On Amazing Stories issue 25

AncientHorror

The latest post in my Amazing Stories retrospective is now live; this time I’m looking at the April 1928 issue, which includes a rather marvellous story called “The Yeast Men” (a fitting alternate title would be… DOUGHLEMS).

This issue marks the magazine’s second anniversary; I’ve now covered two whole years of this pioneering publication, and two thirds of Hugo Gernsback’s run as editor. Bit of a milestone…

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Carmilla and Company

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Continuing one-story-per-decade overview of vampire literature is still flapping about over at WWAC. This month I’m covering the 1870s and 1880s, which involves looking at one all-time classic and one long-forgotten also-ran.

Phew — the series is only one third finished and I’ve already crossed the 12,000-word mark!

The Demonologist and the Thief

A few times now I’ve butted heads with a chap named Brian Niemeier, a hard-right indie sci-fi author who believes that demons are turning people into Marxists. I’ve recently seen the topic of Niemeier cropping up in the blogosphere once more; these discussions have focused mainly on his religio-political views, but I’d like to take the opportunity to point out a grave ethical lapse he’s made as an author by supporting a known plagiarist.

Now, this isn’t exactly news. I mentioned the subject in passing back in 2017, but I didn’t go into detail. With this post, I hope to make the case clearer.

First, let me introduce the plagiarist who Niemeier supports. His name is Douglas S. Taylor and he runs a one-man publishing company called DarcWorX. Taylor has committed literally dozens of acts of plagiarism by using copyrighted artwork without permission on book covers, publicity material and merchandise. I’ve already written in detail about my experiences with Taylor, but if you don’t have time to read that, here are a few samples of Taylor’s theft:

Continue reading “The Demonologist and the Thief”

The Grimms at their Grimmest?

A lot’s been said about how the fairy tales of the Brothers Grimm are sometimes darker and more twisted than the sanitised versions consumed by today’s children. We all know about the mutilations that happen in the Grimms’ version of Cinderella, and some of us have dug deeper and found such oddities as Hans-My-Hedgehog or The Mouse, the Bird and the Sausage. And yes, we’ve all made thunderingly obvious puns involving “Grimm” and “grim”. Myself included, in the title of this very post, because I’m that lazy.

But there’s one story in particular I’d like to bring up; one I’ve never heard anyone talk about in the context of freaky fairy tales. That surprises me as it contains what must surely be the single most twisted moment in the entire Grimm canon. It’s called Cherry, or the Frog Bride.

Continue reading “The Grimms at their Grimmest?”

Midnight Widows: Progress Report, April 2019

widows_illustration-cropTime for another update on the status of my upcoming comic, Midnight Widows

I had previously had April pencilled in as the launch month for the Midnight Widows crowdfunding campaign. Well, it looks unlikely to happen quite so soon — but I’m pleased to confirm that the campaign is getting closer bit by bit.

In my previous update, I mentioned that I had a to-do list of seven details that needed clearing up before I could give the green light. Well, since then, that list has dropped from seven to five. And I’m currently working on one of the five remaining, while Marcela — the lead artist on the comic — is working on another.

It’ll probably be safest if I move the scheduled campaign start from April to May. But either way, the campaign will be happening, and I aim to make 2019 the year of the Midnight Widows.