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About Kelli Owen
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It's not that she may or may not have killed him to escape.
The question on Detective Travis Butler's mind is — what exactly does the death of little Tommy Jenkins have to do with her kidnapper?
And why does the man behind the one-way glass want the detective to entertain Lily's tales of speaking to the dead... and being able to hear the thoughts of the living?
We have assembled some of the very best in the business from whom you can learn so much about the craft of horror writing: Bram Stoker Award© winners, bestselling authors, a President of the Horror Writers' Association, and myriad contemporary horror authors of distinction.
The Horror Writer covers how to connect with your market and carve out a sustainable niche in the independent horror genre, how to tackle the writer's ever-lurking nemesis of productivity, writing good horror stories with powerful, effective scenes, realistic, flowing dialogue and relatable characters without resorting to clichéd jump scares and well-worn gimmicks. Also covered is the delicate subject of handling rejection with good grace, and how to use those inevitable "not quite the right fit for us at this time" letters as an opportunity to hone your craft.
Plus... perceptive interviews to provide an intimate peek into the psyche of the horror author and the challenges they work through to bring their nefarious ideas to the page.
And, as if that – and so much more – was not enough, we have for your delectation Ramsey Campbell's beautifully insightful analysis of the tales of HP Lovecraft.
Ramsey Campbell, John Palisano, Chad Lutzke, Lisa Morton,
Kenneth W. Cain, Kevin J. Kennedy, Monique Snyman, Scott Nicholson,
Lucy A. Snyder, Richard Thomas, Gene O'Neill, Jess Landry, Luke Walker, Stephanie M. Wytovich, Marie O'Regan, Armand Rosamilia, Kevin Lucia,
Ben Eads, Kelli Owen, Jasper Bark, and Bret McCormick
And interviews with:
Steve Rasnic Tem, Stephen Graham Jones, David Owain Hughes,
Tim Waggoner, and Mort Castle
~ Jonathan Janz, author of CHILDREN OF THE DARK
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WHITE PICKET PRISONS
Detective Mark Baker is an honest cop and an all-around good guy. After a chaotic night, Mark starts to reexamine his role in the system he no longer believes in.
That's when an ominous letter arrives from his estranged sister.
She sounds distraught, suicidal. Her words send him on a mission to a small midwestern town, uncertain if he'll find her dead or alive.
Valley Mill is a quiet little utopia. Everyone gets along. There's zero crime. On the outside, it's exactly what Mark thinks society should be.
But what Mark discovers behind the pristine fences and closed doors is far worse than anything he could have imagined. And he learns very quickly to be careful what you wish for...
Nightmares come to life in this comprehensive how-to guide for new and established authors…
Book two in Crystal Lake Publishing’s The Dream Weaver series picks up where the Bram Stoker Award-nominated Where Nightmares Come From: The Art Of Storytelling In The Horror Genre left off.
It’s Alive: Bringing your Nightmares to Life focuses on learning the craft in order to take your story from concept to completion.
With an introduction by Richard Chizmar and cover art by Luke Spooner. Featuring interior artwork from horror master Clive Barker!
Table of Contents:
- Introduction by Richard Chizmar
- Confessions of a Professional Day Dreamer by Jonathan Maberry
- What is Writing and Why Write Horror by John Skipp
- Tribal Layers by Gene O’Neill
- Bake That Cake: One Writer’s Method by Joe R. Lansdale and Kasey Lansdale
- Ah-Ha: Beginning to End with Chuck Palahniuk and Michael Bailey (Discussing the Spark of Creativity)
- They Grow in the Shadows: Exploring the Roots of a Horror Story by Todd Keisling
- Sell Your Script, Keep Your Soul and Beware of Sheep in Wolves' Clothing by Paul Moore
- The Cult of Constraint (or To Outline or Not) by Yvonne Navarro
- Zombies, Ghosts and Vampires─Oh My! by Kelli Owen
- The Many Faces of Horror: Craft Techniques by Richard Thomas
- Giving Meaning to the Macabre by Rachel Autumn Deering
- The Horror Writer’s Ultimate Toolbox by Tim Waggoner
- Sarah Pinborough Interview by Marie O’Regan
- Conveying Character by F. Paul Wilson
- Sympathetic Characters Taste Better: Creating Empathy in Horror Fiction by Brian Kirk
- Virtue & Villainy: The Importance of Character by Kealan Patrick Burke
- How to write Descriptions in a story by Mercedes Yardley
- “Don’t Look Now, There’s a Head in That Box!” She Ejaculated Loudly (or Creating Effective Dialogue in Horror Fiction) by Elizabeth Massie
- Point of View by Lisa Mannetti
- What Came First the Monster or the Plot? In Conversation with Stephen Graham Jones by Vince A. Liaguno
- Building Suspense by David Wellington
- Conveying Horror by Ramsey Campbell
- Unveiling Theme Through Plot: An Analysis of Nathaniel Hawthorne’s “The Birthmark” by Stephanie M. Wytovich
