The Lee-gend releases metal Don Quixote album on his 92nd birthday.
Metal happy returns Sir Christopher of Lee! \m/ \m/
Read on for some pharmaceutical advice!
Take it away Matt…
3 Terrifying Side Effects of Mixing Drugs and Horror
If I’m going to chase this dream as a hungry zombie would chase a prime piece of living flesh, I’m going to do so with an eye removed from skull, looking closely at the embarrassing image of myself. I’m going to be honest. From the now to the then, I don’t plan on dodging questions, pretending to be something I’m not or allowing public opinion to sway my own impression of myself.
Matt Molgaard is, was and always will be Matt Molgaard.
Why in the hell is any of that relevant?
Because the things I write about will reflect aspects of my own life, away from the keyboard and the internet. The Matt Molgaard you don’t necessarily see. Say No to Drugs is stuffed with references to actual events I’ve experienced. Full of inspiration birthed in miserably uncomfortable moments of my own youth. The point is, while I’m not proud of where I’ve been and what I’ve done, at just 33 years old I have been there, and I have done that.
That’s why I hope you take the following notes seriously. I’ve got three excellent reasons to steer you from the idea of blending drugs and horror. They could save your life.
Paranoia Will Drive a Man to Do Strange Things
Here’s what you don’t do, if you hope to uphold a fair reputation with local police: Take pharmaceuticals after consuming three or more beers. There’s a strange sense of paranoia that swarms the mind in this situation. Everyone is your enemy. Your best friend could very well be bending your wife over the coffee table while you’re away at work developing blisters on both hands, and – you’re not positive since you can’t get a great look, but you’re pretty sure – your chode. Your mother may have been the conniving devil that stole the $300 you were certain you had prior to your trip to the local bar on Saturday, but went “mysteriously” missing on Sunday morning. The paranoia will swallow you whole, I swear it!
Drinking, Driving and Role Playing is Terrible
Who hasn’t gotten a little sloshed and thought, I’d love to relive that ‘pedestrian point’ scene in Toxic Avenger! I mean, really? Come on, we’re all a little sick… right? What—ever! The point is, it is a terrible idea to hit your local cinema and catch the new chiller on the big screen right before you head to the nearby bar, right before you’ve got to drive your drunken, fantastical ass home. You just never know what turn may be a bit sharper than you’d anticipated, what late night bike rider may be just a bit too far outside the bike lane.
Drinking, driving and watching awesome horror movies doesn’t work well. Great movies inspire us. Great alcohol provides us with enough courage to defy all established rules and role playing has never led to anything positive… outside of the bedroom.
Smoking Weed Leads to Driving Slow, Which Leads to an Ultra-Violent Ass Whipping in Public
This one can potentially be the most painful to experience, and I’ll be damned if it isn’t real. Smoking weed, if you don’t know, slows response time. Our reactions lag. Our decision making falters. Sure, we get it all together, eventually. But imagine the insanity that can unfold during that eventually time stretch.
Close your eyes.
You’re sitting in a car, stopped at a red light. Time is dragging, and despite the reasonable weather you’ve got a bead of sweat trickling over your right brow. You aren’t doing jack shit physically, but you can hear your heart beat. It’s pounding. It’s pounding inside your head, the sound pressure bullying your ear drums and you’re pretty fucking sure the whole world can hear that son of a bitch doing the jackhammer. And then you realize (keep those eyes closed!) it’s not your heart that you’re hearing beating frantically, it’s a man. He’s standing outside your car window with no shirt on, and he’s pounding your window with zero regard for your property or personal well-being.
And then the driver’s side window shatters. Seconds pass and you’re being hauled out of your Prius. A few more ticks pass on the clock you can’t see and the impact of two fists on your face have your brain running in circles. This lunatic beats you until your orbital bones have shattered. Your jaw hangs at an unnatural angle and your lolling tongue verifies the belief that not only are you utterly conscious, but you’ve got no control over that grill any damn way. Talk about broken? That thing is annihilated.
And why did it all happen? Because you thought it might be fun to spark up a J, but you wanted to obey the law and then some. You wanted to drive 21 miles an hour under the speed limit, and the guy behind you, who just so happened to have an appointment, well, he wasn’t the patient type.
Here’s the deal kids, drugs and horror are bad. No two ways about it. But the rebel in me screams for the youth of today to be bad. To be downright rotten. TP your neighbor’s house. Light that bag of dog shit on fire before you ring the bell. Stick a banana in that asshole’s tailpipe. And most importantly, learn the ins and outs of the rebellious craft by first reading your guide to drugs and horror, appropriately titled, Say No to Drugs.
Just popping out of summer vacation hibernation (or “writing” as i like to call it) for a quick blog post on the touchy subject of internet piracy.
