Monday, February 28, 2011

Stoker Award 2010 Finalists

Here they are!

Superior Achievement in a NOVEL

HORNS by Joe Hill (William Morrow)

ROT AND RUIN by Jonathan Maberry (Simon & Schuster)

DEAD LOVE by Linda Watanabe McFerrin (Stone Bridge Press)

APOCALYPSE OF THE DEAD by Joe McKinney (Pinnacle)

DWELLER by Jeff Strand (Leisure/Dark Regions Press)

A DARK MATTER by Peter Straub (DoubleDay)

Superior Achievement in a FIRST NOVEL

BLACK AND ORANGE by Benjamin Kane Ethridge (Bad Moon Books)

A BOOK OF TONGUES by Gemma Files (Chizine Publications)

CASTLE OF LOS ANGELES by Lisa Morton (Gray Friar Press)

SPELLBENT by Lucy Snyder (Del Rey)

Superior Achievement in LONG FICTION

THE PAINTED DARKNESS by Brian James Freeman (Cemetery Dance)

DISSOLUTION by Lisa Mannetti (Deathwatch)

MONSTERS AMONG US by Kirstyn McDermott (Macabre: A Journey through Australia’s Darkest Fears)

THE SAMHANACH by Lisa Morton (Bad Moon Books)

INVISIBLE FENCES by Norman Prentiss (Cemetery Dance)

Superior Achievement in SHORT FICTION

RETURN TO MARIABRONN by Gary Braunbeck (Haunted Legends)

THE FOLDING MAN by Joe R. Lansdale (Haunted Legends)

1925: A FALL RIVER HALLOWEEN by Lisa Mannetti (Shroud Magazine #10)

IN THE MIDDLE OF POPLAR STREET by Nate Southard (Dead Set: A Zombie Anthology)

FINAL DRAFT by Mark W. Worthen (Horror Library IV)

Superior Achievement in an ANTHOLOGY

DARK FAITH edited by Maurice Broaddus and Jerry Gordon (Apex Publications)

HORROR LIBRARY IV edited by R.J. Cavender and, Boyd E. Harris (Cutting Block Press)

MACABRE: A JOURNEY THROUGH AUSTRALIA’S DARKEST FEARS edited by Angela Challis and Marty Young (Brimstone Press)

HAUNTED LEGENDS edited by Ellen Datlow and Nick Mamatas (Tor)

THE NEW DEAD edited by Christopher Golden (St. Martin's Griffin)

Superior Achievement in a COLLECTION

OCCULTATION by Laird Barron (Night Shade Books)

BLOOD AND GRISTLE by Michael Louis Calvillo (Bad Moon Books)

FULL DARK, NO STARS by Stephen King (Simon and Schuster)

THE ONES THAT GOT AWAY by Stephen Graham Jones (Prime Books)

A HOST OF SHADOWS by Harry Shannon (Dark Regions Press)

Superior Achievement in NONFICTION

TO EACH THEIR DARKNESS by Gary A. Braunbeck (Apex Publications)

THE CONSPIRACY AGAINST THE HUMAN RACE by Thomas Ligotti (Hippocampus Press)

WANTED UNDEAD OR ALIVE by Jonathan Maberry and Janice Gable Bashman (Citadel)

LISTEN TO THE ECHOES: THE RAY BRADBURY INTERVIEWS by Sam Weller (Melville House Publications)

Superior Achievement in a POETRY collection

DARK MATTERS by Bruce Boston (Bad Moon Books)

WILD HUNT OF THE STARS by Ann K. Schwader (Sam's Dot)

DIARY OF A GENTLEMAN DIABOLIST by Robin Spriggs (Anomalous Books)

VICIOUS ROMANTIC by Wrath James White (Bandersnatch Books)

Got Ten Bucks to Spare?

All right, in this economy, many people don't. But even if you're in that group, don't despair - I'll be announcing some contests in the next couple weeks and, like Charlie with the Golden Ticket, you'll have a chance to make your wildest dreams of more zombie mayhem come true in 2011.

But, if you do dig under the sofa cushions and in the ash tray of the car and manage to come up with $10.08, then please consider DYING TO LIVE: LAST RITES, available for pre-order (and shipping in just a couple weeks) at B&N at this huge discount!

