David Stevens

Posts Tagged ‘horror’

Breach

In Uncategorized on June 18, 2018 at 9:50 am

Very happy that my weird story “Baby, cold outside”, has found a home in Breach magazine, and will appear in Breach #08 in August. More details to follow …

… meanwhile, while you are waiting, you can read (or listen to) my latest published story, “The gods of the gaps”, here at Three-lobed Burning Eye magazine.

… we have to be careful of our own disposition to irony. There is tradition, even for scientists. Spilled blood pays strange bills, and we have our fingers in so very many pies…

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I did not win an award

In Uncategorized on June 9, 2018 at 8:26 am

There, that’s a blunt factual title!

My story, The Big Reveal, did NOT win the 2017 Australian Shadows Award for short fiction. Congratulations to the winner, Matthew J Morrison for his story The Banksia Boys (Andromeda Spaceways Inflight Magazine #66).

Nonetheless, feel free to click on the link to read my story which appeared in the Winter 2017 edition of Kaleidotrope, edited and published by Fred Coppersmith. I still like the opening (self-praise is no recommendation, as Mrs Carver used to say, the teacher who told me there was no Santa):

When he heard the cracking before the lights had even been doused — a noise he would later realize was the sound of small facial bones breaking — when he looked up and saw the man’s face turning into someone else’s, the boy stopped paying attention to the stuffed horse he had been pulling hair from all afternoon.

Or of course, you can read something else … like The gods of the gaps, in the latest 3LBE

(So many links. Somehow, I think there would have been less shameless self-promotion here if I had won… 🙂 )

It was excellent to have been nominated.

Sorry Fred …. Kaleidotrope … Mum … I let you all down … 😦

I think I am not getting the tone right, too many inconsistencies. Well, here is something that always cheers me up:

Serial Killer Blues

In Uncategorized on May 28, 2018 at 5:41 pm

The latest edition of The Literary Hatchet, is available now, just click here for details.

Which reminds me, you can read my own contribution to The Literary Hatchet, Serial Killer Blues, for free – just click here, fill out the form, and a PDF of volume 14 will be sent to you. You can also buy hard copies at Amazon if you are so inclined.

The Passage

In Uncategorized on May 15, 2018 at 5:46 pm

Justin Cronin’s The Passage was an excellent book. You should definitely read it. A great thrilling scary read, one of my favourite vampire books, which means one of my favourite books.

Never had I looked forward to a sequel more. My excitement increased when I picked up a more recent paperback edition, with a special preview of the The Twelve. Woo-hoo, the sniper we were briefly introduced to in The Passage has his story told – shooting vampires, escaping soldiers, a nightmare journey through an underground car park. This is great, I thought, just like the fat guy in Animal House before the horse dies. Oh, but it wasn’t. It was shit, except for bits, and boring, and annoying. And then came The City of Mirrors, which was also shit, except for bits. (And part of that shit was that after having been teased about the role of Australia in the future, only to find out everyone died and Australia was colonised by Americans who lost their knowledge of everything but still had the University of NSW – I may be slightly wrong on the detail, my copy is in another continent.) Two fat shit books that I have probably read more than many good skinny books, I think because I kept telling myself I must have remembered wrong, they cannot be that bad, BUT THEY WERE. So you should definitely read The Passage, and then mourn the fact that Justin Cronin made so much money from it that he never bothered to write the sequels.

Any way,  so much for 8 year old books.

So, we live in a golden age of television. Its a fact, I should know, I watch enough. You know, all the shows, with their modern approaches to story telling, their realistic setting, their ARTFULNESS. And in this modern age, someone makes this …

As I said, shit. They took the good book and made a crappy cheap looking generic … well, ok its just a trailer, but why is it so clean, and where is the darkness, and the monsters, and the ATMOSPHERE? Has nobody learned anything? And is it just me, or are they actually remaking I Am Legend? – the Will Smith thing, not the excellent book, which again, is one of my favourite vampire books. Where is the creepiness? What, no murdered nuns? No Virals ripping cities apart? Oh, go to buggery …

The Big Reveal

In Uncategorized on May 9, 2018 at 6:16 pm

My story “The Big Reveal” is a finalist in the short fiction section of the Australian Shadows Awards. Big thanks to the Australasian Horror Writers Association for the nomination. And big thanks to Fred Coppersmith at Kaleidotrope for publishing the story.

I opened an email listing the nominees, thinking wouldn’t it be nice if my name appeared in here, and there it was, a big surprise (on a day when I really needed something nice!).

Read the story here.

Read the list of nominees here.

Check out the latest edition of Kaleidotrope here.

Bandwagon, jumped on; This is America as a horror film

In Uncategorized on May 8, 2018 at 4:07 pm

I keep coming back and watching this. Leave the social commentary behind (you don’t have to, of course, but please, just for a moment) and watch it as a short horror movie. The changes in tone. The riots in the background like anything out of 28 Days Later or World War Z. The Ironside theme type siren, accentuated at the end, that scared/thrilled me as a kid. The concluding grainy images and the absolute running for his life fear. Sudden violence. The smiling dancing imp that drops it all and murders with a dead face – a mockery of Lucifer as a naughty boy and sin as a bit of fun, this is something from primal chaos. The deeper fear hidden behind a happy face. The carpet pulled away, and the removal of any safe place, any safe person. This is one hell of a horror movie. Load back the social commentary, and it still is, and worse. This is really good.

