Instigation: Creative Prompts on the Dark Side is a treasury of twisted tips, strange scenarios and disturbing sparks to help ignite the fuel in your creative furnace. Its aim? To push you into the danger zone of your imagination, by thinking in unconventional ways and trying things you never thought — or dared — to try before in your writing, art, or dreams.
See the catalog page for more information.
DIRECT PURCHASE FROM MASTICATION for $3.99:
NOTE: This book is currently only available in .mobi, .epub, and .pdf formats, which are readable in most ebook devices and computers. It will soon also be available directly from more ebook distributors like amazon and Barnes and Noble. A print edition is not currently available (though you can get a large sampler in the hardcover only edition of The Gorelets Omnibus published by Raw Dog Screaming Press).
If you’ve been reading my ebooks since the early days (e.g., pre-Kindle), then there’s a good chance you got them through Fictionwise.com — one of the first successful ebook distributors, known for offering a wide array of genre fiction — especially individual short stories — for a very affordable price. You may have already known that they were “bought out” by Barnes and Noble a few years ago, to help support B&N’s offerings for the Nook e-reader.
Yesterday I was informed that I should backup all my own purchases and get ready for the site to close down. They have posted a FAQ page with instructions for both downloading your bookshelf to archive copies and to also automatically transfer your ebooks over to B&N’s site, for your Nook library. I recommend doing both, if you can, as I’ve heard rumors that not all ebooks convert over to the Nook bookstore — and if you don’t have a Nook, you still might want to set up an account anyway, because you CAN read Nook books on some other devices, in aps, and on computers for free. Or in case you ever buy one.
Let me say it again:
Bookshelves on fictionwise.com will be unavailable after December 21, 2012. ACT SOON.
I’ll try to keep the books page on gorelets.com updated to help fans of ebooks find my work. Not all of my titles are in ebook form (and I like that, because I think avid readers SHOULD have special and exclusive — if not collectable — versions of stories). But in the years ahead, you’ll be seeing a growing number of e-titles from me, like the re-release of my second novel, Play Dead in ebook form from Raw Dog Screaming Press in late 2013, and a project I am developing for my own line (Mastication Publications) that takes the “Instigation” section of this website to a new level.
Although the death of fictionwise.com is not a major travesty to literature — since most of the titles are really just moving over to the Nook — I’m a little saddened by this turn of events. I’m a “Kindle person” for the most part, but I liked being able to read fictionwise titles on the Kindle. But thinking more broadly, this is another sign of the volatility of the ebook publishing economy, which constantly seems to shake things up and disorient readers, while struggling to evolve into something stable. The thing I liked most about fictionwise was its short story offerings — you could easily build your own “anthology” (or mixed tape) of fiction, and find good short-shorts by your favorite authors that might have appeared in magazines and anthologies you missed. It allowed writers who had a modicum of success to self-publish, and it offered a distribution for indie publishers to sell their wares outside of the dominant agency model that circulates mass market books. I also wonder if this is a sign of the waning of interest in the short-story form. As people can buy complete novels for a mere .99 cents, it seems hard to suggest they pay that much for a short story. Fictionwise had a micropayment system that seemed to solve that issue, and provided a really good niche market to find new genre fiction outside of the mainstream, but now we’ll likely have fewer options, as the dominant corporations have more control the e-publishing economy.
On a related note, Heidi Ruby Miller recently posted a video of our talk at the Western Maryland Indie Lit Book Festival back in 2011, that reveals some of my thoughts about how e-publishing is changing the way readers find books, and how publishers need to brand their lines as a signpost for navigating the disorienting, uncharted waters of electronic books.
I’m proud of the alumni, students, and faculty in Seton Hill U’s Writing Popular Fiction graduate program for putting this new book together, with profits going to assist Donna Munro, a great writer and fellow member of our community who shocked us all by being diagnosed with breast cancer earlier this year.
The kindle edition of the book was just released today on amazon for just $9.99. Totally worth it, given that it’s got over 700 pages of genre stories in it. I wrote one them (first appearance of my story “The Scraper”) as well as the introduction. There are a lot of folks you’ll recognize in the table of contents… in fact, a large number of them appeared in the textbook I co-edited last year, Many Genres, One Craft.
Please help us help Donna by picking up a copy for your Kindle reader. Here’s the official press release…
Giant multi-author anthology on sale Tuesday, August 7 to benefit cancer fighter.
Date August 2, 2012 Contact: Natalie Duvall firstname.lastname@example.org
Seventy-six writers connected to the Seton Hill University Writing Popular Fiction program have created a multi-genre charity anthology entitled Hazard Yet Forward. All proceeds from this project will benefit Donna Munro, a 2004 graduate of the program. Munro, a teacher living in St. Louis, Missouri, was recently diagnosed with breast cancer. An active member of the SHU WPF alumni committee, Munro helps organize the school’s annual writing conference, the In Your Write Mind Workshop.
