Calls for Submissions is 6 months old!

I just realized this morning that CALLS FOR SUBMISSION has been out in the world for six months! It’s been a really great experience and I want to thank everyone who bought the book, bore with me during promotions, took the time to read it, review it and blurb it, and championed it either on your social media or through interviews and publications. I also want to thank my publisher/editor Mark Givens and Pelekinesis for midwifing and delivering this strange baby into the world with me. As I wrote in my announcement last May, none of this would have happened without all of you!

If you missed it and are like “Whaaaa? You had a book come out this year?” Check it:

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#Holiday tip: CALLS FOR SUBMISSION would make a great Yuletime gift for that gothy, weird, Lydia Deets-like cousin who is always reading by the fire rather than watching football and IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE with the rest of the fam.

The past six months have been a great journey. This was a minimal travel year for me, but I had a fabulous event at Tallahassee’s new independent bookstore, Midtown Reader (I was also honored to help them celebrate their first anniversary last weekend) and I’ve been doing several literary events around my hometown which have lead to new friends and a greater understanding of my community. I also got to present my thoughts on Hemingway and Horror in Key West during Papa’s annual summer celebration.

I’ve done several interviews with great readers, writers, and critics who helped me access and rethink a lot of what I have done and what I want to do in the future with my writing. I also was afforded some important publishing opportunities that allowed me to see my byline at some of my favorite literary publications and spaces. If you’d like to see where these various avenues took me, including at Literary Hub, Electric Literature, and Largehearted Boy, check out my #CFSBOOK round-up page here.

So, yeah, she’s growing up quite nicely.

If you have been wanting to read the book but just haven’t had the opportunity to, there are a few giveaways happening. The first is with THE OUTER DARK, where Scott Nicolay and I plotted a fun puzzle for Poe/Shelley fans to solve, and when my concluding Leonora Carrington article runs on Weird Fiction Review.com, there will be a combo giveaway there along with Carrington’s DOWN BELOW.

And if you’ve read the book and would like to help me out even more, I have one request: Spread the Word. Tell me what you thought or give me a shout out on Twitter or Instagram, tell your GoodReads community or blog readers what you thought, or shout it from the mountain top that is Amazon!

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Note to the Note: I still have some ARCs and would love to see CALLS FOR SUBMISSION receive more reviews. If you are a book blogger or reviewer, please drop me a line at LeFilleHST@gmail.com and I’ll hook you up.

 

CALLS FOR SUBMISSION: The First Fortnight

About two weeks ago, Calls for Submission was released by Pelekinesis. I made a nifty comic, did some guests posts, and have enjoyed some really nice reviews at Goodreads, Amazon, and This Is Horror. Here’s a recap of what all has happened:

Friday, May 5, Calls for Submission received its first review at Goodreads (and at 5 stars, to boot), courtesy of Plant X Publications founder Michael Adams (Thank you, Michael!).

He writes: “A nearly flawless debut collection. Evocative, lyrical prose combines with realistically flawed and complex characters in a pleasing variety of settings, historical and modern, to become a book that is greater than the sum of its parts.”

You can read the rest of the review here or at Amazon.

Read More

Richard Gavin & Orrin Grey on CALLS FOR SUBMISSION

THE FINAL COUNTDOWN:  My debut collection, CALLS FOR SUBMISSION, will be released May 15th (but you can pre-order from Pelekinesis now, if you’d like). That isn’t that far away, and to get pumped for the big day, I will be showcasing the awesome blurbs the collection has received. Every author that we queried has influenced me in some vital way, and as a thank you and token of my gratitude for their time and effort, I’ve written a little about each person and what their work has meant to my work. 

This week features very kind words from two masters whose work I’ve both adored for several years: Richard Gavin, a master of mysticism and the macabre, and Orrin Grey, the master of teratology and the new Gothic.

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I am the one who is in awe! I don’t throw around the word mystic loosely. I learned last week that in some literary circles, being termed mystic is anathema. But, man, when I say mystic in regards to an artist, that refers to a very select chosen few (chosen as in not by me, but some higher calling):  Leonora Carrington, William Burroughs, William Blake, Remedies Varo, Percy Shelley, Frida Khalo, Edgar Allan Poe (you balk? Go read Eureka, fool!), etc. You’ll notice those people are all dead. Well, Mysticism, like Poetry, belongs to a dying breed. But there are still a few out there navigating the unseen seas, among them:  Alex Grey, Carrie Ann Baade, and Richard Gavin!

