Enter Our New Contest, ‘Horror: Told in 100 Words’ to Earn Some Cold Hard Cash and Publication!

Originally posted on Horror Novel Reviews:

A quick editor’s note: Tim Meyer, longtime HNR contributor and kick ass author of multiple critically acclaimed novels will be spearheading this contest, and I cannot possibly thank the man enough! We owe Tim a very serious debt of gratitude, as running a contest of this nature isn’t the comfy walk in the park some may believe. There’s a lot of hard work that goes into an event of this nature, and the fact that Tim was eager to step up to the plate says an awful lot about the man!

HORROR: TOLD IN 100 WORDS

Contest/Anthology

Okay, folks! Here’s the skinny. Flash fiction is pretty hip nowadays and we want to see who can come up with the most creative horror story using 100 words or fewer. Sounds fun, right! Right?!?!

So first thing’s first—the theme. This contest/anthology will have a dual theme. The first is Creation. The second…

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Horror Story Of The Week At HNR!

horror-novel-reviews-horror-story-of-the-week

Horror Novel Reviews is starting a Horror Novel Of The Week at their site, and everybody is encouraged to enter. I hope Matt has some help over there, he’s going to get a lot of submissions each week that he’s going to have to get through!

While details are limited at this point, that feature of the site starts next Wednesday. One story will be picked each week and showcased on HNR! Hint: THEY GET A LOT OF TRAFFIC!

Get those horror short stories dusted off, this would be great publicity for you!

Hopefully the rest of the details will be posted soon, but you can check out the official announcement by clicking here!

Book Review: Say No To Drugs

Matt Molgaard, official cool guy and horror extraordinaire, recently released his double-shot short story collection, Say No To Drugs. Both stories are cautionary tales about how doing drugs can do some terrible things to you.

Matt, a man who was once in the clutches of both alcohol and drugs, as he explained on his extremely popular website Horror Novel Reviews, decided to pay it forward in a way and try to help keep kids off of drugs by giving them this book.

say-no-to-drugs-cover

He was kind enough to hand out a few free copies with the promise of a review, regardless of the review itself, and I was fortunate enough to get my hands on one of those copies. So, here’s my review of a book written by a guy who writes book reviews. I feel like I’m in a weird alternate reality of books and reviews and authors. It happens all the time.

From his site about the book:

A double feature told in the tradition of vintage drive-in tales, Say No to Drugs serves as a reminder that some clichés are worth paying heed. In The Pot, the first of two tales, terror turns green, while Blue – the double feature’s second tale – should encourage hard drug users to think twice before mixing fatal cocktails.

Ray Waltz just wanted to get high as he ushered dreaded high school years into a deep crevice designed to bury life’s strangest of moments; never to be revisited again. But Jimmy Hanniger, local weed-man with the strongest herb in town held different designs for Ray and his future.

If only Ray had just said no.

In Blue a confused young man must decipher the visual riddles surrounding him. Why are the walls a sudden and mesmerizing blue? Why is there a body sprawled across the floor. And just what is that forcing its way through an ocean of turmoil, bound for dry land; bound for murderous actions?

Find out in longtime entertainment journalist, Matt Molgaard’s debut double feature, crafted with the intent of pleasing those who favor the whacky, absurd grindhouse style of yesteryear.
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Short Horror Story Contest

Want to see your campfire tale acted out before an audience of horror and cult film fans? Enter your short story for a chance to win this and other great prizes! The winner will get to see their story told on stage by a master storyteller, have the text and video of the reading showcased on our website, and be included in the forthcoming 4 Hour Film Festival Campfire Tales anthology.

RULES FOR THE SHORT STORY CONTEST:
Deadline for entry is July 17, 2014.
The entry fee is only $5.
Maximum word count 1000.
PDF and DOC file types accepted.
Stories must be horror or have a dark theme. Horror-comedy or dark comedy is welcome.
No excessive profanity, sex or gore. Don’t shock us, haunt us.

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This seems like an awesome opportunity! I’m hoping to enter but thought I’d pass it along to the rest of you! I just heard it about it myself and know the deadline is quickly approaching, so get those stories in! This whole thing takes place in Hollywood, I do believe!

For more on this and how to submit, click here! And good luck!

8 Steps All Writers Follow When They Edit

Matt Roberts:

This is great stuff. Apparently my approach is to have an idea, let it sit in my head for 10+ years, write some of it, never go back to it. Repeat. I wish someone had a full proof method to get everyone around you to understand when writing time is, and to shut the f*** up during that time. Aside from locking yourself in a safe. I need to invest in a safe.

