Tag Archive | thriller

Fan Art, Book Reviews and The Future

Greetings and salutations Hellions! Uncle Hunter here, alive and well and busier than a one-armed wallpaper hanger. 2016 has been bat crap crazy, and we’re only two months and change in. Big changes are going on all around me. I’m a hamster on a wheel, just trying to keep up.

Let’s start with some of the hysterical artwork that Jim Herbert has been concocting for 2 of my books, THEY RISE and the upcoming, I KILL IN PEACE. I keep posting that Jaws has nothing on the ghost sharks in THEY RISE. Well, Jim put his artwork where my mouth is and came up with this hysterical variant cover…

Jaws They Rise

Bye bye Brucie! You never stood a chance, big guy.

The title to my last Samhain novella, I KILL IN PEACE, inspired a little savage warrior cover with my face on a Frazetta bod. I think my wife wants this one framed.

Hunter warriorMeeting people like Jim and seeing stuff like this is the reason why I write. When I’m worn out at the end of a long day, I only need to look at this to cheer me up. And wish I’d get off my ass and go to the gym. Thanks Jim.

You may not be aware of this, but one of the best ways to support an author, aside from buying our books, is to leave reviews. Seriously, reviews are like priceless Lucky Charms. Good, bad or ugly, they all count, especially on Amazon where more reviews get your book ranked higher and more sets of eyes. 50 reviews is a magic first milestone to hit.

Right now, THEY RISE, has 32 reviews. If you’ve read the book, I’d love it if you can post a quick review or rating on Amazon. Anyone who does, shoot me an email at huntershea1@gmail.com with a link to your review and I’ll send something special to you. All you need to do is click the cover below and it will take you right there. Easy peasy lemon squeezy.

They Rise cover

The Chimaera Fish are coming to get you Barbara!

OK, on to what’s next, now that Samhain is in a bit of potentially terminal turmoil. I’ve been contacted by several publishers over the past month and will be making an announcement about a new book deal very soon. I also have several short stories that will be included in anthologies. It’s been a long time since I worked on short stories, and it’s even better that I’m finding homes for them. There will be more Hunter tales of the demented and monstrous than ever.

And we’re getting close to official Hellions gear and giveaways. The artwork is amazing. I promise, you’re going to love it and want in on the devilish fun.

Keep on readin’, and I’ll keep on writin’.

The Truth Behind THEY RISE -A Ghost Shark Killer Thriller & Giveaway

First, thank you to everyone who has picked up a copy of my deep sea thriller, THEY RISE. Sales and reviews have been fantastic. You all make my monster heart grow 3 sizes.

Jack and I finally got an episode together to talk about THEY RISE and reveal what is real and what isn’t. You also get a little inside poop on how deeply personal the first chapter was for me. Plus, we give some shout outs to a few of our uber Monster Men fans!

But wait, there’s more! If you comment on the video, you’re eligible to win a free copy of They Rise. Winner will be announced on March 17th. 

 

If our little gab fest has you in the mood for an entree of chimaera fish with a side of seaweed, hop on over to Amazon and snag a copy on your fishing line.

Who Wants The New Issue Of Fangoria?

Growing up, I decorated my room with 2 things – pictures of beautiful women like Victoria Principal, Bo Derek, Cheryl Tiegs (I know, I’m dating myself here) and horrific images carefully cut out from the pages of Fangoria Magazine. It was a very confusing room for visitors, which is why I was ordered to keep my door closed at all times. When family and friends found out I’d become a horror writer, it surprised no one.

Fangoria and Famous Monsters of Filmland were my bibles, places where I could explore the origins of horror as well as the new wave of splatter terror that fueled the 80s.

So you can imagine my reaction when I saw this one page ad for Tortures of the Damned in the latest issue. Needless to say, I bought every copy that my local Barnes & Noble had. I’m tempted to plaster my walls with it.

Tortures Fango adAnd because I hate celebrating alone, I want to share this issue with you. I’m giving away 2 signed copies of Fangoria. How do you win? Anyone who signs up for my Dark Hunter Newsletter between now and September 28th and lives in the US is eligible. Just click the above image or go to the Newsletter tab on the site to enter. Already signed up? Refer a friend and if they win, grab it from their mailbox.

At the very least, you get a free copy of Fango. Come on and join the fun. Horrortober is just around the corner!

This is the cover of the new issue. Pretty creepy.

This is the cover of the new issue. Pretty creepy.

