For horror and dark fiction writers in the current publishing climate, it’s become necessary to have a social presence and raise your visibility, whether in-person at readings or online via live virtual events.
Horror author Jeamus Wilkes shares his experience and a survey of public speaking principles to drive a stake through the heart of any fears you may have of stepping up to the microphone or turning on the webcam. In your efforts to widen your reading audience, learn how Jeamus has positively dealt with his own introvert-leanings to step onto the stage and not fear the engagement with the randomness of a live audience.
Reserve your slot ($5 or free for DHC members) at firstname.lastname@example.org to receive the Zoom link.
Hunger that changes you…consumes you…turning you into a nightmare version of what you once were.
Denver Horror Collective is looking for stories inspired by the Wendigo. The point of view could be a person becoming the Wendigo, from a Wendigo, pursued by a Wendigo, or a witness to a Wendigo-esque situation unfolding.
Submissions may cover cannibalism, lust, plague, war, anxiety, greed, power, or any topic a person or animal could become obsessed with. Read the Wiki on the Wendigo at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wendigo, then feel free to think outside the box and let your imagination run wild.
Submissions do not have to have characters turn into a literal Wendigo. Character(s) must go through some sort of a transformation due to the “hunger.” You do not have to use the term Wendigo. We just ask that authors use the core concept of the Wendigo as inspiration for their story.
Please take a moment to read the KEY NOTES and all submission information below to ensure your story content and format fall within guidelines.
This open call is open to all authors, everywhere.
DEADLINE: August 15, midnight
WORD COUNT: 3,000-12,000 words (lower limit firm, query for longer)
PAYMENT: $20 for the first 3,000 words, then a 1/2 cent per word + print contributor’s copy
SIMULTANEOUS SUBMISSIONS: No
MULTIPLE SUBMISSIONS: No (if you have more than one idea, you’re welcome to query as to which concept we would be more interested in)
FORMAT: -Use the Shunn format ( https://www.shunn.net/format/classic/ ) with the following caveats: -12-point Times New Roman, Courier New, or Arial font -Use paragraph formatting for paragraph indents. Do not manually tab or space in. -No headers, footers, or page numbers
SUBMISSION: -Submit in DOC, DOCX, or RTF format -Submit as an attachment, not in the body of the email. -Include “Submission,” “Story Title,” “Author Name,” and “Word Count” to nearest 100 words in the subject line. (EX: Submission Last Plate by Jane Doe 3,300 words) -The body of the e-mail should include an introduction, any publication information you would like to include, and a bio up to 250 words. -E-mail submissions to email@example.com
KEY NOTES: -First or third person only -Past-tense only -No pedophilia -No rape in a positive light -Graphic scenes should be used to move the story, scene, or character forward, and not be included just for shock value. -Accepted submissions will be hand edited and uploaded to Dropbox in PDF format for the author to access.
TIPS -Do not capitalize entire words in dialogue or to show excitement/yelling. Let your description and/or punctuation do the work for you. -Ellipses signify an extended pause or trailing off. Em dashes signify interruption. -If you’re unsure, ask questions. Please place the words “Submission Question” in your email subject line and query firstname.lastname@example.org.
What Lies Beneath: Redefining Horror (with Shannon Lawrence)
On the surface, horror is seen by those who don’t understand it (and even many of those who think they do) as jump scares and gore, but it’s a lot deeper than that. What types of horror are there? Where can readers find unexpected horror? How is horror defined, both loosely and specifically? The world of horror is full of surprises if you widen your horizons
A fan of all things fantastical and frightening, Shannon Lawrence writes primarily horror and fantasy. Her stories can be found in over forty anthologies and magazines, and her two solo horror short story collections, Blue Sludge Blues & Other Abominations and Bruised Souls & Other Torments are available from online retailers. When she’s not writing, she’s hiking through the wilds of Colorado and photographing her magnificent surroundings, where, coincidentally, there’s always a place to hide a body or birth a monster. Find her at www.thewarriormuse.com.
Email submissions [at] denverhorror [dot] com to reserve your slot today ($5 via PayPal or free for Denver Horror Collective members)!
Are you a horror or dark fiction writer looking to sell your short stories, find an agent or traditional publisher for your novel, or market your self-published work? Or maybe you just want to enhance your creepy craft while deepening your understanding of this popular and growing genre?
If so, then DARK WISDOM—Denver Horror Collective’s monthly webinar series—is for you! For only $5 per session (free for Denver Horror Collective members), you can peek inside the disturbed minds of Colorado’s horror fiction masters to level up your writing, your sales…and your nightmares.
