Never forget.

CONSPIRACY! ARCANE MYSTERY!

SECRET SOCIETIES!

What more could you ask for, right?

So here’s the deal … I have a brand new short story in SECRETS IN SCARLET, the upcoming Arkham Horror anthology coming from Aconyte Books. The book will be out October 4 in the United States and December 8 in the United Kingdom but you can pre-order it RIGHT NOW from Amazon.

Which is pretty cool, but you may be asking, “What is Arkham Horror?”

According to its Wikipedia entry, “ARKHAM HORROR: THE CARD GAME is a cooperative living card game produced by Fantasy Flight Games. It is set in the universe of Chaosium‘s Call of Cthulhu role-playing game which is itself based on the Cthulhu Mythos of H. P. Lovecraft and other cosmic horror writers. The title refers to Lovecraft’s fictional town of Arkham, Massachusetts, which is mentioned in many Mythos stories.”

And this year Arkham Horror is expanding with a new campaign called The Scarlet Keys. It features new characters and new challenges, and as part of its much anticipated launch the tie-in anthology SECRETS IN SCARLET is introducing many of these characters by running them through their own individual adventures.

So, yeah, if you’re thinking my transition to writing more short stories continues along with my association with HPL, you’re right. But the really cool part about this story, “Forty Grain Weight of Nephrite,” is its protagonist Kymani Jones.

Just another day on the job for Kymani Jones!

I love rogues, scoundrels and bent heroes. Historical figures like John Henry “Doc” Holliday (“This is funny.”) and fictional characters like Captain Louis Renault (“I’m shocked! Shocked!”) from the 1942 film CASABLANCA.

Now there is Kymani Jones. If Kymani had a job description it would be freelance insurance claims adjuster and expert in objet d’art by day and picaresque vigilante thief by night.

Strange disappearances have been haunting the city of Arkham for a while now. I mean strange disappearances. Objects, buildings and persons aren’t just vanishing. They are being erased from history and memory. Now disappearances like these are occurring in other parts of the globe and a secret organization called The Foundation hopes to defend humanity against this otherworldly threat by researching and collecting paradimensional objects known as The Scarlet Keys. Helping The Foundation learn about and locate these eldritch items is an eclectic group of folks like Kymani with not-your-average skills and education known as investigators. But The Foundation isn’t the only secret organization searching for Keys. The Red Coterie is also collecting them and its members are much more cavalier when it comes to their methods and their concern towards mankind.

In “Forty Grain Weight of Nephrite” Kymani warns the renowned archaeologist/adventurer Professor Aron Vayner that an attempt might be made to steal his most precious possession, the Xiamen Bi, from his fortified Nob Hill estate. When it is inexplicably stolen Vayner hires Kymani to retrieve the priceless artifact no matter the cost, unaware that the Bi is a Key that Kymani intends to return to China if it is recovered.

But getting to the Bi is not going to be easy.

Standing in Kymani’s way are a warrior dedicated to protecting the Bi, an Interpol agent determined to expose and apprehend Kymani, and a Chinatown cabal led by one of The Red Coterie’s most dangerous members.

Want to know more?

Okay!

To read brief interviews with me and the other SECRETS IN SCARLET authors just click this link!

You can also check out these Youtube gaming sites for more information about THE SCARLET KEYS and Kymani Jones, who has been generating a lot of excitement:

 

 

 

And that’s all for now, but be sure to check back here for more information as the release of SECRETS IN SCARLET draws nearer!

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More now than ever, please take some time this weekend to remember the reason for Memorial Day. Pray and hold close to your heart those who gave their lives that our nation might live.  God bless them all.

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Just wanted to share that the entire line of Lovecraft graphic novel adaptations published by Caliber Comics, drawn by a host of incredibly talented artists and written by me are all now available for order this month through Diamond Distribution! If you’re missing any of these books… or you have been wanting to give them a try … now’s a good time to dive on in!

Want to know more about these adaptations? Just click here to read about Caliber re-issuing these adaptations into new and improved editions!

Time for yet another shout-out to inform ye all that the latest Caliber Comics re-issue of my H. P. Lovecraft adaptations is now available for order through Diamond Distribution! This time up is ARTHUR JERMYN, also known as “Facts in the Case of Arthur Jermyn and His Family” and “The White Ape.” (Phew!) Cover and interior art by the great Wayne Reid. Like all the Caliber/Lovecraft re-issues this graphic novel features re-scanned artwork and updated editorial material along with an illustrated copy of the original story by HPL.

William Heitman’s illustration for Lovecraft’s “Arthur Jermyn” as it appeared under the title “The White Ape” in the April 1924 issue of Weird Tales.

