Guest Post: D.W. Gillespie


Horror for the Kiddos

D.W. Gillespie

For some of us, horror is just in our DNA. With the release of my first novel, Still Dark, I can see how the progression of my life has all led to this point. It’s Universal Monster books in the grade school library. It’s scanning the Scholastic order form for anything remotely scary and perking up when you see a new Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark. It’s Monstervision with Joe Bob Briggs, Tales from the Darkside on Saturday nights, and EC Comics in the dark with a flashlight.

It’s not exactly something you learn, though being exposed to it can certainly help it bloom. I was always drawn to the spooky side of things, and it’s no big surprise that my son is as well. Now that I’m a dad, I’ve seen the question pop up on message boards, in internet think pieces, and even occasionally in person.

How young is too young to start enjoying horror?

There’s no set answer of course. For starters, the world I grew up in is so amazingly different from the one my son is growing up in. If you’re interested in it, now is a remarkable time to be a fan of horror. You can walk into a Toys R Us and walk out with a Freddy Krueger plush toy and a RJ MacCready action figure. The most popular show on plain old TV is gorier than most of the hardest R rated movies I grew up with. There are cutesy, family friendly Pop figures of cinema’s greatest monsters, and kids born decades after the fact just eat them up.

In other words, it’s a good time to be a kid who loves this stuff. I can only imagine with our endless stream of content that this era will spawn the perfect storm of horror writer, somebody a lot like my son who is as well-versed in the history of horror as any seven-year-old has ever been. He’s already starting to write his own stories, and they’re pretty damn good.

My guess is, there’s always been kids like us, drawn to the slightly darker side of things. I can imagine cavemen huddled around a fire, taking turns telling stories to the children about all the awful things hiding out there in the dark, waiting just out of sight to get them. Those stories were warnings and promises, a window into how dangerous the world could really be, and most of the kids responded accordingly, leaning away in terror.

But I’d guess, there was one in every group, leaning forward with a smile.

Still Dark

D.W. Gillespie

When a thunderous explosion rocks an idyllic cabin resort in the Great Smoky Mountains, animals and humans alike begin to act strange. Jim, along with his wife Laura and son, Sam, are cut off from the outside world, but they soon realize the true nightmare is just beginning…

Deep in the snow-covered woods, something is waiting. The creature calls itself Apex, and it’s a traveler. Reading the minds of those around it, Apex brings the terrifying fears hidden in the human psyche to life with a singular purpose: to kill any that stand in its way.

Locked in a fight for their lives, Jim and his family must uncover the truth behind Apex, and stop the creature from wreaking a horrifying fate upon the rest of the world!

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR — D.W. Gillespie has been writing dark fiction in one form or another since he was old enough to hold a pencil. He’s been featured in multiple horror anthologies, both in print and online. Still Dark is his debut novel, and his second book, a short collection titled Handmade Monsters, arrives in 2017. He lives in Tennessee with his wife and two children.

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My Reading List 2018


I read quite a few books each week. I am a big fan of Kindle Unlimited and read a lot of nonfiction books through it. Biographies. History. Writing and podcasting help books. Occasionally fiction, too.

I’ve been inspired by a few people today, notably Tim Meyer and Ron Davis. Tim released his top books read of 2017 and Ron posted every book he’s read in 2017 (38 books, all of which I would love to read someday). It got me thinking… why not keep track of my own reading in 2018?

I keep track of my writing and my money in and out for my career. I keep track of anything to do with podcasting and Project Entertainment Network

I shall keep track of my reading this coming year!

But wait… there’s more!

I also see so many authors diving into the world of Stephen King and reading all of his books.

I was never a big King fan. 

I’m a Dean Koontz fan, so…

In 2018, besides continuing to read the books I would normally read, I’m going to go back through and read (or re-read) every Dean Koontz book I can get my hands on. Yep. 140+ books. 

I doubt I’ll get to read them all, but if I read one per week I could finish it in about three years. It should keep me busy. 

I’ll add a tab onto this website to keep track and keep me honest. Once again, this is more fun than anything else and to hold my feet to the fire to do it. 

My goal would be reading 50 Dean Koontz books and 50 other books this year. 

Let’s see if I can do it!

Here’s the page I’ll be posting the books to in 2018: https://armandrosamilia.com/armands-2018-reading-list/

Armand

 

My Greatest Expense as a Writer in 2017 was…


Robert Chazz Chute with the solid points once again!

C h a z z W r i t e s . c o m

An old friend of mine put the importance of keeping the receipts in stark perspective:

“You wouldn’t throw $5 in the garbage so don’t throw away that five dollar receipt if you can claim it as a deduction on your taxes.”

That really got me so, as 2017 draws to a close, it might be a good idea to review your receipts for tax purposes, too. Make sure they’re all in one spot and ready to go. You’ll miss fewer deductions if you track it as you spend, of course. Some people just toss the receipts in a box. Others use fancy software. I just use Google Sheets to track everything and hand it over to my accountant. You might be able to do it yourself but tax code is generally pretty complex and I don’t want to miss anything. I’m no accountant so I leave it to the experts…

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