Authors remember, when you make a deal with a publisher, you could be making a deal with the devil. (Though I’m not that bad.)
Seth Grahame-Smith, author of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies is being taken to court by his publisher for breach of contract. Hachette claims that Seth Grahame-Smith breached contract by delivering a manuscript that was “not original to Smith, but instead is in large part an appropriation of a 120-year-old public-domain work”, that it “materially varies from the 80,000-100,000 word limit” agreed on, and that it “is not comparable in style and quality to Smith’s wholly original bestseller Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter”.
Two very important parts to deconstruct from this:
First, it sounds like Hachette is saying Seth plagerized, but you can legally plagerize public domain work. It’s public domain and you can modify it and do what you will with it. After all, isn’t that what Seth Grahame-Smith does as a talent anyway? Pride and Prejudice and Zombies was a literary mash-up and it’s what started his career with the publisher.
Second, some publishers can be dicks if you don’t deliver what they want even after you’ve worked with them on prior books.
Seth Grahame-Smith has history with Hachette and has released bestsellers for them. I would really like to know what details Seth broke that would lead to a publisher to sue their own bread and butter. A publisher doesn’t make content, it looks for content, modifies it, and presents it to the world. And Seth had given them manuscripts that were mash-ups and lead to bestsellers.
So what the fuck happened? What the fuck lead to Hachette turning on Seth? Did he deliver something really that far from his other works? If he did, why sue instead of suggesting edits? Or were edits suggested and Seth was like “nope”.
Deadman’s Tome is home to Book of Horrors, a horror anthology loaded with terrifying horror short stories that’ll chill you to the bone!
Rejection is a bad thing, right?
There’s nothing worse as a writer of fiction than being told that your work just isn’t up to scratch. The whole painful chore of the submission process; writing that boring e-mail, adding your bio, double checking your final draft before submitting and then waiting a ridiculous length of time to receive a soul-less form of rejection.
A couple of months back I wrote a short story with a specific publication in mind. I had been on Submission Grinder (an excellent source for searching markets- not a BDSM site) and seen that they had a quite generous acceptance ratio, that they liked stories that involved cryptids and such and that they paid a token payment as well as sending the author a free copy. I made the terrible mistake of being overconfident that this story would be a shoe-in.
How painful it was when I got the letter of rejection two weeks later. I then did what every writer should do when confronted with this; Drink heavily then go back to the drawing board and search for other markets that might take the story. Although I had written it with a specific magazine in mind, I did actually have a lot of faith in the words that I had committed to paper. I started off with the pro markets and worked my way down. The story was completely unsuitable for DMT, being somewhere between dark fairy tale and cautionary tale so I didn’t think of troubling Mr. Deadman with it.
Eventually, at the sixth time of asking I got an acceptance from a semi-pro market that paid me five times more than I would have gotten from my intended publication. I was happy that I had been paid, but most of all I was stoked that I got my ego stroked because, let’s face it, that’s what we’re all about in the writing world, getting your stuff out there and having people tell you that it’s really good.
The moral of the story kids is turn rejection into something positive. editors are real people too (believe it or not) and they also come with flawed opinions or have a specific theme or ideal to adhere to when putting all your stories together in one place. It can help to have a balls-of-steel attitude when putting yourself out there. Just tick them off the list and move on to the next one. You might be surprised where your fiction ends up.
Deadman’s Tome is a growing horror zine that publishes horror short stories and horror flash fiction. The online magazine publishes dark and gritty content from professional horror writers, Bram Stoker award nominated horror authors, along with talented newcomers of the horror writing craft. Deadman’s Tome features chilling, terrifying horror shorts ranging from ghost stories, zombie invasions, bigfoot sightings, monster horror, and even horror erotica. Deadman’s Tome is one of the best online horror zines to publish horror short stories, horror flash fiction, and dark flash fiction. The darker the tale the better. If you enjoyed the story, or even if you didn’t, leave a comment below as it helps the horror authors.
When you’re asked to compare Donald Trump and horror, you damned well better be qualified to do both. I am.
My book Trump This! The Life And Times Of Donald Trump (Riverdale Avenue Books) is not just a biast gasbag of a political tome. I wasn’t going to make it easy on readers. I just presented the facts and nothing but the facts. The real horror will come when you enter the voting booth come November and decide whether or not to mark your X for The Donald.