- Interview with Clive Barker by Tim Chizmar
- World Building (Building a terrifying world) by Kevin J. Anderson
- Speak Up: The Writer’s Voice by Robert Ford
- Writing for a Better World by Christopher Golden
- Shaping the Ideas: Getting Things from Your Head to the Paper or on Screen. Interview with Steve Niles, Mick Garris, Heather Graham, Mark Savage, and Maria Alexander by Del Howison
- On Research by Bev Vincent
- Editing Through Fear: Cutting and Stitching Stories by Jessica Marie Baumgartner
- Leaping into the Abyss by Greg Chapman
- Edit Your Anthology in Your Basement for Fun and Profit! . . . or Not by Tom Monteleone
- When It’s Their World: Writing for the Themed Anthology by Lisa Morton
- Roundtable Interview by John Palisano
- The Tale of the Perfect Submissions by Jess Landry
- Turning the Next Page: Getting Started with the Business of Writing
In Amazing Stories, the Flying Spaghetti Monster goes on trial to earn his godhood among a council of deities that includes Jehovah, the Buddha, Ganesh, Cthulhu, and Charlie Sheen. He is interviewed for an exclusive episode of the celebrity talk show In the Monster's Studio to discuss his relationship with Godzilla and other famous monsters. He rears his head at an archeological dig in a desert wasteland and dines with a horde of food demons in Hell. He rescues pirates, authors, and prisoners from the cold hand of death while banishing children to suffering and starvation. He is a just god, but only if you compliment his vodka sauce.
Like an all-spaghetti evening of Adult Swim, Amazing Stories of the Flying Spaghetti Monster will show you the many realms of His Noodly Appendage. Learn of those who worship him and the lives he touches in distant, mysterious ways.
Enjoy with Italian food and a side of Darwinism.
Featuring stories by John Skipp, Stephen Graham Jones, Kate Bernheimer, S.G. Browne, Cody Goodfellow, Mykle Hansen, Kevin L. Donihe, Bradley Sands, Jeffrey Thomas, Kelli Owen, and many more.
Crystal Lake Publishing proudly presents Arterial Bloom, an artful juxtaposition of the magnificence and macabre that exist within mankind. Each tale in this collection is resplendent with beauty, teeth, and heart.
Edited by the Bram Stoker Award-winning writer Mercedes M. Yardley, Arterial Bloom is a literary experience featuring 16 stories from some of the most compelling dark authors writing today.
With a foreword by HWA Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient Linda D. Addison, you are invited to step inside and let the grim flowers wind themselves comfortably around your bones.
The line-up includes:
The Stone Door by Jimmy Bernard
Dog (Does Not) Eat Dog by Grant Longstaff
Kudzu Stories by Linda J. Marshall
Dead Letters by Christopher Barzak
The Darker Side of Grief by Naching T. Kassa
Welcome to My Autumn by Daniel Crow
Still Life by Kelli Owen
Three Masks by Armand Rosamilia
Doodlebug by John Boden
Happy Pills by Todd Keisling
What Remained of Her by Jennifer Loring
Blue Was Her Favorite Color by Dino Parenti
In the Loop by Ken Liu
The Making of Mary by Steven Pirie
Mouths Filled with Sea Water by Jonathan Cosgrove
Rotten by Carina Bissett
Proudly represented by Crystal Lake Publishing—Tales from the Darkest Depths.
Interview with the editor:
Mercedes, this is your debut as an anthology editor. Can you tell us how you went about choosing the Dark Fiction stories included in Arterial Bloom?
MMY: Yes, absolutely! Crystal Lake Publishing put out a call for short horror stories. My job was to ensure authors heard about the call. I basically beat down doors trying to spread the word, making sure that people realized it was an open, inclusive anthology and I was interested in stories of all types. Several hundred stories rolled in. It was a massive undertaking, but by reading open submissions instead of invitation-only stories, I was able to come across several authors who were new to me. This collection is full of award-winning, well-known authors as well as fresh voices. It’s a beautiful mix and I’m very proud of it.
This was an unthemed horror anthology, which means that you weren’t particularly looking for any specific themes. But did you find that a certain theme emerged?
MMY: Oh, yes. The Arterial Bloom anthology is all about monsters. Some monsters are literal. Some are human. But every story shows the juxtaposition of the ugliness and the beauty of humanity and the way we deal with things. It’s an emotional anthology. We deal with horror, grief, trauma, love, and healing. It’s gut-wrenching. It’s visceral and quite lovely, in a way.
How did you come up with the title?
MMY: The anthology itself is gutting and gorgeous. I was trying to find a title that played with that hardness and softness. My friends from The Geeky Writers and I went into our chat and brainstormed titles. Different words, different phrases. We just put them together in combinations until we came up with Arterial Bloom. It was the perfect title. It has that primitive, animal feel as well as being artistic.
It’s dangerous out there…on the road.