Here are what some other zombie authors had to say:

“Delivers a gritty dystopian nightmare that runs a crazy zigzagbetween the gross, the touching and the carnivalesque. A master ofthe genre, Paffenroth gives us equal parts horror and socialcommentary in a tale that crackles with startling insights about thehuman condition.”—Alden Bell, author of The Reapers Are the Angels

“Last Rites is Kim Paffenroth at his absolute best. There isintelligence here, and injustice, and heartache, and even love.Paffenroth has made a name for himself by challenging readers’expectations of what the zombie story should be… But this time,he’s taken his message not just to our heads, but to our hearts aswell, and the result is a haunting book you will not soon forget.”—Joe McKinney, author of Dead City and Apocalypse of the Dead

“Are the dead still people? A craftsman of the genre, KimPaffenroth offers his literary take on the zombie apocalypse withDying to Live: Last Rites, combining flesh-ripping gore with athoughtful view of what it means to be human.”—Craig DiLouie, author of The Infection

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Cataclysm = Global Warming?

It came to me the other night - the World Of Warcraft expansion, Cataclysm, might be intended as an allegory for global warming. (Yes, you know how I like to sniff these out in popular culture!)

Consider this (I include observations on pre-Cataclysm game play, just to set up how the game world uses lots of real world references):

The WoW world is divided between two super powers, neither of which has a pure record on either human rights or environmental issues. (The one power, The Alliance, is just better-looking, in general, with better dental care.)

Overlapping with these is one race, the Goblins, who seem pretty clearly the industrialists / capitalists of the world - everywhere they go they strip mine, deforest, drain lakes, and build armies of robots to protect their assets or to carry on their plots. When they give missions to players, they never have military objectives (unlike quests given by Horde or Alliance NPCs) - they always want you to steal or acquire some materials for their latest project, or sabotage the competition.

The only other group (that I can recall) that has significant overlap and interaction with both superpowers is called the Cenarion Circle. They are basically Green Peace with weapons. Any mission they give players will be about saving animals or plant species, killing intrusive species, assassinating members of the foresting or mining cartels, or finding samples of rare plants.

Okay, on to Cataclysm: A giant fire-breathing Dragon has broken free and caused massive damage all over. The most visible is that huge parts of the coastal areas are now underwater. The place that looked like Monument Valley, Thousand Needles, is especially striking, as it now looks like Lake Powell, with mesas sticking up out of the water of a vast lake. Several cities now exist with their buildings half-submerged but still inhabited. This cataclysm is said to cause a rupture within the elements of their world themselves.

Now, the allegory would be perfect if the industrialists had set the Dragon off, but as far as I know, that is not hinted at anywhere. He's just a bad dragon. But flying over all these people up to their knees in water, while standing in their city streets, sure looked like a global warming scenario to me.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

New Book of Sketches

From awesome artist Bill Lebeda (he did the cover for GOTLD!).

Check it out over here at Zombies and Toys!

Monday, February 21, 2011


For those who haven't followed me for a long time, I used to work there, from 1997-2001. (Yes, it overlaps with my teaching job at Villanova - you can tell how much professors make to start.) With ChrisI and MichaelG and Christine (there were a lot of Christines there, for some reason - I think all my bosses in the Ebar were named Christine) I worked at Store #30, Bryn Mawr, PA. It's not on the closing list, but both of the stores where we live now are being closed.

Author Brian Keene on his blog reports of lots of bad stuff, including bounced paychecks. Michele Lee is a Borders employee and is blogging daily about the end of her store. She encourages people to come buy stuff. Exactly as she describes in her post, I remember the store as a very pleasant place to work (though there was some hanky and panky in the store room, or so I'm told, and definitely some herbal recreation on the loading dock). Our son was very small and he'd love to play with the styrofoam peanut dispenser. All our children's books are from there, as are all my CDs (I'd only just thrown out the turntable and bought a CD player in 1997). I'd chuckle every time in the bathroom, as the industrial soap they bought was labelled "KIM-CARE" and I thought - "Wow! Soap just for me!" Oh, and it was the closest I came to being unionized (and lefty me really should've been a union member at some point in my life): ChrisI was standing outside my class one day with the petition and I signed it, but it never got to the next step.

