Archive for the Blood Category

World Horror 2015

Posted in Blood with tags on May 11, 2015 by bloodandstardust

It was great being in Atlanta for the World Horror Convention this weekend. The Horror Writers community is simply the best. It was very amazing being surrounded by so many talented people. But this is the case at most conventions. What really filled me up was being surrounded by such great human beings who just “get it”. Know what I mean? Thank you World Horror. Thank you HWA. Thank you everyone. I have a suitcase overloaded with great books despite swearing that I would not. Not such a bad thing. I’m going to be putting in some effort updating this site and making some time to keep in touch and say hello to as many people as I can on facebook and twitter in the coming days, weeks, and months.

The Green Man of Punta Cabre in Cemetery Dance #71

Posted in Blood, My Fiction on June 29, 2014 by bloodandstardust



Cemetery Dance Magazine #71 with a cover date of May 2014 was recently published. This is the special all fiction issue and I am thrilled to be a part of it. Thanks to Richard, Brian, Norman and the entire Cemetery Dance team. I’m extra excited to have my name on the cover along side such a list of amazing and talented writers. I will post a teaser and a small bit of history about the story in another post. Meanwhile I hope you enjoy the story.

Cemetery Dance Magazine Issue 71 Cover

Voice of the Deep in For the Oceans Anthology

Posted in Blood, My Fiction on November 28, 2011 by bloodandstardust

My short story Voice of the Deep (Leo o Ke Kuhohonu ) is now available in the For the Oceans Anthology.

The real world issue of how sonar (no relation to the publisher) affects our oceans and its animals comes up in the short story. As well as the legal issue called standing, which is a doctrine which covers who is allowed to bring a lawsuit for a given injury.  This story, like my story Mile Zero, explores fictional directions in which the law can go.

The Moon and the Mesa at Psuedopod

Posted in Blood, My Fiction, Putting the Pimp Hat On on February 1, 2011 by bloodandstardust

I’m really happy with the excellent job the Psuedopod team did with this.

Have a listen for free at Psuedopod. ( Oh, and if you are so inclined, don’t forget to feed the pod ! )

The Moon and the Mesa in Midnight Echo #4

Posted in Australia, Blood, My Fiction on September 16, 2010 by bloodandstardust

The Australian Horror Writer’s Association publishes a magazine called Midnight Echo:  The Magazine of the Australian Horror Writer’s Association. Issue Four was edited by noted author Lee Battersby. One of the goals of the AHWA and the magazine is to promote Australian horror authors internationally. The AHWA website is extensive and has a lot of up to date information. This link goes to the section about Midnight Echo.

I’m told it is a nice looking publication. Midnight Echo does not provide contributor copies to the authors but they did send me a pdf document so I could get an idea what it looks like.

A recent attempt to locate and secure a copy at World Con failed, so if anyone spots this one in the wild please let me know. I’m curious to see how it all turned out and excited to read the story in the magazine by Christopher Green.

The Bram Stoker award

Posted in Blood, Putting the Pimp Hat On, Stories I like with tags , , on March 28, 2010 by bloodandstardust

Congratulations to Sarah Langan on winning the Bram Stoker award for her novel Audrey’s Door !

Chasing the Dragon

Posted in Blood, Putting the Pimp Hat On, Stories I like on March 15, 2010 by bloodandstardust

I recently had a chance to catch up with author Nick Kaufmann to talk about his upcoming book Chasing the Dragon.

NK: So tell me about this blog of yours.

DB: Remember I told you about it a few months ago, when Hunt at World’s End came out and I wanted to interview you and ask you things like in a fight between Gabriel Hunt and Godzilla who would win?

NK: Godzilla would win. Definitely. Gabriel Hunt is one tough hombre, but Godzilla’s sheer size gives him a distinct advantage.

DB: So, we should really talk more about Chasing the Dragon:  which came out in…

NK: The limited edition hardcover came out in January from ChiZine Publications, and was sold out in the preorders stage. The more affordably priced trade paper back is coming out in March.

DB: Well despite my fascination with asking you to detail a Hunt versus Godzilla fight I actually have some real questions for you. I had just read my story The Water Dragon to a friend and I asked her if she thought the story was a genre story or a literary story. She replied well it has a dragon in it so it definitely is not horror. I instantly thought of Chasing the Dragon and said, funny Nick Kaufmann’s new book really puts that notion to the test.

NK: I can understand where your friend is coming from. Dragons certainly are icons of fantasy, a common hallmark, if you will. And yes, most of the time dragons are associated with high fantasy or at least fantasy in general. But authors like Michael Moorcock have mixed a horror-like tone of dread and terror with other fantasy tropes, like Elves. I’m thinking about Elric here. Moorcock never explicitly calls the people of Melniboné Elves, but the iconography he uses for Elric’s people is very Elflike, especially in the way they’re presented as an ancient, magical, pre-human society and that their appearance is given as tall, lean, beautiful–the usual Elflike features one gets in many a high fantasy, which is what tipped me off that Moorcock was playing with tropes there. I love it when authors play with tropes, and it always feels fresh to me when they add a sense of dread to what is normally presented with a sense of wonder.

DB: And you’ve done this with dragons in Chasing the Dragon.

NK: It wasn’t my original intention. In an earlier conversation you mentioned to me that no one has ever used dragons in a horror story before, but I’m not sure if that’s true or not. To tell you the truth, I haven’t read enough stories with dragons in it to say. I really doubt I’m the first.

DB: What about the trope of heroin users? The heroine in Chasing the Dragon is a heroin addict.

