Tag Archives: Halloween

Gearing Up for Candy Extortion

It’s almost time for the annual Adolescent Candy Extortion Day!

Trick or Treat? To most kids those are simply the magic words to get free candy. They don’t realize what it boils down to. I will play a trick on you and possibly damage your property OR give me a treat and I’ll go away. As a grumpy old fart, I could easily choose to see this holiday as nothing more than a shakedown. And that’s my costume this year, BTW. I’m going to be that old guy who sits on his porch and yells at kids to ‘stay off my lawn’! The only difference between Halloween and any other day is, I’ll be throwing candy at them as they run off!

But…now I have grandkids who are old enough to Tick or Treat. To see their joy as they go house to house, dragging their little plastic pumpkin with them in their loose fitting costume brings a smile to my face and stirs old memories. The joys of being old and having a bad memory allows me to believe that I was a good kid and never got into trouble. It’s those inconvenient times that an old school chum reminds me of things I did that makes me question that belief. (I choose to believe that I was mostly good.)


But Halloween is the time of change. Seasons transition from hot and dry to cool and wet to bone chilling cold. The leaves, the smells, the cooking, the cooling weather…it all brings a smile to my face as we slide into what is easily my favorite season of the year. Seeing how other people celebrate it is almost as fun as candy extortion used to be. From the goofy to the macabre to the questionable, Halloween is celebrated in so many ways that one questions the origins of the day. Whether dressed as a cartoon character or elaborately made up victim to those who barely wear anything at all and still call it a costume, everybody puts their own flair into it. It is, after all, a celebration and people will find a way to put their own personal and unique stamp on it.


Personally, I prefer the scary stuff. Sure, the cute and cuddly is nice for the wee ones, and the younger generations can have the ‘sexy’ stuff, but the realistic and frightening is what it’s all about for me. Give me a haunted house that causes people to wet themselves a little and that’s a house I’d stand in line to go through. Of course, my wife will go in ahead of me to keep me safe. She’s a lot tougher than I am…and I hate wetting myself.

And let me add this, I’m joining with my fellow Addictive Reads‘ Authors for our annual Halloween Blog Hop and Giveaway. This year, we’re talking about our favorite parts of Halloween. We’re having a giveaway over at the Addictive Reads site ($50, $25, & $10 gift cards) so be sure and take part in the festivities!

Also, I’m taking part in the WINTER OF ZOMBIE 2015 EVENT on Facebook. I hope you’ll join me and a whole gob of other fantastic zombie authors. There will be fun and prizes and some of my favorite authors will be participating. Just click here to join the FREE event now so you don’t miss out!

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Posted by on October 22, 2015 in Uncategorized


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Things In a Box and Other Musings

Those of you who follow my ramblings on Facebook are already aware that the first Monster Squad book, Return of the Phoenix, has been included in a truly awesome boxed set along with five other authors.  Whoever decides to take advantage of this offer will be picking up over a half million written words of some of the best horror on the market.

Awesome boxed set2

For those of you who haven’t already experienced the wit and wisdom of Mark Tufo, here’s your chance to dive into the first of his Zombie Fallout series.  You also get to sink your teeth into John O’Brien and the first of his zombie series, Chaos.  Expose yourself to the inner workings of the twisted mind of Armand Rosamilia with Darlene Bobich: Zombie Killer.  You can dive into Trudge from Shawn Chesser, probably one of his best works.  And one of my personal favorites is James Cook’s offering of No Easy Hope.

These are all full length works to keep you busy through the Halloween season…but there’s a catch.  We’ve included a teaser from Joe McKinney’s The Dead Wait.  If you’ve never read Joe’s writings, you’re not doing yourself any favors.  He has a way of sucking the reader into the story and putting you on edge throughout the entire ordeal.

Now for the ‘spiel’.  You get the entire boxed set for the price of a single e-book.  WHY would we do this, you might ask?  Where’s the catch?  Are we only putting in HALF the story?  No, these are the complete first books.  If you ordered each of the books off of Amazon, this is what you’d get.  The catch is, we’re trying to EXPOSE all of these writers to YOU the reading public.  That’s why we make offers like this.

You may recall a while back when I mentioned that I ‘fell into’ a wonderful situation with a group of other authors that help promote each others work…this is that group.  A mish-mash of authors from all over the country with one thing in mind…to put our stories into the hands of as many readers as we can.  So, with that, I present to you, the readers, Epic Apocalypse, A Boxed Set of Apocalyptic Horror.

Read, enjoy, review!

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Posted by on October 29, 2013 in Uncategorized


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One Week To Release!



Yes, I know I’ve been rather excited about the release of Whispers, and now the countdown has begun.  One week from today, it will be released for public availability.  Originally, my plan was to release it on my wife’s birthday (October 20th), but since that falls on a Sunday and people who get a new book like to enjoy the weekend reading it, I figure a Midnight Friday release might be more appropriate.  Still, I’m going to call it her birthday since we’ll be celebrating it all weekend.  Hopefully, I can coordinate everything with my publisher so that she can ‘push the button’ at exactly midnight CST Friday and have it ready for everybody to enjoy.

You might wonder why I’m so excited about this particular release.  Well, it’s not exactly something I can put my finger on.  It’s not part of my signature series, the Monster Squad, but it is one of my favorite stories to date.  My missus has read everything I’ve written so far and she has other favorites, but this one is closest to my heart.  I can’t explain why.  Perhaps because I dedicated it to both of my dads?  Maybe.  My father passed in ’88 to cancer and my father in law has done his level best to be there for me even though I know filling those shoes isn’t possible.  Maybe it’s because it has small town law enforcement as the central characters…people I can relate to.  Maybe it’s because it deals with a love that runs so deep that even in death it can’t be denied.  Oh, wait.  I better not say much more.  I don’t want to give anything away.

If you’ve been one to search Amazon in anticipation, you’ll note that Whispers sits on their website but it says, Out of Print–Limited Availability.  That’s sort of a teaser.  It’s populated to Amazon and simply waiting for the publisher to ‘press the button’.  So…why wait?  Well, if you’ve followed any of my posts on Facebook, then you know that the grand majority of the characters are real people who donated their names to be used in the story.  I knew that the body count would be high in a story like this.  Rather than sit and pull out the last three or four hairs that I had left trying to think of names that sounded real, I asked for volunteers.  I posted in the thread that I would only use their names, not their likeness.  I couldn’t guarantee what would happen to them or what character they might be.  I literally printed out names, cut them out, folded them in half and put them in a hat.  As I made the list, I pulled out names and filled the list.  The Fates decided who went where.  Then I decided that those who volunteered their names should get a free autographed paperback for their trouble.  By coordinating with my publisher, she pre-ordered the books so that we could get them to folks BEFORE the book was available to the general public.  Factor in shipping to me, labeling and shipping out to them and we still had plenty of time to make it available before Halloween.

I owe a big debt of gratitude to my editor Todd Brown for getting this done in time and to my publisher Denise for having everything ready to do the pre-order and having the patience to let it sit while we wait for folks to get their copies.  I know this was no easy task.  The book was written in ‘Okie’ and spell check does NOT like southern speak.  At all.  Neither does grammar checkers.  Nope.  Not one bit.  This is one he had to do line by line, word by word.  And it is not a short story.  At over 150K words, this is a long story.

So, with all of that said, I hope that those of you who enjoy a good ghost story will give this one a shot.  It may or may not be up your alley, but it was certainly a joy to create.

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Posted by on October 12, 2013 in Uncategorized


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