I'll stop by the Scarsdale store tomorrow and see what's left.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Dead Island Trailer

Sunday, February 13, 2011


Fellow Permuted Press author Bryon Morrigan has updated his website to give more info on his highly-anticipated, upcoming release ACHERON. Check it out here!


And, silly me - I forgot the all important info on how to pre-order D2L3! (That'd help - actually selling books, not just looking at the nice cover!) Here it is on B&N at 32% off!

And while I have you here, let me also say - VALLEY OF THE DEAD is my favorite thing I've published so far. (D2L3 will be in contention for that when it comes out.) It's the novel only I could write, to be frank: if there's a Venn diagram, the little sliver where "zombie novelist" and "person who know Dante's Inferno really well and has read it a dozen times" - that's a set w/ only one occupant, me. This is NOT a typical zombie mash-up: this is a zombie story that Dante fans will love, or this is a Dante story that zombie fans will love - it goes both ways.

Anyway, I post because Greg Hall posted his review on Amazon (he put it up elsewhere a few months back, but I saw it on Amazon this morning):


Saturday, February 12, 2011

D2L3 Full Cover

Sunday, February 06, 2011

Two Best Things I've Ever Seen

I've been keeping blog posts mostly to writing updates, but you have GOT to see these two videos! You owe it to yourself!

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Another Non-Fiction Announcement

This one's further along in the editorial process, but I think there are also more in the queue ahead of it over at McFarland Publishing.

Generation Zombie: Essays on the Living Dead in Modern Culture. Edited by Stephanie Boluk and Wylie Lenz

"Introduction: Zombie as Metaphor" by Stephanie Boluk and Wylie Lenz

"White Zombies in the Black Republic: William Seabrook's The Magic Island, American Capitalism and Early Horror Film" by Gyllian Phillips

"Radio Zombies! Horror Radio and U.S. Colonial Ambivalence in the 1930s and 1940s" by Chris Vials

"Lost Bodies/Lost Souls: Night of the Living Dead as MIA Narrative" by Karen Randell

"Slowly Shambling up Mount Improbable: Evolution in Romero's Dead Films" by Sean Moreland

"Pedagogies of the Undead: From Bare Life to Whatever Resistance in George Romero's Zombie Films" by Tyson Edward Lewis

"Soft Murders: Motion Pictures and Living Death in Diary of the Dead" by Randy Laist

"Gray is the New Black: Race, Class and Zombies" by Aalya Ahmad

"Like, Dead and Live Life: Zombies, Digital Culture, and Queer Sociality"
by Shaka McGlotten

"Zombies as Internal Fear or Threat" by Kim Paffenroth

"Group Psychology and the Analysis of the Zombie: From Suggestion to Contagion" by Phillip Mahoney

"The E-Dead: Zombies in the Digital Age" by Brendan Riley

"Rhetoric Goes Boom(er): Agency, Networks, and Zombies at Play" by Scott Reed

"Lego, Handcraft, Edible, and Pin Up Zombies: How Flickr Community Members Use the Zombie Metaphor" by Trevor Owens

"Cyberpunk and the Living Dead" by Andrea Austin

"We Are the Zombie: Danny Boyle's Infected and John Wyndham's Triffid as Metaphors of the Political, Social, and Philosophical Structure of Postwar Britain" by Nicole LaRose

"The Groping City: The Zombie Cozy in Graphic and Film Adaptations of John Wyndham's The Day of the Triffids" by Terry Harpold

Non-Fiction Announcement

I will be contributing an essay to the upcoming volume

Triumph of The Walking Dead: Robert Kirkman's Zombie Epic on Page and Screen

Edited by James Lowder

Projected release date (to coincide with Season 2) is October 2011

And Tomoview Is Back

For those of us who howled to the reviews (and sometimes flames), it's great news that

Zombie Music, Zombies in Space!

Check out the zombie inspired songs of Aaron Stoquert - eery and crackly-sounding!

And I love when the NYTimes takes zombies seriously! (A.O. Scott has had a couple reviews of zombie films that I think were very insightful and definitely took the genre and the individual film with the seriousness it deserved.) Here's their take on Dead Space 2.

And here's the hilarious promo trailer with middle aged women hating on the game. And the lady who says "This game is an atrocity" looks just like Ms Soto from Broad Run High School - and that's exactly how she'd put it, too (she loved big words, god bless her, and she was a great teacher!).


Triumph of The Walking Dead