To me, Richard Gavin’s writing is in direct correlation with the darker aspects of Sublimity and Dark Romanticism, all of which often intersects at very strange, mysterious, and alchemical topographies. In his latest collection, SYLVAN DREAD: TALES OF PASTORAL DARKNESS, he explores these topographies, as well as the lies we have told ourselves about Nature to ignore what might be beyond the veil beyond human civilizational presumptions. It was one of the collections that really stuck with me last year. To learn more about his work, please visit his website here.

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Just as Richard Gavin has opened my eyes to the mystical possibilities in writing Weird and speculative fiction, Orrin Grey has brought me more sympathy and understanding to our relationship with monsters. Be it primordial beasts or a B-movie zip-up costume, works like NEVER BET THE DEVILPAINTED MONSTERS, and the non-fiction collection MONSTERS FROM THE VAULT, explore teratology to its fullest, while also staying in commune with the Gothic traditions of Edgar Allan Poe and M. R. James. Check out his skeletal perambulations at his website:  Who Killed Orrin Grey?

Many thanks, Richard and Orrin, for the time and for the words!

Publishing Notes: NonBinary Review #12: The Works of Edgar Allan Poe

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Cover art by MANDEM.

For the past few months, I have been reading for Zoetic Press’s NonBinary Review #12: The Works of Edgar Allan Poe, which I have the honor of serving as Guest Editor. It was just released, and is now available for digital purchase for just $1.99.

Out of something like 63 submissions, I selected 32 stories, poems, essays, and artwork to appear in this issue, as well as its online sister companion, Alphanumeric. I was only able to do this with the patient gut-checking and assistance of Zoetic Press‘s founder and editrix-in-chief Lise Quintana, and all of her awesome editors. I can’t thank them enough for letting me join their sandbox!

I really enjoyed editing this issue, and I hope you will enjoy reading it! From the dark, decadent gothic to sharp, modern retellings, I wanted to make sure the issue had something for every kind of Poe fan here. One aspect of this issue that may be surprising to all Poe fans is the presence of lighter tones and humor in some of the pieces. Poe was actually a funny guy and that aspect of his personality is often excised when we discuss his work, so I was very happy to receive submissions celebrating that. One fantastic example is “The Ravening,” by Meadhbh Hamrick, which launches this month’s Alphanumeric*

“The Ravening” is a hilarious text-based adventure game based on the archetypal Poe hero that no only sheds light on popular culture’s perception of Poe’s work but also illustrates its timelessness. Can you survive the massive doses of laudanum required to survive? Click here to find out. 

Oh, and Poepathists may recognize my introduction, “The Living Poe Girl.”It is a radically revised edition of a series that ran at Tor.com in 2009, and touches on the heroines that appear in this issue, Ligeia, Berenice, The Oval Portrait, and of course, Virginia Poe.

*Alphanumeric is the fun, free, month-long online companion to each issue of NonBinary Review. This is a great way for readers to get a feel for the issue’s vibe, so if you are on the fence about buying the issue, check in every week to get a sample of the issue.

Cover Reveal: Calls for Submission!!!

It’s a book!!!

Light up your cigars, pop the bubbly, and behold my little bundle of horrors, Calls For Submission, my debut collection published by Pelekinesis.

 

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I am thrilled that it is adorned by Joan Horne‘s cute & creepy cover, and includes an introduction by Molly Tanzer, and collaborations with Jesse Bullington and Virginia M Mohlere.

Arriving this May.

If you are a reviewer, blogger, or podcaster, and would like an ARC, please contact either me at LeFilleHST[at]gmail[dot]com or Pelekinesis at pelekinesis[at]gmail[dot]com.

And if you are interested in helping me get the word out, please share!

What does “Quiet Horror” mean? Five Horror Writers Weigh In–Lovecraft eZine

This one fell through the blogging cracks for some reason. Nonetheless, this roundtable curated and conducted by Acep Hale is a great vehicle for showing how nuanced the horror genre is, but also how many voices are out there improvising it.

I was honored to be part of the “Quiet Horror” panel with Kristi DeMeester, C.M. Muller, Nathan Carson, and Mehitobel Wilson.

“The Neurastheniac” is a World Fantasy Award Finalist for Short Story

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Awesome cover for CASSILDA’S SONG designed by Steve G. Santiago.

I’ve blinked a thousand times and the words haven’t changed, so…guess what?  I’m a World Fantasy Award Finalist for my short story “The Neurastheniac,” which appears in Joseph S. Pulver, Sr’s  CASSILDA’S SONG (Chaosium), also a WFA finalist for best anthology.

CASSILDA’S SONG explores the feminine side of Robert Chambers’ (no relation) KING IN YELLOW, and features an all ladies table of contents. My story, “The Neurastheniac” is about Helen Heck, a failed beat/confessional poet/alchemist/junky, and what she uncovers from a series of trespasses through the abandoned suicide chambers (as mentioned in “The Repairer of Reputations”) during the 60s. It gets weird.