Special Announcement – The Montauk Monster on Sale To Get You Ready For Summer

Right now, you can get last summer’s smash hit monster thriller, THE MONTAUK MONSTER, on ebook for only $1.99. Load up your Kindles and Nooks and iPads for the beach, and don’t be afraid of the water…just what washes up on the shore!

You can get a copy at Amazon B&N or KOBO today. I’m not sure how long the sale will last (I wasn’t even aware it started until someone else pointed it out!), so grab it while you can.

montauk monster coverAnd if monsters aren’t your bag, THE HAUNTED HALLS by Glenn Rolfe is free on Amazon aaaand Jonathan Janz’s THE NIGHTMARE GIRL is only 99 cents! You can get three great books for just under $3. I dare you to find a better dealio.

An Interview With Kristopher Rufty On His Dog Gone Bad Novel – JAGGER

I love being a horror writer. Sometimes, it afford little perks, like not only getting to know an awesome writer (and human being) like Kristopher Rufty, but also getting a sneak peek at his latest book.

The book in question this time is JAGGER, a tale about an enormous dog who goes from cuddly to bat crap crazy. When I was done, I actually said, “Cujo who?” out loud. This is one you’ll want to devour in one sitting.


Let me start off by saying I loved your new book, Jagger. Why don’t you tell folks what this nail biter is about?

Thank you so much! I’m happy you enjoyed it. Coming from you, that means a lot. I’m a huge fan of your work as well. Jagger is about a scumbag named Clayton who takes Amy Snider’s mastiff to use in some dogfights. His showpiece pit was killed in a fight and cost some very bad people a lot money. He knows if he doesn’t come up with something quick, he’ll suffer the same fate as others before him. But the problem is Jagger is a domesticated canine, and his size wouldn’t be the only thing that could keep him alive in the fights. So Clayton enlists the help of an old friend named Stan, a medical school graduate who’s turned to developing meth and experimental drugs in his basement for help. Stan has whipped up a special kind of steroid that he sells to beef farmers and they try it out on Jagger. It works. But the side-effects are disastrous. Jagger can no longer feel pain, and he suffers from violent outbursts, rage, and insanity. Take that, and add in an abusive dog trainer, Jagger becomes the Jason Voorhees of dogs. Once he breaks loose from his captors, he goes on a bloody killing spree as he tries to find his way home.

I wrote the first draft of this book in less than six weeks. In the revision process, I changed very little. Though it got a little intense writing certain scenes, I had a good time with this one. It was one of those books I couldn’t stay away from. Being a lover of nature-gone-wrong books and movies, I tried to incorporate some of that with some classic exploitation-style characters and situations. Hopefully I succeeded.

jagger_v2

I know you’re a dog owner. Is there a particular dog you had that inspired Jagger?

I based a lot of Jagger’s traits and mannerisms before he goes mad on our dog, Thor. The personality, the huffing and puffing and sagging jowls that make propeller sounds, the unlimited supply of drool, the crawling into bed with you and nuzzling his wet nose into the nook of your neck—all of that came from Thor.

Jagger’s appearance was inspired by a dog I saw at the vet’s office one day. Sitting in the waiting area with Thor, I watched as he took pride in being the biggest dog around. Thor ways close to 135 pounds, so there aren’t many dogs bigger than him at any vet visit. On this day, that changed. A guy entered with this beast of a dog. He had thick brown and black fur, a scrunched up face that sort of resemble a Chow. Thor went to greet this dog and looked like a puppy standing next to its mother in this dog’s presence. I got to talking to with the owner and he told me his dog was a fuzzy mastiff, a form of bullmastiff but with longer hair. I found it slightly humorous how much the dog resembled Mick Jagger. On the way home that day, I kept thinking what would happen if that dog turned on its owner and the seeds for Jagger was planted.

I read up about mastiffs. They’re very gentle in nature, loving, and overly affectionate. So I had to work a bit at coming up with something that might make such a tender animal turn violent.

You’re not just a horror writer, you’re a director, too. Which hat is more difficult to wear? Do you have any future movie making plans?

They can be difficult in their own ways. In movies, I have to be a leader of a team and it’s my duty to make sure the movie is made with this team the best way it possibly can be. I have budgets to adhere to, actors to instruct and care for, and a certain number of scenes have to be filmed on a particular day or I’ll get behind schedule and risk throwing a wrench into all the aforementioned duties. But when it’s over and filming has wrapped, I get to take my footage and cut it together into my creation. That is the best part, seeing the fruit of everyone’s labors. The stress and bad moods of filming become a distant memory as I watch what we worked so hard to accomplish in a finished form. It’s a wonderful feeling that makes the entire process a wonderful experience.