Speaking of that original story, Lovecraft gives a behind-the-scenes glimpse of his inspiration for it in this snippet from a letter he wrote to Weird Tales editor Edwin Baird in 1923:

“Somebody had been harassing me into reading some work of the iconoclastic moderns — these young chaps who pry behind exteriors and unveil nasty hidden motives and secret stigmata — and I had nearly fallen asleep over the tame backstairs gossip of [Sherwood] Anderson‘s Winesburg, Ohio. The sainted Sherwood, as you know, laid bare the dark area which many whited village lives concealed, and it occurred to me that I, in my weirder medium, could probably devise some secret behind a man’s ancestry which would make the worst of Anderson’s disclosures sound like the annual report of a Sabbath school. Hence Arthur Jermyn.”

Want to find out just what that secret is?  Or would you like to order a copy through Diamond distribution?  Just click on this link: https://www.previewsworld.com/Catalog/APR221355.

Our story gets off to a rather energetic start in this page by Wayne Reid.

If you would like to read more about the re-issuing of these Lovecraft adaptations , you can check out the article Reprinting H. P. Lovecraft’s Best As A Graphic Novel & Caliber Comics from Otaku No Culture.

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CLICK HERE TO WATCH CASTLE BRIDGE MEDIA’S “LOVE GONE WRONG” LAUNCH PARTY!

My short story “Expiration Date” is coming back at you in the next edition of Castle Bridge Media’s popular anthology series CASTLE OF HORROR.

VOLUME 7: LOVE GONE WRONG is now available in paperback and Kindle at Amazon!

The focus of LOVE GONE WRONG is … well … love.  Familial, romantic, dedicated, obsessive … you name it. The one thing that truly unites all these love stories, however, is a misstep occurs which leads into a slide into the uncanny.

“Expiration Date” is a tale of a marriage left to sour and how even the best laid plans of vengeance involving the supernatural can go terribly awry. “Expiration Date” is also my homage to those wonderful portmanteau sixties and seventies films from Amicus Productions like DR. TERROR’S HOUSE OF HORRORS, ASYLUM and FROM BEYOND THE GRAVE.

Nope, flowers and candy aren’t going to save the day here.

 

 

 

 

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Just a quick shout-out to let you all know that the latest Caliber Comics re-issue of my H. P. Lovecraft adaptations is now available for order through Diamond Distribution! This time up is THE MUSIC OF ERICH ZANN with cover and interior art by the ever-awesome Aldin Barzoa, who worked with me long, long ago on NIGHTLINGER and TATTERS (both available through Caliber). Like all the Caliber/Lovecraft re-issues this graphic novel features re-scanned artwork and updated editorial material along with an illustrated copy of the original story by HPL. I also want to add that, after THE LURKING FEAR, this is my favorite of the Lovecraft adaptations and am so happy to see it available again in a better-than-ever presentation!

If you would like to order a copy through Diamond distribution just click on this link: https://www.previewsworld.com/Catalog/MAR221506.

If you would like to read more about the re-issuing of these Lovecraft adaptations , you can check out the article Reprinting H. P. Lovecraft’s Best As A Graphic Novel & Caliber Comics from Otaku No Culture.

Aldin Baroza’s artwork from the first page of Caliber Comics’ adaptation of “The Music of Erich Zann.”

 

Erich Zann is given a chance at retribution. Or is it redemption? Artwork by Aldin Baroza.

 

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It is almost year end. Time to take a look back at 2020 (which I forgot to review last January) and 2021 and then take a look at what’s ahead in 2022.

The pandemic made 2020 an unpleasant and often tragic year for many people, but even before the shutdowns started in March the year got off to an unhappy start with the death of Clive Cussler on February 24. Mr. Cussler left behind a truly memorable legacy and remains sorely missed.

Clive Cussler was true to character until the end, as demonstrated by his epigraph on the tombstone he shares with his wife Barbara.

On a more personal note, the shutdowns meant no comic conventions which meant no get-togethers with fans and old friends at places like MSP or local cons. I missed you all and hope we will have the opportunity to gather again in the future.

So what happened as far as writing projects are concerned in 2020?  Caliber Comics published my and Trey Baldwin’s graphic novel The Shadow over Innsmouth, my first adaptation of an H. P. Lovecraft story in over twenty years and my first comic of any kind in over ten years. Caliber also teamed up with card.com to offer debit cards featuring several Caliber properties, including several of mine. Later in the year Caliber teamed up with zazzle.com to offer a variety of different types of merchandise featuring many Caliber properties, again including several of mine.

Shadow over Innsmouth, Sherlock Holmes, Vanguard and Heroes and Horrors are just some of my comics available as debit cards through card.com. Other types of merchandise featuring some of my Caliber properties are available at zazzle.com.

My foray into the realm of short story anthologies continued in 2020 with my Sherlock Holmes pastiches “The Case of the Unparallelled Adventures” and “The Adventure of the Amibitious Task,” while my article “Dirk Pitt: Occult Detective?” was published in Occult Detective Magazine #7 in time to serve as a tribute to Mr. Cussler and his greatest and most famous character.

