Good evening Coffin Hoppers! Wait, I can’t hear you. I said, GOOD EVENING COFFIN HOPPERS! Ok, much better that time around. I interrupt this year’s Coffin Hop to bring you the Main Event. Tonight, author Tim Lebbon steps into the ring and faces off with the “10 Questions”. Tim Lebbon is hands down, one of the best writers in the game today. His work has been a great influence and I hope to one day be half as good as the three guys I’m standing with in the picture. At Horrorfind 2011, I was a new author and arrived full of dreams and my first con reading slot. The weekend became a validation for me choosing to pursue writing. Before the con and during, I had the opportunity to speak with Tim a bit about the craft, the Hollywood horrors he’s encountered, and drink some beers. I’m going to stop blabbing and get on with what you all hopped over here for. Ladies and gentlemen, Tim Lebbon. (Note: The interview is from a few days ago and not from 2011)
Archive for the convention Category
Hello fellow readers! The ride is hitting the end of the first hill and the fun is about to begin. I have a lot of things going on right now and I figured it was time to give everyone a handy-dandy and all-in-one reference guide. So, feel free to click on one or all of the links and join the party!
Amazon Page- amazon.com/author/brentabell
Once my novella and short story collection go up for sale, I will post links to those.
My name is Brent Abell and I write horror fiction. For better or for worse, that is my calling and it pleases me. I live in Southern Indiana with a wife, two sons, and a pug who swears up and down he is the reincarnation of Alexander the Great. Oh, that last bit is fueled by my love of whiskey and a degree in history. Stop reading this now and go grab something I wrote and read it instead. What? I know I wrote this, but that’s besides the point, I meant go read something else that I wrote that is fictional. Do you know what else pleases me? Rum, walks on the beach, and cigars. Yeah, they please me a lot. So, feel free to stop by anytime to have a drink and to talk a while, I’ll be waiting.
Greetings from a person still getting over going to Star Wars Celebration VI. I may write horror and dark fiction, but as I warned you before, I’m a huge Star Wars fan. SO, I’m going to throw some pics up and get on with life again.
First off, I met Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker), saw Kevin Smith live, and shook the hand of Emperor Palpatine (Ian McDiarmid). The pic here was fun to take. I am also a Highlander fan and Chris Malcolm was in the first Highlander film and in The Empire Strikes Back. It was a pleasure to meet him and the other actors I got the chance to speak with at Celebration VI.
I came home with tons of new crap for my collection and now I have two years to recharge for Celebration VII.
Now, to the writing bit you all keep coming back here for. I didn’t get as much done as I hoped I would on some stories. For the moment, the new short story machine is off-line. I am spending all my time on the three novellas and novel for the foreseeable future. I have some stories in various states of completion which I need to finish brushing up to send out, but those will be all. In Memoriam is in the final stages of editing and the cover artwork will be finished soon. I will be doing a blog hop, some interviews, and some give-aways in conjunction with the release. On another note, one novella I’m working on is being readied for a publisher to take a look at and everything seems to be going along nicely. Go Southern Devils!
In Memoriam will be done and released in time for the book signing on October 20th at Comics Unlimited. This will be the official launch party and we will find someplace to go drink tons of beer afterwards (it will also be my birthday). So be sure to come down and party with us and get some stuff signed.
More info to come and I hope to show the book off soon.
Ok, let’s go. See that guy next to these words? That’s me. Well, 35 pounds heavier, but I assure you it is me. See that one book in front of him? Now it would be 13 anthologies with him. And now the solo stuff is coming. The pic is from Horrorfind Weekend in 2011 where I read and sat at a table to sign something if something was brought to me (I did sign some programs in the elevator. I was flattered, but I was also drunk and still drinking at the moment. I even had two beers in my hands). I hope everything keeps moving in the current direction and I can have some fun doing what I love to do…tell my tales with droplets of blood.
When I turned in the synopsis for In Memoriam, I was scared for my life. It’s one thing sending a short story out, but to send something bigger freaked me out. What was once a short story idea written out on a few sheets of notebook paper turned into a 18.000 word work that I was proud of. Within a week or so, I was contacted back to send the first three chapters.
That was even more gut wrenching.
