Literary Horror discussion

95 views

Comments Showing 1-50 of 93 (93 new)    post a comment »
« previous 1

message 2: by Benjamin (new)

Benjamin Uminsky (benjaminu) | 340 comments What do you think about this press Randolph?


message 3: by Randolph (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 2 comments They have some pretty good anthologies, that's all I've ever bought from them, but their proofreading leaves a lot to be desired. The books are bound decently. They seem to have a pretty wide range of authors but other than the three anthologies I own I don't have a lot of first hand experience. Somebody else here probably has more extensive knowledge.


message 4: by Benjamin (new)

Benjamin Uminsky (benjaminu) | 340 comments I used to buy more of their books a while a go. My tastes in this genre has really changed over the last few years and has edged more to the uh... well away from CD types of books. CD is not really publishing high quality lit... just your run of the mill horror genre fiction, with a few hidden gems sprinkled about... IMHO.


message 5: by Randolph (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 2 comments Benjamin wrote: "I used to buy more of their books a while a go. My tastes in this genre has really changed over the last few years and has edged more to the uh... well away from CD types of books. CD is not really..."

Agreed. I don't see a lot I want to collect there. Every once in awhile there is an interesting release.


message 6: by Scott (new)

Scott I agree that their editing sucks; really it's unforgivable for collector's editions. But they have put out some things I'm glad to own, like huge collections by Tim Lebbon & Tom Piccirilli, and those Century's Best Horror (which I haven't read yet, but with such a range of material, it seems worth having.)


message 7: by Randolph (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 2 comments Has anyone ever joined the Cemetery Dance book club? What did you think? They are offering a different setup now where you get a monthly $40 coupon. You only get 10 because they give two limited signed editions instead for two of the months. The problem is I have zero interest in the two limited edition books. Still, it's $400 a year for a $150 price tag. If you couple that with the berserk sales they have, 33% and 50%, you could get a real deal out of this.


message 8: by Scott (new)

Scott I agree, the price is good but there isn't much I'm interested in either.


message 9: by Benjamin (new)

Benjamin Uminsky (benjaminu) | 340 comments There is precious little that they are putting out that holds my interest. I might snag the novellas every now and then, if it is by an author I like. Everything else is pretty forgettable.

Its funny, when I first got into horror, CD was my go to, but then my tastes changed and now Ex Occ, Tart Press, and the like are my go to.


message 10: by Randolph (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 2 comments Benjamin wrote: "There is precious little that they are putting out that holds my interest. I might snag the novellas every now and then, if it is by an author I like. Everything else is pretty forgettable.

Its fu..."


Thanks for the input. I was probably gonna pass anyway. CD hasn't really gotten me excited recently either. I was pretty interested in them a few years ago. The only positive is you can convert the $40 coupon to a gift card if nothing snatches your interest that month. You can use it for other publishers they carry too, but the two "special" books are really not up my alley at all.


message 11: by Randolph (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 2 comments Well, this dumb-ass did it. We'll see how good an "investment" it turns out to be.


message 12: by Scott (new)

Scott CD is offering $15 off orders of $30 or more until the end of 12/31 with the coupon code NEWYEAR15.

I ordered I'm Not Sam and Shivers VII.


message 13: by Randolph (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 2 comments Scott wrote: "CD is offering $15 off orders of $30 or more until the end of 12/31 with the coupon code NEWYEAR15.

I ordered I'm Not Sam and Shivers VII."


Those are choices I'd make. CD does have some ridiculous sales from time to time.


message 14: by Canavan (new)

Canavan Randolph wrote (in part):

I ordered I'm Not Sam and Shivers VII.

I picked up the same two titles, Randolph. But for the most part, I agree with Benjamin and Mike. It’s not that the authors that Cemetery Dance touts are writing crap, but to a large degree the kind of horror they’re interested in doesn’t hold all that much appeal for me.

Scott wrote (in part):

But they [Cemetery Dance] have put out some things I'm glad to own, like huge collections by Tim Lebbon & Tom Piccirilli, and those Century's Best Horror (which I haven't read yet, but with such a range of material, it seems worth having.)

