The latest issue of The Goreletter (Vol. 7.01: “Cibophobia”) included a special subscribers-only contest that involved writing a haiku summary of one of my books and posting it to LibraryThing’s #bookhaiku page. Here are the winning entries (surprise: I’ve added a bonus for 4th place!).
These fine folks are all each receiving a signed copy of Many Genres, One Craft, an uncased copy of the film based on my short-shorts, Exquisite Corpse, on DVD, and a special signed CD-R single of “The Bleu Man Group” (featuring both live and studio versions), excerpted from the ArnzenSongs CD (currently in production as part of a 26-copy lettered series of double-live recordings for kickstarter backers of The Fridge of the Damned…extra cds will be available for sale from this site in the near future, if you missed your chance!). They also all received a free limited edition broadside (fancy single poem on fancy paper).
psychopath of art:
i color my brain in ink –
your death comes to me
– Bill Bush
nothing is as it appears –
read between the lines
– Beth Kegelmeyer
Thanks to these fine folks for crafting such intriguing haiku. I love every syllable.
Don’t miss out on contests like these for your chance at winning free Arnzen books and scary swag! Subscribe to The Goreletter email newsletter right now. Next issue expected in mid-to-late March 2013.
A few weeks ago I guest-judged (along with Nathan Rosen and Oonah Joslin) a writing contest they held on the site for short-short horror stories related to the common theme of “art.” It generated a huge response, and I read a lot of very sick stories that made it a difficult process to select the very best. My hat’s off to the winners: Caelin Beaty (for “Chiseled”), Mara Morrigan (for “Disturbing Art”) and Angel Zapata (for “The Blood Worms”). Three very distinctive shots of terror. I sent them all a signed copy of The Gorelets Omnibus, in appreciation for their accomplishments. Start reading those three and I know you won’t be able to stop yourself from reading any of the hundreds upon hundreds of short-short stories on the site. Go to microhorror.com and enjoy.
Microhorror is spearheaded by Nathan Rosen, who you might recognize as the graphic designer behind the “100% Arnzen” meat package I shared with you back in May. Since that time, Nate has been working with me on a couple of future projects that I can’t wait to share in the year to come — from graphic design work for the upcoming re-release of my novel Play Dead in new formats, to a new chapbook to come in 2013, to a realization of my old “Refridgerator of the Damned” in a way you won’t be expecting! Keep your eyes here, or subscribe to The Goreletter for all the exciting news to come in the year ahead.
Congratulations to Samantha Mostek — winner of my Friday the 13th giveaway of The Gorelets Omnibus on the website for booklovers, GoodReads.com. [You can follow my profile here: http://www.goodreads.com/MichaelAArnzen
]. Samantha will be receiving a signed paperback copy as well as one of the rare broadsides I produced to celebrate the book launch.
Didn’t win? Sad? Well, contests for all sorts of things always appear in The Goreletter. Subscribe today! The Goreletter WILL run a contest for a few of the remaining broadsides I have on hand, so come join the mad party and stay tuned with all things Arnzen. [Click here to read a description of The Goreletter].
THIS GOODREADS GIVEAWAY IS FOR A FREE SIGNED PAPERBACK OF THE GORELETS OMNIBUS.
You must be a member of goodreads.com to enter. If you win, your book will be autographed and include an original handwritten haiku on the title page, and you will also receive one of the fancy and rare limited edition broadsides that were given only to those who pre-ordered the book a few months ago.
NOTE: This contest has now ended.
Contest ends FRIDAY THE 13th MIDNIGHT. Better get clickin’.
Reader reviews, and helping to spread the word, are really appreciated.
“Dark Promptings” is a special series of guest-written creative writing prompts, aimed at sparking the imagination’s gasoline for writers from any genre…but with a dark or devious discoloration, just like the Instigation department at Gorelets.com. The guest contributors are folks who wrote articles appearing in my fat new non-fiction book for fiction writers of all kinds, Many Genres, One Craft: Lessons in Writing Popular Fiction, making a stop here at gorelets.com as part of their Virtual Book Tour across the web. (You can find my own VBT essays elsewhere).
