Saturday, October 31, 2009

13 Days of Horror: Day 13

The final day of Erin Cole's 13 Days of Horror brings us the extremely talented Jodi MacArthur and her story "Lovely Creature".

Friday, October 30, 2009

13 Days of Horror: Day 12

Today, the penultimate day of Erin Cole's brilliant 13 Days of Horror is a genuinely disturbing story from John Wiswell, entitled "Familiarity Does".

Thursday, October 29, 2009

13 Days Of Horror: Day 11

Michael Solender returns today with his moonscape prose poem entitled "Hunter Moon". Has to be seen to be believed.

"Dressed To Impress" Now Showing at Six Sentences

Hey folks, I have a new story published on Six Sentences, one of my favourite sites for writers. This piece is entitled "Dressed To Impress" and you can find it here.

13 Days Of Horror: Day 10

The amazing Angel Zapata is the guest writer today at Erin Cole's 13 Days of Horror, with his magnificent tale entitled "Styx And Stones". Halloween wouldn't be complete without a tale from this gifted man.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

13 Days Of Horror: Day 9

Today's story at Erin Cole's 13 Days of Horror is Paul D. Brazill's brilliant tale entitled "The Friend Catcher". A marvellous read which should be read in a brightly lit room!!!

13 Days Of Horror: Day 8

Today's guest writer at Erin Cole's 13 Days of Halloween is Kate Pilarcik. A writer with an immense talent for language, she creates a dizzying tale called "Apparition"

Sunday, October 25, 2009

13 Days of Horror: Day 7

Day 7 of Erin Cole's 13 Days of Horror brings a fantastic author of many styles and skills. His name is Barry Northern, and his story is entitled "A Trick Of The Night" A fantastic read and well worth a look.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

13 Days Of Horror: Day 6

Today, at the 13 Days of Horror, is one of my favourite writers, Laurita Miller, and her masterful tale "Monsters". And, as Erin states in her introduction, "Nothing goes better with Halloween than Monsters."

Friday, October 23, 2009

13 Days Of Horror - Day 5

Today at the 13 Days of Horror is the short and sharp piece by Jeffrey S. Callico. His story is entitled "Throat" and for some obvious reasons. An absolute belter of a story.

"House Of Horrors" up NOW at MicroHorror

I am pleased to announce a second piece of mine has been accepted at MicroHorror, a marvellous site that I highly recommend for those who like a bit of Horror in their day. Story can be found here.

"Errors of a Generaton" up NOW at MicroHorror

My short story "Errors Of A Generation" is up now on one of my favourite sites, MicroHorror. The link to the story can be found here.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

A Matter of Perspective

A famous football coach had prepared his team for the final game of the season and, understandably, the tensions were high and the dressing room was filled with irritable and nervous players, all except for one man – he was sitting quietly in the corner, tapping his foot to a tune in his head, seemingly quite content. The coach approached him and asked how he could be so calm when everyone else around him was feeling the pressure of expectation and the fear of failure. He responded by telling the coach that every night after training, he would jump into his Mustang and take a short drive around the mountains – it helped relax him and make him think about perspective and priorities.
Many years later, after retiring, the coach was strolling along the footpath in a busy city when he came across his former player, disheveled, dirty and despondent – the coach asked him what had happened for him to be in such a terrible state. The player looked at him wearily, as if he had explained it many times...he had just been through a very rough divorce. The coach patted him on the shoulder and said he felt sorry for him for losing his wife...
"It’s not the wife that is the problem….she got the Mustang in the settlement!"

Life's Riches

The rich corporate businessman was absolutely horrified to find the bookseller at the markets with his feet up, reading a book - no spiel, no hawking - just relaxing.
“Why aren’t you trying to sell more books?” he asked of the bookseller.
“I have sold enough books for the day,” came the reply.
“Enough? What do you mean enough?" The businessman didn't seem to understand the concept. "If you sold more books, you would make more money...then you could open a bricks-and-mortar store...more books, more money, until you get to a point where you could be as rich as me.”
“And then what would I do?” asked the bookseller, a faint smile creasing his face.
The businessman folded his arms across his double-breasted Parker Brothers suit, a hint of self-satisfaction in his voice. “Well, you could relax and really enjoy life.”
“What do you think I am doing now?”