Writing can bring its own stresses at times, but there is something therapeutic about writing stories that can’t be topped by film-making, at least not the kind of film-making I’m used to. Writing is magic, not only are you creating a world to play in, but there’s no budget sheets to worry about, nobody will throw a temper tantrum, nobody can get hurt (other than the characters) and you are completely limitless as to what you can do. It’s amazing. One of the greatest blessings I’ve been given is the chance to write stories.

For future movies, I wish I could say there are things lined up. I’ve been writing book after book, and haven’t had much time to pursue movies since we finished Rags (which will be released this year from Wild Eye Releasing). My dream was to be like Clive Barker—somebody who dabbles in both. And one day I hope that will happen again. But for now, I’m very happy with just writing fiction.

Some of my books have received interest from film-makers and producers. And I have a script that I wrote based on my novella Last One Alive. That movie might be my return to the director’s chair in the near future.

But nothing can take my love away from movies. The passion is still there, a burning sensation in my heart. I still watch all the movies I’ve loved since I was a kid on a regular basis. Roger Corman, H.G. Lewis, AIP classics, and the exploitation greats. Plus the splatter movies that set me on this path to begin with.

You’ve written quite a few books in just several years. How do you keep the writing wheels going?

I keep those wheels lubed! Seriously. There’s material all over that I can find influence in. Like with Jagger, the dog at the vet that day inspired an entire novel with the help of our dog Thor. My son inspired Proud Parents. My stepsister inspired Tracey in Oak Hollow. A close call at my old job inspired Angel Board. I’m sure this happens to you as well, something will just trigger your brain and these massive mortal shells start exploding ideas. Sometimes it can be a conversation you have with someone that just stays with you. My personal fears have inspired a good bit of my writing and still do. I just do a lot of people watching, read a lot of books, magazines, newspapers. I watch a lot of true crime and monster mysteries on TV. Material is everywhere. You know as well as I do that we never take a day off. Sure, we don’t sit down and write once in a while, but our gears are always cranking, always spinning possibilities for stories in our minds, even when we’re sleeping.

What’s one thing you’d like to check off your bucket list this year?

I want to finally read some of King’s The Dark Tower series. I know what you’re thinking, but please don’t beat me! I haven’t read any of those books yet.(We’re both in the same boat. They are some of the only King books I haven’t read!)

My wife swears they’re some of his best. I promised her I would read the first three this year. I’m actually about to start on The Gunslinger here soon and plan to read the following two this summer and fall. We have them all in both paperback and hardback, so they’re waiting on me and I’m excited to start.

I’m going to go opposite on this question – what’s your least favorite horror movie franchise and why?

Probably either the Paranormal Activity series or Zombie’s Halloween movies. I watched the first Paranormal and thought it was pretty well done, but the sequels were just mundane and repetitive. The fourth one was silly.

Zombie’s Halloween saga was just bad for all the wrong reasons. He did something you shouldn’t—tried to explain evil. It can’t be explained. That was what made Myers so scary in the first place. There was no method to his madness, no reason for it. Myers was just evil on two legs as Dr. Loomis stated in the original series. An unstoppable force that slaughtered anything in front of him without provocation, a wildfire that can’t be extinguished as it scorches everything in its wake. But I do give him credit for trying. He has a brass pair for tackling a classic character like Michael Myers and trying to make him his own.

Do you think you could beat Stephen King in an arm wrestling match?

Probably not. I’d be so distracted by being in his company that he’d use it to his advantage for the win. I probably wouldn’t have even noticed I’d lost until he’d left the room and I came down from my King-induced high.

Tell the world what’s coming next and where to find you and your books.

The Lurking Season just came out. It’s a sequel to The Lurkers. Jagger will be released in a couple weeks, with Bigfoot Beach following. The Vampire of Plainfield comes out this summer, and Desolation follows that. Thunderstorm Books are doing limited edition hardcovers of Bigfoot Beach and The Vampire of Plainfield, but they’ll also be available in e-book with a paperback following soon after.

My books can be found in a lot of the usual places, sometimes books stores too. I recently heard that some of my titles are in a few libraries, which I think is amazing. I love libraries and even now I get that same kind of nervous excitement whenever I’m scouring the shelves for something I haven’t read. It’s a feeling we should all get to experience as much as possible.

Thanks a lot, Hunter! I appreciate the chance to visit your blog. It’s always a fun time. Can’t wait to get together again and talk about writing, monsters, and horror movies.

