Horror and Comics!

Comic and Horror lovers!!! Listen up!!!

There is this book called IN THE DARK. It’s a comic horror anthology. It’s brilliant and I do not say that lightly. You may notice it’s out through IDW, but it was originally a Kickstarter by the phenomenally talented Rachel Autumn Deering. A rising horror star in the comics community. Rachel put together this magnificent anthology with talent such as Steve Niles, Batman’s Scott Snyder, the brilliant Paul Tobin, Tim Seeley, Ed Brisson, Duane Swierczynski and so many more. This is a massive work of horror art and you’d be ridiculous not to get your hands on it.

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You can buy it online, sure. But you can also contact Rachel and buy directly from her. Which is what I highly recommend. Because this was a Kickstarter, she has a ton of copies. Running a successful Kickstarter campaign is not all fun and flowers. It’s extremely difficult and the cost on the creator is insane. If you’re going to order this book (which, have I mentioned already that you REALLY SHOULD?), order it directly from Rachel (drop her a message on FB: https://www.facebook.com/theironrachel).

Support artists who are taking chances, being bold, thinking outside of the box, and making a difference in the pulling industry.

Check out Bloody Disgusting’s 5 Skull review here! http://bloody-disgusting.com/reviews/3292704/5-skull-review-dark-horror-anthology/

Hallowe’en Extravaganza!

skeleton-clip-art-15UPDATE!

We only have to wait a week now! Next week I will post the first contest. Get ready for some crazy halloween fun!

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Yea. So what if I start preparing for Hallowe’en in August. I still have a bride and groom skeleton set hanging from my window from last year. In my world, everyday is Hallowe’en.

We won’t start any of the festivities until Oct. 1st (whimper heard around the world). But I wanted everyone to be aware that there WILL be festivities. I had to take last year off, but I’ll more than make up for it this year!

I already have some amazing books from extremely generous publishers like Little, Brown, Walker, Quirk Books, and Abrams, lined up for giveaways. Ghosts, skeletons, murderers, maniacs, and good old spooky fun haunt these pages.

There will be contests to win books. And they are difficult contests. They involve writing, and reminiscing, maybe some old Hallowe’en pictures?! There will be plenty of books, thus plenty of creepy contests.

Get ready…

Set…

Wait a month and a half…

‘A Box Story’ by Kenneth Kit Lamug: The Review

Kenneth Kit Lamug is a trend setter.

Sure, the habit of children playing with and/or in boxes has existed for ages. But if my 18 nieces and nephews have taught me anything, it’s the boxes that house their precious (and expensive) toys that they play with.

What Kenneth’s magnificent book proposes, is that a box can lead you down a rabbit hole of adventure, just as a box. Not as a box that held a 200$ tricycle or a beloved American Girl Doll. Just a box. A Box Story strips the box down to its skivvies and then the real fun begins.

Starting with the cover. I can’t tell you how much I love this cover. It’s as simplistic as a box itself, but holds a certain mystery about it. What could possibly be between the covers of a book called A Box Story, it asks the viewer. It’s so simple that it becomes completely eye-catching.

The first page on the inside features one of my all time favorite things: a This Book Belongs To space. As a child, there is nothing greater than being able to mark something as your very own. And then the adventure begins…

Something that I found incredibly remarkable about the illustrations is that the box stays in the same place on every single page, but becomes something new and exciting every time you flip to a new page. This gives the reader the impression that it is in fact, the same box being used for a myriad of adventures.

I first came across Kenneth’s illustrations while working on my children’s magazine Underneath the Juniper Tree for which Kenneth regularly contributes. He was asked to do one of our earliest covers because his art is so exceptional. While A Box Story keeps the illustrations somewhat simple, that classic Kenneth comes out and it’s downright stunning.

The words are simple but thought-provoking. They help build the imagination while simultaneously challenging the reader to find a purpose for their box. A purpose all of their own. Every child will want to build a life inside a box after reading this story.

I’ve been an avid proponent of children using their imaginations to entertain themselves, and I couldn’t be a bigger fan of this book.

