From a piece by John C. Wright, from a few years ago: In none of the stories I just mentioned, even stories where the image of Our Lord in His suffering nailed to a cross is what drives back vampires, is any mentioned made of the Christ. Is is always an Old Testament sort of God ruling Heaven, or no one at all is in charge. So why in Heaven’s name is Heaven always so bland, unappealing, or evil in these spooky stories? I can see the logic of the artistic decisions behind these choices, honestly, I can. If I were writing these series, I would have (had only I been gifted enough to do it) done the same and for the same reason. It is the same question that George Orwell criticized in his review of THAT HIDEOUS STRENGTH by CS Lewis. In the Manchester Evening News, 16 August 1945, Orwell writes that the evil scientists in the NICE [the National Institute of Coordinated Experiments, who are the Black Hats of the yarn] are actually evil magicians of a modern, materialist bent, in communion with ‘evil spirits.’ Orwell comments: Mr. Lewis appears to believe in the existence of such
As I mentioned in a previous post, I often do some reading in the target genre prior to and during working on a book. Now, I don’t really read a lot in the horror genre, with the exception of some Lovecraft, and Larry Correia’s Monster Hunter International and Jim Butcher’s Dresden Files, while involving monsters, aren’t really horror per se (though they are similar enough to what I write; there probably wouldn’t be a Jed Horn series without MHI). But in the workup for Older and Fouler Things, I finally picked up a book I’ve been meaning to read for a while, Residue, by Steve Diamond. Short version: it is phenomenal.
Edit 2 is finished, and the preorder for the Kindle version of Older and Fouler Things is up! It will release on September 22. In the meantime, here’s a look at Chapter 4. Oh, and there’s a cover, too. Paul didn’t show up to breakfast, even though it was pretty late in the morning, and the sounds and smells of frying bacon and eggs were permeating the entire house. After the events of the previous night, that was a matter of some concern. I was about to go check on him, but Eryn put a hand on my arm. “Let me get him,” she said quietly. “If he’s as traumatized as I think he might be, a gentle voice will probably help him a little more. No offense, hon, but you’re better at the ‘shooting monsters’ part, and I’m better at the ‘comforting victims afterward’ part.” I just nodded, and stepped back. I was still hovering in the hallway, though, and I still had my .45 on my hip. The combination of Magnus’ reaction to him, the eerie activity at the witching hour that morning, and his silence and absence at breakfast were not serving to make me particularly comfortable.
Had something else in mind for this post, but got too busy. So here’s a bit of a look at the work in progress. Chapter 1 Crossing the police line was like stepping into a sauna. It had been warm enough out on the street; it was the middle of August, after all. But Spokane was relatively dry and arid. This felt like we’d just walked into a swamp in the middle of Mississippi. In August. There was also a heavy scent in the air. It wasn’t quite incense, and it wasn’t quite burned blood, though there was a hint of that; something metallic. It was something I’d smelled before, and didn’t care to smell again. Cloying, sickening, and absolutely wrong. I had felt like we were being watched before we even set foot across the police line and onto the yard in front of the spruced-up old neo-Victorian house. And not necessarily by the swarms of cops, firefighters, EMS personnel, reporters, cameramen, and curious neighbors who were gathered on the street. There was someone, or something, up in that house, and it didn’t want us there. That was abundantly clear as soon as Eryn, Kolya, and I stepped
The Canyon of the Lost, the new novelette in the Jed Horn series, is now available for pre-order on Kindle (Kindle only, for now. It might get folded into a later edition of one of the paperbacks.). If you’re hoping for the further adventures of Jed, Eryn, and Frank Tall Bear, and more of the aftermath of the Walker’s rampage, I’m afraid that’s not here. This story takes place between Nightmares and A Silver Cross and a Winchester, when Jed is still learning the ropes from Dan Weatherby. From the book description: All too often, it starts with a missing kid. It has been a year since Jed Horn and Dan Weatherby confronted Professor Ashton and destroyed his homunculus. They’ve been busy in the meantime, roving the Intermountain West, fighting monsters and and the demonic, protecting people as best they can from the powers of the Otherworld and the Abyss. They are between jobs in Washington State when they catch wind of a missing kid in the mountains. There is enough weird about the situation that it sounds like their kind of work, so they volunteer to help out. As the hunt for the missing child progresses, it turns into
I’ve talked about it a little on Facebook, but I’ve recently finished the Jed Horn novelette The Canyon of the Lost, which should be out soon on Kindle. The art is still being worked on, which is why there’s no pre-order yet, but it’s almost there. Here’s a peek:
At long last, The Walker on the Hills is live, for Kindle, Nook, and iBooks. Paperback can be ordered, but is taking longer than anticipated; Createspace is being slow, probably due to the proximity of Christmas. I’m kind of proud of this one; I think it’s the strongest of the series to date. It’s certainly the longest. There’s a lot going on, and a few hints of things to come for those who are paying attention. The Kindle can be found here, with the Nook version here.
With the first draft finished, and the pre-order out, here’s the final sample chapter: Chapter 5 I almost bowled Tall Bear over as I slammed out the door, my .45 already in my hand. I didn’t see any of the crowd carrying guns, but I was almost certain that somebody in there would be packing heat. There were certainly enough pipes, chains, and baseball bats in evidence. I didn’t stop at the door, either. I kept moving toward the truck; my rifle was in there. Sure, I had the 1911, but a pistol is what you use to fight your way to the long gun that you should have had the whole time. Out of the corner of my eye, I could see Tall Bear and Craig, Craig’s quarrel with us apparently momentarily forgotten, rushing to the cruiser, where they must have had shotguns or patrol rifles.