To aid Munro and her family, faculty members, alumni, students and friends of the Writing Popular Fiction program quickly responded to compile this massive anthology. The book features flash fiction, short stories and even a full-length novella. In total, there are 75 works from various genres, which makes this anthology one that features something for everyone.
Genres represented in the book range from horror to romance to mystery – and everything in between. Some of the notable writers in the anthology are World Fantasy Award winner Nalo Hopkinson, Bram Stoker winners Michael A. Arnzen and Michael Knost, Bram Stoker nominee Lawrence C. Connolly, ALA/YALSA Best Book for Young Adults winner Jessica Warman, Rita finalist Dana Marton, Spur winner Meg Mims, Asimov’s Readers’ Award winner Timons Esaias and WV Arts and Humanities literary fellowships winner Geoffrey Cameron Fuller.
About Hazard Yet Forward, co-compiler Matt Duvall says, “It’s an unprecedented collection of stories from every genre imaginable.” This large volume is an electronic book for the popular Kindle platform and is available for purchase through Amazon starting August 7. It’s also reasonably priced. The book will be on sale for $9.99.
More information about the anthology can be found at http://hazardyetforward.wordpress.com. To learn about the unique and exciting Writing Popular Fiction program, please visit http://www.setonhill.edu/academics/fiction/.
If you want to contribute more than just the $9.99, then visit this page from Michael Knost.
Postscript… The book is doing well. Right now, it’s #3 in the amazon bestseller list for short story anthos, right under the works of Poe and the Norton Anthology!
While “responsive” is a word I usually associate with “Things Doctors Say In Intensive Care Units,” it’s also a word that now applies to this website. “Responsive” means that the site automatically recognizes if you’re reading it with a touchscreen device and it changes to make it more mobile-friendly. [The same is true of the Arnzen Social Network page at http://michaelarnzen.com/ and most of the other main pages linked in my menu.] While I doubt it’s perfect, you can now far more easily read the text and browse pages while on the road, riding in the back of your hearse or whatever. I’ve only tested it on an iphone and ipad, but it seems to work well. In fact, in iOS, you can not only bookmark it, you can choose “Add to Home Screen” and it will place an icon on your main screen that you can click for instance access to these pages, just like clicking on an “app.” Try it out, Apple-heads!
It’s funny to me to reflect on how far things have changed — yet remained virtually the same — over the decade+ that I’ve been running this website. I bet most people don’t realize that “gorelets” is neologism short for “gory applets” (aka “apps”) — which was how the original poetry series was created and delivered using some of the first handheld devices (PDAs). Here’s a funny before-and-after comparison of gorelets now and then, to show the evolution of this website.
This is all very trivial, but you can read more about the history behind the gorelets project in The Gorelets Omnibus. An excerpt, answering the question “What are Gorelets?” is available on the book page for the original chapbook, Gorelets: Unpleasant Poems, where more photos and history is provided.
To all my longtime readers and goreletter subscribers over the past decade who have been there with me since the beginning and are smiling right alongside me…THANK YOU.
Related fiction: “Introducing MyBlade”– a parody of those infamous Steve Jobs-styled ipod/iphone product announcement speeches, published in The Goreletter back in 2007. (And here’s a funny youtube video I found of some kids goofing around with an uncannily similar concept).
A quick update to note that the massive fiction writing guide that I co-edited last year, Many Genres, One Craft: Lessons in Writing Popular Fiction, is now available in an affordable ebook form for the Amazon Kindle and the Barnes and Noble Nook.
Many Genres has not only swept up an astounding number of industry awards, it also is getting rave reviews from writers who have turned to the book for guidance in navigating their new novels. See the awesome array of customer reviews on amazon.com for the hardcover edition, and I think you’ll see why I am so proud of this book and its many amazing contributors.
You can now get the Gorelets Omnibus as an e-book for the Kindle along with all the other editions, from amazon.com.
I think this is very cool, because gorelets — which, a decade ago, were originally a series of poems that were written for PDAs, the first handheld e-readers — are now available in ebook format for your cell phone (if you have the Kindle app). This feels like coming full circle.
Just so you’re aware: the Kindle edition is an electronic adaptation of the paperback edition. Remember that the Hardcover is substantially expanded, with bonus poetry galore and it even features a “Poetry Writing Workshop” that includes craft articles and more Instigation than you can even find here on this website).
The print edition is also available through your favorite bookseller, or directly from the publisher, as well. Visit those scoundrels at Raw Dog Screaming Press (publisher of my earlier titles, 100 Jolts and Play Dead) today for more information.
Plans are afoot with publishers of my backlist to produce ebook versions of my novels and collections in the year to come. Keep an eye on my Amazon profile if you’re looking for something new for your kindle, nook, kanookiedindle, et cetera.