I meant to post this sooner (but i’ve been writing, see above), following an interesting debate on Farcebook sparked by an alert sent out to a bunch of authors whose books were listed on an illegal download site.
For a long time, I’ve held the belief that people downloading my books for free were stealing from me and taking the food from my family’s table. (and look no further than Brian Keene’s impassioned, insightful post on this aspect of internet piracy)
But i was also painfully aware that piracy is inevitable in this day and age and could, in effect, provide a free marketing campaign for an author’s work. (who else but Neil Gaiman can sum this up for us so eloquently?)
Then author/filmmaker/all-round-mighty dude John “yer pal” Skipp showed me the way, and the light. He said (by the way I, ahem, stole the following quote from the aforementioned Farcebook debate thread):
The thing is: the first time I got file-shared, I went fucking ballistic. I got ahold of the perps, took out my psychic reaming tools, and gave them a good what-for. Once I was done screaming, they kinda shrugged and went, “Okay. We took it down. Didn’t mean to piss you off. Take care.” And by the end of the conversation, I felt kind of like the dad who finds his kids partying in the rec room and loses his shit. They didn’t actually break anything. They just got high and watched TV. I never liked that dad, and sure as shit never wanted to be him. And that’s when my perspective began to change. I guess what I’ve come to accept is that a lot of my readers are outlaws. You make outlaw art, you get outlaw fans. GO FIGGER! (John Skipp)
Outlaw books, outlaw readers. Hadn’t thought of it that way before.
And then Carlton Mellick III added (again, quote stolen from Farcebook):
Two things to keep in mind: 1) these people wouldn’t be buying your book if it wasn’t free. It costs you nothing, but you might gain a reader who might spread the word about your work or start buying your work in the future. 2) most file-sharers are also the biggest consumers. I admit that I download stuff all the time, but I also spend at least $1000 a month on books, movies, comics, video games, and mp3s…mostly by creators I discovered through free downloading. (Carlton Mellick III)
An interesting distinction. These people wouldn’t be buying your book anyway.
I took a peek at one pirate site and one of my novels has had over 1,000 illegal downloads. That would buy a lot of groceries for my family if the pirates were to buy those books. But they’re not. They never intended to buy the book, and if no pirate copy was available they still wouldn’t buy it either. They’d just go on to the next available title.
But now they’ve read it, maybe they’ll recommend it to others, leave a glowing/or damning Goodreads review, or (saints preserve us!) maybe even buy my next book.
That’s how it is now, so maybe we should all stop worrying and learn to love the pirates.
What do you think, me hearties? Yarrrr? or Arrrrgh?
Comments below please – i’d love to read ‘em!
I couldn’t not post about this one. My love affair with the films of John Carpenter goes way back to the days of dusty old video stores and those rental VHS tapes in big, squidgy boxes. It reached fever pitch when I was lucky enough to enjoy a run of his movies on the big screen, a personal highlight being Prince of Darkness (i had bruises on my arm from my poor terrified date after that one, let me tell you!). I was a gibbering fanboy mess after seeing his talk/screening on the films of Howard Hawks at the National Film Theatre (he smoked liked a gunslinger throughout). And yes, I am one of the few who enjoyed Ghosts of Mars and rocked up to see The Ward on release day – so sue me, even when his movies are slightly below par they still rock my world.
It’s heartening to know that Carpenter is out there, still doing it (this time in comic book form with a Big Trouble in Little China spin-off). And when I read this interview, I just had to share it. Here’s a choice cut:
“Horror is the most durable genre in cinema,” Carpenter says. “It’s outlasted the Western, it’s outlasted the musical, it’s outlasted all sorts of genres.”
“It will live forever.”
Long live John Carpenter! And long live horror!
Lovely tribute to the late, great Rik Mayall from the talented folk at http://brunelwriter.com
Rik will be laid to rest tomorrow at a private funeral, with a public memorial planned for September.
R.I.P. bogey bum x
Originally posted on Brunel Writer:
” – and punks and skins and rastas will all gather round and hold their hands in sorrow for their fallen leader. And all the grown-ups will say, ‘But why are the kids crying?’ And the kids will say, ‘Haven’t you heard? Rick is dead! The People’s Poet is dead!’ And then one particularly sensitive and articulate teenager will say, ‘Other kids, do you understand nothing? How can Rick be dead when we still have his poems?'”
Comedy lost a hero this week. It is with a heavy heart that we say our goodbyes to Rik Mayall – the People’s Poet, the Young One, an imaginary friend; one of the most lovable comedy geniuses of the last thirty years.
It is rare to see someone’s popularity stand the test of time, and even more rare to see their jokes do the same. It is a testament to him as a person…
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Some kind readers (hello kind readers!) wrote to me in support of the Author’s Note (pictured below) I included in my recent horror novel The Jack in the Green – in which I highlighted the threat posed by the UK rail Project HS2.
