SPOTLIGHT ON: Richard Thomas


What is your latest release and what genre is it?

Staring Into the Abyss, a collection of dark short stories, from Kraken Press.


Quick description of it.

The title comes from a Frederick Nietzche quote, “Battle not with monsters, lest ye become a monster, and if you gaze into the abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.” In this collection of stories, I focus on those moments where people get themselves in trouble, find themselves at a crossroads, sucked into the darkness, forced to respond to the challenges at hand—sometimes with violence, sometimes with an epiphany, sometimes by surrendering. I find it much more interesting to write about people in those moments where they define their character and show us what they’re really made of. Call it the “inciting incident” or stories that start “in medias res” (in the midst of things) but all of these stories are tragedies, with a bit of hope sprinkled here and there.


Something unique about it.

What’s unique about this collection of stories that are by default in the horror genre is the wide range of what I deem horror, and the various lengths and formats that provide a bit of variety. There is flash fiction (typically under 1,000 words) as well as the traditional short story length, and then “Victimized” at almost 7,000 words. There are stories that could be called horror, as well as fantasy, science fiction, crime, noir, neo-noir, transgressive, Southern gothic, magical realism, and even literary. We have list stories, a choose-your-own-path adventure story, a story that follow a $20 bill, meta-fiction, etc. There are stories in here that have won contests, and been nominated for awards.


Links for people to buy it.



Your promo links.



Your short Bio.

Richard Thomas is the author of three books—TransubstantiateHerniated Roots and Staring Into the Abyss. His over 75 publications include Cemetery DancePANK, Gargoyle, Weird Fiction Review, Midwestern Gothic, Arcadia, Pear Noir and Shivers VI (with Stephen King and Peter Straub). He is also the editor of three anthologies out in 2014: The Lineup (Black Lawrence Press), Burnt Tongues (Medallion Press) with Chuck Palahniuk and The New Black (Dark House Press). In his spare time he writes for The Nervous Breakdown, LitReactor, and is Editor-in-Chief at Dark House Press. For more information visit