NK: Funny, but drug users tend to be featured widely in crime novels, and less so in fantasy and horror–though I’m reminded that Elric of Melniboné was also a drug addict. The addicted hero is more often seen in police procedurals. Their journey is often one of redemption. I think we saw something like that in the first Lethal Weapon movie, though there Riggs’ addiction was suicidal tendency rather than the usual drugs or alcohol.

DB: A movie that would be greatly improved with the addition of a dragon.

Here’s a more generic question but one I’m interested in the answer to none-the-less. What was your inspiration for the story Chasing the Dragon. Was it a movie. A song. An idea bouncing around in your mind?

NK: The inspiration came from a song by a band called Trivium that I like a lot.

DB: What kind of music is it?

NK: Metal.

DB: Death metal or one of the strange infinite subdivisions of such.

NK: I’m not sure what to call them. Death metal maybe, though they’re not exactly that. They do use a lot of death metal’s weird cookie monster vocals, though.

DB: Can I quote you on that?

NK: Sure. Anyway, the Trivium song is called Becoming the Dragon. I was listening to the CD in the shower, which is where I tend to listen to most of my music, the shower and while I’m writing. I also tend to do my best thinking in the shower, for some reason. So the title of the song gave me the idea. The idea was for a high fantasy kind of story. A kingdom with no king is being plagued by a dragon. Whoever can kill the dragon becomes the king. But then the power that comes with being the king would corrupt this person and they begin turning into a dragon… or becoming the dragon. And so the cycle would perpetuate: power corrupting a hero into a villain over and over again. It was a political allegory. But I don’t write high fantasy nor do I particularly like writing about kingdoms, so the idea wasn’t quite right for me in that incarnation.

DB: How did it transform into Chasing the Dragon?

NK: I don’t recall the exact transformation but at some point I decided that if I was going to shy away from writing a high fantasy, I might as well to retreat to my comfort zone, which is the horror genre. At that point, I knew I wanted to write a horror story that involved a dragon in a modern day setting. I also wanted it to be kind of a Western, like High Noon, where it’s one person against the Dragon. An unbeatable odds kind of thing.

DB: How did the St. George aspect come into play?

NK: I knew very little of Saint George so when I did a bit of research I was pleasantly surprised to discover how well it fit in to what I was doing.

DB: At what point did you integrate it in?

NK: That definitely happened organically, as I was writing the story. I knew there had to be a reason Georgia, our heroine, was chasing and fighting this real-life dragon, so I thought, why not make the reason something big? Like, cosmically big. And that’s when I started weaving the story together with the legend of St. George.

DB: So it was one of those synchronicities that just worked.

NK: Yes, it was one of those times where you just let go of the reins while writing and it worked out. In fact, the story expanded from St. George to include dragonslayers from mythologies all over the world. There is a dragon figure and a dragonslayer in just about every culture, and it all fit in perfectly with the larger scope of the story as it developed.

DB: A very Joseph Campbell like notion.

NK: It is wild how so many cultures, many of whom had no contact with each other, had many of the same mythological motifs. There’s a universality at play that’s absolutely stunning, the way these different cultures shared certain icons. Like dragons.

DB: Let’s talk about blowing people up. Tell me about the Western angle.

NK: Chasing the Dragon is a road trip story, but most of it is set in the dusty plains of the Southwest, in the town of Buckshot, New Mexico. Like a Western, especially a Spaghetti Western, there’s the lone hero and a lot of gun fighting, but I also consider the story an anti-Western in that instead of everything being new the way it was in the frontier, there’s a pervasive sense of decay, of things falling apart.

DB: There is a real John Woo aspect to the fight scenes.

NK: I’m a big fan of Woo’s Hong Kong heyday: The Killer, Hard Boiled, A Better Tomorrow. Woo has a real Western flavor to his films, only instead of lawmen and outlaws dueling it out in the middle of a frontier town he uses gangsters and cops in an urban setting.

DB: Your writing in general always has a real cinematic feel to it.

NK: Thanks. Like everyone else in the world, I love movies. I also love books, especially well written ones, but to my chagrin I sometimes think I’m more influenced by films than I am by books when I imagine the scenes I write for any given project. I mentioned High Noon before, and there are a lot of references to that movie in the story. In much the same way Gary Cooper’s character has to face the bad guys alone, Georgia has to face the Dragon alone, so naturally she identifies with that film in a resonant way.

DB: Did you write Chasing the Dragon before or after your Gabriel Hunt novel?

NK: I wrote Chasing the Dragon before I wrote Hunt at World’s End, though I don’t think it sold until after the Gabriel Hunt novel. Though they were two very different experiences, both books were a huge amount of fun to write.

DB: How would Gabriel Hunt fare in a battle versus the Dragon?

NK: Better than he would against Godzilla. At least for a little while.

New Short Story Collection by Lee Thomas

Posted in Blood, Putting the Pimp Hat On, Stories I like on March 6, 2010 by bloodandstardust

I just learned Lee Thomas’ short story collection has been nominated for a Stoker award ! Congratulations Lee ! I’d been meaning to post a blog about this collection and now I’m pleased to include this news. These short stories have been favorably compared to Clive Barker and the praise is well deserved. I’ve read several of these stories in other venues, including Ellen Datlow’s The Dark anthology and I’m looking forward to reading them all. I highly recommend adding a copy of this to your collection.

Midnight Echo from Down Under

Posted in Australia, Blood with tags on February 26, 2010 by bloodandstardust

Watch this space for news about Midnight Echo #4. Midnight Echo is the publication of the Australian Horror Association. Follow the link for some tidbits about upcoming announcements I can’t wait to share with you…


Unanchored at the Daily Cabal

Posted in Blood, Movies, My Daily Cabal Stories on January 25, 2010 by bloodandstardust

I’m working on a multipart series over at the Daily Cabal…