As to the horror aspect. I was a journalist for Fangoria Magazine for the better part of two plus decades and, in the process, learned from some of the great horror minds what made good scares. And what literally pulls the wool over people’s eyes. Which has ultimately led me to the following conclusion…
Donald Trump is not the monster. He’s not Jason, Freddy, Pinhead or Frankenstein. What he is, quite simply, is the manifestation of some very real zombies who follow him like lap dogs, cheer and boo on command and basically see in their psychological political creation, the justification of every uneducated stereotype, blind, rascist attitude and the willingness to believe anything that comes out of Donald Trump’s mouth without, for a nano second, even stopping to consider that he might be full of shit.
Yes the monster is you. And with less than 70 days before the election that will decide who will lead this country for the next four years, it is already too late. The monster is loose and out of control. Or, more succinctly, those who created him and now control him are thumping their chests and preparing for the apocalypse. The dark forces of human nature are abroad in the land and anyway you look at it things are looking mighty black.
Stopping to think that your personal and professional failures might be your own fault rather than some Mexican taking your job or that that people who do not look, speak or pray to God the way most God fearing white folks do is the delusion that has led you down the garden path of blind hatred. None of what makes your life a living hell is your own fault. At least that’s the way you see it.
At the end of the day, if Trump wins, the darkest aspects of human nature will have been given carte blanche to come out of the shadows and ply their nightmarish trade out in the open. If Trump loses, the people who don’t read, think, or question will have found their way out of the night and feel emboldened that their way of life, hate and dark horror have been given a legitimate voice by the Trump monster they have created. Trump may ultimately skulk off into the night. But he will have left a legacy; people of no conscience, thought or love taking to the streets with only one thing on their minds…
The feline species has been given a bum rap. Horror films and literature seem ever so willing to vilify the cute little house kitties every single chance they get. As a cat lover, not literally you disgusting pervert, but as a cat lover I can’t stand it. Black people who think they have a case with horror because of exploitation need to wait in line. Cats have been so demonized by horror genre that if they could sue, they would have a landslide of a case.
My question is why? Does horror just hate cats? Is there something about a pretty kitty that just screams ABSOLUTE EVIL!
According to Wikipedia (I’m too lazy to research myself, and if its wrong then go change the wikipedia page yourself):
Folklore dating back to as early as 1607 tells that a cat will suffocate a newborn infant by putting its nose to the child’s mouth, sucking the breath out of the infant.
Cats feed off the souls of newborns. Such cuteness comes at a price, right?
Black cats are generally held to be unlucky in the United States and Europe, and to portend good luck in the United Kingdom. In the latter country, a black cat entering a house or ship is a good omen, and a sailor’s wife should have a black cat for her husband’s safety on the sea. Elsewhere, it is unlucky if a black cat crosses one’s path; black cats have been associated with death and darkness. White cats, bearing the colour of ghosts, are conversely held to be unlucky in the United Kingdom, while tortoiseshell cats are lucky.
Both Black and White cats are seen as unlucky and bearer of bad omen. Glad this little post can avoid diving into racial tensions since both white and black cats are discriminated against as bearers of bad luck.
In the Renaissance, cats were often thought to be witches‘ familiars (for example, Greymalkin, the first witch’s familiar in Macbeth‘s famous opening scene), and during festivities were sometimes burnt alive or thrown off tall buildings.
People during the renaissance became retarded by religion and thought cats were servants of the devil and would burn them alive.
In Japan, there is also the saying called the Maneki Neko, also referred to in English as the “good fortune” or “good luck” cat. It is usually a sitting cat with paw raised and bent. Legend in Japan has it that a cat waved a paw at a Japanese landlord, who was intrigued by this gesture and went towards it.
Japan worships cats as if they’re divine.
It seems that the culprit of the vilification of cats lies with witchphobic renaissance bastards. Angry Europeans with the fear of God in them and a burning hatred for anything “unholy” and “satanic”. But don’t be so quick to judge the cat hating bigots, because in their defence cats were probably lazy and just could not keep up with the rat problem that would eventually bring the Black Death. Take that filthy cat haters.
Speaking of cat haters, I might be one of them. After all, I approved of a story called Oreo. A short chilling tale that resembles a bit of Edgar Allan Poe’s The Black Cat. Read it here.
Deadman’s Tome is home to Book of Horrors, a horror anthology loaded with terrifying horror short stories that’ll chill you to the bone!
Just about every other blog boasts a list of BEST Stephen King novels, but Deadman’s Tome asks what Stephen King novel is MOST significant to you. Not which Stephen King novel do you find the most entertaining, the most fulfilling, or the most well-written, but which one has the most significance.