As I work on the next issue of The Goreletter, I thought I’d post a little New Year’s round up of recent activity and news of some exciting things to spill soon out of the cracks in the Arnzen brainbox.
Earlier today, I uploaded scans of a few rare broadsides from days of yore to the new “Arnzen Manuscripts and Rarities” collection on Scribd.com. I thought fans of my book, Proverbs for Monsters, might like to get a peek at the history behind some of the stories. (Dark Regions Press is selling Proverbs for Monsters at a nice discount right now… visit them at darkregions.com ). I’ll likely keep updating this site with various oddities, and excerpts from forthcoming titles, so if you’re on scribd, please follow me or leave comments.
New artwork continues to be posted to my flickr gallery on a semi-regular basis, like the image above. This one reminded me of the story, “Spring Ahead, Fall Back” so I called it that. There are also new things going up every now and again to the Gorelets.com gallery on this very website (like several poster art pieces I discovered recently, when going through my old files).
And the big news:
Many of you might realize that the name of this website, gorelets.com, refers to my poetry experiment — and subsequent poetry chapbook — called Gorelets: Unpleasant Poems. This webpage was originally just a platform for distributing short-short horror poems to people with handheld computers long before there was a twitter or even a Kindle. 2011 will mark a DECADE since launching that experiment, so to celebrate, I am compiling a HUGE e-collection of poetry, articles, and other fun related to the gorelets project called The Gorelets Omnibus, which should be available on Amazon.com as a Mastication Publications title in the weeks ahead. The original Gorelets collection had just 52 poems — which really is quite a few. But last I counted, this new ominbus edition will have something like 183 poems in it! I will likely create enough exclusives to bring that number up to 200, just because I like round numbers and because I like to make each edition of a book a little special. Anyway, if you’re a regular visitor to this site, I think you’ll enjoy it a great deal.
2010 was a sluggish year for me due to some setbacks and work commitments, but the haze of the year is settling and I’m excited about the year — nay, the decade — to come. Right now I’m juggling four book-length projects, I have several short stories I’ve promised to horror anthologies in development, and lots of stuff on publisher’s desks getting typeset as we speak. So I suspect 2011 will be a very happy new weird. I wish you all the best.
Much more to come soon! Subscribe to the email edition of The Goreletter so you don’t miss a beat.
HAPPY HOLIDAYS! Against my better judgment, for a gift I give you this Christmas story — “Dear Santa” — a long lost manuscript of the very first horror story I ever sold (to GAS magazine in 1989), but which ultimately never saw print. On the one hand, this is old and amateur enough to be most embarrassing. On the other hand, I think I’ve made a career of embarrassing myself. Enjoy?
(If you cannot read the above, see if you can click on the “view fullscreen” link at the top of the reader. Or just head on over to scribd.com, a neat site for document sharing that I have just joined. Comments, “follows” and offers to buy my old manuscripts for heaps of gold bullion are always more than welcome!)
Have a great holiday season…
A few bits of “writer”-related news to note:
I’ll be returning as a guest lecturer at the Odyssey Fantasy Writing Workshop next Summer (applications for early admission due Jan 30th!). The kind folks at Odyssey just interviewed me for their blog, too, where I talk about how I persisted in the early years of my career, and where I share some advice for writers of genre fiction. [I'll also be returning to teach at the Alpha Workshops for Young SF/F/H Writers next summer, as well!]
A shorter interview is attached to a brief 5-Star Review of my short story “Spring Ahead, Fall Back,” over on Red Adept’s Kindle Book Review Blog. You can get that story and more on your Kindle at amazon.com. [Speaking of amazon, I just posted lengthy "Listmania" of hard-to-find anthologies they sell in which I appear, aptly entitled "Michael Arnzen Is Lurking In The Shadowy Corners of Your Bookstore"].
P.S. My 20th Anniversary Contest has passed deadline.
If you have entered by kindly writing a customer review, you need to let me know about it via e-mail with your mailing address asap. The random draw for winners will be posted later this week. WINNERS HAVE BEEN POSTED. THANKS TO ALL!
I’ve gathered all the books I’ve reviewed in The Goreletter (since 2002) into some fun listmania lists over at amazon.com, and I’ll keep adding titles to them from the “Not Dead Yet” department into the future.
I’ve also been having way too much fun trolling around amazon for weird discoveries, and I have compiled a few other funky lists, like the Goofy Gory Gifts Galore list and other novelty lists. I’m apparently a listmaniac.
After many years of neglect, I have updated my author profile on amazon.com, where you can find more weirdness and links to many of my books and anthologies. Since amazon now features some of my stuff in their kindle store, and because I am likely to begin publishing The Goreletter for Kindle readers as well as web browsers, I have made gorelets an amazon affiliate, and I have been cleaning up their database when it comes to Arnzen titles by uploading book covers or making corrections. Your reviews and tags on amazon.com are appreciated.