2021 was not as productive as 2020 but was definitely a busy year, due in large part to our move from Iowa to Utah. As comic conventions continue to open up again I am hoping to attend at least one this year.  On the writing front my novel The Adventure of the Coal-Tar Derivative: The Exploits of Sherlock Holmes & Dr. John H. Watson Against the Moriarties During the Great Hiatus” was published by MX Publishing and became my first audio book (available through Audible).

Meanwhile “The Adventure of the Ambitious Task” was adapted into a one-man show called “The Adventure of the Inescapable Crypt” by Jonathan Goodwin, winner of the 2020 Hamilton Dean Award from The Dracula Society. Goodwin wrote the adaptation and performed as Holmes (but also some other characters) for his Don’t Go Into the Cellar theater group as a Halloween program that was available live throughout the world as an online Zoom broadcast. If you didn’t catch it and would like to get an idea of what the production was like, you can click on the image below to see Goodwin portraying Holmes for the Kickstarter promotion for the production.

Finally Caliber Comics continues to reissue all of my Lovecraft adaptions. Each re-issue features re-scanned comics pages and updated editorial material so the books look better than ever. Also the re-issue of Dagon features a dazzling new cover by my collaborator on this story Sergio Cariello. The remaining individual adaptations as well as the two volume anthology collection H. P. Lovecraft Worlds should be published in 2022. And here is more good news! Re-issues of Caliber’s Sherlock Holmes graphic novels–which includes my pastiches Adventure of the Opera Ghost and The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Holmes–may be in the works in the near future. Keep your fingers crossed!

So what’s coming in 2022?

Getting settled in our new home will be the priority. That said, I am very excited to be writing a short story for an all-new anthology to be published later this year dedicated to an overlooked pulp hero created by one of the medium’s most popular authors. That is all I can right now, but I promise to share details here as soon as I have the okay to do so. Meanwhile Trey Baldwin is working on our latest Lovecraft comics adaptation, The Call of Cthulhu, which will hopefully be available from Caliber Comics before the end of 2022. I have also been submitting to various publishers more than I have in many years, but there is no way of knowing right now if any of these will be accepted. If anything is, I will let you know here. Work also continues on the second novel in my Lovecraftian series and I recently began outlining a possible second Sherlock Holmes novel. I have also been whittling away on a non-fiction book that looks at how superhero films have changed from their inception with Adventures of Captain Marvel in 1941 up to the launch of the Marvel Comics Universe with Iron Man in 2008. I am not going to lie, my finishing this is a long shot, but it is a manuscript I come back to when I need a break from other writing projects or there isn’t enough time to start working on a new project before something time-consuming happens, say like moving across four states.

So, hey, I’m keeping busy.

And that’s it for now. It has been quite a couple of years. Things are improving in some ways, but not so much in others. I don’t know what the future holds, but I do have every faith that we are near the end of this pandemic and that we will be all the better and stronger for it

Take care and I’ll see you all next year!

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I am gobsmacked and amped to proclaim far and wide that all nine of my H. P. Lovecraft adaptations and both volumes of H. P. Lovecraft’s Worlds that collects the nine adaptations have either been or are in the process of being re-issued by Caliber Comics! All feature the nifty Lovecraft Series logo seen above to show that it is part of my original series of Lovecraft adaptations. Look for the seal to know they are Cthulhu Approved!

The artwork for all nine stories have been re-scanned and the book itself reformatted to look and read better than ever.

In case you have forgotten, these nine adaptations are:

Just look at that line-up of artists! And the Dagon adaptation features a new cover by artist Sergio Cariello!

Along with the release of Shadow Over Innsmouth in 2020 there is a total of 10 Lovecraft adaptations to choose from! And if that is not enough hard-core Lovecrafty goodness for you, let us not forget about these dark chests of wonder that are also available for your reading entertainment:

 

 

Just in time for Hallowe’en! My novella “The Adventure of the Ambitious Task” is being presented as an online theatrical event by Don’t Go Into the Cellar! Theatre Company as THE ADVENTURE OF THE INESCAPABLE CRYPT on October 30!

What is it all about? Cellar’s Jonathan Goodwin as The Great Detective tells all in this video produced to promote the production’s current Kickstarter campaign:

Sounds creepy, doesn’t it?

Sheridan Nighlinger is the nom de guerre used by my mysterious horror-adventure hero Feril Nightlinger during the 1920s and “The Adventure of the Ambitious Task” was first published in SHERLOCK HOLMES AND THE OCCULT DETECTIVES, VOL. II. I have since incorporated it into my new Sherlock Holmes novel THE ADVENTURE OF THE COAL-TAR DERIVATIVE which will be released by MX Publishing on November 3 and is currently available as an audio book from Audible.

Join in from anywhere in the world on October 30 by signing up at Eventbrite! Just remember, whatever you do — DON’T GO INTO THE CELLAR!

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