Thursday, 29 June 2017

Unidentified Fatherly Object by Calvin Demmer

Unidentified Fatherly Object is the latest tale in Calvin Demmer's extraordinary Dark Celebrations series; Prom ScreamsShe Will Rise, Hungry Ghosts, Labor Day Hunt, Thanks Sinning, Trick or Death, Three Dead Men  Happy Dark Year  and Spring Outbreak. They are all available on Amazon for less than a pound or dollar depending where you live!

In the 11th instalment of this epic Dark Celebrations Series we meet Fred Garcia a young man in the throes of bereavement but what he needs most are answers. His father passed away in mysterious circumstances, an accident at work in a top secret military bunker.

His aunt and uncle tell him to leave it alone, to accept what has happened and move on with his life, surely that's what his father would have wanted for him?

But Fred just can't let things lie, he has to know, he has suspicions that just won't go away. One night he decides to go out into the desert and see for himself the strictly prohibited  area in which his father died. Will he find his answers? Will he be able to handle the truth?

Another great story from Calvin Demmer. I don't want to give too much away but the ending is particularly gruesome. Calvin has a unique ability to make his readers squirm with dread. I'm so happy I'm not one of his characters! There's a some very clever references to his past tales included within which I thought was a great touch. 

I really enjoyed reading Unidentified Fatherly Object and can't wait for the next instalment of the Dark Celebrations series.

About the Author

Calvin Demmer is a crime, mystery and speculative fiction author. When not working, he is intrigued by that which goes bump int he night and the sciences of our universe. His work has appeared in a variety of publications including Under The Bed, Deadman's Tome, Siren's Call, Sanitarium Magazine, Morpheus Tales, Devolution Z and many, many more.

You can find out more about Calvin Demmer at

Twitter @CalvinDemmer

Wednesday, 28 June 2017

Of Sorrow and Such by Angela Slatter

How often is it when you blindly come across a new book and fall under a spell within the first few paragraphs? That you must read it in one go, cover to cover in one sitting? How often do you feel shivery knowing you've just read one hell of a book and it might have just changed your life? That you can't wait to read it again and again.

OMG! How amazing is this cover! By Anna and Elena Balbusso.

This is exactly how I felt when I read Of Sorrow and Such by Angela Slatter. (I can't believe, to my shame, it's taken me until now to discover this wonderful author?!) I picked up this book after reading that  another equally amazing author Gwendolyn Kiste really admired her.

I didn't know anything about the book before starting it but was absolutely delighted to find out it was about witches! I've long harboured a deep fascination with witches and sorcerers. There's just something so uniquely enduring about the lure of strong powerful women who are able to live beyond the realm of normal, surviving and even prospering through their sheer force of will and keen intellect.

Throughout Of Sorrows and Such are little pearls of wisdom we can all take away with us. Reading this I felt I was learning how to be a witch, like I had been taken under the wing of Patience Gideon, being taught how to think like a witch, how to protect oneself, the sort of people to be wary of, the ones who can be trusted, the sweetness of revenge.

"If you behave as someone with a secret, you will certainly find people digging to discover it. Better still to be like a reflective surface to those around you, smooth and impenetrable, show them nothing more than a gentle smile and listen with compassion to their plaints. Breathe deeply before you answer questions, for a guilty party always blurts and shrieks their innocence.
And always-
always - have an escape plan."

The story centres around a powerful witch, Patience Gideon who spends the majority of her life tending to the needs of the local women folk in Edda's Meadow living under great caution. One night Flora Brautigan appears suddenly out for the darkness, upon her door step in dire need of shelter and magic. Patience should have let her die there. Flora is nothing but trouble and in saving her Patience risks everything, her secrets, her daughter and her life.

"I feel as though all my sins are coming home to roost."

I'm finding it hard to put in words just how much I loved this book. I will say that when you start this book, do so when you know you won't be interrupted for a few hours because, believe me, you will have a burning desire to read it in go.