The highways, byways and backroads of America are teeming day and night with regular folks. Moms and dads making long commutes. Teenagers headed to the beach. Bands on their way to the next gig. Truckers pulling long hauls. Families driving cross country to visit their kin.
But there are others, too. The desperate and the lost. The cruel and the criminal.
Theirs is a world of roadside honky-tonks, truck stops, motels, and the empty miles between destinations. The unseen spaces.
And there are even stranger things. Places that aren’t on any map. Wayfaring terrors and haunted legends about which seasoned and road-weary travelers only whisper.
But those are just stories. Aren’t they?
Find out for yourself as you get behind the wheel with some of today’s finest authors of the dark and horrific as they bring you these harrowing tales from the road.
Tales that could only be spawned by the endless miles of America’s lost highways.
So go ahead and hop in. Let’s take a ride.
- Introduction by Brian Keene
- doungjai gam & Ed Kurtz — “Crossroads of Opportunity”
- Joe R. Lansdale — “Not from Detroit”
- Kristi DeMeester — “A Life That is Not Mine”
- Robert Ford — “Mr. Hugsy”
- Lisa Kröger — “Swamp Dog”
- Orrin Grey — “No Exit”
- Michael Bailey — “The Long White Line”
- Kelli Owen — “Jim’s Meats”
- Bracken MacLeod — “Back Seat”
- Jess Landry — “The Heart Stops at the End of Laurel Lane”
- Jonathan Janz — “Titan, Tyger”
- Nick Kolakowski — “Your Pound of Flesh”
- Richard Thomas — “Requital”
- Damien Angelica Walters — “That Pilgrims’ Hands Do Touch”
- Cullen Bunn — “Outrunning the End”
- Christopher Buehlman — “Motel Nine”
- Rachel Autumn Deering — “Dew Upon the Wing”
- Josh Malerman — “Room 4 at the Haymaker”
- Rio Youers — “The Widow”
Proudly represented by Crystal Lake Publishing—Tales from the Darkest Depths.
Interview with the editor:
So what makes Lost Highways: Dark Fictions From the Road so special?
Lost Highways comes at the theme of road stories with the desire to push the boundaries of what that theme means. Because of that, it collects authors of diverse levels of experience and notoriety in the worlds of horror and dark fiction. This brings together voices like Joe R. Lansdale, Cullen Bunn, Josh Malerman, Damien Angelica Walters, Rio Youers, Bracken MacLeod, Rachel Autumn Deering, doungjai gam with Ed Kurtz, and Kristi DeMeester. All of these unique voices bring a fresh and often unexpected take on the theme.
What made you think of this theme for the anthology?
Road trips can be fun but they can also be long and boring. And while you can read a book to yourself to pass the time, it’s not a very social experience.
Detective Carly Greene was only eleven when she learned Lake Superior was a brutal beast, capable of bringing up long forgotten memories of pain and death, by occasionally releasing the bodies of those trapped beneath her waves.
As an adult, Carly still despises the bodies occasionally coughed up, and the high water eroding the edge of the graveyard this year gave "floaters" a new meaning. But she could never have prepared for what else broke free to swim with those long dead.
Part myth. Part monster. Older than time.
Carly, along with the medical examiner and a local reporter, must find and destroy a forgotten legend in the waters at the edge of Lake Superior. Before it decides it's time to feed. And breed...
Kelli Owen's debut collection returns! Featuring a foreword by Thomas F. Monteleone
Horror is pessimism at its bleakest. Worst-case scenario. The darker side of reality. The glass half-empty. The situation unfathomable. In Black Bubbles, Kelli Owen presents classic genre tropes—ghosts, murderers, zombies, what you'd expect (sans sharks)—but it's the characters, rather than the tropes, that experience the story, speak of the horrors, and sometimes survive the inevitable. Sometimes.
A decades-old crime shocks a family as evidence points to one of their own…An ancient evil hitchhikes its way to freedom…A child has an unusual fascination with decay…A woman excuses premeditation…Death takes a holiday…Science and good intentions make horrific bedfellows…A man hides from nightmares that invade his waking world…
Kelli Owen's first collection gathers over 60,000 words, including a handful of out-of-print, difficult-to-find previously published work, a plethora of new pieces, story notes, drawings inspired by the title story, and an introduction by the legendary Thomas Monteleone.
Nick Kontis and his remaining family members have survived winter--have outlived the threat of deadly infected flies--and are heading toward presumed safety. They quickly find all exit points blocked, the perimeter burned, and learn the flies were only the beginning, as Mother Nature has stepped in to correct mankind's mistakes.
Her weapon of choice: spiders.
With thick webs covering the spring landscape, and lack of any communication leaving them on their own to guess whether or not the spiders are as lethal as the flies they're eating, they make a new plan. Fleeing in a new direction they run into another party of survivors. And what was once a breakdown of society becomes an exercise in rebuilding.
They'll need to find common ground and bond with the others, before winter arrives again. Before the spiders declare victory...