Tuesday, 22 April 2014

More horrors on the way

I have happy news!

My story "No History of Violence" will feature in the forthcoming anthology Horror Uncut: Tales of Social Insecurity and Economic Unease, edited by Joel Lane and Tom Johnstone, published by Gray Friar Press. Watch this space - Table of Contents coming soon!

I'm also delighted to announce that my notorious "Guinea Pig Girl" (from The Tenth Black Book of Horror) has crept her way into both Best British Horror (edited by Johnny Mains) and the Mammoth Book of Best New Horror 25 (edited by Stephen Jones).

I have other stories due to rear their dark and scaly heads very soon but I'll leave off talking about them until I have book covers to share.

For now, here's a shot of me being absorbed by the stones at Avebury…

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

The Call of the Dreaming Moon

At last I have some news! I have so many stories out in the wild right now and it's been a frustrating few months not being able to talk about any of them. But finally they are starting to pop up.

Let me introduce you to another little Lovecraft mash-up: Sword & Mythos. This time it's - well, sword & sorcery vs Lovecraftian horror. I'm part Cherokee so I though it would be fun to write about Native Americans in a high fantasy/horror setting. I'd never written about the Dreamlands before and the idea of a Cherokee girl dreaming the end of the world seemed a natural for this anthology. It's a story I loved writing and I fully expect to return to the Dreamlands again sometime.

For now here's a taste of "The Call of the Dreaming Moon":

Ghostly plumes of smoke rose from the peaks of the mountains as Sunoyi climbed to reach them, losing her way among the thinning trees and unfamiliar spiny plants. At last she came to an immense deep lake. It too was strange. It was wider than any lake she had ever seen and its waters boiled as if a great flame heated them from far beneath.
Through the waves she saw the darting silhouettes of terrible fish, their bodies huge and ungainly, as though the water was not their natural home. The creatures seemed to sense her nearness and she watched nervously as their movements began to slow. Soon they had stopped swimming entirely. The bulky shapes turned beneath the water and countless heads rose black and dripping above the surface, each with a gulping mouth that appeared to be trying to form words.
Sunoyi stepped back, her flesh crawling at the sight. The eyes of the fish were cold and empty and she knew they could see every dark thing in the world. They could see deep inside her and they knew her thoughts, her fears. She stared, unable to look away. Her eyes burned for want of blinking but she was transfixed. Soon her vision began to darken, as though someone were pouring black paint into her eyes. And then she saw beyond the darkness.
She stood now at the crest of the mountain, staring down with her new black eyes at the world below. The cold plateau was the grey of ashes and bones, the colour of eyes when all sight has gone from them. And swarming across its pale expanse were strange animals, so many more creatures than the Great Spirit could have made. So many more trees and plants. And in the impossible distance, so many more mountains. Mountains so vast they might reach all the way to the Upper World. Or perhaps to an even higher world above it, one her tribe knew nothing of.
In the centre of the dead plateau one creature stood apart from the others. At first it seemed human and she took it for a warrior of another tribe. But the unknown colours it wore could not be paint for they seemed to pour from the body of the creature itself, staining the ground beneath it. Inhuman sounds escaped its mouth, a mouth far too wide for its thin face. As she watched, it unfolded great dusty wings like those of a moth and turned to look at her, waving a multitude of spiky, jointed legs. Its eyes were the most terrible things she had ever seen. They were of an even deeper black than those of the gulping fish, a swallowing, bottomless black that threatened to reduce her mind to dust with the horror of its emptiness.

All that black emptiness and more is available on Amazon Kindle. I hope you like it!