This is a book like a fine wine that you will want to sip and savour, to make it last as long as possible but Angela Slatter won't let you once you're under her spell, you'll be gripped, reading with  frenzied fervour as if it is your last night upon this earth.

Underneath this story, there are some really great themes of love, sacrifice, revenge and the power of female friendship, betrayal,  of sisterhoods that will always endure. This is a really powerful book of really powerful women. Hopefully one day this book may be studies in school everywhere.

About the Author

(Goodreads bio)
Angela Slatter is the author of the urban fantasy novels Vigil (2016) and Corpselight (2017), as well as eight short story collections, including The Girl with No Hands and Other Tales, Sourdough and Other Stories, The Bitterwood Bible and Other Recountings, and A Feast of Sorrows: Stories. She has won a World Fantasy Award, a British Fantasy Award, a Ditmar, and six Aurealis Awards.

Angela’s short stories have appeared in Australian, UK and US Best Of anthologies such The Mammoth Book of New Horror, The Year’s Best Dark Fantasy and Horror, The Best Horror of the Year, The Year’s Best Australian Fantasy and Horror, and The Year’s Best YA Speculative Fiction. Her work has been translated into Bulgarian, Russian, Spanish, Japanese, Polish, and Romanian. Victoria Madden of Sweet Potato Films (The Kettering Incident) has optioned the film rights to one of her short stories.

She has an MA and a PhD in Creative Writing, is a graduate of Clarion South 2009 and the Tin House Summer Writers Workshop 2006, and in 2013 she was awarded one of the inaugural Queensland Writers Fellowships. In 2016 Angela was the Established Writer-in-Residence at the Katharine Susannah Prichard Writers Centre in Perth.

Her novellas, Of Sorrow and Such (from, and Ripper (in the Stephen Jones anthology Horrorology, from Jo Fletcher Books) were released in October 2015.

The third novel in the Verity Fassbinder series, Restoration, will be released in 2018 by Jo Fletcher Books (Hachette International). She is represented by Ian Drury of the literary agency Sheil Land for her long fiction, by Lucy Fawcett of Sheil Land for film rights, and by Alex Adsett of Alex Adsett Publishing Services for illustrated storybooks.

Tuesday, 13 June 2017

Monsters Exist

Super excited to announce the upcoming release of Monster's Exist, by Deadman's Tome which features one of my stories, the Murder of Crows.

Along with a bunch of other great writers, we aim to explore what is monster, what forms do they take, their methods they employ, but more importantly do they exist?

Monsters Exist is officially released in July 2017 but is available as a pre-order here via Amazon

Here's the official line-up;

Master Vermin by Wallace Boothill
Legend Trippers by Theresa Braun
The Murder of Crows by S.J.Budd
Wicked Congregation by Gary Buller
Playing Dead by S.E.Casey
Lake Monster by Mr Deadman
Never Sleep Again by Calvin Demmer
The Voice from the Bottom of the Well by Philip K.Cleaver
Eclipse at Wolfcreek by Sylvia Mann
No.7 by William Marchese
Criatura by John Palisano
Bitten by Christopher Powers
Kelpies by Leo X.Rovertson
Bloodstream Revolution by M.R.Tapia

If anyone would be interested in receiving a ARC in exchange for a review please get in touch!

Friday, 2 June 2017

How to Get an Agent The Lazy Way

These days I barely have enough time to write let alone pester people to publish my stories in their magazines. I've got some longer manuscripts but these are even harder to pester people with as most publishing companies only accept submissions through well connected literary agents. (Psst there are a few that still accept direct subs, click here to see who they are.)

But there is a way in which you can get the agents to come and pester you. In many a conversation I've with other writers significantly higher up the ladder, ones lucky enough to have novels and story collections published with very respectable publishers, I've noticed something strange.

The agents and publishers pestered them!