April 25, 2020 @ 4pm (MT): Who Do I Have to #@&% to Get My Horror Story Published? (with Henry Snider)
If you’re struggling to find reputable, paying markets for your horror short fiction, you’re not alone. Lucky for you, Henry Snider is here to help. A former horror publisher and editor with an 82% success rate on short story sales in 2020 alone (9 sales out of 11 submissions), Henry knows the business and craft as well as anyone, and he’s here to share his experience and knowledge with you.
In this exclusive 2-hour Zoom webinar, Henry will discuss:
-Honing your craft -Creating your brand -The writing business -And much, much more!
For over two decades, Henry Snider has worked for multiple publishing houses, serving as acquisitions editor, content editor, layout artist, cover artist, website designer, marketing For over two decades, Henry Snider has worked for multiple publishing houses, serving as acquisitions editor, content editor, layout artist, cover artist, website designer, marketing director, and, on occasion, salesman. He and his wife – fellow author and editor Hollie Snider – opened a genre fiction publishing house (Strigidae Publishing) and enjoyed a thriving business until health issues forced its closure. Snider has lectured at local and national conventions. His public recognition includes both Writers Digest and Predators and Editors. On the homefront, he’s co-founded and helped maintain two writing organizations (Colorado Springs Fiction Writers Group est. 1996 to help make good writers better, & Fiction Foundry est. 2012 focusing of publication preparation). In his spare time, he’s offered contests to local high schools and taught introductory creative writing class to juvenile offenders.
Email submissions [at] denverhorror [dot] com to reserve your slot today ($5 via PayPal or free for Denver Horror Collective members)!
There’s no better way to show your love of horror and the local dark arts than sporting an official Denver Horror Collective T-shirt, with its haunting logo (drawn by The Rïpröck) on a space black background, printed by Denver-based IndyInk.
If you haven’t already grabbed yours, we’ve got a few left in sizes S, M, and L for $20 ($16 for DHC members). Pay through PayPal here or send a check to: Denver Horror Collective, 3542 N. Raleigh St., Denver, CO 80212 and be sure to include your size and mailing address.
A Transylvanian vampire in Lafayette? A haunted road between Brighton and Thornton? A deadly speedway accident in Lakeside? Cold-blooded murder in Golden?
Muster your guts and venture out to Tattered Cover (2526 E. Colfax Ave., Denver) on Sunday January 26 from 2-4pm for an afternoon of local dark history and urban legend to celebrate the publication of TERROR AT 5280’, Denver Horror Collective’s new horror fiction anthology featuring 22 dark tales set in and around Denver and the Front Range, penned exclusively by local authors.
Let local experts enthrall you with micro-lectures on Colorado’s shadowy past including: KARREN TOLLIVER (ATravelforTaste.com) on the “vampire grave” of Theodor Glava in Lafayette Cemetery; BRYAN BONNER (Rocky Mountain Paranormal Research Society) on Riverdale Road, the most haunted road in Colorado; PAUL BREDENBERG (Colorado Auto Racing Club) on the tragic wreck that shut down Lakeside Speedway; and ANNELIESE FARMER (Golden Ghost Tour & Pub Crawl) on Golden’s shoot outs, secret liaisons, and murder.
Following each brief talk, listen to authors reading from their TERROR AT 5280′ original story that history or legend inspired, featuring CARTER WILSON (USA Today & #1 Denver Post bestselling thriller author of The Dead Girl in 2A and Mister Tender’s Girl), ANGELA SYLVAINE (Colorado Gold & Zebulon award finalist), JAY SEATE (paranormal author), and P.L. MCMILLAN (writer of the dark and macabre).
Presented by DENVER HORROR COLLECTIVE (denverhorror.com) and hosted by DANIEL CROSIER of Colorado Festival of Horror (cofohorror.com), this is the event—and the anthology—that lifts the veil on Colorado’s lingering darkness.
A neighborhood won’t let its residents forget the past. One taste draws two lovers into a nightmarish addiction. A harsh winter forces strange creatures down from the mountains.
At sea level, where it’s safe, things like this can’t happen. But when you’re sky high in Denver, Colorado, anything goes…including your sanity.
Beware of Terror at 5280’, a local horror fiction anthology featuring 22 dark tales set in and around Denver and the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains penned exclusively by local authors (including Stephen Graham Jones, Carter Wilson, and others).
If you’re in the greater Denver metropolitan area, Terror is available at a growing number of local bookstores, including: Bookbar, Mutiny Information Cafe, West Side Books, Broadway Book Mall, Tattered Cover, and Barnes and Noble in Denver, 2nd & Charles in Aurora, and Boulder Bookstore and Barnes & Noble in Boulder (more stores coming soon!)
