“There Is No Zombie Outbreak!” in O IS FOR OUTBREAK

My short story about people in denial of the zombie apocalypse–“There Is No Zombie Outbreak!”–can be found in O IS FOR OUTBREAK from Red Cape Publishing.

Purchase e-book or paperback.

“O IS FOR OUTBREAK is the fifteenth book in an epic series of twenty-six horror anthologies. In this book you will find a selection of thirteen unsettling tales from some of the most talented independent horror authors writing today. From government conspiracies to historic plagues, otherworldly viruses to deadly insects, O IS FOR OUTBREAK brings a wide selection of pandemic-inspired horror tales that will have you hiding away, face mask in place.”

Fellow authors include: Pauline E. Dungate, Carlton Herzog, Jonathan Inbody, S.G. Kubrak, John Ryland, Damir Salkovic, Eric Thomas, B.F. Vega, and Lisa Zang.

Pulling the Trigger Warnings?

TRIGGER WARNING: Non-ideological discussion of every trigger warning I can think of.

Now that you’ve been cautioned, dark reader, I want to start off by admitting that I don’t have a problem with trigger warnings. I fully understand that some people have been traumatized by certain life experiences, and to read about them can make them feel anything from discomfort to extreme distress. And in my own writing, I’m completely willing to provide trigger warnings for any editors or publishers who ask for them.

But as a reader I don’t have much use for them, especially in horror, as dark fiction for me is about pushing through the shadow into the light. Personally, I’ve found that refusing to explore something that scares me only makes it loom larger in my life. Yet, mostly, I tend to skip them because I like to avoid anything remotely resembling a spoiler.

So, while I totally get the point of trigger warnings and honor those who advocate for them, the tricky question that no one wants to answer is: What subjects qualify?

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Why You Don’t See More Jewish Horror

THE JEWISH BOOK OF HORROR, the anthology I edited for Denver Horror Collective (DHC) in late 2021, won a bronze medal in the Independent Publisher Book Awards, a Silver medal in the 666 Awards, and had previously made it onto the preliminary ballot for the Bram Stoker Awards. Meanwhile, at a horror writers conference, I lost count of the authors who told me they loved the book, which sold well at the DHC table, as it has been literally around the world.

While readers are hungry for Jewish horror as a unique exploration of the larger genre, I think I finally understand why THE JEWISH BOOK OF HORROR was one of the only Jewish horror anthologies ever released (all by small presses). And why nearly every working author who also writes Jewish horror tells me they have difficulty getting those stories published.

Because while pitching my Jewish folk horror novel (CHARWOOD will be published in 2023 by Aggadah Try It, the Jewish horror imprint of Madness Heart Press) to the editor of a large, established horror fiction publisher, one of my sneaking suspicions as to what’s been turning off so many gatekeepers was finally confirmed.

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