I didn't realise this happened I thought it was us writers that did all the hard work.

So I'll let you in one a secret that I've learned. Now, gather round we don't want everyone to know.

Most publishing companies seek out new talent by buying all the latest copies of the most prestigious literary magazines in their chosen areas. If a story really jumps out at them they will get in contact hounding that author asking to see what other projects they're working on.

So if you're really ready to push yourself to the limits and really show the world just how good a writer you are. You can get an agent the lazy way.

Though this will mean you'll have to get one of your stories in a top magazine which has fierce competition.Just make sure to write to the best of your ability and always, ALWAYS follow the submission guidelines.

It seems that it's quality over quantity when it comes to publishing credits. Having one of these publications on yours writers CV will open a lot of doors, mostly in offices of publishing companies.

Nightmare - Possibly the hardest magazine to get accepted into if you're a horror and dark fantasy.
I've read a few of these issues and they're really very good. Edited by John Joseph Adams

Black Static -  UK horro magazine, once called The 3rd Alternative from TTA press. Again I've read a few of these and the stories are great and will give you actual shivers down your spine. Edited by Andy Cox

Shimmer-  A journal of speculative fiction which publishes, fantasy, horror and other types of beautiful stories as the name suggests. They've published some huge names. Previously I've published an anthology from them and the stories were all beautifully strange. Edited by E.Catherine Tobler.

Apex Magazine  -  This is a magazine that features prose and poetry of science fiction, fantasy , horror and mash-ups of all three. I would say they have a very distinctive style that is
somewhat hard to explain. Again great stories in here, the bar is set high. Edited by Lesley Conner.

Clarkesworld -  A Hugo award winning science fiction and fantasy magazine. Enough said. Edited by Neil Clarke.

Cemetery Dance Magazine  - Probably the biggest magazine out there for horror. It is a World Fantasy Award winning magazines and pulls in the big stars of horror literature.

So do buy these magazines if you're really serious about appearing in it one day. You'll also help the support the magazines that help support you and other fellow writers. Read the stories, not just for the sake of a great tale  but to see what stories sell. As you read think how they are different to yours. Are they emotionally  moving? Do they scare you?  Are they in first person, third person narrative?

About the Author

S.J.Budd is a writer of all things weird and creepy. Previously her tales have been featured on Deandman's Tome,  Sanitarium Magazine, Dark Gothic Resurrected, Liquid Imagination, Aphotic Realm, Aurora Wolf, Aphelion, Blood Moon Rising Magazine, The Wild Hunt, Danse Macabre, Shadows at the Door, Inner Sins, Bewildering Stories, Siren's Call and many more.
She lives at  and  @sjbuddj 
Spells and Persuasions, her debut collection of short stories of horror and dark fantasy is available now in paperback and kindle from Amazon

Thursday, 1 June 2017

Sparkles and Sunshine by S.J.Budd

Very pleased to announce that my latest tale, Sparkles and Sunshine, is out now at Liquid Imagination  where reality and fantasy blur. 

Dave makes a pilgrimage back to his mother land with his young son and ever distant wife. As they catch sight of the beach where he spent most of his childhood, she drops a bombshell that rips his world apart.

All he wants to do is take his son to the beach and make sandcastles.

Image by Sue Babcock at Liquid Imagination

You can read Sparkles and Sunshine here

About the Author

S.J.Budd is a writer of all things weird and creepy. Previously her tales have been featured on Deandman's Tome,  Sanitarium Magazine, Dark Gothic Resurrected, Liquid Imagination, Aphotic Realm, Aurora Wolf, Aphelion, Blood Moon Rising Magazine, The Wild Hunt, Danse Macabre, Shadows at the Door, Inner Sins, Bewildering Stories, Siren's Call and many more.
She lives at  and  @sjbuddj 
Spells and Persuasions, her debut collection of short stories of horror and dark fantasy is available now in paperback and kindle from Amazon