Denver Horror Collective active member, Steering Committee member & Terror at 5280′ co-editor, Gary Robbe
1. Name one horror author you admire and explain how they helped you become a better writer.
GARY ROBBE: There are many writers who had a profound influence on me, and what and how I write. But there are two who stand out. When I read Ray Bradbury at a very early age, specifically Dandelion Wine, I knew that I wanted to write and tell stories the way he could. His storytelling and simplicity, and the way he could get a message across without pounding you on the head, definitely influenced me to the core. Another writer who got to me, at a much later date, was Harlan Ellison. When I read I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream, and A Boy and his Dog, I was completely blown away. Harlan’s writing style and anger shone through with everything he wrote, and he embodied what I thought a writer was all about. We are who we read, and I often reread Ray and Harlan to remind myself what writing can do.
2. As a writer, what would you choose as your mascot and why?
GR: Has to be a squirrel. They’re cute on the surface, but they’re really rats with a fluffy tail. I used to pretend I was a squirrel when I was a toddler (this was the day and age of Chip and Dale, who were chipmunks, not squirrels). So, yeah, an animal that is really deceptive. We’re terrified of rats eating our face, but squirrels? Not so much. But they will…
3. Name six of your favorite horror movies or books. Elaborate on any of them.
GR: I grew up watching all the great Universal monster films, watched all of them over and over, usually late at night on Shock Theater on a black and white TV. Frankenstein, the monster played by Boris Karloff, and King Kong, played by himself, stood out and were always special to watch. Psycho scared the shit out of me at a very vulnerable age. I’m still wary of showers. Halloween. Alien. The Thing. Almost perfect horror films.
But ultimately my heart belongs to the old, tattered black and white (sometimes color) horror films of my childhood. Anything by Hitchcock or Roger Corman, all the cheap and cheesy effects and acting, the bad costumes, all of it.
Books? Salem’s Lot. Interview with a Vampire. The Exorcist. Rosemary’s Baby. Maybe the most disturbing and haunting book I ever read was Johnny Got His Gun by Dalton Trumbo.
4. “Scrape” from Denver Horror Collective’s new anthology, Terror at 5280’ is a disturbing tale; can you tell us a little about how it came into being?
GR: Gentrification gone bad. An image came to me, children staring from a window of a place that was being torn down, and the story took off from there. Loss to me is the ultimate great fear. Loss of control. Loss of what we love. Loss of self. I thought, what if a family scraped an old house and built a new one in its place. And once they moved into the new house they realized the old place was still very much there. Maybe it is a little homage to House of Leaves, a story I really liked but didn’t understand all that well. Of course, I did have to give the story a happy, Disney ending. That’s my homage to Chip and Dale, those crazy mixed up rodents.
As we predicted, the vile powers-that-be conspired to try to prevent the distribution of Terror at 5280’, Denver Horror Collective’s brand new local horror fiction anthology.
Our “Terror Tuesday” online launch was all but scuttled by a cabal of tyrants intent on stopping us from telling the world about the ongoing carnage in this mile-high hellscape we call Denver, Colorado.
Some of you may suspect we’re pulling your leg. If only that were the truth.
To the contrary, one of our online sellers—let’s call them Amazoth—put a screeching halt to our web sales by falsely telling potential customers that paperback copies of Terror at 5280′ wouldn’t be available through Amazoth for up to two months!
The proof in the blood pudding comes from the fact that earlier in the week people had ordered and received copies within 2 days—indeed, Terror at 5280’ was skyrocketing up the charts of horror fiction anthologies!
But as soon as our enemies got wind of the breach, they pushed back the dates they were telling customers they’d likely receive the book until after the holidays, and our sales dried up like bodily fluids inside a corpse.
The good news is we sent out our fiercest mercenaries to deal with the problem and they forced Amazoth to ONCE AGAIN MAKE TERROR AT 5280′ AVAILABLE FOR 2-DAY DELIVERY!
So, please consider buying a copy so we can make up for lost time and get back on the charts (the Amazoth algorithm punished us severely for our curtailed sales even though it was their own doing)!
If you’re disinclined to order through Amazoth, you can also order via Indiebound.org or Barnes and Noble.
And if you’re in Colorado, Terror is available at a growing number of local bookstores, including: Mutiny Information Cafe, West Side Books, and Bookbar in Denver, and Boulder Bookstore and Barnes & Noble in Boulder.
We at Denver Horror Collective never go down without a fight! We knew it was dangerous to report on the foul goings-on in and around Denver and the Front Range Rocky Mountains, and we remain committed to warning people to stay away from the Centennial State, no matter the consequences.