The theme is set, and odd it is

In Uncategorized on May 3, 2018 at 5:46 am

Sorry, but this one is a little too odd for us

Two days in a row? Are you guys talking to each other about me behind my back? 🙂

Life is short. I am never going to have a career or find celebrity as a writer. Don’t want to. In the little bits of time that I have, my magpie eye picks up on crooked shiny things, and I play with them for a while. I ignore the ordinary, because I spend enough time with it the rest of the day. The strange bits and pieces from my own tiny corner of the universe, these are the things that I want to share. The characters I have met and had fun with. The man whose mind spent too much time in the brain of a lizard, and is having trouble unpacking into that of a human. A cosmonaut heading to the land of the dead. Neil Armstrong, trapped in a child’s bedroom. A spider woman and an insect man dancing the dance of death – and love! A man who never dreams, except of blackness and things shifting around a little bit, and what he finds near his back fence. The secret true history of Lawrence of Arabia, with djinn and ghouls.

If my little oddity catches the eye of an editor, as it sometimes does, and gives some pleasure to a reader, what a bonus. A little affirmation, and a joy shared, before heading back to the mundane world. And that, dear reader, is what it is all about, for me at least.

(“Why I write”: sheesh, now he thinks he’s George Orwell.)

Having said all of that – after something of a pause, there is a new edition of Three-lobed Burning Eye magazine appearing this month, and it is extremely important that you keep an eye out for it, burning or otherwise.

Eyes are burning

In Uncategorized on April 20, 2018 at 3:35 pm

What’s that you say, 3LBE?

“The voices from the shadows of the things long extinct loose whispers that a new issue will visit soon.”

You don’t say? And I wonder, why is it that I have a special interest in that? Hmm …

I hear that the next issue of Three-lobed Burning Eye magazine will be available in May. …

Night sky in the day time

In Uncategorized on March 23, 2018 at 10:03 am

Night sky in the day time

 

Relief after the storm

when rain washes the sky clear

grit and grain

drained away.

Awake to a sense of purity:

tensions resolved, static removed,

humidity vanished.

Walk outside

Bewildered at the streaks,

paint trailing at the bottom of a dome

See as you have never seen,

Darkly, though no longer through a glass.

Who knew the stars

were eyes?

Clustered, staring, unblinking

greedy.

Who knew the sky is a face?

The earth at your feet is a mouth,

full of teeth.

 

(with a nod to Laird Barron)

****

I miss Sydney thunderstorms – the urgent, commanding nature of weather that demands your full attention, slamming the skies, shaking your house. The cosy thrill / of knowing it can kill / while you are safe (-ish) indoors. And then afterwards, the air is clear and clean and everyone and everything can breathe so very deeply. Not like this monotonous seasons long European grey that wears you down until you are dead but you don’t realise. Dramatic much?

Twice we have heard thunderclaps here. Single individual booms. We waited, happy, ready for the follow up. Though it never came, we spoke about those thunder claps for days afterwards.

A jewel in the dark …

In Uncategorized on March 4, 2018 at 12:57 pm

In his introduction to CHTHONIC, editor Scott R Jones very kindly remarks

Finally, David Stevens’ Some Corner of a Dorset Field That Is Forever Arabia gives us the secret history and fantastic death of a famous English colonel. I count this last as a jewel in CHTHONIC, and I think you will, too.

When I first described my monster, I thought it was harmless enough, as monsters go, but then I saw Fufu Fruenwahl’s drawing, and it freaked me out on several levels. Hmm, there may be something wrong with me.

If you enjoy reading the weird, and/or supporting small independent publishers, I recommend CHTHONIC for your reading and purchasing pleasure, with not a jot of self interest (you can trust me, I’m Australian).

…..

Martian Migraine Press presents seventeen diverse tales of subterranean horrors and abyssal wonder.
CHTHONIC: Weird Tales of Inner Earth features stories by Ramsey Campbell, Gemma Files, Nadia Bulkin, Antony Mann, H. P. Lovecraft, Aaron Besson, Christopher Slatsky, Adam McOmber, John Linwood Grant, Scott Shank, Sarah Peploe, Orrin Grey, S. L. Edwards, Belinda Lewis, David Stevens, Adam Millard, and Tom Lynch . With cover art by Lucas Korte, interior illustrations by Fufu Fruenwahl, and an introduction by editor Scott R Jones.
Only $11.99USD via paypal

 

  If you’re Canadian (and congratulations if you are!)
you can order CHTHONIC: Weird Tales of Inner Earth HERE (11.99 + 3.50CA shipping & handling)

  If you’re American (brave! free! delightfully weird!)
you can order CHTHONIC: Weird Tales of Inner Earth HERE (11.99 + 8.00CA shipping & handling)

  If you live anywhere else on this bizarre spinning mudspeck,
you can order CHTHONIC: Weird Tales of Inner Earth HERE (11.99 + 10.00CA shipping & handling)

CHTHONIC: Weird Tales of Inner Earth is also available in electronic book formats ($7.99 in the US and Canada): .mobi via Amazon’s Whispernet instantly and direct to your Kindle or Kindle-enabled device, and in EPUB (Kobo and Nook readers) and PDF (most computers and iDevices) formats direct from our site (via Paypal, with an under-12-hour delivery time). Links below…

CHTHONIC: Weird Tales of Inner Earth (mobi) for your Kindle ($6.99) HERE

CHTHONIC: Weird Tales of Inner Earth (EPUB) for your Kobo or Nook reader ($6.99) HERE

CHTHONIC: Weird Tales of Inner Earth (PDF) ($6.99) HERE

Martian Migraine Press: the Best Kind of Headache