Perhaps I’m being petty, but my experience with The Century's Best Horror Fiction still irks me a bit. Cemetery Dance started accepting pre-orders around 2004 or 2005. (I placed my own pre-order fairly early.) Then they proceeded to post-pone, re-postpone, and re-re-postpone the publication of the two-volume set. I heard various stories over the years about the cause of the delay, but in the final analysis the reasons are moot — that was simply far to long to be holding on to customers' money. The irony is that had the volumes been released on schedule, they might have had a bigger impact on the genre. As events played out, John Pelan's anthology was (in my opinion at least) overshadowed by the more all-encompassing anthology co-edited by Jeff and Ann VanderMeer, The Weird .


message 15: by Scott (new)

Scott I can understand being frustrated with that, and I agree that it's far too long; they should have refunded and then re-solicited the books later. Fortunately by the time I ordered they were available and in stock.


message 16: by Randolph (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 2 comments Scott wrote: "I can understand being frustrated with that, and I agree that it's far too long; they should have refunded and then re-solicited the books later. Fortunately by the time I ordered they were availa..."

I had a similar experience with NightShade Books. I bought a subscription to the William Hope Hodgson five volume collection and literally waited probably 5 years for volume 5. Jeremy Lassen kept making excuses (or just not responding at all) and missed promise deadline after deadline. Since about 2007 NightShade bailed on a lot of projects and sent them elsewhere mostly to Subterranean. In the end the NightShade management just had no business sense and could rarely pull off a quality project, the Clark Ashton Smith being the one exception. The Hodgson books as well as the Jorkens and Manly Wade Wellman (excellent content as well) were just not produced as a premium product like this should have been. They had cheap embossed covers, cheap bindings, and no dj.


message 17: by Randolph (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 2 comments Scott wrote: "I can understand being frustrated with that, and I agree that it's far too long; they should have refunded and then re-solicited the books later. Fortunately by the time I ordered they were availa..."

I bought these as well but during a 50% off sale!


message 18: by Randolph (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 2 comments Canavan wrote: "Randolph wrote (in part):


I ordered I'm Not Sam and Shivers VII.


I picked up the same two titles, Randolph. But for the most part, I agree with Benjamin and Mike. It’s not that the authors th..."


I have to agree with pretty much everything you say. CD has some good writers but weird offerings by these writers. As for The Weird: A Compendium of Strange and Dark Stories or the Best Horror collections, I have both but have read neither so I'll take your word for it.


message 19: by Canavan (new)

Canavan Randolph wrote:

I bought these as well but during a 50% off sale!

You’re rubbing salt in the wound, Randolph. Heh-heh.

What’s really embarrassing is that now that I finally have them in hand, I have rather churlishly refrained from picking them up for more than a year. That will change in 2014 — I recently placed them near the top of my to-be-read list and I plan on slowly going through them at the rate of one or two stories a week.


message 20: by Randolph (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 2 comments I'll probably regret joining the CD Book Club. I usually rue these things in the end.


message 21: by Scott (new)

Scott Randolph wrote: "I bought these as well but during a 50% off sale!"

I did the same. Wouldn't have, otherwise.


message 22: by Benjamin (new)

Benjamin Uminsky (benjaminu) | 340 comments Canavan wrote: "Randolph wrote:


I bought these as well but during a 50% off sale!


You’re rubbing salt in the wound, Randolph. Heh-heh.

What’s really embarrassing is that now that I finally have them in han..."


I think you will enjoy them Canavan. I found some beauties by authors whom I had never read and/or heard of. Tower of Moab was phenomenal by LA Lewis. There were many others, at least within the first 50 years. I'll probably tackle volume II this year if I am able to get through the 1000+ pages of CP's Master's of the Weird Tale collection for HPL.


message 23: by Canavan (new)

Canavan Benjamin wrote:

I think you will enjoy them Canavan. I found some beauties by authors whom I had never read and/or heard of. Tower of Moab was phenomenal by LA Lewis. There were many others, at least within the first 50 years. I'll probably tackle volume II this year if I am able to get through the 1000+ pages of CP's Master's of the Weird Tale collection for HPL.