Jason’s provided some opening lines for writers to develop into a full-fledged scenario, all infused with a little dark background music. He calls these prompts “MURDER BALLADS”….
25 MINUTES TO GO
Well, they’re building a gallows outside my cell. I’ve got 25 minutes to go.
Polly handed Willy back his ring, and said, “I can’t, Willy, I’m afraid of your ways. The way you’ve been ramblin’, you’d only lead me astray.”
Willy shrugged and dropped the ring into his pocket. He said, “Sorry to hear that, Polly. Mama’s always right. So it’s a good thing I dug on your grave the best part of last night.”
LONG BLACK VEIL
The judge said, “Son, what is your alibi. If you were somewhere else, you won’t have to die.”
I said not a word, though it meant my life. You see, I was in the arms of my best friend’s wife.
THE DEVIL AND PRESTON BLACK
Preston Black went down to the crossroads. He tried to make the devil a deal, but the devil said he didn’t have a soul to steal.
SOMEBODY GOT MURDERED
Someone lights a cigarette in the back seat of the car. Someone else takes a swig and passes back the jar. Where they were last night, no one can remember. Somebody got murdered. Goodbye. For keeps. Forever.
Jason Jack Miller is a writer, photographer and musician who has been hassled by cops in Canada, Mexico and the Czech Republic. An outdoor travel guide he co-authored with his wife in 2006 jumpstarted his freelancing career; his work has since appeared in newspapers, magazines, literary journals, online, and as part of a travel guide app for mobile phones. He received a Master’s in Writing Popular Fiction from Seton Hill University where he is adjunct creative writing faculty and he is an Authors Guild member. He’s been a whitewater raft guide, played guitar in a garage band and served as a concierge at a five star resort hotel in Florida. When he isn’t writing he’s on his mountain bike or looking for his next favorite guitar. He is currently writing and recording the soundtrack to his novel, The Devil and Preston Black.
Jason’s lessons in Many Genres include “Magical Realism” and “Painting Your Setting with Concrete Nouns.”
Read more “Dark Promptings”…
It was difficult to pick one, but to me the clear winner is FJ Bergmann (fibitz.com), for penning a gross little number inspired by the art piece, “Fountain of Worm.” Bergmann’s haiku has dynamic action, impending doom, good reference to the image, and great language use, all telling a unique story in just 17 syllables!:
quivering with need
undulating, gorged with blood
the gut villi wait
FJ wins a free trade paperback of the book, HE IS LEGEND, edited by Christopher Conlon for Tor Books. I’ll deface my story in that book with my signature scrawl. Maybe draw some book-worms, even. And then to make up for that I’ll toss in an extra Arnzen book of some kind as a bonus.
I wasn’t planning on a 2nd place prize, but I really liked the unsettling suggestions evoked by Terrie Leigh Relf‘s entry for the drawing, “Angry Bird”, too, so she’s winning a free copy of Audiovile on CD:
so many ravens
gathering around my house
those eyes. . .those blue eyes
– TL Relf
We’ll have more contests like this in the future, so be sure to subscribe to The Goreletter so you don’t miss a chance. In the mean time, check out everyone’s twisted haiku! And do feel free to post your own captions, share dark poems, and add comments whenever you like on the gallery or photostream! I appreciate it, and I think all the visitors to gorelets.com really do, too. — Mike Arnzen
[Note: this contest is now closed to entries (though comments on the gallery are always welcomed, poetic or not). Winner announced soon. -MAA].
This one’s easy. Post a haiku poem related to one of the artpieces on my gallery. Just enter it in the “comments” field, along with your byline (name) and e-mail address. This will automatically publish the poem. All adult language will be censored, so please don’t use any — suggest and evoke, instead. Entries are due by Halloween (Oct 31st) at Midnight.