I challenge you. Buy A Box Story for your child, read it with them, run to the store and pick up a brown cardboard moving box, tape the bottom together, and watch your child’s imagination grow. Join the revolution: www.aboxstory.com

Be the Evel Knievel of Writing

Let’s talk about risk taking.

For a long while now I have been soliciting a Dexter-type YA manuscript, something risky, something daring. Well. I missed that boat. And that boat is called Barry Lyga’s I HUNT KILLERS, “a dark thriller pitched as Dexter meets The Silence of the Lambs for teens, about a teen boy who uses his killer instinct, inherited from his serial killer father, to help solve a series of gruesome murders.” Well played, Barry. I absolutely cannot wait to read this.

Lately, I’ve been noticing a lot of seemingly risky manuscripts (usually in the form of something paranormal) that when broken down to their basic elements, are not really risky at all. Denis Waitley said, “Life is inherently risky. There is only one big risk you should avoid at all costs, and that is the risk of doing nothing.”

I love that sentiment. But I’m changing it to this: “Writing is inherently risky. There is only one big risk you should avoid at all costs, and that is the risk of writing without risk.”

Bree’s Rules for Risky Writing:

1. Place real people with real problems in a risky/unusual/daring/dangerous setting, and make the story about the people, not the setting. I.e., Rot & Ruin.

2. Utilize drastic non-linear storytelling. I.e., Invisible Monsters.

3. If you are going to have obsession, make sure it involves legitimate turmoil, not teenage angst. I.e., Wuthering Heights.

4. Try this: the not-so-happily-ever-after. I.e., Identity Crisis.

5. Or this: the unsure ending. Are they happy? Who knows. Who cares. That’s life. I.e., How To Be Good.

6. One word: Historical. One more word: Dazzling. I.e., Bright Young Things.

7. Get rid of angst, try the extreme opposite: sociopathic nonchalance. I.e., Darkly Dreaming Dexter.

8. Incorporate unusually dark themes in an otherwise normal world. I.e., Nevermore.

9. Write real. I.e., The Duff.

10. Do your research, know the exact feelings of the people you are writing about and writing for. Those real feelings are probably a lot scarier than your imagination can come up with. I.e., Go Ask Alice

I’ve said it many times and I will say it again: I know it’s not the easy path to be a risk taker in writing, but these risks are what set you apart in this ridiculously competitive marketplace.

“Creative people who can’t help but explore other mental territories are at greater risk, just as someone who climbs a mountain is more at risk than someone who just walks along a village lane.” -R.D. Laing


D.M. Cunningham has gone MISSING! Or, in my opinion has been kidnapped–Halloween Tree Chapter 19

I’ve received a very important and seemingingly dire email from The Creepings of Creeping Hills. D.M. Cunningham has gone missing. (Although I’m not too sure how much I trust the Creepings of Creeping Hills. They are a diabolical bunch.) However, they have found the last known footage of D.M.:

I’ve been asked by the Creepings to post he Halloween Tree animated series, which I think is a brilliant idea. In this animated video, you will see a more cohesive version of what we have been reading over the last 19 days. I hope you take some time this lovely Halloween and enjoy this classic book by the legendary dreamer, Ray Bradbury.


Happy Halloween!

I hope you have enjoyed our crazy Halloween Tree readings, as well as agentbree.worpress.com’s month long Halloween extravaganza! It’s been a blast for all of us to bring this story to life in a somewhat unconventional form.

Go be deliciously evil and spontaneous tonight!

I love you all! Thank you for participating in this very special month!

Ummmm yea…Halloween Tree Chapter 15

This is about as “experimental” as it gets.

Let me set the scene. I decided despite the weather (roughly 48 degrees), that I would put on my wig and go fully clothed into the Puget Sound (my backyard) and read Chapter 15 mermaid style.

Halloween Tree Reading FAIL.

So you get the bathtub instead. And by the time I had roughed the freezing perilous waters of the Sound, I was so delirious, that this reading is really quite boring. If you watch my hair sway in the water, it might even hypnotize you to sleep. Happy ZZZzzzzz’s!