty” and much more…

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The Horrific Network was kind enough to invite me on for a chat about all things horror on their podcast. During the show (which is available to be streamed here), we discussed everything from classic Carpenter films like In The Mouth Of Madness to new crowd funded horror from indie production teams and of course, my sci-fi/horror novella “Empty!”

How A Story Changes On The Path To Getting Published

Find out how “Empty” went from a werewolf camp story to a claustrophobic sci-fi tale

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It’s rare for a story to go from vague concept in a writer’s head to edited and published manuscript without major changes taking place.

Whether a character doesn’t work in the story or a major plot point hasn’t been thought out properly, there’s always changes. “Empty” went through quite a few, starting off as a short story in a very different setting than the sci-fi novella it eventually become.

I was invited by The Scary Reviews to discuss how a story changes and the vicious, rejection-strewn path to getting published in a new guest post. An excerpt follows:

All of my work is inspired by personal experiences, with this one stemming from a disturbing encounter I had at a religious summer camp as a kid. The first version was going to be a straightforward modern day tale with a supernatural twist as a camper contracts lycanthropy and has to keep his affliction hidden. Every time I’d go to write a new page though, I couldn’t stop thinking about the moon (being a werewolf tale and all) along with all that vast emptiness out in space.

The original version was junked and I started over with an engineer on a spacefaring vessel, ostracized for breaking the rules and stuck all alone serving punishment duty in the bowels of the ship. Many of the themes and ideas from the original source material made their way in, just in new forms, as the engineer explores an ancient ship, encounters a madman on a religious mission, and discovers something beyond his comprehension that offers disturbing implications about man’s place in the order of things.

The full guest post is available now at The Scary Reviews here – be on the lookout for more coming soon examining both “Empty” and my upcoming dark fantasy novel!

Confessions Of My Literary Past And Future

Find out what stories shaped my youth and what I’m reading lately

gatheringdarkFollowing the stellar 5 star review for “Empty” bestowed by Confessions Of A Reviewer, the site asked me to contribute to their Confessions Of My Past, Present, And Future column.

The idea is to explain what inspired an author in the past, what is occupying all their reading time in the present, and then to give a tease of what’s coming soon from that writer in the future.

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In my addition to the column, I go way back to middle and high school, covering my earlier  fantasy influences from the timeless Redwall series to a Magic: The Gathering novel with some truly subversive concepts packed into its planeswalking action.

The present section goes over my recent torrid love affair with graphic novels, from Hellraiser to Shutter and Black Science. Finally in the future, I offer a brief glimpse at an upcoming full-length dark fantasy novel. Read the full article over here.

The Music That Inspired “Empty”

Experience the music that kept my head in the properly disturbing sci-fi space

I’ve talked extensively about where the inspiration for horror comes from in the past, and a huge part of any story I craft is the music that drives the writing sessions. “Empty” is no exception.

This sci-fi/horror tale about a down on his luck engineer named Hansen was fueled both by personal experiences and by a steady stream of killer music that more of the world needs to know about.

These are the songs that not only played constantly during my writing sessions, but that work very well as a soundtrack to the book. You can actually listen to them all at this playlist.

With a story dealing with isolation and the sense of being separated from the herd, I’m hoping metal fans in particular will identify with “Empty.”

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 “Oversee The Rebirth” – Augury

Man, we are so overdue for a new album from this Canadian technical/progressive death metal band. The “Fragmentary Evidence” album is all about various conspiracy theories, and this track always makes me think of floating out in space for for the opening two minutes and then something really bad happens when the heavy part with the harsh vocals arrives around 2:40. The sudden (and shocking) change of pace into unexpected violence is something I tried to nail in a certain segment of my book as well.

anathema“Distant Satellites” – Anathema

The only track on this playlist that isn’t strictly “metal,” Anathema nonetheless has strong roots in the metal scene, and this title track in particular really creates the feeling of being alone out in the darkness of the stars. This one’s a lot more low key and atmospheric, the perfect accompaniment to the downtime segments when things aren’t going horribly wrong for Hansen.

Keep on reading!

New Horror Stories You Should Be Reading This Year!

2016 is already filled to the brim with high quality terror!

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Looking for something chilling to read alone in the dead of night? There’s already been some truly horrifying novels, shorts, and anthologies released this year that are well worth your time – and it’s only September! Plenty more are coming down the pipe by year’s end.

While you might recognize a name or two on this list, don’t expect anything by the likes of Stephen King or Clive Barker to be covered. Instead, these tales of terror mostly come authors that don’t get a ton of press but still have some very diabolical minds and are putting out stellar horror literature.

You can read the full breakdown, complete with cover art, buy links, and review quotes, at Imgur here. A brief list version is also available below.

  • Children Of The Dark
  • Mayan Blue
  • The Invasion
  • Empty
  • Disappearance At Devil’s Rock
  • The Grieving Stones
  • The Hatching
  • Gutted
  • Walk Hand In Hand Into Extinction
  • The Binding
  • Every Heart A Doorway

What new horror stories are out this year that YOU recommend I should put on my reading list?