Networking and Jobs!

Hey, folks. Thanks to the lovely Nicole and Shad, who took up arms to work the HorrorHound, Columbus show a couple weekends ago, we have some information to pass on to all of you. Do with it what you will – perhaps there will be a new project to work on or you can get your goods in a store in Ohio!

This is what we received at the convention. If you can’t make something out, or need further information, don’t ask us to clarify! This is all we’ve got.

First up is from Barbara Adams, aka Diva of the Dead. She’s a well known presence on the horror convention scene (apparently) and she’s looking for someone to write a backstory for her Diva character. Additionally, she’d like someone to create a weekly 3-panel comic. Sound like something you’d be interested in? Then by all means contact her!

Diva of the Dead

Next is the business card from Robert Kirchgassner: Blogger, Author, and Movie Fanatic. He has a couple of alternate personalities and I know one of them interviewed GLAHW at the HorrorHound convention in Cincinnati this past March. Maybe you’d like him to promote your stuff? Why not send him an email?

Robert Kirchgassner

And finally is Around About Books. They buy, sell, and trade quality used books. They ALSO take books on consignment so if you’d like to get onto their shelves, contact them!

Around About Books

Keeping my Pimp Hand Strong

I always forget that I have the opportunity to pimp myself on this page! Aside from being able to add more content to the GLAHW website, I can talk about me. And don’t we all like to talk about ourselves?

Stop shaking your head.

Anyway, Daulton Dickey just interviewed me for his website to shed more light on women in the horror industry. So why not head over and check it out? Please and thank you.

If you know any women in horror that should be given some attention (or maybe it’s YOU), send a message Daulton’s way and get interviewing.

Women of Horror: An Interview with Peggy Christie

 

Mass Hysteria Has Been Unleashed! | Michael Patrick Hicks | GLAHW

MASS HYSTERIA, by Michael Patrick Hicks

Today’s the day! Mass Hysteria is officially available and on sale everywhere. The eBook costs only $3.99, and the paperback retails for $14.99 but has been discounted pretty nicely at both Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

The eBook edition of Mass Hysteria can be found at the following:

Amazon | iBooks | Nook | Kobo

Google Play | Smashwords

Here’s the synopsis:

It Came From Space…

Something virulent. Something evil. Something new. And it is infecting the town of Falls Breath.

Carried to Earth in a freak meteor shower, an alien virus has infected the animals. Pets and wildlife have turned rabid, attacking without warning. Dogs and cats terrorize their owners, while deer and wolves from the neighboring woods hunt in packs, stalking and killing their human prey without mercy.

As the town comes under siege, Lauren searches for her boyfriend, while her policeman father fights to restore some semblance of order against a threat unlike anything he has seen before. The Natural Order has been upended completely, and nowhere is safe.

… And It Is Spreading

Soon, the city will find itself in the grips of mass hysteria.

To survive, humanity will have to fight tooth and nail.


 

What Readers Are Saying

“Fun, horrible fun, from start to finish.” – Horror Novel Reviews

“It’s fast paced, action-packed, and bloody. Really, almost everything a horror gore-hound could want. … Undeniably talented, Michael Patrick Hicks shows evidence of a rather deliciously depraved mind…” – SciFi & Scary

“Mass Hysteria is a hell of a brutal, end of the world free for all. A terrifying vision of a future gone mad with bloodlust, Mass Hysteria will haunt your nightmares.” – Hunter Shea, author of Just Add Water and We Are Always Watching

Mass Hysteria was a brutal horror novel, which reminded me of the horror being written in the late 70’s and, (all of the), 80’s. Books like James Herbert’s The Rats or Guy N. Smith’s The Night of the Crabs. There are a lot of similarities to those classics here-the fast paced action going from scene to scene-with many gory deaths and other sick events. In fact, I think Mass Hysteria beats out those books in its sheer horrific brutality.” – Char’s Horror Corner

“I’m telling you now, this book isn’t for readers with weak stomachs. It is brutal in all the right ways.” – Cedar Hollow Horror Reviews

 

Purchase Mass Hysteria

Amazon | iBooks | Nook | Kobo

Google Play | Smashwords

People We Love (and think you should love, too)!

We here at GLAHW have met so many amazing and talented people out in the big wide world (you know, OFF the internets) and thought it was high-time we introduced them to you. Who knows? You may end up discovering a favorite new artist, photographer, writer, or all-around awesome human. This time around, Ken MacGregor will be talking to an author who is viscerally cool: Jessica McHugh.  http://www.jessicamchughbooks.com/

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GLAHW: How long have you been writing? Professionally?

JESSICA McHUGH: I’ve loved writing stories and poetry since I was a kid, but I didn’t take it seriously until I was around nineteen. At that time, I worked in a perfume kiosk at the mall, and since we didn’t do much business, I had lots of time to kill. I read a lot, of course, especially horror and fantasy. I can’t pinpoint what kicked me off—though I could probably blame months and months of reading Roald Dahl short story collections—but one day I decided to set aside other people’s stories and write my own. Most were terrible and fairly derivative, but once I started I couldn’t stop.