Originally posted on Today's Author:

Every author has a different approach to writing. I know this because I read Rebecca Bradley’s wonderful series on how writers do their thing. Each author she spotlights adds a personal twist that intrigues me.

Not so surprisingly, no one’s approach is like mine. Here’s how I write a novel:

  • Draft out events for the novel in a spreadsheet program like Excel. This gives me room to add columns and rows with new information, new ideas, notes to track an event through the story. Here’s what my spreadsheet for my latest WIP looks like:

plot with Excel

  • JK Rowling’s is low-tech, but still an obvious spreadsheet:

jk rowlings plot

  • Convert the draft to a word processing program like MS Word. Mine is usually 70+ pages.
  • Add details about timing, setting, characters, clothing, transitions, chapter breaks.
  • Start at the beginning and read for flow, timing, pacing. Edit diligently. I do this a day at a time. I…

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Daily Prompt: By The Dots

We all have strange relationships with punctuation — do you overuse exclamation marks? Do you avoid semicolons like the plague? What type of punctuation could you never live without? Tell us all about your punctuation quirks!

Many moons ago when I was in high school a buddy of mine mentioned one day how I used entirely way too many commas. I wrote him a note and slyly passed it to him so the teacher wouldn’t notice. In, the, note, I, put, a, comma, after, every, word, like, this. You know, just to piss him off. He didn’t get it. “See?! You use way too many!” I just shook my head. He wasn’t one for sarcasm.

Even though I thought I knew what I was doing, what he said still scared me. I remembered it for, well, the rest of my life up to this point. Any time I’m going over something I wrote I typically end up deleting or otherwise removing a lot of the commas I had placed in whatever I wrote. Sometimes they actually aren’t needed.

However, I recently wrote a short story for an anthology (it wasn’t picked) and I had my editor, the extremely awesome Jordan Drew, tell me what she thought about commas. It turns out she’s a fan and she told me to use them whenever I thought I should (basically) and how I wasn’t entirely wrong in the first place. So now I’m a fan of them again.

I also have a horrible time with apostrophes. I’m never sure when to use them or when not to. Semicolons, forget them. I almost completely understand when to use them, too, but I never get them right when I do use them, so I just don’t.

That’s about it. I think. Unless I’m massively screwing up other stuff and everybody has been too nice to tell me.

FLASH MASTERS Flash Fiction Contest

Announcing FLASH MASTERS Flash Fiction Contest from Grey Matter Press

We are excited to announce our first ever FLASH MASTERS, an all-new Flash Fiction Contest coming from Grey Matter Press once each month for the remainder of the year.

The first FLASH MASTERS will launch this Monday, June 23rd, and is a Flash Fiction Contest intended to celebrate the exceptional creativity among both current and up-and-coming authors of dark fiction. FLASH MASTERS allows you to share your talent for short, concise storytelling with the horror-loving community. And each month a winner (or winners) will be awarded prizes from Grey Matter Press.

Read More…

Peters Cartridge Company

Hey all! Remember that post I made about the creepy but awesome abandoned building? Well, the good folks… dude?… Rick over at Creepy Cincinnati just wrote a piece about it, with actual history and detail about the building. Check it out!

Last Month For Skinner

Hey folks, just a heads up. I’ve decided to take Skinner off the market at the end of this month. I’ve always planned on “finishing” it, which it needs and deserves, and I’ve been planning a short story collection for a while, too. I might just polish up Skinner and put it in the short story collection. Maybe, we’ll see.

Right now there aren’t many details to be had other than what I just gave you. The short story collection is just an idea right now, but I hope to make it a reality sometime in the near future. In any case, who knows what the future holds for Skinner, but if you’d like to read it as it is now and you haven’t got yourself a copy, head on over to Amazon and get it for your Kindle now! At the end of this month it’ll be gone!

Reblog: This Is The Kind Of Competition Publishers Want

This is good stuff. I found it courtesy of Alexandra Sokoloff, and feel as she does about it.

This Is The Kind Of Competition Publishers Want

Since the huge shift to online purchasing and e-books, a common meme is that there is some kind of “discoverability” problem in publishing.

The funny thing is readers don’t seem to have any problem finding books they love. Any readers I talk to have a time problem – reading lists a mile long and never enough hours in the day to read all the great books they are discovering.

The real discoverability problem in publishing is that readers are discovering (and enjoying) books that don’t come from the large publishers. What these publishers have is a competition problem not a discoverability problem.

Read The Rest Here…