In brief – HS2 is a high speed rail line that will cut through acres of ancient woodland, farmland, and communities – including those in Buckinghamshire where I am lucky enough to reside.
The initial proposals for the scheme made journey speed a key selling point: business travellers could shave off a massive 30 minutes or so if they travel via the high speed line. When many voiced their opinion that 30 mins of train time actually = 30 mins of uninterrupted work time, the scheme seemed to change tack, this time citing capacity as the new justification behind the project.
Now comes the bombshell that the rail line would displace thousand of graves – without the assurances in place that sacred remains would be properly relocated. I mean, haven’t these crazy HS2 people even seen POLTERGEIST?
My opinion (because everyone has one, right?) is that HS2 is designed, primarily, to make money for those behind it. Well, duh. It is a rich* man’s train (*for the financially rich, but spiritually bankrupt). I am utterly disappointed to see cross-party support for HS2 in UK politics – and feel especially betrayed that the Labour Party appears to back the project – so much so that for the first time in my life I cast my vote in the European Elections for the Green Party (among other, personal reasons). You see, I have just not seen any justification for the project that convinces me the environmental cost is worthy of the line’s creation. As with all things infrastructure, there is always another way (the clever folks at StopHS2 and HS2 Action Alliance have some excellent suggestions).
Sigh. I am aware that I’m just a local yokel author, banging on about this on his blog. What difference is that gonna make? Not a jot, of course. But there are things we little people can do to stop the goose-stepping forward march of ecological destruction. Maybe those of us who oppose HS2 are like Arthur Dent, trying to stop the Vogon Constructor Fleet in our dressing gowns. Maybe lying down in front of that bulldozer will be all the protest we have left – if, and when, the decision comes to decimate our wildlife and destroy so much that is green and good in the land.
But we have to bloody well try. And try we shall. In that spirit, I’ll sign off this post with one last video – this time from an inspiring young voice that should absolutely be heard – that of 9 year-old Midlands schoolboy Alexander Rukin.
And as ever, thanks for reading.
The Lee-gend releases metal Don Quixote album on his 92nd birthday.
Metal happy returns Sir Christopher of Lee! \m/ \m/
Read S.E.’s post below for more about this exciting new venture!
Are you one those people who have to align a tilted frame on the wall? Have you ever found yourself folding a piece of paper to stick it under a wobbly table?
If so, you’d know the instinct – and the pleasure – of correcting things that are desperate to be corrected. And Mash Stories is born exactly from this instinct.
I remember the day I looked into the short story competitions market for the first time. I found a website which listed competitions: The Grinder. At the time, there were over 2,300 competitions listed on The Grinder, and 28,638 submissions had already been made. I felt like a kid who had been taken to an astonishing playground with the queue of an airport security check.
In the time that has elapsed since then – roughly five months – the number of submissions on The Grinder website has nearly doubled – 42,668 as of 9th April 2014.
The number of competitions left me not knowing where to start from, and the number of submissions made me anxious about the vast amount of competitors out there. I wasn’t ready to race against writers who had already won awards, while I simply had no publishing experience.
I had assumed short story competitions would allow me to get my voice heard, gather a circle of readers, and earn small amounts now and then to support my writing. But to start with, I was asked to pay to submit my work. And when a magazine accepted to publish a story of mine, they offered me less than their submission fee for the ‘exclusive’ rights to my work. I thought there was a typo there, but apparently there wasn’t.
That was when I decided to fold a piece of paper to stick it under the wobbly market of story competitions. I knew I couldn’t write to more than 7,000 competitions listed in the endless waters of the Internet and tell them my point, but I could set up a competition which would stand straight no matter how tilted the others were.
That’s how Mash Stories was born. I dreamt of a competition that evaluated my story, instead of its formatting; that paid me reasonably, rather than charging me fees; that gave me free feedback and helped me to promote my work, rather than demanding exclusive rights to limit it.
At Mash Stories, we keep the rules to a minimum and award the winning story a professional rate. We turn all shortlisted stories into a podcast, and provide free feedback for the rejected ones so that they can improve.
I hope our efforts will help the talented writers out there to get their voices heard. And I hope you will help us to set up a model competition, which will create a change in many writers’ lives.
Please support us by donating to us or by giving us a hand with editorial matters.
Thank you for your interest and support.
S.E. Sever is currently working on several projects in fantasy fiction and science fiction.
She has had several short stories published in fiction magazines across the US and the UK.
S.E.’s poetry book, Before Me, is published by Thought Catalog Books, New York.
Mash Stories website: http://mashstories.com/
Official S.E. Sever website: http://sesever.com/
The Skintakers is the prequel to my Bram Stoker Award® nominated debut novel The Lamplighters.
My Editor, Don D’Auria, said some lovely things about the book. I hope you’ll like it too.
Cover art, release date and more details to follow!