All right, the fourth chapter of COLLECTED SONGS OF SONNELION is going live today on my publisher’s website. Give it a read, leave me some feedback, check out Delirium’s novella club, go buy your wife flowers, give your kid a hug and listen to them, etc. As always, a huge thanks to my readers Shaun Ryan, Kevin Wallis, and Jen. And again to my publisher for putting so much faith in me and my work.
I also got the press release for my live event on Delirium/Darkfuse’s website. I’m super pumped about it since it’ll be my first time and I appreciate any who can spread the word and hope to see some of you there! Some of you are editors who have encouraged and helped me, some are writers who have been there and shared the struggle, some of you are readers and the reason I write, but we’re all in the same boat. We all love stories.
So check it out and spread the word! A big thanks to those who have already shared: K. E. Bergdoll, Peter Schwotzer, Jennifer @ Book Den, Douglas E. Wright, Dave Thomas, Dark Eva, Gregory Fisher, Jim Mcleod, Rich Gott, Amy Grech, Scott Tyson, and Scary Ass Books! Plus anybody I’m not aware of who shared!
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: DELIRIUM TO HOST LIVE ONLINE EVENT WITH AUTHOR LEE THOMPSON ON THURSDAY, MARCH 29 AT 9 P.M.
NORTH WEBSTER, INDIANA – DarkFuse Publications will be hosting a live online event with author Lee Thompson on Thursday, March 29 from 9 to 10 p.m. The event is open to the public and participants will be entered to win a one-year subscription to the Delirium Kindle Book Club—24 novellas total—as well as signed limited edition hardcover copies of Lee’s novella IRON BUTTERFLIES RUST.
Lee will be answering questions from readers and discussing his influences, creative process, future projects, and his Division mythos.
About the author: Lee Thompson started selling work in early 2010. His novels NURSERY RHYMES 4 DEAD CHILDREN and THE DAMPNESS OF MOURNING, along with his novellas IRON BUTTERFLIES RUST and DOWN HERE IN THE DARK have all been published by Delirium Books. His free serial web novel COLLECTED SONGS OF SONNELION is currently being published in a weekly format.
You can find his short stories in Dark Discoveries, Sideshow Press, Shock Totem, Apex’s Zombie Feed anthology, Tasmaniac Publications, and other neat places. He’s worked a lot, sweated a lot, and continues to take up space the best he can. He interacts with his readers at his website.
About the publisher: Delirium Books is one of the leading specialty presses in the horror genre. Operating in the Midwest (Northern Indiana), Delirium Books has quickly gained the reputation of bringing to print and eBook formats the best new voices in horror fiction, including bestselling author Brian Keene. Delirium has also published established genre authors such as Brian Lumley, Greg F. Gifune, Douglas Clegg, Ramsey Campbell and Jack Ketchum.
Tons of things going on here and all of them rocking. I’ve got the signature sheets for DOWN HERE IN THE DARK in front of me. The digital is out now, the signed/limited hardcover coming mid-April. It’s a hell of a story and picks up right after the end of IRON BUTTERFLIES RUST. It’s dark, twisted, cryptic and stunning. Alfred Hitchcock (my pet monkey) said it’s a tour de force.
Like everything else, I think it stands alone, but it’s a sliver of the Division mythos and I think it’s going to be badass when every book and short story is complete so everybody (including me) can read them in order and experience the full effects of these character’ trials and successes.
It also ties in directly to THE DAMPNESS OF MOURNING which is out early as a Kindle Exclusive. The signed/limited hardcovers are coming out on Valentine’s Day!
I did an interview on Literary Mayhem. Also just turned one in for Darkfuse that was a lot of fun and should be live soon. Working with Dave Thomas on some promotional stuff that should be a blast for everybody! I think I’ll be playing guitar and reading some opening chapters.
NURSERY RHYMES 4 DEAD CHILDREN is in production as an audio book and so far I’ve heard the first 13 chapters (my lucky number!) and it is so cool to hear somebody else read my work.
I’ve also been interviewing some of my heroes lately. So far I’ve sat down and sipped absinthe with Robert Dunbar, Tom Piccirilli, and Lee Thomas. All amazingly talented bad boys. Up next I’ll be interviewing Greg Gifune. Working on his questions now. It’s been a lot of fun talking to those guys and picking their brains. They’ve been surprisingly candid and I love ‘em for it.
I finished the rewrite on the second Red Piccirilli book WITHIN THIS GARDEN WEEPING. I’d submitted it to Chizine but since I’ve written one novel and three novellas while waiting to hear back from them I figured it a good idea to use what I’d learned while waiting to make the book stronger. It’s the sequel to the first book BEFORE LEONORA WAKES, a simple but interesting YA story. I’m very proud of both of them since they set the foundation in what comes in the adult novels and novellas. You can read the opening of the second book on the lovely Book Den.
