23 October 2011

Coffin Hop Contest: You Could Take It With You

Source
It's the week before Halloween, and the beginning of the Coffin Hop Horror Web Tour. Hooray! Last time I checked the website, there were 99 fabulous writers participating - which means that there will be tons of wonderful contests to enter and win. So get hopping, visit some new writers, and enter their contests!

What am I giving away, pray tell? I've got a two-part prize for you. Part one is electronic: you get issues 1-3 of One Buck Horror as a gift from me from Amazon.com, plus a copy of One Buck Zombies. Issue one of One Buck Horror contains my story "The Last Nephew." (Hooray!) Overall, this is one of the most exciting horror magazines out there. I guarantee you'll enjoy reading it.

I don't think a giveaway is any fun unless you get something in the mail, though, so I'm including something old and super cool as part of this prize: a teeny tiny leather bound copy of Samuel Taylor Coleridge's The Rime of the Ancient Mariner. If you've read this creepy late 18th-century poem, you'll know it's one of the weirdest and spookiest pieces in English literature. If you've never read it, you're in for a treat. Impress and win the person of your affections by carrying this around in your pocket:


Looks impressive, right? But look how teeny:


That is a regular bic pen, my friends. The edition also has some awesome line drawings:


And it contains a copy of the poem Christabel, pretty much the earliest example of the vampiros lesbos genre that I'm aware of. I will mail this to you, plus Halloween stickers!

What do you have to do? Leave a comment on this post, and tell me the one thing you have or might someday have or fantasize about having that you'd like to be buried with when you kick it. In your ideal world, what would be with you in your coffin? Are you hoping for the perfect little black dress (or awesome black suit) or do you wish you could go with the full Mesopotamian funeral and take your slaves, your pets, and your numerous spouses with you? On November 1st, I'll pick a winner at random out of a hat or similar vessel and contact you to get your info.

This is a global contest. If you are on the earth planet, I will mail your prize to you.

Make sure you leave an email address or other means of contacting you. If you're worried about spammers, you can always format it this way: yourname at mailservice dot com.

17 October 2011

Halloween Warm-Up

It's almost here, boils and ghouls! Just to make sure you're in the spirit for Halloween and eagerly planning your costumes / movie marathons / candy binges / dark rituals, here's something old but so so good.

14 October 2011

Coffin Hop Horror Web Tour



At the end of this month I am getting Hallowe'eny with some fellow horror writers. If you're one of us...join us! If you're not, you might want to make a habit of dropping by the Coffin Hopper's websites that week, because we will all be offering treats, not tricks, in the form of contests! with fabulous prizes!

Deets for those who might like to play:


1) HAVE A SPOOKY FUN TIME!
2) INVITE YOUR FRIENDS AND SPREAD THE WORD!
3) THIS TOUR STARTS: Monday, October 24, 2011 at Midnight (PST)
THIS TOUR ENDS: Monday, October 31, 2011 at Midnight (PST)
Winners will be drawn and posted November 1, 2011
4) MEET AND MINGLE WITH THE AUTHORS! EXPERIENCE A NEW DESTINATION AT EVERY STOP! PARTICIPATE IN EVERY SITE’S CONTEST AND BE ENTERED FOR CHANCES TO WIN MULTIPLE PRIZES! EVERY BLOG VISITED IS ANOTHER OPPORTUNITY TO WIN!
5) PARTICIPATION AT ALL SITES IS RECOMMENDED, BUT NOT REQUIRED. THE MORE SITES YOU HOP, THE BETTER YOUR CHANCES OF WINNING PRIZES.
6) DID I MENTION TO HAVE A SPOOKY FUN TIME?
***Authors have full discretion to choose an alternate winner in the event any winner fails to claim their prize(s) within 72 hours of their name being posted or after notification of win, whichever comes first. Anyone who participates in this tour is subject to these rules***
This is a Blog Hop!
Sign up at the Coffin Hop site or go there to start following awesome writers now!

13 October 2011

Mind Candy: James Mollison's The Disciples

This week I've been working on a short story about bubonic plague, trying to finish another about what happened to Icarus after he fell from the sky, and reading Malachi Martin's Hostage to the Devil, one of the scariest non-fiction books I've ever read.

In my never-ending search for amazing things to look at, I discovered photographer James Mollison's series called The Disciples. Mollison writes:

Over three years I photographed fans outside different concerts. I was fascinated by the different tribes of people that attended them, and how people emulated celebrity to form their identity.


Many more photos available at Mollison's online portfolio, including a musically enhanced slideshow. If that doesn't turn your crank, you can enjoy being fascinated by his amazing portraits of apes or his series on where children sleep.

09 October 2011

By the Lake


So, I've been away. Specifically, I've been in a Muskoka chair on the grassy shore of this jewel of a Northern Ontario lake. While I was there, and during the bits of September and early October that weren't spent there, I was sick with Deathflu (tm).

Look out for this flu, people. Everyone I know who caught it ended up with wicked bronchitis that stretched on for weeks. I'm (mostly) better now, but it took a while.

But ours is not to whine. My point is that normally while I'm up on Lake Charming, I spend most of my days scampering through the woods, meditating, and doing tai chi. The wild energies in this pristine natural setting are nothing short of mind blowing. No coincidence that throughout history, those who like to meditate tend to retreat to mountainous caves where no one will bother them and there is a low chance of human contact. The Lake Charming property is home to deer, moose, otters, beavers, herons, loons, ducks, jays, chipmunks, red squirrel, bear, and wolves. (Wolves!) It's an amazing place for a retreat.

This year, though, I was debilitated with Deathflu (tm). I had no choice but to sit in a Muskoka chair and read. (I know. It's terrible, isn't it?)

And read I did. I read up a storm.

I read at home, but it's all too easy here to get caught up in television watching and the daily grind. Some days it seems like it's all I can do to grab twenty minutes with a book, never mind the long solitary hours necessary to finish a novel or a story collection in one bite. But it's all about how you choose to spend the time you have, you know? And yet again I remembered how wonderful it is to sink into books and not come up for air. Since I've been back, I've been cultivating my reading habit on three fronts:
  • novels! This week I read Uglies by Scott Westerfeld (wow) and Hater by David Moody (double wow)
  • short stories! I've taken up a new reading challenge that I'm tracking at Stringing Words. I've pledged to read a short story a day in November
  • research! It's only three short weeks before the beginning of NaNoWriMo - that's National Novel Writing Month for those of you who have been living in a hole. I'm planning an epic plot featuring political intrigue in an alternative England ruled by female necromancers. To gear up, I'm reading Machiavelli's The Prince, and reviewing Shakespeare's first tetralogy (the Henry VI plays and Richard III) 
What are you reading?

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