Arbitrary rule: I expect your haiku to be 3 lines long, in a 5-7-5 syllable pattern. No rhyme necessary. Can be humorous, horrific, or traditional in nature. You can enter up to three total. Anything more than that, and I’ll report you to the FCC as a perpetrator of spamku.
If I like your haiku best, you’ll get a signed copy of the Tor trade paperback edition of He Is Legend, a random horror gift from the Arnzen coffers, and your poem will appear in the next e-mail edition of The Goreletter.
[UPDATE: The writing contest has now ended. I was asked to judge the finalists, and have submitted my selections to Raw Dog Screaming Press, who have now announced the winners and published the winning entry. Thanks to all who participated!]
For the month of August, Raw Dog Screaming Press (publisher of my novel, Play Dead) is offering a sweet “Retrospective” book bundle of their bestselling short-story collections, which packages together my book, 100 JOLTS, with Jeremy C. Shipp’s Sheep and Wolves and Adam Golaski’s Worse Than Myself, for a VERY low price ($30 for paperbacks, $12 for Ebooks). Orders get a bonus pdf of secret goodies, as well.
To celebrate and promote this event, I’ll be participating in a live chat on TWITTER alongside Adam Golaski on Monday, August 9th, at 9-10pm eastern. Tweet us questions during that hour and you never know what might happen. [Don't miss Jeremy Shipp's chat, too, on Aug 4th] To follow the chat via twitter, just type “#retrospective” into the search window and you’ll track the conversation!
And if that wasn’t enough, RDSP is also hosting a writing contest, with prompts based on all three books, and goodies for prize. See the Retrospective page for details on all three. To get you inspired and instigated, here are the details for the contest inspired by 100 Jolts:
WRITERS: participate in our writing contest with prompts based on these books! The winning stories will be published on the Raw Dog Screaming Press website and the winners will receive a prize pack of goodies.
Rules: 1 piece of fiction per prompt. No piece can be longer than 1000 words, not including title and information. Attached to email as a .doc, sent to email@example.com. Work must be obviously based on the prompt, poetry acceptable. Submission deadline: Oct. 1, results posted no later than Oct. 31.
100 Jolts prompt: Take one of the lines from “Stabbing for Dummies” (from 100 Jolts and/or Audiovile) and use it as the opening sentence of a new story. You can alter the point of view to suit your need. The tale must build to an outrageous conclusion, and fall under 1000 words. If you don’t have your copy of 100 Jolts handy, use this line: “Knowledge of the circulatory system can save time.”
Prize Pack: publication of the winning story on the RDSP website, a signed horror movie postcard, a signed copy of “Audiovile” and the Bram Stoker Award winning poetry collection, Freakcidents (from Shocklines Press, 2005)
I expect your weirdest. Get crackin’! And don’t forget to drop by the chat on twitter on August 9th, at 9-10pm eastern.
Book Collectors, Arnzenophiliacs, and Ebayaholics, look out! Your chance to win some pretty rare swag in my 20th Anniversary Contest is ending sooner than you think! I’m extending the deadline to December 13th!
Up for grabs are some exceptionally hard-to-find items:
A “test design” pressing of the Live and Vile audio disc. This CD (pictured above) was released in only 26 lettered edition copies, bundled with the leather bound edition of my novella, The B*tchfight, from Bad Moon Books in 2008. It features a hilarious live reading from the Zombiefest convention and demo versions and outtakes from my recording sessions for Audiovile. Only 26 people in the country own these rare tracks; and only three copies of the hand-made test pressings exist. It’s signed. The winner will get this rare cd PLUS a signed copy of 100 Jolts for read-along fun.
Also up for grabs is a signed deck of Play Dead playing cards. These cards feature art by David Liscomb, inspired by images in my novel PLAY DEAD. They were included with the “Grim Grimoire” (sculpture-bound) edition of the novel. Not a lot of these exist! The winner will get the cards PLUS a copy of Exquisite Corpse, the film based on my short-shorts and poetry.
