Tag Archives: Short stories

Halloween Special – Portraits of Dread

This month it’s all about horror and darkness. I’m going to be showcasing a great collection of ghoulish books to get you in the mood for Halloween.

First up is an amazing #awethor and buddy Michael J Elliot – who has possibly the greatest book cover ever. Pre-order your copy now in time for Halloween…

In this collection of twelve stories, Michael J. Elliott examines dread in all it’s many forms,
In MOTHER CALLED TODAY a woman becomes increasingly fearful of her demanding mother’s incessant phone calls. She has a horrible secret about her mother, something she is too scared to share with anyone.
In THE LITTLE MAN ON TOP OF THE WARDROBE Four year old James has always been very good about going to bed but recently he’s been too scared to go to sleep. There is a little man living on top of his wardrobe and it wants his soul.Of course that’s just his overactive childhood imagination….Isn’t it?
In A GLUTTON FOR PUNISHMENT we visit a future that isn’t too hard to imagine. It’s a world where the overweight are social pariahs, where a government controls their eating and shopping and failure to loose weight after three attempts results in the obese being sent to a detention camp. Lynda Whittaker has just been sent to one such camp and she’s about to learn a horrifying government secret which shows they till have one final use for the overweight.
Portraits Of Dread contains these chillers and more.


In The Trenches

I am so excited to share this next book with you all. In The Trenches is a collection of incredible war based short stories and they really are incredible. I was very fortunate to get to read these stories before publication and they are definitely some of the most moving pieces of literature I’ve ever come across.

“In the Trenches” is about wars spanning history and taking place all over the world. Killing without mercy, bodies blown to bits before your eyes; Physical and mental devastation. Peer into the heart, mind, and soul of a soldier during active duty and beyond. War forever changes men and women, and impacts everyone around them. See through their eyes. View the horror of combat. See how it plays out when they come home to family and friends.

Download Now

Mojo and the American Female

Take a look at this extract from Sean Hammond’s Mojo and the American Female and take a look at his website too – it’s amazing.

The Blunder Years

Whatever happened to predictability? The milkman, the paperboy, evening TV? Casual drives over the Golden Gate Bridge and neon windbreakers to protect us from that brisk Bay Area sea breeze? Back when times were simpler and the world had three fathers- and by no means am I referring to the holy trinity. I’m talking Danny, Jesse and Joey. All were miserable failures with personality dysfunctions but somehow were able to pull themselves together to raise America’s favorite girls. What this country’s fascination is with “three men and a baby” is beyond me.

Aside from the horrible acting and after school special “the moral of the story is” writing style, Full House was mashed potatoes and gravy to my generation. When the theme song kicked on, you felt good because “everywhere you look there’s a heart and a hand to hold on to.” I always acted as if I was bored while I watched the show though, even at an early age I was aware that it wasn’t socially acceptable for a dude to like chick flicks. And that’s what Full House was, a weekly soap opera for young girls.

I watched habitually though, especially once Rebecca became a regular. I’m not afraid to say it, Lori Loughlin was hot. She still is. In 1989 I didn’t even really know what hot was, but whatever Rebecca was- I liked it. And so began my lifelong hatred for John Stamos. The guy makes me sick, he’s too fucking cool. His gelled up hair, scruffy metro shave (before the world even knew what metro was), black Italian boots, a rock n’ roll attitude but with a sensitive and understanding side… What a prick. Moreover, he was briefly married to a super model. Still, Romjin aside, the only Rebecca that really mattered to me was the one on Full House.

I remember sizing up Stamos on every episode. I’d sit there and scowl at the TV as I’d watch his performance. The majority of my Full House viewing was around the age of 10, so looking back that must have been quite the sight. Back then I didn’t know what it was, and I couldn’t clearly put my feelings into words but I certainly knew that Uncle Jesse was a pretentious asshole. The Elvis impersonations are eventually what did me in. One too many “Teddy Bears” made Rebecca’s love for Jesse unforgivable and I eventually had to move on. I learned early on that chasing after women that were attracted to Jesse’s was fruitless. I’d never be that guy.