Out of all of Stephen King’s novels, Fire-Starter is the most significant to me. Not Carrie, not The Stand, or even the Dark Tower series. A simple story about a little girl with a bizarre and dangerous power bound with a cover that horrified me. Stephen King’s Fire-Starter haunted me by cover alone. Granted, I was maybe five or six when it happened, but the memory lingers to this day like a phantom I cannot shake. My mother had a bag of novels stashed away at my grandmother’s house, and one day I wanted to peer inside. I looked into the bag and a set of piercing blue eyes stared at me from the darkness, seemingly lit by the illustrated fire.
I know, I know. Childhood memory and nostalgia trip may not make for significance for others, but for me it did and still does to this day. Firestarter was a story I read during 4th and 5th grade book reading days, while others read Goosebumps and Babysitters club. Firestater was an influence for when I wrote The Bleeder series. It’s significant to me.
So, I ask again. What Stephen King novel do you find most significant to you?
An overcast sky evaporates before a brooding sunrise. Yet my mind’s as clear as it’s been. Black Prism that has thrived in me for centuries, dies. Temples fade inside a kingdom built with second-sight: visions of conquering . . .
As a man I’m weak, sucking-off platitudes from a withered tit. Laying low drunk in some ramshackle district with the whore who was going to bring me out of retirement. Wandering into a nearby cemetery, I fuck her good – Last chance to be a man! Twisting beneath me with the dullness of an animal. I am reminded of the dutiful Earth.
There’s always been this conflict in me. While I hold her near. Scent of pink flesh, throb of forgiveness. Yet underneath there’s an abyss, twisting inside her stomach’s pit. Only death to make her realize life’s preciousness.
Breaking her neck my strength returns, rip-free her skull & drink from the neck-hole. My cock still lingering inside, conduit of pain, memories & strange pleasures. Drawn to the threshold of her mind, searing-truth reduces nerves to white-hot embers. Drowning in a swirl of semen-blood, intoxicating moments of childhood. A courageous spirit crawls toward some form of heaven.
I pull out in disgust & vomit in a distant corner. There is a breeze coming over the mountains, but I can’t feel it on my skin. All I experience is a distant communion with nearby galaxies burning around my soul: the raw sensation of immolation, consecration followed by death.
They only see my crawling flesh, but not the thing inside. I return without remorse into ancient catacombs. Blood dripping from a ceiling as sickness passes by. Larval entities blind & groveling. I walk across their soft backs – Children Of Baal. Cultus decomposing. Feeding on the filth of ages . . .
Beyond death comes a soft-pink glow. An eye & flower opening, sex of the goddess of my new birth. If she has her choice she’ll send me away, to grovel in the purple-haunted dark. Shadows to instruct me there in ways of diabolical transfusions & agonized delirium.
Walking through streets grafted-on, empty-narcotic swoon of my nerve center. In search of a victim to prolong my search. Following death’s odor into mephitic tenements. Laminae pulse in dark holding sway over a séance. Spirits to issue from porous souls, mangled & insane.
All extensions of my mind – What it is to be free! I look beauty in the eye where solace has miscarried. Bloody forms twist from the Black Prism. Fills the sky & burns my eyes, forcing me to act out once more in desperation. Sick for some time, with savage cravings to eat my insides. Vacant lust. My cock cries into my stomach, blood stored there for centuries where I dug my grave; burns around me, sealing it in. Rupturing destiny with a downward stroke.
How to re-enter the world when there are worlds abound? Darkness fills the space of resuming dreams. Weakness fades & I lose my way. Constantly in need of prolonged sleep, yet having the strength of numbers when I wake – Idle gods to conjure the ferocity of daemons. Rend apart the flesh of mortals who do not walk alone. Entire histories flow through their veins. A sacrifice in blood to the kingly cast steals my sickness in this brooding hour.
I’ve had the power to do this all along, but never enough strength to see it through. Even though I can tear a man from limb to limb & eat is soul, I struggle with the fact that I’m not human. Although born from a human family, poisoned by its veins, I’ve risen above its curse to know my true lineage.
I look at them in sorrow, yet they fear what’s incarnate in me: a beast who has traversed oily kingdoms to crucify kings. Lords over matter which dissolve the moment it touches the earth. I rise above the landscape to see it for what it is, a tiny seed in the smallest corner of a greater-beast like me.
Time rests & I am eternal. Buried inside the plasma of living beings. I go to them in the night & rip their throats out. Temples living inside the cavernous dark to go on like that for centuries. Blood of strangers & they are free. To climb false halos into strangled reservoirs. If they make it out they’ll find truth, but if not they’re lost forever. Blind inside the Cathedral, unaware of the construct as it’s formed . . . Pity us who are damned forever!
