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Category: Short Stories

Bound for Evil: Curious Tales of Books Gone Bad

Bound for Evil: Curious Tales of Books Gone Bad

boundforevil_medBound for Evil: Curious Tales of Books Gone Bad is a mammoth volume gathering together for the first time ever the very best stories of diabolical books. Illustrated throughout with over two dozen black and white pieces by World Fantasy Award-winning illustrator Allen Koszowski, it was nominated for the 2008 Shirley Jackson Award for Best Anthology, and includes a short story by Christopher Fulbright, “Mechanix” and a short story by Angeline Hawkes, “A Lesson In Therapy.”

Bound for Evil collects 66 tales of lost knowledge and restless ghosts, secret libraries and forbidden texts, alternate worlds and ancient gods; written by 61 acclaimed writers, including Ramsey Campbell, Rhys Hughes, Gary McMahon, H. P. Lovecraft, Jeffrey Thomas, Simon Strantzas, M. R. James, Mark McLaughlin, Robert W. Chambers, Gary Fry, and dozens more.

Limited to 500 copies. Deluxe smythe sewn, 800-page hardcover, bound in black imitation leather, and stamped in gold leaf with an original cover design by Allen Koszowski. Copies of this book are still available from the publisher, Dead Letter Press, at a deep discount. Click here to order while they’re still available: http://departmentofdeadletters.blogspot.com/

For a complete list of all of our books and links to all available formats, please visit the Books page.

Book of Dead Things

Book of Dead Things

cover_bodtOur first published Fulbright & Hawkes short story collaboration appeared in the Twilight Tales anthology Book of Dead Things in 2007. This was the expanded edition of Book of Dead Things edited by Tina Jens, with cover art by Alan Clark. Apparently, an earlier edition was thinner, and the rise of the popularity of dead things at the time called for the addition of about 40,000 words, if I recall correctly.  We had the good fortune of contributing 6,500 of those new words with our story “The Mud, the Blood, and the Bones.”

We came up with the idea for the short story during our first trip to Robert E. Howard Days together.  We were on a rickety old school bus, trundling down wash-boarded back roads in Callahan County. It was hot as hell and dusty as a saloon, but we were happy as larks. We were touring the back roads and wilderness of the area around Cross Plains, when we started to talk about an idea which grew into this story. We wrote the story after returning home, and it was published in this anthology a year later.

You just can’t keep the dead down. Stake them through the heart, bury them at the crossroads; they’re still going to climb out of their graves. But these are not just stories of Romeroesque late-nite gorefests. Book of Dead Things (expanded edition) is bursting at the seams with stories that will touch your heart as they explore what it means to be human. With stories by: Tom Barlow, Bill Breedlove, Suzanne Church, Alan M. Clark, C.S.E. Cooney, Scott A. Cupp, Stephen Dedman, Sukie de la Croix, Brendan Detzner, Joshua Alan Doetsch, Andrea Dubnick, Jo Fletcher, Christopher Fulbright, Richard Gilliam, Sephera Giron , Ken Goldman, Angeline Hawkes, Brian Hodge, Tina L. Jens, Chris Kozlowski, Stephen C. Merritt, Randy Miller, Jude Walter Mire, Yvonne Navarro, Katherine Norem, Craig D.B. Patton, John Peel, Michael Penkas, Bruce Holland Rogers, Martel Sardina, Lawrence Schimel, Alan Smale, J.D. Smith, Thomas J. Strauch, Karen E. Taylor, Edo van Belkom, Dan Waters, John Weagly, and Robert Weinberg.

The book is officially out of print, but copies of Book of Dead Things can still be found through Amazon Marketplace.

Grimoire de Solace II: Milking Blood for Poison Pens

Grimoire de Solace II: Milking Blood for Poison Pens

Grimoire2-lgAngeline is known for and, many agree, very good at writing fantasy fiction. I am a fan of fantasy fiction of all types, but hadn’t tried writing much of it.  So in 2005, when Christopher Heath was putting together his second Grimoire de Solace anthology, I gave it a shot and managed to get an acceptance.  When the book was published, my story “Cold Blades of Vengeance” appeared next to Angeline’s story “The Dreamweaver’s Daughter,” under the pen-name of Angeline Hawkes-Craig.