I tried to seek solace in DJ, but she just didn’t have what made me tick. Kimmy was way too easy, so I figured I’d give Steph a shot and maybe try someone my own age. I appreciated her wit and subtle vulnerability but the fact she shared a roof with Stamos was a deal breaker. I finally had to part ways with the San Francisco family and I found myself becoming best friends with Kevin Arnold. His lifestyle was much easier to swallow then three misfit dads living in the gay capitol of the world. He rode his bike, played football with Paul, thought way too deeply about the world around him, and had a crush on Winnie Cooper- the single greatest young female character up to that point in television history.

Kevin and I got a long great, primarily due to our strikingly similar inner monolog. Yes, that’s what it sounds like in my head all day. Winnie was off limits, however. I admired her from afar but the show taught me trust and loyalty, one of the lessons that always seemed laughable coming from Jesse’s mouth. Winnie was everything a 12 year old boy could ask for. She had her own set of wheels, enjoyed milk shakes, and was never afraid to make the first move. In the grand scheme of things, that doesn’t sound too bad to someone in the their mid twenties.

Kevin was my boy though, even through their on-again off-again late adolescence. We shared a comradely, an understanding of sorts. Kevin always ultimately did the right thing, learning life lessons along the way. I took notes and mentally never had an affair with his girl. That’s how it all went down until the final episode.

That night I turned on my TV half depressed. I was anxious to see the big finale, but I felt like my childhood was ending just as Kevin’s was. The suspense ate me alive as I slurped from my juice box. The show ended by flashing forward to present day. Winnie got off a plane from studying art in Paris only to be greeted by Kevin, his wife and new son. Those fuckers. I dropped my fruit flavored beverage and let it seep deep into my favorite childhood blanket.

From that moment on it’s been nothing but Guns n’ Roses, cheap strippers, Wild Turkey, and an immense Winnie Cooper void I’ve never been able to fill. Rebecca’s are a time a dozen, just like the Jesse’s they date. But not Winnie Cooper. Only a Winnie can make you… melt.

Read more from Sean here: http://www.harnessyourlife.com/news/111-mojo-and-the-american-female

Terror Train – Extra

Okay so I lied. I’ve got one more podcast from Terror Train this is a Halloween Special for our Halloween Special, which I think makes it a double whammy of scary… so have a listen if you dare!

Terror Train: Podcast 7

Happy Halloween!

Here’s the final podcast I’ve got for you from Terror Train. I hope you like it. And remember you listen to more of these podcasts on YouTube and download the entire anthology from Amazon. Enjoy… and don’t get too scared.



Download the book now!


Terror Train: Podcast 4

I know, you were expecting the second podcast – well you’re only going to get snippets from me I’m afraid. You can listen to more of the Terror Train anthology on YouTube, or you could buy the book now.



Download the story from Amazon

Terror Train: Podcast 1

It’s time to be scared. Here’s the first podcast from Terror Train – I swear to you the opening gave me goosebumps.




Remember you can download the rest of Terror Train from Amazon

Terror Train: Interview

Editor of Terror Train, Krista Clark Grabowski, has taken some time out to answer some questions about the book.

Terror Train is a collection of horror stories, right? Can you tell us more about the concept?


The concept for Terror Train came from A. Henry Keene, an excellent writer and my co-editor on Terror Train. It’s more than a collection of stories and poems with a train theme, it’s a cross-country train ride. The first story in the book is written by Charie D. LaMarr and is set in New York and it ends with a story written by Alex S. Johnson that is set is California. Between the first and last stories are “train stops” in various locations.


Interesting. I noticed you said it includes both stories and poems. That gives the book a lot of variety.


Yes it does. It worked out so well. The writing itself covers a broad range as well. There is a noir-style story, one from the future, one set in the Old West, a southern gothic story, and lots of other styles. Some of them have gore and some have none at all. You won’t find any two stories or poems that are the same. I really think there is something for everyone in this one.


How has it been received?


Very well. We have no negative reviews and there has been so much interest that we’re doing a series of Terror Train podcasts. David Schutz II narrates every episode and does an amazing job. His wife, Mary Genevieve Fortier, is a running character she created, the disembodied voice of Terror. Her wicked laugh and dialogue make the episodes extra creepy. There are nine episodes so far. A new one goes out every Saturday and except for the first installment, each one is about half an hour long. David is working his way through the book. Eventually he will read every story and poem.