I know what it’s like to be human. Enough to imagine I’m one & blindly groping for years . . . Increments of illusion. I begin to form gods of my own. In nightmares & dreams where Saturn looms above a Red Sun –
Torn by it’s rings. Sunset bleeds. I watch circumspectly the death & re-creation of stars. Violence puts things in perspective. Reality wilt the moment it is known. Revealed is the nature of consciousness & power I speak of. Another sphere of forgiveness where there’s only strength to be gained . . .
Night falls & I’m awake again. Another day for strange visions. I go into the kitchen & drink a beer in a swallow. Stumble to the sink & vomit a torrent of red. Holding my stomach in. The rage I feel for being back in this realm & living among the dead. Complications reflected in a visage of dread. How to get back there permanently? Save for plasma which lets me see, stretched against horizons to lead me back. I never awaken there! I can only roam dirty streets in search of a fix that will help me remember a power I once had.
There’s a child outside my door trembling in the rain. His body is the numb benefactor to his waning spirit. With vague ideas of ways to survive with no human family to guide him. They’ve all died & gone their separate ways. He has learned to do the same. In his faraway gaze:
A brutal life filled with brutal promises. I cling to an idea that the earthly plane doesn’t have to be like this. In a more primitive age we’re alive to suggest formlessness. Floating to higher states, our flesh separate from the wilds of consciousness. Supplanting fear with logic. Giving life to take it. Drawing all of rage from a pulsing seed within. Giving this boy courage to rise above loneliness in order to defeat the riot within. Rage, boy, rage!
Inviting him inside to warm next to the fire. I smell his skin relax & forget itself. Bones stretch & bend in his tiny frame, popping like old tinder.
He’s older than he seems. A child out-of-time. Forbidden to wield power that is granted to him. A shell of unreason brims over, delusions to rectify chaos & the ugly truths within. Restraining beautiful visions . . . Taking him under an arm. He strokes my cock & sucks my finger. Blood flows smoothly from the cut there. A glassy look in his eyes, he slips to his knees & bites down on the swollen head. More blood flows . . . In another life I’d kill him. Shatter his spine & drink the fluid down. Giving me a painful-erect cock. To fuck holes ripped open with my teeth as bilious fragments wash down. My tongue in search of fresh geysers or gently bleeding dams. Yes, I would open him up.
Only I do not see this in him. He’s been a victim too long. The discipline of martyrs has forced him outside . . . Too much! I pull his head aside. His eyes rolled back where my reflection resides. The same world that taunts me. In his tears roiling free. Gateway of illusions leads to true memory.
A god awakens in time for the Feast Of Tyrants. Sky breaks & lets loose it’s celestial screaming. Howls of His mind in even-tempered repetitions. The same tones that lulled Him aeons ago. Rippling through spheres connected by blood-lines, torment of histories & future contusions.
It keeps me alive though I’m dead. I sacrifice everything to see it for what it is. In my veins when I feed it consumes me. Looking up in a veil-less sky with nothing between me, & the voice. While He lies stretched on a bed of herculean maggots, translating frequencies into words I understand –
Destroy the mask you’re wearing. Lie naked in the sand. Feel the course of spirits who prolong death. Cast off shackles of your demise & let it’s carcass decompose. Blaze of a sun bleeds out pores as the desert drinks it’s fill. Storing ghosts in an after-life of dreams. Death piles-up around you. Shadows walking proud through nightmare realms. Watch the Earth vomit it’s guts, spilling seed into bottomless caverns. What lingers in the dark with only a trace of humanity, a plague of denizens older than time itself . . . I am the First Plasma, & the Last. I open & close the circle sealing off benign faith. Storm of casualty & unrelenting suicide where savagery reigns. They die many times, yet grow more sick. Most don’t know what’s happening & suffer in vain. In a community of shadow, Idle Lords with foetid breath rubbing cocks in the dark unable to grasp what they’re aspiring to. No longer attached to the symbol that is their name. Sagging flesh & impulses. Observing no restraint. Absolute satiety . . .
I follow Him to Innards Of the Earth. A temple rests among catacombs of a deadly science. The brightest of a degenerate race forming a semi-circle. Robes hanging to the ground to soak-up His ooze. Minds grown heavy with visions of bloody war. Followers, not unlike me, sacrificed to the Angry Planet.
Out in the darkness there’s a presence beyond, & these foul beasts are my protection. When mortal I remember them asleep in graveyards fat on pleasures no mortal has known. Roaming streets night after night in search of the wound that would function as a door. I would go to them in my confusion, desperate to understand the purpose of man. To burn easily like a moth that gets too close to the flame. Why must it be . . ? So much weakness & worry for such a brief tour, eyes opened & closed in an instant.
