Joy Yehle and Brenda Tolian had me on their new horror fiction podcast, BURIAL PLOT, to talk about the origins of Denver Horror Collective, worshiping viruses as gods, and the inspiration behind MALINAE.
In a virtual launch event on Friday, April 9 at 6 p.m. (MT), D & T Publishing unleashes MALINAE, the debut novella by biological horror author, Josh Schlossberg.
RSVP via Eventbrite for Zoom link.
Ward Ayers, physically disabled and confined to his Jersey Shore home, can only watch in dismay as his beloved wife Malina slips further and further into dementia. Until he uncovers the dark force behind Malina’s decline and must plumb the depths of sacrifice and selfishness to reclaim his wife and preserve humanity’s future.
The 1-hour event will feature:
–Josh Schlossberg reading a brief excerpt from MALINAE and sharing the real-life inspiration for his fictional work’s exploration of Alzheimer’s disease.
–D & T Publishing editor, Dawn Ellis Shea, relating her experiences working as a nurse with dementia patients.
–Huntington Potter, Ph.D., Director of University of Colorado Alzheimer’s and Cognition Center, offering hope in the form of the latest scientific progress towards a cure.
The event will conclude with Q&A.
MALINAE will be available as an e-book from Godless.com on April 9, and as print and e-book through Amazon on April 23.
For more information, please visit JoshsWorstNightmare.com or DandTpublishing.com.
All my life, people have been trying to shut me up.
It started in grade school, when speaking my mind got me sent out into the hall. This kept up through junior high, where I’d commit the sin of “talking back” to teachers, earning me a double-digit tally of detentions.
I mostly stayed out of trouble through high school and college by funneling my unauthorized thoughts into writing, without ever bothering to try to publish any of it.
In my twenties, when I took a job as an environmental organizer, the state would muzzle my legal protests with detainments and arrests. On one occasion, I was passing out brochures on a public sidewalk when a SWAT team member and former Blackwater operative threw me to the pavement, kneed me in the neck, and confiscated my camera before carting me off to jail.
Upon discovering the political power of the written word, my activist career from that point on involved me being censored and blacklisted by government agencies and corporate-funded NGOs for daring to critique their failures.
After retiring from activism in favor of journalism, despite writing for dozens of publications and winning multiple awards, I eventually learned that editors would reject any pitch that didn’t conform to their own rigid ideologies.
Venturing into the horror fiction world, I was able to sneak several of my short stories into some forward-thinking publications and subversive anthologies, but not a single publishing house would touch my far more “controversial” longer fiction.
But 2020 changed everything. That’s when I sent my novella, MALINAE, to D&T Publishing’s Dawn Ellis Shea. Not only didn’t Dawn blanch at what I had to say, she offered me a contract for the book (coming out in April).
Praise the dark gods for people like Dawn; the opposite of censors, they’re the amplifiers raising up the voices of artists the establishment doesn’t want you to hear.
So, I’ve been thinking lately (never too late to start!): Is there anything more narcissistic than publishing a newsletter dedicated solely to oneself?
Of course, the reality of being a writer today is that if you don’t promote your work, no one will read it. While I certainly write for myself, I’m also doing so to connect with weirdos like you. Hence this newsletter.
Now, I’ve tried to turn Josh’s Worst Nightmare into something larger than myself, focusing on biological horror fiction rather than just my latest scribblings. Which is why I’ve done everything from putting out my infamous Haiku Horror Reviews of bio-horror books, to hosting Beast Bout brackets (where you get to vote on which monster you think would win in an actual fight), to short, subtitled music videos I’ve been calling “Micro Bio Horror.”
But I’ll be honest: Engagement wasn’t that high for these attempts, so instead of putting time into stuff people aren’t that interested in–don’t worry, I’m not hurt!–I’ve regressed back to simply promoting my latest work and sharing a few horror fiction-related musings in this here editorial.
Still, ultimately, I’d like to make Josh’s Worst Nightmare something you’re excited about, rather than just one more thing to labor through with an obligatory scan, ignore, or send straight to the trash.
Those who know me are all too aware of my ability to not only home in on the disturbing, but to make people afraid of things they never even thought about before.
For years, the forces of light have conspired to keep my long fiction from infecting the minds of good, wholesome folk such as yourself. Sure, several of my short stories slipped through the cracks, but my most dangerous works have been suppressed. And with good reason.
A sinister force known as D & T Publishing has conspired with me to unleash a flood of shadows this April in the form of my forthcoming novella, MALINAE:
In the quiet oceanside community of Beachcrest, Ward Ayers watches in dismay as his wife Malina slips further into dementia. As her behavior takes a turn for the disturbing, he uncovers a dark force behind her decline.Continue reading
Over the last century, traditional publishing has brought us the most famous horror stories ever told. Big names such as Stephen King and Dean Koontz thrust horror’s tendrils into the minds of millions of Americans, popularizing the genre.
Fast forward to 2019, where small presses and indie publishing are now bringing us the lion’s share of horror fiction—including what I believe to be some of the best stuff ever written, in what many are calling a horror renaissance.
The reason is simple: Small presses have more freedom to publish unique and diverse voices, acquired tastes that might not appeal to a mainstream palate. While these conduits can sometimes be hit or miss, more often than not, they’re where you’ll find the most artful—and dangerous—writing out there. Giving free rein to authors is how a literary genre evolves.
Which is why I’m all shivers to announce that, this fall, Denver Horror Collective (of which I’m a founding member) will be publishing a horror fiction anthology of its own!
A buck doesn’t get you much these days. But here’s a short list of products you can purchase on Amazon for $0.99!
1) Pineapple Shaped Bottle Opener
2) Makeup Brush
3) Mini Funnel
4) 2-ounce Plastic Spray Bottle
5) Silicone Oil Brush
6) LED Elephant
7) Multifunction Garlic Tool
8) Cosmetic Sponge
9) Glue Stick
10) My short story “Handgina” about a bitter young man shocked to find a part of the female anatomy growing out of the palm of his hand!
Pick up “Handgina” (cover art by The Rïpröck) for $0.99 for your Kindle or gift it to a friend (or frenemy)!
I was interviewed on the Jeamus After Midnight podcast with Jeamus Wilkes about folk horror, my dangerous and ill-advised pilgrimages to the desert, and whether it’s a good idea to have a big ego as a writer (I wonder why I was asked that question?).
Check it out and tell me what you think and be sure to subscribe to Jeamus After Midnight!
Download or stream here.
Read the story for $4 in issue #5 of The Rock N’ Roll Horror Zine!