You can follow Krist’s amazing journey at lastkristontheleft.blogspot.com . And if you crave some Jagger, click on the cover copy above.

The Truth Behind The Montauk Monster

What’s cookin’ monster dudes and monsterettes? Hope you’re enjoying your summer as much as I am and catching up on some quality reading time. August is the month I rest up so I’m ready for my favorite month, #Horrortober! Already putting together my list of horror flicks to watch and books to read.

When I’m not lounging around searching for my lost shaker or salt, I’ve been visiting bookstores, libraries and horror cons, talking about The Montauk Monster. And not just the book, but the real story behind the myth and how I tied fact and fiction together and injected it with a human growth hormone/speed cocktail.

Fellow Monster Man Jack and I recorded one of our get togethers where we talked all about the Long Island beasts and how the book deal came about. For those of you who can’t get to one of my talks, I present it here for your viewing pleasure (or displeasure).

What monster do you think is under-appreciated and needs its own book? You may be the person to inspire my next monster novel! If you live in the US and give a suggestion in the comments here, you’re eligible to win a signed copy of The Montauk Monster. Let your monster freak flags fly!

The Montauk Monster – Publishers Weekly Best of Summer Reads

 

Publishers Weekly logo

I was a little numb when my editor recently sent me a link to Publisher’s Weekly. They named my upcoming thriller, THE MONTAUK MONSTER, one of the best summer books of 2014! Not only that, they gave it a hell of a review. Here’s a snippet :

The urban mythologies of the Montauk Monster and the government labs on Plum Island unite to cause staggering levels of mayhem when mutant animals with toxic blood descend on a Long Island town. This wholly enthralling hulk of a summer beach read is redolent of sunscreen and nostalgia, recalling mass market horror tales of yore by John Saul, Dean Koontz, and Peter Benchley. — PW

Saul, Koontz and Benchley? That’s crazy. I’m just a guy who likes writing about monsters. 🙂

The buzz on the book has been fantastic. The Horror Bookshelf also named it one of the most anticipated reads of the summer, right next to Stephen King’s Mr. Mercedes. Here’s what they had to say :

IThe Montauk Monster, Shea utilizes the failed genetic experiment angle to craft a story that seems absolutely terrifying. I mean, this book has it all! Creepy monsters?

 

montauk monster cover

Check. Shadowy, top-secret projects from the government? Check. One thing is for certain after reading the synopsis of this book. Seeing how there is not just one but MANY of these creatures terrorizing the residents of Montauk, I will probably be afraid to ever step foot in the water again, fictitious story or not!

THE MONTAUK MONSTER hits shelves as a Pinnacle paperback on June 3rd. For those of you who have been following me these past 3 years, I promise you, this is the one you’ve all been waiting for.

Where Crime Meets Horror: Inside the Mind of a Killer

Today I bring you a guest post by a wonderful author who immediately caught my attention a year ago with her story, The Doll. Her name is J.C. Martin and she is absolutely someone to watch. Her debut novel, Oracle, has just been released and is sure to be a huge success. I’m sure you’ll love her work as much as I do. So little hunters and huntresses, with great pleasure, I bring you J.C. Martin. Take it away…

Although my main genre is crime and thrillers, I adore scary stories, and enjoy dabbling in horror fiction. As a fan of both genres, I find many parallels between crime fiction and psychological horror, and nowhere else are these similarities starker, than when one looks inside the mind of a killer.

In this post, I discuss certain elements of a villain’s psychology—using some mildly clever subtitles—that could be every bit as spooky as one of Poe’s poems.

Eyes without a Face

In my books, I often write a few chapters from the point of view of the antagonist. Oracle is no exception. By getting inside the villain’s mind, readers will gain a different perspective on the crime. To the killer, it’s not just a murder. Depending on their twisted logic, it could mean so much more: personal gratification, retribution, a work of art, divine sacrifice, even an act of heroism for the good of all.

By seeing the world through the killer’s eyes, readers, though they may not agree with his methods, may sympathise with his motivations. We may share the same views as a psychopath. The only difference is that they act on their compulsions.

Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?

The nature versus nurture debate in behavioural psychology fascinates me. Personally, I believe a psychopath is borne from an unfortunate combination of both: traumatic experiences and difficult circumstances, coupled with and an innate neurological malfunction, could well be the recipe for a serial murderer.

The antagonists in my stories aim to address this question of how a killer came to be. In Oracle, we visit the Oracle’s childhood in an attempt to understand the factors that triggered his psychotic behaviour.

