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Saturday 14 January 2023
Wednesday 11 January 2023
Several years ago now without planning to do such a thing I began a series of loosely connected stories based around a fictitious area of a fictitious town in Lancashire. The town was Edgebottom - the area of this town was known as Grudge End, an area of ill repute, with a long history of violence, murder, cults and worse!
The first story in which Grudge End is mentioned, though it doesn't take place there, is Lock In, first published in The Black Book of Horror, 2007.
Following this came these:
The Fragile Mask on his Face (Dark Discoveries magazine No 15, 2009)
The Worst of all Possible Places (Houses on the Borderland, 2008)
The True Spirit (Back from the Dead, 2010)
Old Grudge Ender (The Screaming Book of Horror, 2012)
Scrap (Dark Visions 1, 2013)
Grudge End Cloggers (Scare Me, 2020)
The Psychic Investigator (Lovecraftiana Magazine, 2022)
Tuesday 3 January 2023
All four stories in this collection cover a wide range of tropes within the zombie genre.
Dead Ronnie and I is a tale of high adventure by plane and sea, with an abortive escape by our protagonist to the as yet untainted Isles of Scotland. This was originally published in Sanitarium Magazine No 44 in 2016.
His Pale Blue Eyes is probably the most traditional take of zombie stories today, featuring a young girl’s determined search for her parents during a zombie apocalypse. It’s a story, though, about conditioning and how what someone is taught can radically affect their behaviour. Is the horror in this the shambling undead or the girl herself? See what you think. This first appeared in Bite-Sized Horror edited by Johnny Mains for Obverse Books in 2011.
By contrast Right For You Now, originally published in Weirdbook Zombie Annual No 3 in 2021, harks back to the original concept of the zombie in Voodoo-haunted Haiti, though this tale is set in present-day Britain. It’s a combination of a crime story, revenge, and a man’s obsessive fascination with age-old practices.
Our final tale, Romero’s Children, is more in the way of a science fiction story. The zombies here are certainly the most different. For a start off they are not dead but have been granted near immortality by a drug that swept the world with its promise to stop aging. Alas for those caught up in the frenzied demand to use it, though, its side effects were such that they would have been better off dead. This story appeared in 2010 in The Seventh Black Book of Horror edited by the late Charles Black and was subsequently picked up by American editor Paula Guran for her 2012 anthology Extreme Zombies.
Sunday 1 January 2023
I have as yet to receive confirmation of the actual date when this book will be published, but I'll post it here when I do.