No truth found at the base of a mountain. Corpses piled in vast-chasms, aeons-old. Blindly climbing to absorb knowledge as they go. A journey through death before the summit. They stop to rest in elaborate bone structures. Before the world was alive a second time, but after the storm . . .
Peripheral views to grant me wisdom. Laying me down in the vulgar soil to fondle my dripping cock. Old stench . . ! No longer burns my nostrils.
Quivering around me. Shapes risen out of my unconscious. Steaming out my pores, a burning evanescence. Drains me of my life-force. No longer in exile I abandon it’s temporal claw. Risen to shaking knees & gore soaked feet, wounds leak profuse dreams all around me. A bacchanal of the cruelest kind. Some kids from a nearby city ripped apart, but still alive. I look in their eyes & the mewling sounds that seem to come from them.
What hope exists in a world ashamed of you? You’ll not die as heroically in your time, but at least you’ll witness some truth before you go. Back into the eternal flux which takes you down into it’s belly. A gross-beast with sprawling testicles, & giver of worlds . . . In need of sacrifice before it speaks, bathes in your blood to remember you. Indifferently. Your thoughts meandering on the tips of their tongues. In a language I can understand. Inhuman . . .
Man has yet to witness the catastrophe of his spirit. I re-awaken at the tail end of his Last Dark Age. Symbols burned into my skin. Nerve quenching fire & the smoldering ruins of my useless heart. Replaced by the cold steel of cosmos as they’ve misplaced it. Memory shrouded by seeds of immortality, flourishes from the worm laden soil. Plague attached to flesh infused virally, & the plasma which is connected to all things . . . I must face facts. As an alien haunting ghosts afraid to leave the world. I slash them free & ruminate. What’s it like to die & not have to look back? And as a messenger of light His voice speaks through me. Chosen to step across divides grown fat on the dreams of men, reducing their wisdom to a bloodied corner. Nothing lives here anymore. In a language I understand well, He tells me to move on – The universe is your feeding ground!
Critics called Don’t Breathe the best and most original horror film, but does it life up to the hype?
Well, if you’re a strong supporter of Stand Your Ground laws, then you’ll be right at home.
Don’t Breathe seems like it was designed for those that want to vicarious enjoy the fight and the right to kill that usually comes as a victim of a home invasion.
The plot reads like an episode of Daredevil or a comedy like Home Alone. Three douchbags want to rob a blindan thinking he is an easy target, but they didn’t expect him to be willing and more than capable of standing his ground. This plot is as original as Home Alone, except with blind badass that the movie tries to make you fear?
Don’t Breathe is American in that a group of entitled, deadbeat, punk ass millennials explot an elder for easy money. The movie is American in that the blind man is an ex veteran and can kick ass. Don’t Breathe is also American because it glorifies Stand Your Ground laws. But it isn’t American in feeling empathy for the three lowlife scum fucks.
Is it worth seeing? If you enjoy a comedy forced into a horror.
“Neither men nor women are treated with anything like respect. Humanity itself is mocked in the arc of this story; and considering it is a future world that let Trump be president, I cannot defend humanity.”
Bob Freville joins Mr. Deadman on the Deadman’s Tome Podcast this Friday at 10PM (CST) to discuss his story on Deadman’s Tome called Sex Toy and the projects he’s currently working on.
Bob Freville is a writer and filmmaker from New York. His work has been published by Bizarro Central, Creem Magazine, Akashic Books, Box of Bizarro and many others. A cult favorite on Berkeley public access TV, Freville is also the writer/director of the minimalist vampire opus “Hemo,” available now from Troma. Freville’s dreadful words most recently graced the pages of the clown horror anthology “Floppy Shoes Apocalypse 2: Cherry Nose Armageddon” (from Nocturnicorn Books). His chapbook “Beastuary” will be released later this year from the publishers of Ravenwood Quarterly.
Catch the episode as it broadcasts at 10PM (CST) on Friday (9/2/2016) – give or take a few minutes. Questions brought to me via chat will be asked to Mr. Freville no matter what. I’ve open the flood gates for the trolls, but it should be fun.
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If you’re a fan of Deadman’s Tome and enjoy reading the content, then you should look yourself in the mirror and ask “why haven’t I become a patron, yet?”
Gary Buller is the man. He is the first and only patron at the moment. If I ever feel the need to split the tasks and request help or even talk business proposals, he would be first choice.
Even if you became a patron today and out did his $1 pledge, you would still be less than him, because he’s that awesome. You could, however, be one of the more recognized fans and support the Deadman’s Tome patreon! Plus, it only takes a dollar. Becoming a patreon is super easy and super cheap.
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