Sunday 31 May 2020

Cover artwork for Phantasmagoria magazine for my story The Fragile Mask on his Face

I can now reveal the fantastic cover artwork by Jim Pitts for my story The Fragile Mask on his Face, which will be in the next issue of Phantasmagoria magazine, due next week.

Saturday 16 May 2020

The Evil Leader of Communist China

Chinese death threats for Polish illustrator! 

Her boss wants to fire her. Read the article on the link below. 

And below that is the illustration in question.


No one should have to suffer under Communist rule. 

It's time the Chinese people were helped to shake off the shackles of that despotic regime.

Friday 15 May 2020


We were recommended to watch Devs, a strange science fiction series produced by FX. Finally watched all the episodes and what a fantastic trip that was! Enjoyed everything about it, from the brilliant photography and music to the wonderfully underplayed but thoroughly effective acting. It was one of those series that had a really well written storyline that reached a satisfying conclusion, with some unexpected but logical twists along the way.

Wednesday 13 May 2020

The Lurkers in the Abyss - 50 years on

It still seems amazing to me that my first professionally published story appeared 50 years ago this year in 1970 in The Eleventh Pan Book of Horror edited by the legendary Herbert van Thal. It was written and sent off when I was still a pupil at Accrington Grammar School, though my letter of acceptance didn't arrive till one week after I finished.

The Lurkers in the Abyss has been reprinted a couple of times since.

In 2012 it was chosen by editor John Pelan to represent 1970 in The Century's Best Horror Fiction, a massive two-volume hard-cover anthology published by Cemetery Dance.

I then included it in my collection published by David Sutton's Shadow Publishing, The Lurkers in the Abyss and Other Tales of Terror.

Monday 11 May 2020

The Last Kingdom

Watching a lot of TV these days, but there is so much outstandingly good stuff on it at the moment - thankfully!
Anyway, last night saw us watching the final episode of the current season of The Last Kingdom, based on the brilliant novels of Bernard Cornwell. We started by rewatching all the previous seasons to remind ourselves of just what had already happened. I must admit the story just gets better and better, as you would expect from such a fantastic writer as Cornwell. If you haven't watched any of tjhese yet, give it a go. It began life on the BBC (perhaps one of the BBC's last decent dramas) but they abandoned it after the second season, God knows why. But luckily it was taken up by Netflix, who have done a first rate job with it, and actually made it even better than before.

Sunday 10 May 2020

Fauda - season three

Finally watched the last episode of the current season of Fauda. The tension in this series is the most intense I think I have ever come across in the TV program. Nail-biting doesn't come into it. I have no intension of giving away any of what happens in it, but it certainly didn't pan out as I expected and had one of the most stunning climaxes I have yet seen. Thoroughly recommended.

Red Lights - review

Watched Red Lights, starring Sigourney Weaver and Robert De Niro on Friday night.
The film has a great cast, besides the ones mentioned above, but is such a waste of all the talent in it, perhaps because the writer/director hadn't a clue about the word subtlety. De Niro's performance was pretty bad too, I must admit, with too much OTT acting, though it would be hard to match Cillian Murphy who shouts too much at everyone, and there is one particular scene where his character attacks, humiliates and bullies his department boss, Toby Jones (who is quite a bit smaller than him) in front of witnesses - and without repercussions. It came over as a nasty piece of arrogant bullying, unjustified by anything that had happened. My credibility in the film, already fairly well stretched, passed breaking point after this. In no real world would something like that either be justified or tolerated, either by the man subjected to it or by any of the witnesses. Just one example of a stupid script that wasted what could have been an interesting concenpt. 
Not recommended at all.


I was flattered by this image created byJames Toeken on facebook on my birthday, which he posted on my own facebook page and on the Horror Novels Review site:

Thursday 7 May 2020

Lovecraftiana Volume 5, Issue 1 arrived today

I was pleased to receive my copy of Lovecraftiana volume 5, issue 1, Walpurgisnacht 2020, in the post today.
It contains a reprint of my Lovecraftian story Lurkers, which is a sort of sequel to The Lurkers in the Abyss.

Priced only £6.99, it is available from Amazon:

Table of contents:
Lurkers by David A Riley
Every Star is Mad by CM Fields
The Reliquary by CP Webster
Unholy Cosmic Terror by Cameron Walker
Bug of the Stars by Evan Rodenhausen
Afterburn by Carlton Herzog
The Vessel by Henry Snider
How to Frame a Dying Art by Mike Lee
The Blue Canoe by Ben Scotti
The Terror of Emmett’s Cove by Lee Clark Zumpe
The Dewey Mine Attack by Dean Wirth
Shipping on the River by Sergio Palumbo
The End of History by Mathew Chabin