13 Days Of Horror - Day 4

Lee Hughes is today's featured writer on Erin Cole's 13 Days of Horror with his tale 'With Brush & Pain".
A classic story that deserves your attention. Enjoy.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

13 Days Of Horror: Day 3

Today marks Day 3 of the 13 Days of Horror, hosted by Erin Cole. Today's author is, well, me, and my piece called "Branded".

A big thank you to Erin for inviting me to be a part of what has been so much fun, both as a writer and, more importantly to me, as a reader. Discovering new writers, or new voices for old favourites is refreshing indeed. Her regular blogs can be found here.

Meeting The Queen

Lord Wotsit was looking extremely pleased with himself, which is rather unusual, as he is generally more depressed than Joan Of Arc with a pile of logs and a box of matches.
"I say, m'lord, you're looking happier than a happy man with a brilliant reason to be happy - what's the goss, the story, the news?"
"Dear Grumble-Whiney, I have had the distinct pleasure of actually touching the Queen this very morn, and I must say, that she was everything that I imagined her to be, and all that that saucy pamphlet made her out to be."
"You touched her, m'lord....where?"
"In the chapel."
"Never heard it called that before!!"

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

13 Days of Horror: Day 2

Today's guest writer is John Donald Carlucci. His story can be found by clicking on the blog title. Go ahead, you know you want to!!!

Hunger Pains - John Donald Carlucci

Thanksgiving Feast Of Flash Contest

Hey all, check out Michael Solender's Thanksgiving Flash contest. All the details are on his homepage, just click the blog title above for a link to his page. The info is on the right hand side of his page. Give it a whirl, you know you want to...

Erin Cole's 13 Days Of Horror: Day 1

For the next 13 days to Halloween, Listen to the Voices will be hosting Halloween horrors to fright and delight you. Grab that caramel apple, stir your brew, turn on the lights if you must, for a new thriller every day by those who know darkness and write it well.

Day One features Michael Solender's piece "Orange Dot"

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Mother Love

My mother was taken from me at an early age. I wasn't terribly upset. She deserved what she got.

Scars identify us. They are a part of who we are and who we once were. I had seen the scar on the lower abdomen of Alison, a streetwalker I had taken a shine to and patronised regularly - it is very similar to the one my mother had where she had been stabbed during a bar fight. My mother was a mean bitch. Alison could be mean, too, although there was no sign of that when I drove the dagger into her stomach. Nothing like reopening old wounds, right?

Kelly and I had had an on-again-off-again relationship since high school. She was attracted to my wilful disregard for authority and continual displays of indifference for the sensitivity of others. I was attracted to her by her perfume. Our fragmented relationship was dependent on my ability to not hate her for reminding me of my mother. That scent comes to me now as I wrap her corpse in recently-defiled bedsheets. I guess I hate that perfume again.

As I got older, I came to recognise that my destructive behaviour was rooted in the fact that I never got to have closure on the daily abuse I received from my mother. Physically, mentally, emotionally and even sexually...

My mother was, if nothing else, consistent. Following every tirade, every put-down, and every molestation, she would apologise - a lot. She would shed crocodile tears and beg my forgiveness. Joanne was an ugly girl - she wasn't likely to be attractive to anybody else and I only kept her around for the constant sex. She would invariably apologise after making love - either about her performance or some other irrelevant issue. The one thing I have learned from that relationship is that the human tongue is almost impossible to pull out of a person's mouth...almost, that is.

I grew to know what form of abuse I was going to be subjected to on any given day. There were certain looks I recognised, became aware of. When it was to be sexual, my mother's language and bearing would have had a lewd and wanton characteristics and when I complied to her unnatural desires, a chilling smile would flit across her face, as if in victory. Reagan used to smile like that, too, when she would fall before me on her knees - she had something else in mind but it was all the same to me. I was surpised how fragile the human neck could be.