Then I got the word they wanted to read the rest. And the rest was sent. Once Armand Rosamilia and myself talked about it, we agreed it needed some work. First, I was shocked it got to that point. Second, I was even more shocked we were going to go forth with it. We discussed the piece and decided the bones were there, but I had some work to do. I began the process of going through and looking at it with a different set of eyes. These eyes were looking at how to drive it more, to build it up more, and kick you in the heart more. I started the rewrites a few months ago.
Then something happened to me.
I have a tendency to struggle with depression from time to time and I got hit hard this summer. I’d been working tons of hours, struggling to stay up on things at home, and get my writing done. Something had to give and it was me. For a few weeks I would power up the laptop and then stare at the keyboard. The muse was gone. I’m still not sure where it went, but she left me and I had nothing. I’ve heard the tales of writer’s block, but I never knew how it could strike without warning and leave you a hollow shell grasping at anything to get you going again.
I’m still not sure what happened.
The muse came running home and slammed into my brain like a freight train. I was quickly able to finish the rewrites, finish a story I’d been working on with another author I’d lost my way on, and I took pictures-made notes-started writing my second novella. It’s been a productive week.
So, now we will begin the task of going through the manuscript for In Memoriam again with a fine tooth comb. I’m hoping to get it all ready before the book signing I’m planning for my birthday weekend. It looks like October 20th, 2012 at Comics Unlimited in Evansville Indiana will be the coming out party.
The experience has been a good one and I’ve learned a lot about the craft, about me, and about the voice I’m settling into. I hope when the work starts coming out, you will enjoy it too.
Welcome to the ride my friends…come inside…come inside…
I would like to thank Rose. This evening I was given the Liebster Blog Award. It is a German term for ‘dearest’ and is given to up-and-coming bloggers. If you would like to check out Rose’s blog you can click here and drop by.
I hear someone in the crowd shouting, “Speech, speech, speech!” So I will make them happy…
I started this path two years ago and I have met many new friends, signed some books, and I have lived out a dream I had in high school many, many moons ago. I have learned how to take rejection in stride, I learned that authors spend all the money they make at conventions on booze, and I got to read at Horrorfind 13 in Gettysburg. Today I read a review that didn’t praise me, but didn’t call me out either. Today I found out I won an award for my words on trying to get this writing thing going and what a new writer has to endure to survive and grow. Most of all, I learned I made the right choice in pursuing this dream. The ride is just getting started, so buckle up, and keep your hands and feet inside the car…it’s going to be a wild ride.
Well the party has started, there is beer to be consumed, and I think I am really just going to go to bed.
Well, this is it. Here we are at the end of 2011 and it was one hell of a year. When the year first started, I had just finished out 2010 with a fun reading at Mo*Con IV and a few rejection slips from editors. That was pretty much my writing career till 2011. Considering I didn’t start writing until mid 2010, I didn’t expect much. I heard all the stories and such about, ‘doing your time’. Well, I guess I did enough time, because 2011 was a very good year. The first half was slow, but once April hit, all bets were off.
It started in February when I was given the chance to read at Horrorfind 13 in September. It meant I had to skip Mo*Con, but I was ok with that for this chance (and to the guy who does the selecting - thank you, I still say I owe you more and you know who you are). I now had a conundrum…what should I read since I didn’t have anything published yet? April brought what I thought was the answer when my first acceptance came for “Stonewall” (that anthology has been cancelled and brought back from the dead to be published at some point in 2012 I hope). It was followed closely in May when “A Winter’s Feast” was accepted. Stories went out and rejections came back for a few months. Late summer and early fall would prove to be a storm.
I tried to spend most of the summer working on my novella, “In Memoriam” (I am preparing to get the first three chapters out based on the synopsis I sent out). The short stories were on the back burner, but some didn’t want to be buried. Through the next three months I had eight more stories accepted. I only set myself a goal of five. Come on, let’s be realistic, it was only my first full year. So, if you want to see what’s coming or what is out to buy, check out the Biblio page. There is even a nonfiction piece that will be out in January and I will give you more info when I get it.
That brought me to Horrorfind 13. It was the most fun I could have had. I drove with my partner in crime Wesley Southard to the great state of Pennsylvania for a weekend of books, booze, and good friends. I learned tons from people I hadn’t seen in a year and from some new friends as well. Then I had the reading. I wish I would have done better, but I was nervous and it showed. I decided to read “A Winter’s Feast” for my time in the ring. I picked it because it was my first story to see print and because it was the only thing I had the book for. It was sweet to be up there and read from the book. I highly recommend it!