Another Division story, THE RIVER, is under consideration with Apex’s Dark Faith 2 antho. It’s the only short story I have unpublished right now and I love it.
Two short stories (Daddy Screamed With Us and Crooked Stick Figures) will be in the anthology American Horror Stories, vol. 1 from Delirium Books later this year, too.
I’m working out the threads of the third Red Piccirill novel COLLECTED SONGS OF SONNELION. So not ready to write this one yet. It’s going to be incredibly dark for Red. It’s going to break my heart to write. But I know I have to get to it at some point because this is the book that mostly shapes who Red is in the Division novels Nursery Rhymes 4 Dead Children, The Dampness of Mourning, and The Patron Saint of Infinite Sorrow.
Also working on the threads of a very touching, yet very disturbing, YA novel called A Monster of Many Faces. It’s going to tackle issues that have bothered me my whole life and people are going to die (one of them is already dead.)
I’m anxious (somewhat) for when reviews start coming in for all four books coming out this year. I enjoy feedback, and especially enjoy it when people tackle the challenge each story presents. I know not everybody will get them, and not everybody is going to like my work, but I’m grateful some do (some who I have a ton of respect for.)
I’ve heard news that my Thunderstorm novella is on the fast track and look forward to seeing the finished product. It’s going to be a beauty.
I’m very excited that some people are loving the Division story line and characters. I see it all so clearly and its such a massive story it takes my breath away knowing that it came out of my wee little imagination. Crazy.
Feeling very relaxed. No pressure here. But expect some great things.
Buckle your seatbelt (this was a busy writing year…)
At the beginning of 2011 Ellen Datlow picked three of my stories for Honorable Mention in her Year’s Best Horror, volume 3! The first three stories I sold! It was a good start to the year and a nice buzz.
This year I’ve had stories published alongside some great writers in mags and anthos and webzines I love! Shared space with Joe Lansdale (x2), Lee Thomas, Jack Ketchum, Bentley Little, Jason V. Brock, Ken Wood, Maggie Jamison, Jeffrey Thomas, Michael McBride, Tom Piccirilli, Weston Ochse, James A. Moore, Nick Mamatas, Gene O’Neil, Ronald Malfi, Kevin Wallis, Steve Lowe, Shane McKenzie, etc. in Delirium’s Horror Wired anthology (February), Dark Discoveries #18 (May), Apex’s Zombie Feed, vol. 1 (June), Shock Totem #4 (July), Literary Mayhem (October), A Hacked-up Holiday Massacre anthology (November).
I sold the second Division novel THE DAMPNESS of MOURNING to Darkfuse Publications on October 19th! (Going to be released in signed/limited hardcover and digital in February 2012 and has a killer cover by Dani Serra. Bam!) This novel also came out early (Dec. 8th 2011) as a Kindle Exclusive. Pretty damn neat.
I sold my standalone novella WHEN WE JOIN JESUS IN HELL to Delirium Books on Dec. 14th (my dad’s birthday). It’ll come out in 2012 as a signed/limited hardcover and digitally! Another badass cover from Dani Serra! *Dance* This is one of my favorite pieces and was so difficult to write that it made me cry several times. And my hero Tom Piccirilli commented on WHEN WE JOIN JESUS IN HELL when I shared the rough opening on here. It made me extremely happy. Not only is he a badass author, he’s encouraging and kind and such a great guy. I’d probably give him a kidney if he needed it. Maybe not mine, but somebody’s.
My buddy, Jassen Bailey, bought me a book I’d been searching for forever! Tom Piccirilli’s first novel Dark Father! Thanks so much, bro! What a thoughtful, dude!
I wrote reviews for The Crow’s Caw which is a great site if you want to know what books are rocking the genre.
I’ve sported some stylish threads thanks to The Bag & The Crow. I think their tees have gotten me laid a couple times and increased my creativity.
I wrote quite a bit even though I was insanely busy working 60 hours a week at my regular job spring and summer, plus some Sundays at my old job, critting friends’ work, studying writing, reading, doing some reviews. Then when worked slowed down in the fall I spent most of my time playing guitar, drawing and painting (which I’ve never really invested any time in but found it’s super fun), and I had a blast talking life and its great mysteries with my buddies Shaun, Jassen, and Susan. I love those guys so much. Those three are like soul mates to me.
I’ve seen Susan search for truth, dive deep into the waters of her soul, and come back even more incredible, and I’m so proud of her. What a woman.
I’ve watched Jassen blossom despite slogging through the most challenging year of his life.