I spent the next five years writing novels, novellas, and short stories without considering their future. I didn’t write to be published. I didn’t want to be published at that time. I just wanted to create, to follow my passion until I fell so head over heels in love with writing I couldn’t stop if I wanted to. And it worked. On my worst days with a full-time job, when I was working in molecular diagnostics for 8+ hours and throwing myself into insane revisions as soon as I got home, I never contemplated giving up. Even now, when I’m dealing with too many projects, too little money, too many health woes and familial issues, and writing seems like the ultimate stress in my life, I love it too much to let it go.

In summation, Writing and I are clearly in an abusive relationship, and you’re all enablers.

 

GLAHW: What draws you to write horror?

JESSICA McHUGH: Fresh, gaping wounds provide so many opportunities for scenes chock full of sensory details. I don’t know why anyone wouldn’t want to write about the sights, smells, and sounds of horror. It’s so much fun! I’d rather write a death scene than a sex scene any day—or combine them like I did with my forthcoming erotic horror novel, “The Train Derails in Boston.” That was an interesting experiment, for sure.

 

GLAHW: Do you ever write something and then sit back and think “what the hell?!?”? If so, can you give us an example?

JESSICA McHUGH: Many times. For instance, the book I mentioned above. While I was writing “The Train Derails in Boston” for NaNoWriMo 2012, it didn’t disgust me. I actually thought it was pretty sexy as far as horror erotica went. But once I sat down to revise it, I frequently found myself leaping from my computer chair to shake off tremors of revulsion. “What the hell” was pretty much my motto while editing that novel. It…I…well…you’ll see when the book comes out next year from Perpetual Motion Machine Publishing.

 

GLAHW: Do you outline or are you more of a “pantser”?

JESSICA McHUGH: I usually dive right in when it comes to short stories. But since I’ve been writing most of my novels during NaNoWriMo, outlining is a must. The first half, at least. I like having a road map for the beginning of the journey, but after I’ve written a few chapters and learned more about who my characters are, I tend to sit back and let them lead me to the end. But if I feel stuck in any piece I’ll typically step back and do some outlining or whiteboard sketching. But I was 100% pantser when I started out. It took me too long to realize an outline can be a writer’s best friend.

 

GLAHW: Tell us something interesting about you not related to your books.

JESSICA McHUGH: Since being a novelist isn’t the most lucrative profession in the world—shocking, I know—I have a weekend job leading food tours around downtown Frederick in Maryland. I lead up to twelve people around this gorgeous part of my hometown, ducking into different restaurants that provided dishes for the guests, and telling stories about the history and culture of Frederick. It’s a lot of fun, and it allows me to engage in non-fiction storytelling, which I don’t do much in my career. Plus, the more strangers I meet, the more stories I get to steal. 😉

 

GLAHW: What, if any, negative experiences (aside from rejections) have you had with publishers?

JESSICA McHUGH: I’ve been fortunate to work with some amazing presses, but there have been the occasional bad apples that didn’t pay authors on time—if they paid at all—or were vanity presses in disguise. One such publisher promised they would rerelease my novel with a new cover (after two years with a god-awful one) and fresh edit (even though the editor was cold balls on toast and added more mistakes to the book). I fought back against the revisions, of course, which I believe was part of the reason the release was delayed. I tried contacting them to no avail. I received no payments, no updates, and was basically given the cold shoulder about my favorite story from the McHughniverse. It was a huge disappointment, especially since they broke our contract taking so long to re-publish the novel. But when I told them I wanted out to cut ties with them due to their unprofessionalism, they tried to charge me for breaking the contract. It was a big mess. It ended as amicably as possible, fortunately, but I know plenty of writers who haven’t been so lucky. Like writing novels isn’t hard enough.

 

GLAHW: If you could be one of your characters for a day, who would it be and why?

JESSICA McHUGH: Darla Decker from “The Darla Decker Diaries” Even though I put that poor teenager through the wringer, she experiences less torture than characters from my darker novels like “The Green Kangaroos” and “Rabbits in the Garden.” I’d gladly relive my first period over being a drug addict or constantly questioning my sanity. Plus, her friends are goofballs. I’d love spending a day with those wacky kids.

 

GLAHW:  If you had to give up writing, what’s your second career choice?

JESSICA McHUGH: I don’t even want to think about that. Even if I lost both hands and my tongue, I’d find a way to get my writing work done. And if it was impossible…I don’t know. I guess I’d have to settle for my backup career as Indiana fuckin’ Jones.

 

GLAHW: How often do you write? Do you have a daily word-count goal?

JESSICA McHUGH: I write and/or edit every day 1) because it’s my job, and 2) because I want, need, and love to write every day. When I look back at how much I’ve improved over time, it makes the most sense for me write as much as possible. I have my off days, of course, when I binge Netflix and don’t get much done. But even then, I’m thinking about plots, maybe doing research for future projects. I don’t have a daily word count unless I’m participating in NaNoWriMo, though. My motto is, “Don’t aim for a word count. Aim to make your words count.”

 

GLAHW: What’s your favorite food?

JESSICA McHUGH: I love green beans with almonds so much. No further explanation. They’re just so damn tasty.