The year ends and I’m gearing up for 2012 with the work on the novel and another novella or two. The short stories will keep coming and ten is the goal for 2012. I will take some of the stories plus some new ones for a collection or two in the fall (I hope if things go well). I have not forgotten the blog followers, you guys have a story coming just for you.
The thank you’s for 2011- My wife (my pre-pre-reader who busts me up before Troy gets me), kids, and pug: you guys are the greatest family a man can have. To the following for their advise: Wesley Southard, Brian Keene, James A. Moore (who told me to stop screwing with “In Memoriam” and get it out there), Tim Lebbon, Bob Ford, Kelli Owen, Christopher Golden, and to John Everson and Jeff Strand for the interviews. Troy Green for being my pre-reader from hell (and kicking my stuff in the teeth – you make it better) and to Armand Rosamilia (Rymfire Books), Jessica A. Weiss (Wicked East Press), Eric Beebe (Post Mortem Press), and Jessy Roberts (Pill Hill Press) for trusting my work and putting it in print. Lastly, I want to thank all who have read and followed the blog this year, 2012 will be even better!
The top ten books of 2011 will be up on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day for you to take a look at. If you haven’t read some the books on the list, go get them and enjoy the rides they will take you on.
I realized that my blogs about me are no longer on the front page, so I will recap what has gone on before. My name is Brent Abell and I write horror fiction. I have only been writing for a year and a half and have already had eight stories accepted (it was nine-more on that later). In the past two years I read at Mo*Con IV and recently read at Horrorfind 13 in Gettysburg. So far, only one story has seen print from Rymfire eBooks and the others should be coming out soon, starting in a couple of weeks with my story “Spot Shoot” in Post Mortem Press’s New Dawn Fades anthology. More stories will be coming from Pill Hill Press and Wicked East Press. For more information, please click on the Biblio link on the right. I am working on two novel projects, finishing the last touches on a novella, and working on concepts for two short story collections. Here is where you will find all the latest news and rants. Feel free to also follow on Twitter or to send a friend request on Facebook, I also use those quite a bit as new arises (links to these are on the right also).
Ok, the news…In a sad turn, The Twisted Library has cancelled almost all of their planned anthologies. This includes my story “Stonewall” which was to appear in their The South Will Rise Undead anthology. It saddens me because this was the first story I ever had accepted, so it held a special place in my heart. Now that the story has been returned, I’m brushing it up and finishing up my initial concept by making it a novella. I have some places in mind, so we will see what the future holds. I wish the good Doc and all the Twisted Library luck and their moves now save the press for later when the economy improves.
Author of the Day #3- So far I have talked about Stephen King, Brian Keene, and Jeff Strand stopped by to answer some questions this week. Today’s author is somebody who’s work is simply amazing and is a big influence on me along with the other three authors. Ray Garton’s books have been some of the best I have read in the past three years since I found small press horror. He is the author of works such as the highly regarded vampire novel Live Girls, he gave werewolves a neat twist in Ravenous and Bestial, and even his non-supernatural thrillers such as Shackled are great reads. The good thing about Ray’s stuff is that he tries to keep things in print. All of his hard to find novellas and short stories find ways to get back out for a bigger audience to enjoy. The past year has seen many of his limited and hard to find books being released in trade paperback format from e-reads.com as well as a few new ones like Trailer Park Noir and Meds. If you have not been reading Ray, you’ve been missing out a one hell of a writer and if you have…you know how talented the man is.
Day Three Author Question: What thriller by Ray about people who live in the sunny hills is my favorite novel from him?
Welcome to the show, step inside…step inside. Rather you are a regular visitor or just passing through the graveyard on the Coffin Hop, let me welcome you to the official home of me. Let me introduce myself, I am Brent Abell and I write horror and dark fiction. The things that go bump in the night? That’s me and the stories I bring to the masses. I have been writing for just over a year and a half. My work has been accepted to anthologies from Rymfire eBooks, Library of the Living Dead, Post Mortem Press, Pill Hill Press, and I have three stories upcoming with Wicked East Press. I read at Mo-Con in 2010 and at Horrorfind 13 in 2011. If you would like more information, please check the Biblio link on the right for all the stories and links.
I have told personal stories and I have shared my reasons for writing in previous blogs. Recently I have started to rate the many beers I drink so I can share my love of the brew with you. I am ramping up to start book and movie reviews for the horror genre. The site is also used to spread the word about upcoming projects and new releases. Now then for the good stuff. This weekend, in honor of the Coffin Hop, I will do my first book review and I have a surprise guest to the blog. The guest is a surprise, so be sure to check back Sunday to find out who stops by.