Whilst experiencing past and present events through a madman’s eyes can be a creepy experience in itself, the scariest thing about killers, particularly serial killers, could be this…

They Walk Among Us

Many psychopaths appear to lead completely normal lives: Ted Bundy was a promising law student; Ian Brady was a quiet, unassuming office clerk. Could that nice young man in the cubicle next to yours be a serial killer in training? You may never know…

For me, more unnerving than their twisted psyche and murderous capabilities, the fact that you can’t tell a psychopathic murderer from the average Joe, is the scariest thought of all.

Through writing or reading from the perspective of a psychopath, we get to explore the darkest recesses of the human psyche. This walk on the dark side, together with the knowledge that these real-life monsters are indistinguishable from the everyday man, is what makes writing serial killer fiction so horrifyingly intriguing.

How do you find a serial killer in a crowd? You don’t. They find you.

What compels YOU most about the mind of a killer? In your opinion, who is the scariest serial killer of all, real or fictional?

About J.C. Martin:

J.C. Martin is a butt-kicking bookworm: when she isn’t reading or writing, she teaches martial arts and self-defence to adults and children. A writer of dark mysteries and gripping thrillers with a psychological slant, her short stories have won various prizes, and have been published in several anthologies. Oracle, released by J. Taylor Publishing, is her debut novel.

Born and raised in Malaysia, J.C. now lives in south London with her husband and three dogs.

Website: http://jc-martin.com
Blog:
http://jc-martin.com/fighterwriter/
Twitter:
http://twitter.com/#!/JCMartin_author
Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/jc.martin.author

    Oracle

As the countdown begins, the body count rises.

With London gearing up to host the Olympics, the city doesn’t need a serial killer stalking the streets. They’ve got one anyway.

Leaving a trail of brutal and bizarre murders, the police are no closer to finding their latest murderer than Detective Inspector Kurt Lancer is in finding a solution for his daughter’s disability. 

Thrust into the pressure cooker of a high profile case, the struggling single parent is wound tight as he tries to balance care of his own family with the safety of a growing population of potential next victims.

One of whom could be his own daughter. 

Fingers point in every direction as the public relations nightmare grows, and Lancer’s only answer comes in the form of a single oak leaf left at each crime scene.

Available wherever e-books are sold. Click on any of J.C.’s links throughout the post to learn more or pick up your copy today!

My Inspiration For…By Shaun Jeffrey

This month’s inspiration comes from author Shaun Jeffrey. He’s been publishing short stories and novels for years, and his latest novel is now a movie!

So, without further ado, the following page is Shaun’s stage…

The old adage goes ‘Write about what you know’, but in the case of monsters and serial killers, that’s easier said than done. Now, although monsters are figments of the imagination, serial killers are rea – but how can you write about killing people if you’ve never done it? This was my problem when I wrote The Kult. OK, aside from risking imprisonment and actually going out and killing people, which I’m not going to admit to in public, you have to make shit up. You have to let your imagination run riot.

When I started writing the novel, I set out to write something that I’d like to read, but sadly, at first it didn’t work out that way, and the novel I wrote was nothing like the novel that was published.

The story started out about a group of mutated individuals seeking revenge for the continual harassment they suffered at the hands of others. I finished the novel, landed an agent and then waited for it to sell. And I waited, and I waited. But nothing happened. A publisher expressed an interest, but then nothing came of it. So in the cold light of day, I reviewed what I had written and realised that I didn’t like it at all. To cut a long story short, the agent and I parted company, but I knew there was something in the novel that I liked, so I went over it again, and realised that there was another story there, a much better story that needed telling. So I rewrote it, and as I did so, the story flowed. It was as though it had been there all along, but I had tried to shape it into what I wanted it to be, rather than letting the story be what it wanted to be. Once I had finished, I was much happier about the whole thing and the new novel was nothing like the original apart from containing a few of the same characters. Next thing, I knew I had sold it to a small press publisher (who has sadly since gone bankrupt, but the book is available in various ebook formats) and then, before long, the book was optioned for film. Shooting finished last year and the first trailer has just gone online.

So it’s not always about what inspired you to write the story as much as it is about the story wanting to be written, and that’s something you have little or no control over. Of course when you’re writing about a subject that you know little about, such as when I wrote, The Kult, you have to research. My study involved reading about heinous crimes and the mindset of killers so I could ‘walk in their shoes’ so to speak. Because of course I’d never really kill anyone, unlike the characters in my novel …

For more info, please check out www.shaunjeffrey.com

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