A third prize offering is a signed white paperback / “advanced review copy” of my out-of-print novel, Play Dead. Unavailable anywhere, an unknown limited run of these bound paperback versions were sent only to book reviewers before the book’s release. You’ll get this PLUS a signed copy of my latest chapbook, Skull Fragments.
HOW TO ENTER:
I’m trying to broaden my audience, so I need your help. You get an entry for any “user review” or “customer comment” you post about any of my books on any web retailer where you already shop online. I don’t see this as a bribe for false advertising: You can praise or damn me and my god forsaken “writing…I don’t care. Ideal places to do this include the Arnzen pages on Amazon.com, itunes, cdbaby.com, horror-mall.com, or anywhere my work is sold.
ANY old titles from my 20 years of weirdness can be reviewed in this way (for convenience, there’s also a large list on my amazon.com biography page). If you haven’t actually read any of my books, I invite you to review some of these freebies:
- you can review The Goreletter on amazon.com
- you download your free ebook of Sportuary and then post a review on amazon.com
- you can listen to the sampler of Audiovile on cdbaby.com and review it there or post one on itunes
When you’ve published your review, simply e-mail me (or post a link in a comment here) to tell me about it before Midnight eastern on Dec 13th, 2009. Include your mailing address, because the first thirty entries get this signed bookplate for free, while supplies last:
That’s a lot of cool stuff. If you do not currently subscribe to the email edition of The Goreletter, you will automatically be added to the list. If you are weird enough to be reading this now, you are sure to like the newsletter (which is only delivered quarterly or so, and won a Bram Stoker Award, so it can’t be half bad). You must be on my mailing list to qualify for a prize when winners are chosen, but you are free to unsubscribe anytime you like.
will be chosen from a random draw. have been posted (see comments section on this post).
If you got your free ebook for subscribing to the Goreletter, but don’t know how to read it, did you know that Amazon.com recently released a free Kindle reader for the PC? (New versions for other platforms are coming soon, too). Here’s how: simply download and install Kindle Reader for PC…and then double click on the file for your ebook from inside of Windows. Voila! It’s easy. Then go back to amazon’s kindle shop and download any of the INNUMERABLE other free ebooks they’ve got. (This is so popular, that all their “bestsellers” today are freebies). Or buy some of my short stories for under .50 cents!
(If you do the latter, and post a review before Dec 1st, e-mail subscribers can get an easy entry into the rare Arnzen stuff giveaway contest in the latest Goreletter! First thirty entries get a free signed bookplate, too. Can’t lose!
I don’t know why I’ve fallen for Amazon after all these years of resisting their lure. But e-books aside, I’ve finally got a decent amazon author page, and I’ve been getting way too goofy with listmania and other amazon fun.
The Goreletter Vol. 6, #1 was e-mailed to subscribers on Halloween, 31 October 2009 @ 9:30pm est. It contains extra material not available here on the weblog version, including a great contest to win some very RARE Arnzen-related collector’s items, and a chance to get a signed numbered bookplate.
Subscribe today…it’s free and you can always unsubscribe if it terrorizes you too much. Issues are mailed only a few times per year, so your inbox won’t suffocate. And remember: all subscribers to The Goreletter get a free ebook, yours to keep, in either .pdf or kindle/.mobi format!
– Michael A. Arnzen
Lots of little things going on, so I thought I’d post a bunch of random news all in one batch:
+ Two of my critical essays on THE EXORCIST will appear in Studies in the Horror Film: The Exorcist, which promises to be a fantastic — if not the definitive — collection of studies of this seminal shocker, from the always exquisite publisher Centipede Press.
+ Dark Regions is previewing their upcoming book, Nostradamus’ Fate! A must buy.
+ Writers! Don’t forget Writer’s Workshop of Horror…already in its second printing, this book is fast becoming one of the most important ‘textbooks’ on how to write for the genre of the unexpected, by masters of the craft.
+ Do you subscribe to The Goreletter yet? If not, do so. A new issue mounts.