Here’s a link to my YouTube channel. You can find all of the podcasts there.



Buy it on Amazon here.



Terror Train

In the UK we don’t really celebrate Halloween like they do in the US but we still like our scares. So all this week I am showcasing a great collaboration of stories to chill your bones and give you nightmares. There will be something new everyday to get you in the mood for a frightening Friday. And also we’ve revamped (get it!) the blog a bit too. Let us know what you think in the comments below and please feel free to share your scary stories.

Now allow me to introduce the spine-tingling, hell-raising, not-being-able-to-go-to-sleep-in-the-dark-ing… Train Terror:




The Terror Train rides, from city to city, from village to village, through states, across rivers and mountains. If only it could tell its tales of grisly murder, of demonic pacts, black holes into different dimensions and portals to other realms where the ghosts of train robbers hunt in perpetuity for that elusive bullion filled carriage that cost them their immortal souls. Behold the terrors the train has witnessed, see firsthand the horrors it has lived through and when you get on board, pray, pray you’ve entered the right one, on the right track, the one that does not lead to oblivion…

Terror Train contains stories by new and established authors, with a guest story by William F. Nolan.

All aboard!

Download it now! http://www.amazon.com/Terror-Train-Mathias-Jansson-ebook/dp/B00KYWRWS2/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1413836480&sr=1-2&keywords=terror+train+in+books

Mexican Radio and Other Short Stories

This week I’ve been chatting with Jaysen True Blood and he has been telling me all about his book of short stories. Here’s what he has to say:



Mexican Radio and Other Short Stories is a real mix of genres, is there a running theme or style that unites each story?

Not really. I am a “stream of consciousness” writer.

This book is in two volumes, should the stories be read in order and how are the volumes different to one another?

The only stories out of order in the book are the westerns, and I didn’t realise it until after publication. Other than that, the others that are part of a series are all in order. But as a whole, the stories can be read in any order.

So let’s pick your favourite of the short stories – tell us a bit about it.

I would have to pick the title story, “Mexican Radio”. I had the silly song running through my head when I began and thought: “wouldn’t this make a great story? Then, I put the main character in the most impossible position I could-a staged prison break that he uses to his own benefit, and that of the female lead. Although there are so many excellent stories in these two books.

Who is your favourite character in all of the stories and what sets him/her above the others?

I would have to say either Fancy Marsh or Guy Marlowe. Fancy, because he carries a buffalo gun and knows how to use it, and Guy because he is fast with both guns and at cards.

What locations feature in your stories, are they based on real places?  

Most of my stories could be located anywhere, except a few sci-fi, but I do mention L.A., Baton Rouge, and a few other US cities, but there is only one-the historical fiction piece-that is based solely on fact…with conjecture mixed in.

Overall how many stories feature in each volume and how big on average is each story?

Book 2 has 23 stories and the Book 1 has 14.

Who is your target audience for Mexican Radio and Other Short Stories?

Anyone who likes a good story and loves adventure, no matter where the action takes them.

So you have your favourite but is there a particular scene you can show us from any of the stories?

As I raised up out of my hiding place in the backseat, she looked in the rear view mirror. As I scooted to a position right behind her, she thrust her can of mace in my face and commenced to sprayin’. I bellered in pain and surprise. Even though she was chokin’ on the mace herself, she didn’t let up until I knocked it loose from her grasp.

“Are ya stupid?!?” I exclaimed, eyes, nose and throat burning as if I’d swallowed a match and splashed gasoline in my eyes.

(From “Mexican Radio”)

And finally what is next for Jaysen True Blood?

I have two novellas, “Bad Company” and “The Faust Syndrome”, due out in a couple months and am working on a third. I also have another collection in the works.


You can download Mexican Radio and Other Short Stories now from Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Mexican-Radio-Other-Short-Stories-ebook/dp/B00FLL00GM/ref=la_B00IUNJWFI_1_4?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1411485010&sr=1-4