Re-scanning the contents of the first volume, I see a lot of titles that I’ve previously read, but also a good number that I have not. I first read L. A. Lewis' "The Tower of Moab" about 10 years ago in the Ghost Story Press edition of Tales of the Grotesque . This one gets a lot of love from people whose opinion I respect, but for some reason it didn't quite click with me. I think of it as an okay story, but not necessarily a great one. I started out yesterday at lunch reading the first entry in Volume 1, Barry Pain's 1901 story, "The Undying Thing".


message 24: by Randolph (last edited Jan 08, 2014 02:24PM) (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 2 comments Canavan wrote: "Benjamin wrote:


I think you will enjoy them Canavan. I found some beauties by authors whom I had never read and/or heard of. Tower of Moab was phenomenal by LA Lewis. There were many others, at..."


There are a lot of stories in these I have never read just as there were in the American Fantastic Tales Boxed Set. I didn't much read horror other than Lovecraft and some Cthulhu Mythos when I was younger. I read mostly sf and "literature," whatever that means. My literature tended towards Modernism when it wasn't for school. I would buy these dime store mmpb anthologies with the lurid covers off of wire racks from time to time. I have to admit the covers were what drew me.

I went through a King phase (as we all do). I started to read some horror again when I found a second hand book shop in St. Paul , MN that stocked Arkham house in print and old, but that didn't start until '82 and I was still in a P.K. Dick frenzy, and pretty much centered around only reading AH titles. After the '80s when I had acquired all the AH that had been in print from about 1970, and a few earlier finds, the only horror I would read was the odd small press offering I would find in mainly genre themed independent bookstores or independent bookstores that had larger genre sections. I remember a bookstore called Book People in Austin, TX that carried ALL the Fedogan & Bremer titles all the time. But still I stuck with literature and history mostly.

To make a real long story even longer I didn't get back into horror until 2007 when I got a Kindle 1 very soon after it came out. You don't want to know what I paid for it but it still works as it did on day 1 with the addition of one new Lithium battery in 2010. There were only 50,000 e-book titles on Amazon. I didn't REALLY get back into horror until 2011 when I actually found someone to talk about it without thinking I was nuts, goodreads.

So anyway to make this really long story really, really longer, I don't know as much and have not read as much horror fiction as a person interested in the genre would have by my age. Therefore, most anthologies collections contain a wealth of stories I have not read.

And if you made it this far you are either nuts or you like watching paint dry.


message 25: by Benjamin (new)

Benjamin Uminsky (benjaminu) | 340 comments Jodi wrote: "Randolph wrote: "So anyway to make this really long story really, really longer, I don't know as much and have not read as much horror fiction as a person interested in the genre would have by my a..."

I am very much a late bloomer to the horror/weird genre as well. I read some King back in high school, but it never formed a gateway into the horror genre for me. In fact, I don't think I have read a King book since then. My last dalliance with King was the Stand, which I promptly put down after 400 pages.

Since that time, I read a lot of "literature", particularly all sorts of contemp lit in college classes... Camus, Gogol, etc. It wasn't until about 5 years ago that I was in the field for my job, and I was on break. I walked into a small Mystery/Horror indie book store. I was perusing the shelves, and I saw a cover to a book that really caught my eye. It was amongst a collection of other books, published by Midnight House (John Pelan's venture). It was this one:

The Beasts of Brahm by Mark Hansom

There were many other beautiful books from the collection and I was blown away. So I bought the book. It wasn't quite what I was expecting (I was expecting more of a werewolf stalking the moors kind of story). Nevertheless, I was taken in by the whole presentation of this hardback book and sought out other Midnight House Titles. In doing so, I developed a passion for collecting beautifully produced, limited hard back books. From there, my tastes in weird fiction continued to develop.


message 26: by Canavan (new)

Canavan Randolph wrote (in part):

I didn't much read horror other than Lovecraft and some Cthulhu Mythos when I was younger. I read mostly sf and "literature," whatever that means. My literature tended towards Modernism when it wasn't for school. I would buy these dime store mmpb anthologies with the lurid covers off of wire racks from time to time. I have to admit the covers were what drew me.