All of the stories in here are beautiful, visceral, and each one unforgettable–just check out this TOC if you don’t believe me:

“Black Stars on Canvas, a Reproduction in Acrylic” by Damien Angelica Walters
“She Will Be Raised a Queen” by E. Catherine Tobler
“Yella” by Nicole Cushing
“Yellow Bird” by Lynda E. Rucker
“Exposure” by Helen Marshall
“Just Beyond Her Dreaming” by Mercedes M. Yardley
“In the Quad of Project 327” by Chesya Burke
“Stones, Maybe” by Ursula Pflug
“Les Fleurs Du Mal” by Allyson Bird
“While The Black Stars Burn” by Lucy A. Snyder
“Old Tsah-Hov” by Anya Martin
“The Neurastheniac” by Selena Chambers
“Dancing The Mask” by Ann K. Schwader
“Family” by Maura McHugh
“Pro Patria!” by Nadia Bulkin
“Her Beginning is Her End is Her Beginning” by E. Catherine Tobler & Damien Angelica Walters
“Grave-Worms” by Molly Tanzer
“Strange is the Night” by S.P. Miskowski

If you haven’t gotten your hands on this collection, yet, why not do so now? You can order on Amazon or directly from Chaosium’s site.

Congratulations to Herr Pulver, all of my Sisters of Carcosa, and the other stellar nominees!

For a writer, I feel language evading me to describe the emotional similacrum of awe, wonder, gratitude, humility, and encouragement I have been feeling. It’s unlike anything I’ve ever experienced, and while I acknowledge this energy is ephemeral, I am harnessing it to fuel the next story, and the next after that.

Many thanks to the Judges for nominating this story. (!!!)

The Curse of Frankenstein, Updates, and Other Frankenphilia

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Wandering Spirits: Traveling Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein (Tallhat Press) now available for purchase at Amazon.

Last Thursday, my good friend, vintage movie expert, bomb writer, and teratologist Orrin Grey inducted me into the wiles of the Hammer Frankenstein films. I’ve never seen them, and so what a better way to celebrate #Frankenstein200 than live-tweeting the experience. It was loads of fun, and we storified the experience here.

In addition to celebrating the Villa Diodati bicentennial, we were also marking a few other related events:

The release of Orrin’s first non-fiction collection, MONSTERS FROM THE VAULT, which collects over five years worth of his regular vintage horror flick column, VAULT OF SECRETS, that runs over at INNSMOUTH FREE PRESS. And speaking of, his latest column there delves into more territory with a look at IT! (1967). Check it out here.

Word Horde did a cover reveal of its Frankenstein tribute anthology, ETERNAL FRANKENSTEIN, out in October, and boy, it is a beauty!

And, of course, my own little chapbook from Tallhat Press, WANDERING SPIRITS, which has been doing really well since its release last week. In the past few days, it premiered as #1 New Release in its category, even hit #5 at one point, has been spotted in the wild via book pics, become the focus of a really fun giveaway at the Frankenstein200 Facebook page, and has garnered five stars in its first review!  I am really excited about the response it has been getting, and I know it wouldn’t have been done without the help of friends and colleagues who have helped spread the information, and to the readers who shelled out to buy this book. To each and every one of you:  Thank you!

Numbers of the bEast: xChambers

Collage_Pulver_xPulverToday is Numbers of the bEast, a lovely blog-o-sphere tribute honoring/roasting/ultimately celebrating the King in Yellow himself, Joesph S. Pulver, Sr.

Joe is one of my favorite writers, editors, and people all around. A bridge between the symbolist, beat, and weird movements, Joe wields words on the page like Jackson Pollock and I can’t think of anyone else writing right now that utilizes space akin to Mallarmé and Apollinaire.  How does he do it? I think it’s all in the mustache, whose magical wonders I tried to unleash in this Cindy Sherman-esque tribute. I’m not really sure it works, after editing these portraits, I tried my hand at the Selectric II and all that kept coming out was:

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Thanks to Mike Griffin and John Langan for asking me to play and help celebrate xPULVER!

Love ya, Joe!

EDIT:

After the fact, I figured no one wants to go backwards for the individual images, so I have included them below  for the bEast’s (and the viewer’s) convenience.

Also, be sure to check up the round-up from Mike Griffin of all the Numbers of the bEast, and Joe’s lovely thank you note here.

xPortrait of the bEast #1:

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xPortrait of the bEast #2:

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xPortrait of the bEast #3:

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xPortrait of the bEast #4:

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