New Books but Not a New Me

Tis a new year, but not a new me. I figured since I don’t do the resolution shit, I’d also skip the January 1st post where I tell you I don’t do that shit.

I guess I kind of did that anyway just now.

Anyway, 2021 came in quietly at our house. We didn’t want to make too much noise, because last year that seemed to have a very bad effect on how shit went. We decided to get to bed early and avoid wishing anyone a Happy New Year. Didn’t even acknowledge it for weeks. Has it been better than 2020? Meh. It’s not worse, so I’ll be content with that.

I’m still working in retail, still “essential” without the essential pay, and still wondering how the human race has survived with so much stupid in it. I guess that’ll never change.

This month, though, after two years of trying to figure out how to work with this guy around:

 And this guy…

This next guy is a good boy, so we’ll just share his handsome face so he feels included:

I’ve FINALLY figured out a writing routine that allows me to get shit done without the house falling down around me. And I’ve subbed stories to several places over the past few months (for a while, I wasn’t subbing anywhere). Mostly, I’ve been rejected, because that’s how this works. Several of those rejections, though, were the “We don’t usually provide feedback, but are making an exception because… **nice things follow**” kind of rejections. I appreciate these, and they make me feel like I’m doing something right, sort of, but they’re still rejections, so I get about half as bummed as when I get a form rejection. So, I’m choosing to view those rejections as wins.

Glass half-full. That’s how I’m trying to view shit these days. If I don’t, I’ll probably become a serial killer and I don’t think I’d be very good at that. Always running my mouth, you see.

 So, what was accepted? I shall tell you. On February 25th, Unnerving will be releasing two novellas. First, a bloodier, nastier version of CHURCH (called Church: Cult Edition), with a pretty cool new cover, and SHE AIN’T PRETTY, a sex-fueled nightmare that explores a different type of cult than we encounter in CHURCH. This is just after my birthday, so you guys should pre-order these now, so I feel loved.

Now, the basic idea for SHE AIN’T PRETTY, was inspired by the song of the same title by the Northern Pikes.

NORTHERN PIKES – She Ain’t Pretty – YouTube

I love that song, man. Listen to it all the time. (Stop judging me) I was brainstorming ideas for a Rewind or Die story, when this song came on, followed by THAT SUMMER, by Garth Brooks.

That Summer Garth Brooks – YouTube

I listen to ALL the music, kids. I guess the two songs together wove a few nuggets in my brain and voila! Lily, soul sucking succubus with a goal of total world domination was born.

At the same time, I plotted a second novella, SKIN DEEP, that I haven’t subbed anywhere just yet. That too was inspired by music. She Ain’t Pretty (the song is catchy, guys), and Bad Girlfriend, by Theory of a Deadman.

Theory of a Deadman – Bad Girlfriend [OFFICIAL VIDEO] – YouTube

It’s not often that music inspires whole stories, but I get ideas everywhere, as most of us do. Anyway, SKIN DEEP is sexy (Lots of weird, awkward, killer sex), bloody and weird as well. I really love it.

Finally, I wrote a creature story that I’m calling CHUPACABRA for now. No, this one wasn’t inspired by any music. Pure nightmare/things I think about in the shower ideas here. It’s longer than a novella. A little shorter than what I prefer for a novel, though.

Now, I’ve written monster/creature stories before. I mean, STRANDED, HOWL, and BLOOD LAKE MONSTER are clearly those types of tales. I’ve always wanted to write a full-on Frankenstein style monster, though, that is all about the bloodlust of a full-on predator whose existence is totally our own fault. In Blood Lake Monster, I played with that a little bit, but it wasn’t quite the creature feature idea I’ve been too afraid to attempt up to this point. I mean, can I really keep the action-packed pace required in military/apocalyptic/TEOTWAWKI/The shit has hit the fan types of stories? I’m still not sure. You guys may never read it, because maybe no publisher will ever want it, but I’m happy that I tried it and I am pretty pleased with the result.

Remember, glass half-full.

Also coming down the pipes, although I’m not sure when, is CLUSTER, a sci-fi horror novel that will leave you dreading your next headache. I’ll keep you updated on this one.

My short story TRIAL BY WATER was included in Scare Street’s NIGHT TERRORS VOLUME 7 in December of 2020. I also had a handful of other stories published in various publications in the last half of 2020. You can find all of these on my Amazon page.

I wasn’t going to speak of current events, because God Fucking Damn, People! What the hell is wrong with you all? But I will say this: We’re a year into this pandemic. A mask isn’t a fucking tattoo that will mark you for life. It isn’t a torture device that will kill you or scar you in any way. It’s not taking away any of your rights. It’s not doing anything but keeping your germs on you, where they belong. Aside from that, though, no matter what you believe, it’s a nice gesture that says to others, “I’m a decent person and I care about your well being, because we’re both human beings who deserve to be happy and healthy, so even if I think this bit of cloth is stupid and pointless, I’ll wear it while I’m standing close to you.” Oh, also, some of you can stop with the yelling at employees of stores/offices/medical facilities, who have ZERO CONTROL over the rules they have to enforce because IT’S THEIR FUCKING JOB. Some of them don’t agree with it either, but if they want to pay their bills, they’ve gotta do what they’ve gotta do. If they can suck it up, you can too.

Looking at you, asshole who called me a commie bitch because I informed you my boss made masks mandatory in our store. Some of you need to look up the definition of a lot of shit before letting it fall out of your mouth. Just saying.

PS: This is not an invitation for a debate on Covid, masks or any of that shit. I couldn’t give a shit about this side or that or what’s real and what’s conspiracy, or who’s batshit insane and who’s just bored. This is just a plea from a person who is sick of being threatened, insulted, and abused for just doing her job.

Okay, so, moving on. I’m looking forward to this year and all the potential goodness it holds. Let’s all just let 2021 ease its way in here. Don’t make any sudden movements that might startle it into a shit storm. Just get a few new books to read and tuck yourself away in a quiet corner until all the wrinkles left by 2020 are smoothed out.

Oh, that reminds me: I finished RETAIL. For those who might not remember, I was working on a novella about a retail employee that loses her shit and becomes a serial killer (based very loosely on my own experience in retail). I don’t know where the hell I’m subbing it, but maybe some day, I’ll find a publisher that might be interested, and it’ll be out in the world so you guys can laugh as much as I did as I wrote it. Before then, I might add more blood and rage to make it more realistic.

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