I remember developing a taste for supernatural fiction very early on. And like many adolescents, I went through an obligatory Lovecraft phase (which more or less coincided with the release of some of his stuff by the old Ballantine Adult Fantasy series). I sort of fell away from horror during much of the 70's, not because I became disinterested in the genre, but more because it was difficult to locate anything worth reading. The 80's horror boom re-energized my interest and my reading in the area has been fairly consistent since that time.

Benjamin wrote (in part):

I was perusing the shelves, and I saw a cover to a book that really caught my eye. It was amongst a collection of other books, published by Midnight House (John Pelan's venture).

I have a number of these. It's really too bad that John had to suspend his publication schedule. I was particularly disappointed that he was only able to publish the first volume of Joseph Payne Brennan's short fiction.


message 27: by Benjamin (new)

Benjamin Uminsky (benjaminu) | 340 comments Canavan wrote: "Randolph wrote (in part):


I didn't much read horror other than Lovecraft and some Cthulhu Mythos when I was younger. I read mostly sf and "literature," whatever that means. My literature tended..."


I know... it is very disappointing that we have not seen an MH title since 2008. The JPB collection was outstanding (I can see where your handle comes from)!! I was hoping to see more volumes. It was also really fun hunting for some of the rarer titles too.

That Jean Ray volume took quite an effort... = )


message 28: by Canavan (last edited Jan 08, 2014 01:10PM) (new)

Canavan Benjamin wrote:

I know... it is very disappointing that we have not seen an MH title since 2008. The JPB collection was outstanding (I can see where your handle comes from)!!

Yep, you caught me. One my favorite Brennan stories.

Benjamin also wrote:

I was hoping to see more volumes. It was also really fun hunting for some of the rarer titles too. That Jean Ray volume took quite an effort... = )

I vaguely recall that the Ray collection, My Own Private Spectres , sold out rather quickly. I think the Leiber and Edward Lucas White titles also moved fairly quickly. However, in the case of other authors I got the impression that John overestimated demand by quite a bit and I wonder if that played a role in Midnight House's demise.

I believe John is still heading up Dancing Tuatara Press, an imprint of Ramble House. I've picked up three or four titles, but by and large DTP is concentrating on authors that don't really interest me. I believe the books are currently all print-on-demand trade paperbacks.

By the way, if you have not already seen it, a witty and perceptive review of the Ray book, written by the late Johnny Eatman (aka rbadac), can be read here.


message 29: by Randolph (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 2 comments This whole digression made me remember something. I originally heard about Arkham House by reading the copyright pages in all those lurid paperbacks I bought in the '70s, but I didn't know anything else. In 1982 I walked into the Midway Bookstore in St. Paul, MN and saw an entire book case of AH books new and used. I freaked out. What got me into collecting them was not just the contents but the fact that they looked so cool on the shelf. Well, as I said I pretty much went out of the horror genre for a long time after collecting all the easy to get AH books. Then, just about the time I got my second (you don't want to know) gr account I saw all these wonderful Tartarus Press books on the internet. I freaked out. It took me back to my AH collecting days and I was hooked again.


message 30: by Canavan (new)

Canavan Randolph wrote (in part):

This whole digression made me remember something. I originally heard about Arkham House by reading the copyright pages in all those lurid paperbacks I bought in the '70s, but I didn't know anything else. In 1982 I walked into the Midway Bookstore in St. Paul, MN and saw an entire book case of AH books new and used. I freaked out.