I’ve witnessed my buddy Shaun hone his writing voice and the stories he has to tell to a razor sharp edge. I can’t wait until people read his novels.
I’ve seen these friends suffer and watched them grow while facing adversity, with honesty, heart and dignity. Listened and shared. Lived and loved deeply and more passionately and honestly than I’ve ever been capable of before (and surprisingly, to me anyway, it had to start with loving myself and letting go of a lot of self-loathing and buried resentments. How weird. LOl).
My buddy and long time critique partner Kevin Wallis finished his first novel! Was a pleasure to read and give him feedback. Can’t wait until he sells that bugger!
My publisher, Shane Ryan Staley, built me a sweet website! How awesome is that? I could hug him several times, maybe even rub his feet.
I went to my first convention in October (Rock & Shock). Got to meet up with uber cool Jassen Bailey, sexy kitten Susan Scofield, iron man Ken Wood of Shock Totem, fellow authors Bill Gauthier and Adam Bloomquist, Tom Moran of Sideshow Press, watched Jordan Norton get molested by a big hairy guy and Scott Wieser of Morning Ablaze laugh at him, Andy Royal made me laugh my ass off, Danny Evarts was kind, Matt and Melissa Herron of Corrupt Culture were great and funny in the booth next door, and Kurt Newton and me had a fun talk. Sold out of the paperbacks of Nursery Rhymes 4 Dead Children (thanks to everybody who bought a copy and spent some time with me!) as well as learned some very valuable lessons. I really enjoyed seeing people picking up my novel, asking questions about it, as well as talking to them and signing copies for them. How fucking neat. Thanks to everyone for such a wonderful time!
I spoke to a 6th grade class (Jassen’s daughter Jayda’s) about creativity and imagination while on vacation in Maine. It was a total blast even though I’m very introverted. I read them the first chapter of my teen book Before Leonora Wakes, they sent me a very kind thank you, and I sent them a physical copy of the book. Win-win! Looking forward to speaking to more kids about creativity in the near future!
I did a fun and personal guest blog tour (though I did fall way behind on it since writing fiction was my number one priority and I didn’t have the energy for both some weeks. Yet the people who allowed me on their sites are beautiful and gracious and so understanding.)
I’ve had a ton of great reviews on pretty much everything that came out this year. From my first novel Nursery Rhymes for Dead Children to my first novella Iron Butterflies Rust, and garnered some nice mentions on stories that have appeared in magazines and anthologies. Sweet! Thanks to all the book reviewers who have taken the time to give me and my work a chance!
Brian Keene doesn’t know me from Adam, but he was kind enough to mention me on his website, which was damn cool of him! Then my buddy Susan sent me a link to Brian Keene’s Top Ten Books of 2011 and my first novel, Nursery Rhymes 4 Dead Children, is on there. So, a big thanks to Brian for taking the time to read it and for sharing it! And thanks to Susan for always letting me know stuff like that is out there because I’m kinda lazy (or focused on writing) when it comes to keeping track of what’s going on.
Plus Brian let me use this awesome blurb!
“Thompson’s voice is his own — strong, hypnotic, and unsettling. Nursery Rhymes 4 Dead Children is a bleak fucking book, and therein lies its danger. So beautifully-constructed is Thompson’s prose, that the reader is often caught off-guard, mesmerized by a turn of phrase or a descriptive passage, until the book grabs you by the balls and rips them right off, breaking your heart and your psyche in the process.”
My favorite short story, Beneath the Weeping Willow, from Shock Totem #4 was recommended for a Bram Stoker Award. This story and the protagonist tie-in directly to the second and third Division novels. I’m very proud of that one so it holds extra special significance to me that other people dug it. Plus it’s cool to see my name near Stephen King’s. When on vacation at Jassen’s in Maine, Jassen took me to his house, too! Thanks, dude! I wish Stevie would have come out and we could have wrestled in his yard, that’d have been fun!
I feel like I’ve grown as a man, a friend, a lover, and a writer. There were a few times when I was utterly exhausted and I thought I might take some steps back—sometimes I probably did, I can get cranky or anti-social when I’m not well-rested or sick—but what a year it’s been. I’ve worked my ass off, but I’ve also been lucky to have so many amazing people in my corner. Because really there is only two halves of my success… First: I write. Second: I’m fortunate enough to have people as excited about the work as I am. People who give me feedback, a publisher who believes in me, book reviewers and readers, lovers of literature and people full of imagination.
So many, many thanks to everyone who has been my friend, taught me valuable lessons, offered honesty and encouragement, bought the books, reviewed my work, and spread the word!
Let’s see how 2012 shapes up next, huh? Perhaps it’ll bring some of us diamonds to share with the world.