 

GLAHW: You write in different fields: horror, bizarro, YA – do you need different external stimuli for each (music, etc.)?

JESSICA McHUGH: I usually write to instrumental music for all genres except my YA series. For that, I have a Darla Decker Inspirado playlist with current hits or 90s/2000s pop. That playlist is definitely responsible for my Miley Cyrus obsession. But when I’m writing to movies or TV shows, I tend to stay within the genre. I’ll watch Nip/Tuck or Carnivale while writing darker stories and Gilmore Girls or Boy Meets World while tackling my YA series.

 

GLAHW: Is there anything that scares you?

JESSICA McHUGH: Ha! Pretty much everything, yes. I love to write horror, but I usually can’t read or watch horror unless it’s a sunshiney day and I’m not alone. There are exceptions for my favorite horror films like Poltergeist and The Thing, but it’s extremely difficult to convince me to watch a new horror movie at night. And Nightmare on Elm Street? NO WAY. Not even during the day.

 

GLAHW: What do you read for pleasure? Favorite authors? Recommendations?

JESSICA McHUGH: I’m listening to a lot of audio books these days. I recently finished “The Virgin Suicides,” “The Girl on the Train,” and am currently listening to “Steelheart.” But I never get tired of Roald Dahl. I love his short story collections like “Skin” and “Over to You,” and I can read them over and over. Oh, and if you haven’t read his novel “My Uncle Oswald,” do it now. It’s hilarious.

 

GLAHW: As a child, what did you want to do when you grew up?

JESSICA McHUGH: As you can see, I’ve wanted to be a writer for quite a while.

McHugh2

 

GLAHW: What’s your favorite way to unwind?

JESSICA McHUGH: I like to cuddle up with my Tylercat, drink a beer, have yummy dinner with my husband, and catch up on a favorite show/movie for a few hours…

…before I inevitably return to writing work.

 

GLAHW: What’s the best piece of non-writing advice you’ve ever gotten?

JESSICA McHUGH: Peter S. Beagle, author of “The Last Unicorn” and countless other rad stories, told me once that alcohol doesn’t have calories when consumed with friends outside of the home. I took this advice to heart—and to the belly.

 

 

 

 

 

Ken MacGregor’s work has appeared in dozens of anthologies and magazines. His story collection, “An Aberrant Mind” is available online and in select bookstores. Ken is a member of the Great Lakes Association of Horror Writers and an Affiliate member of HWA. He edits an annual horror-themed anthology for the former. He has also dabbled in TV, radio, movies and sketch comedy. Recently, he co-wrote a novel and is working on the sequel. Ken lives in Michigan with his family and two “domesticated” predators.

Website:  http://ken-macgregor.com

Twitter: @kenmacgregor

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KenMacGregorAuthor?ref=hl

HOW TO CORRUPT TODAY’S YOUTH – by Peggy Christie

That got your attention didn’t it? Weirdo.

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Technically, I’ll be talking about my and MontiLee’s experience with several classes of 10th graders and the art of writing, storytelling, and horror. I’m not saying we corrupted any of those young minds. But I can’t guarantee we DIDN’T either.

A little while ago, Jennifer Ward, an English teacher at Ionia High School, reached out to GLAHW with a request. Last semester, her students studied what she called The American Dream. And now in the second half of the year they were beginning to study The American Nightmare, including authors like Poe and Elliott, as well as the Gothic horror styles of writing in general.

Smart woman that she is, Jennifer thought inviting a couple of horror writers to school might bring insight to her students about the horror genre and the process of writing. We were more than happy to help out and so MontiLee Stormer and I made the 2-hour trek to IHS to impart our knowledge onto the eager young minds in several of her classes.

Writing and Editing

I was a bit nervous at first. Lord knows it’s been a hot minute since I was in high school, let alone 15, so I wasn’t exactly sure what to expect. But once that first hour began, I was pleasantly surprised to see how curious and engaging the students were. Sure, some were a bit shy about asking us direct questions but the classroom door covered in sticky notes helped out with that at first (more on that in a minute). By the time the third class was finished, I could hardly believe the day was over.

I’ve done workshops. I’ve done readings. Conventions are a regular scene for me and the group throughout the year. But I have to say I had so much fun being able to discuss writing and horror with a room full of teenagers. Their enthusiasm and delight and honest desire to actually learn something was a thing of beauty.

Thank you, Jennifer, for inviting us out to speak with your students. It was a wonderful day of exchanging ideas on writing and exploring the world of horror.

(For another perspective on the afternoon, head over to The Ionia Sentinel Standard and read Stan Sulewski’s article: Sentinel Standard)

Now…for that sticky note comment above. Many students from Ms. Ward’s classes wrote up a bunch of questions for us and posted them all over the classroom door. We were only able to answer a few so we thought why not make them available to the rest of GLAHW who couldn’t make it to Ionia and see how their answers might add to the students’ learning experiences.

20160218_084153

Ms. Ward will scan all the questions and email them over to me. Once I receive them, I’ll either post them here or on the forum. When you all know what you want to answer, you can email me and I will compile them all into one big file and send it over to Jennifer so she can share them with her students. Fun, right?