Continuing to digress…

The trigger for my own collecting mania was an acquaintance loaning me a copy of Conan the Adventurer , graced by Frank Frazetta's cover art. At that time (this was, I think, sometime in the late 60's) I was already picking up the odd paperback here and there, but my determination to find and buy the Lancer-published Robert E. Howard books was a sort of watershed moment marking my transformation from a casual buyer of books to a more hardcore collector. I finally found the Howard books in a semi-sleazy newsstand called Shinders located on what was then a rather sleazy stretch of Hennepin Avenue in downtown Minneapolis. I believe Midway Bookstore still exists; Shinders, however, finally went belly up about 5 or 6 years ago.


message 31: by Benjamin (new)

Benjamin Uminsky (benjaminu) | 340 comments Canavan wrote: "Benjamin wrote:


I know... it is very disappointing that we have not seen an MH title since 2008. The JPB collection was outstanding (I can see where your handle comes from)!!


Yep, you caught..."


Thank you for the link Canavan. I had indeed read this some time ago when I was on the fence about shelling out serious dollars for the MH Ray volume. I realized Ray was a writer I needed to read. I was not disappointed by the collection.

Most of the DTP stuff is also unappealing to me, save for perhaps some of the additional Marc Hansom titles and perhaps some of the R.R. Ryan titles, that I think John had intended to publish under MH, until it went defunct.

Oh well... such is life.

I think from MH, I moved on to some of the Cemetery Dance novellas and novellettes, but then I found Centipede Press, and Tartarus Press (oh man... major hurt on the bank account).

What killed it for me though, and I think what has profoundly changed my tastes in weird lit is my discovery of Ex Occidente literature. Now... I seek out similar small presses as EO (in addition to continuing to purchase every new EO title)... such as Egaeus Press.


message 32: by Benjamin (new)

Benjamin Uminsky (benjaminu) | 340 comments Randolph wrote: "This whole digression made me remember something. I originally heard about Arkham House by reading the copyright pages in all those lurid paperbacks I bought in the '70s, but I didn't know anythin..."

Randolph, what is your favorite Arkham House title in your possession?


message 33: by Benjamin (new)

Benjamin Uminsky (benjaminu) | 340 comments Jodi wrote: "Randolph wrote: "...In 1982 I walked into the Midway Bookstore in St. Paul, MN and saw an entire book case of AH books new and used. I freaked out. What got me into collecting them was not just the..."

Which shop is this Jodi? I happen to be in Los Angeles.


message 34: by Benjamin (new)

Benjamin Uminsky (benjaminu) | 340 comments Ah yes... the Mystery and Imagination Bookshop!! That is where I bought my first Midnight House book. I live on the west side (Mar Vista) but periodically drop by Glendale to buy a book or two.


message 35: by Randolph (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 2 comments Jodi wrote: "Benjamin wrote: "Jodi wrote: "Randolph wrote: "...In 1982 I walked into the Midway Bookstore in St. Paul, MN and saw an entire book case of AH books new and used. I freaked out. What got me into co..."

Where do you live in South Carolina? I live in South Carolina.


message 36: by Benjamin (new)

Benjamin Uminsky (benjaminu) | 340 comments Jodi wrote: "Tell them hi for me next time you go. :)"

= )
Will do.


message 37: by Randolph (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 2 comments Jodi wrote: "Randolph wrote: "Jodi wrote: "Benjamin wrote: "Jodi wrote: "Randolph wrote: "...In 1982 I walked into the Midway Bookstore in St. Paul, MN and saw an entire book case of AH books new and used. I fr..."

Greenville, actually lovely Simpsonville.


message 38: by Randolph (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 2 comments Jodi wrote: "That's in the northern part isn't it?"

Almost to North Carolina and Georgia. You can see the mountains in NC from the higher elevations in Greenville.


message 39: by Randolph (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 2 comments Alright, one thing I've already found out that bites about the CD book club is shipping is not included in the fine print. I get a $40 coupon for January and I buy Turn Down the Lights for $35. I've got $5.00 left so that should cover part of the shipping, right. Oh no effendi, you're going to pay all that $6.79 shipping out of your own pocket.


message 40: by Randolph (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 2 comments Some more fine print I apparently missed "cannot be combined with other discounts." Hmmm, I don't recall any of this and I know I read the thing. Oh well, live and learn, it's only for a year and still worth $400.


message 41: by Randolph (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 2 comments Cemetery Dance is having one of those crazy 50% off sales. If there is anything you want from them that you've been waiting for, here's your chance. There aren't too many restrictions on this one so pre-orders, limiteds, signed, etc. are all game.