Grimoire de Solace II: Milking Blood for Poison Pens includes 12 stories and 300 pages of Earth-based, high fantasy, and sword and sorcery fiction. Some of the other authors included Steven L. Shrewsbury, Peter Welmerink, Christopher Heath, Shawn P. Madison, and Brian Grisham.  The book sold well, but just how well none of us will ever really know, since it was released through the now-notorious CyberPulp Press, which sailed off into oblivion without paying a lot of its authors monies they claimed were due.

Angeline single-handedly sold a large number of this title at local conventions and Renaissance fairs. I was present at one Renaissance fair where, every time I came back with a new cup full of mead, more books were gone. By the end of the day, all of them were gone, so we had none left for the following day. Due in part to Angeline’s charm no doubt, but also to the amazing cover art by V. Shane and the great mix of authors and tales in this book, we are now left with only two copies of this book between us. It is woefully out of print, but copies can be found second-hand at Amazon, or ABEBooks.

Folks interested in reading some of Angeline’s fantasy fiction should check out her highly praised collection, OUT OF THE GARDEN and Other Tales of the Barbarian Kabar of El Hazzar, now available from Bad Moon Books.

The Blackest Death, Volumes I and II

The Blackest Death, Volumes I and II

The 2003 hardcover anthology from Black Death Books
The 2003 hardcover anthology from Black Death Books

Angeline and I have a past together.  You might be thinking all manner of sordid thoughts about that, but really all I mean is that, long before we met, we were published in a lot Web zines together (in a long forgotten past when that used to be a fun thing to do).  Back then, a lot of us who were published in those old Web zines liked to correspond with each other, and so began a lot of friendships that exist to this day. As you can see, the friendship between Angeline and I progressed a bit farther than that.

But now we approach the edge of sordid, so we’ll leave it at that.

Two of the books Angeline and I had stories in together were the two-volume Blackest Death series, published 2003-2005 by Black Death Books (now known as KHP publishing).  The first volume was a nice hardcover book. At $30, it was quite affordable in those days compared to the cost of other small press hardcovers, and I was personally pretty darn proud of it, since it was the first time anything of mine had ever appeared in hardcover.  You can still find copies of The Blackest Death Volume I online. It includes my story “Encounter on Old Temple Road,” and Angeline’s story “To Save a Dynasty,” published under her original pen name of Angeline Hawkes-Craig. The back cover copy promises some pretty ghoulish delights:

In the world of The Blackest Death things are never what they seem and a trip down a lonely stretch of highway, through the shadow-rooms of a darkened house at the edge of the woods, or through the inhuman imagination might just bring you face to face with your worst possible nightmare come true. Demons, succubi, shapeshifters, mind-eaters, vampires, ghouls and fallen angels–no matter what monster you find lurking in wait for you in the dark corner of dreams, one thing is for certain: death comes for us all, and its color is pure black.

The next volume followed a couple years later.  Released as a trade paperback, The Blackest Death Volume II came out in 2005 and featured a collection of tales by authors mostly still around and working today, which is kind of rare for these old POD trade anthologies.  This one includes my story “A Twist of Hate” and Angeline’s mummy story “Return of the Ba,” again under Angeline Hawkes-Craig.  They actually use the words “ghoulish delights” in the cover copy for this one:

The Blackest Death Volume II is a horror house of twisting corridors and encroaching shadows, and our family is full of soul-eating succubi, demonic executioners, earthbound angels, hellish cowboys, and private demons. Take a walk down our halls and peek into vast rooms full of walking nightmares and ghoulish delights. In this place your darkest dreams and desires come true–but be careful what you wish for! In our house you are never quite alone. Feel the cobwebs brush your face and listen to the floor creaking in the dark as something fast approaches. The door is open and we are waiting for you.

Both books are still available used from major online retailers.