Since it is close to Halloween, I must write and do my yearly viewing of “The Nightmare Before Christmas”. Be good and be sure to stop by for some ‘tricks or treat’ this weekend. Good night!
When I was a kid, my parents, brother, and sister lived in an older two-story house. It was the first house that my parents bought and as kids, we thought it was a mansion compared to the other places we had lived. I was only in kindergarten, so my knowledge of the paranormal was minimal at the time., but I believe now just as I did then, that the house had a ghost.
The first instance occurred while we were moving in. There were some things being done like carpet and paint so I would bring some toys and play. The den closet on the first floor became my G.I. Joe base. The gun was set with the gunner in his seat, ready to fight Cobra when I went to go get a drink. Upon returning, I found the gunner was gone. At the time I was gone less than a minute and my siblings were somewhere else. This was not the only instance of toys vanishing. One day some Ninja Turtles were on the stairs to go up to our rooms when two of the four disappeared in the three-minute span.
The toys were weird enough, but what I saw one night really stuck with me for the rest of my life.
My parents had gone to a get together at a friend’s house and took my brother and sister with them. Thinking I was old enough, I was allowed to stay home alone. I chilled in the living room watching TV and finally grew tired. Walking to the bathroom, I went to the sink and began to brush my teeth. From where the downstairs bathroom door faced, you could see the doors to the basement and to the upstairs. When I went in, they were both closed and as I looked up , the upstairs door was slightly ajar. Thinking nothing of it, I continued to brush until I saw a young boy at the doorway. I looked up again and called my brother’s name. Then it hit me that he wasn’t home and I quickly looked back up again only to find the boy was gone. I was scared senseless. Heck, thinking back about it now gives me goosebumps.
I guess it knew it freaked me out pretty bad, because I never saw it again and nothing else disappeared. Maybe even in his state, the kid realized he messed up and decided to leave us alone and not take toys. Those toys were never found even when my parents moved and the whole house got packed up.
One day, I did think I was going to get an answer. My father was busting up the old concrete steps at the backdoor to replace it with a bigger set of wooden steps and porch. I helped him and when we busted through, we found the area behind the stairs was hollow, just an open space filled with some loose dirt. In the back of my mind, I knew the boy was down there, his skull slightly buried beneath the dirt. To my surprise, he wasn’t. No toys either, but it was the hope of a teen who likes horror books to find the remains.
A year or so ago, the house I grew up in burned down in a chimney fire and the house the leveled. A few days after the fire, I drove by to look at the remnants of my childhood home. In the upstairs bedroom window, my old bedroom window, I saw something up in the window looking down at me and was gone when I blinked. Later when the house came down, I glimpsed him again, standing in the open lot where the house once stood. Is he still there? Maybe. I have a new unbelievable belief however, I believe he followed me. There are notes for a story concerning this, I’m just not ready to write it down yet. When I do, you’ll know because he wants to meet all of you too.
This not what the ‘going to be’ standard Friday blog is for the week, but will instead be a few short blasts from the Horrorfind 13 Convention in Gettysburg, PA.
As I sit here partaking of cold pizza for breakfast in my hotel room, I realize that for the first time during this trip, I am not drunk. This fact might be the reason I am still in the room and Wes disappeared around 3am. I must change that and get my drink on today because I would rather not take the beer home that’s still in the car. I have to be careful with how bad I get tonight because I read first thing Sunday morning and I am reading with my bottle of Jamieson’s in my hand.
Being at a convention as a reader has been a great experience so far. Connecting with other writers I read and meeting back up with ones I have met in the past is really nice. Being at the start of my career, the help and encouragement the crew from PA and the guy from GA give is priceless. They were me once and the way they try to pay it forward to some of us newbies is something I could never thank them enough for. I only hope that one day I can be in their shoes and be able to pay it forwards myself.
On another note, I did meet up with the crew from Library of the Living Dead Press and got an update from the editor on “The South Will Rise Undead”. It is still going to come out, but he is really behind. I am looking forwards to that one since “Stonewall” was my first sale and it will always have a special place in my heart. I am lucky that “A Winter’s Feast” is out in print so I can read from it at my reading. Something about being able to do that makes me feel like this has the possibility to go somewhere.