Coupon Code: SNOW50


message 42: by Canavan (new)

Canavan Benjamin wrote quite a while ago (in part):

I think you will enjoy them [i.e., stories in John Pelan’s anthology] Canavan. I found some beauties by authors whom I had never read and/or heard of. Tower of Moab was phenomenal by LA Lewis.

Re the L. A. Lewis story, Mark Valentine has posted today on Wormwoodiana on the possible real-life inspiration for the Tower of Moab.


message 43: by Randolph (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 2 comments I joined the Cemetery Dance book club last year and I swear it is a bit of a con. The books you really want, the ones that are going to sell out in 24 - 48 hours, are announced on a schedule that almost ensures the majority of the people will have used their expiring monthly coupon before the announcement is made. Sure you can buy a gift card but it took me several months to figure out the shell game before I started to get wise to it. Some probably never wise up. I still think it is a little slight of hand, plus the two "exclusive" titles suck and everyone is going to eBay them so they are pretty worthless as far as resale is concerned. I've already dumped half the books I bought. CD just isn't that good anymore.

I certainly wouldn't join a second time.


message 44: by Canavan (new)

Canavan Randolph wrote (in part):

I joined the Cemetery Dance book club last year and I swear it is a bit of a con.

I’m sorry to hear this, Randolph, although I can’t say I’m too surprised. I’ve previously voiced some minor complaints about CD’s business practices. And as far as their selection is concerned, I get their mailings, but rarely buy anything from them.


message 45: by Char (new)

Char Randolph wrote: "I joined the Cemetery Dance book club last year and I swear it is a bit of a con. The books you really want, the ones that are going to sell out in 24 - 48 hours, are announced on a schedule that ..."

I'm sorry to hear that, Randolph. Are you still signed up with Darkfuse?


message 46: by Randolph (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 2 comments Charlene wrote: "Randolph wrote: "I joined the Cemetery Dance book club last year and I swear it is a bit of a con. The books you really want, the ones that are going to sell out in 24 - 48 hours, are announced on..."

No, but I'll probably jump back there once the CD sub runs out in Jan. I didn't like that DarkFuse quit distributing through Amazon. I understood why they did it but it means my books are not backed up in the Kindle cloud and switching devices is so painless, phone, tablet, Kindle. Everyone knows I'm not a big Amazon fan.


message 47: by Randolph (last edited Sep 12, 2014 03:16PM) (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 2 comments IMHO this outfit has come off the rails

Hi,
PLEASE DO NOT SHARE THIS OFFER ANYWHERE. We’re giving a very small group of customers the opportunity to order our LAST Forthcoming Grab Bag of the year if they want, and this special offer will NEVER be in the regular newsletter due to how few sets are available.
You can read more or place your order while supplies last:
http://www.cemeterydance.com/page/CDP...
(If the page says “Sold Out,” then you’re too late and unfortunately there aren’t any left.)
Thank you, as always, for your continuing support!
Cemetery Dance Publications
132-B Industry Lane, Unit #7
Forest Hill, MD 21050
410-588-5901 [phone]
410-588-5904 [fax]
http://www.cemeterydance.com


message 48: by Canavan (last edited Sep 12, 2014 03:12PM) (new)

Canavan Randolph wrote (in part):

IMHO this outfit has come off the rails

I’ve seen this sort of offer before from Cemetery Dance. Seems like a calculated effort to off-load stuff that wouldn’t ordinarily sell at any price. My only other observation might be directed at the tone of this and similar advertising e-mails they send out; they all seem to embrace that same shrill “hurry! hurry! get ‘em while they last” hucksterism that makes me think of a snake oil salesman.


message 49: by Scott (new)

Scott Unless it's by an author I know and love, I don't think I'm going to be buying anything from them any more. Every thing from a "new" author I've tried has been lousy. Actually, some of their stuff from good authors has been bad, too.


message 50: by Randolph (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 2 comments It didn't even post a price unless you went to checkout.


« previous 1
back to top