Whiskey and painkillers. When I saw them sitting on the kitchen table, I knew violence wasn't far behind. Mother would be in an almost trance-like state when she hit me. She would use closed fists and hit me so hard and so often, that she would bleed from the knuckles. She would also bite hard on her lip in effort - so hard, in fact, that she would often break the skin. When she was exhausted and reached the apology stage, she would kiss me; her blood would mix with mine, blood and sweat, blood and saliva.

I developed a taste for blood, a craving, a desire...everything else is just an excuse.

Sensing The End

I enjoy pain.
That's not entirely accurate - I enjoy inflicting pain.
Torture and mutilation uplift my dark soul only so far.
Psychological pain is far sweeter for my tastes.
As a famous rock singer once said: Once you have tasted excess, everything else tastes bland.I think the same thing about pain.

The sight of pure fear is addictive. It drives me. It compels me to reach beyond myself, to play the game so far outside the comfortable circle that these mere humans exist within, to force them to make decisions based on their own selfish needs. Fear is the key which unlocks the door to my appetites. I envision this fear before the act of barbarity. I fantasise about it after.

For me, a scream in terror is like a child's laugh to a parent. I actively encourage it. Seek it as a lion seeks for prey on the prairie. I will not rest until my desire for the lamentations of the barely-living reach my ears and fill my heart with exhilaration. Screaming, crying, sobbing, pleading, and whimpering. They are all part of the Dance.

Her eyes are devoid of emotion, as if in defeat, or supplication. I raise her own hand in mine. She caresses the handle of the dagger in an almost phallic manner. I guide her to that small cavity between her still perky breasts. I whisper in her ear and my darkness touches her soul. I gently stroke her hair as the blade penetrates into her chest and yet she still sits there, unmoved, if already dead, which, is more truth than lie.

Droplets of blood on a razor's edge. Pale thin lips kiss the still-warm blade that has pierced and ravaged sinew and muscle. My lips brush against the jagged wound in her chest, lingering on the heady, metallic taste of her lifeblood. I run my bloodied fingers across her own lips; perhaps in an attempt to give her hope, to give her belief, before I crush them into dust. I wonder if she can still taste the sorrow in her tears. It is a bittersweet goodbye kiss.

Overpowering. Oppressive.
Ambrosia. Indulgent.
The smell of victory.
The smell of death.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The Many Faces of Death

“Good morning, Dad.” Shannon had come to a halt in the driveway of his father’s home. His father had rung him, asking if Shannon could pick him up on the way through to work. His new car had failed yet again to start. “You really are having some bad luck of late, aren’t you? I hope you filled in - and sent off - the warranty details.”
His father glanced at him, nodded slightly and sighed. “Son, I have seen a lot in my time, but this has got to be the most damndest luck I have ever come across. I was lucky when the branch came off the old elm and almost crushed me. Then I had the bad luck with the gas heater that decided to turn me into toast. And now this. Where does it end?”
Shannon tried not to look at the pink flesh around his father’s face and neck. The fire brigade had still yet to explain what had made the heater explode, showering his father in flame and almost taking his life.
“Well, Dad, I have some good news for you then. A change of luck, if you will. This morning I secured two tickets to that Halloween party the local radio station has been promoting. I begged and pleaded and they gave me two tickets. One is for you. What do you think?”
Shannon’s father stared hard at his son, a disheartening look creeping across his face. “Son, there is something I need to talk to you about in regards to this Halloween thing. You see...” he began.
Shannon pulled up to the curb. “Dad, we are here. I will drop you off then go around back and park the car. You can tell me about it on the way up in the elevator. Deal?”
The older man smiled, looked at his son with a cryptic glint in his eye and said “Ok, son. I will meet you inside the lobby. Don’t take all day chatting up Miss Kim in the parking stalls okay? She really is pretty but way out of your league.”
It was Shannon’s turn to grin. He let his father out of the car and proceeded to drive off towards the side entrance to the building. As he looked in the rear vision mirror, he saw his father patiently waiting for the lights to change when, suddenly, a car from nowhere slammed into the old man, sending him sprawling across the road, into the path of a huge semi-trailer. His father, if still alive after the first collision, had no chance with the second.
Panic and disbelief seemed to grip Shannon. He stared in the mirror, hoping he had been mistaken but from the screams of horror he heard around him, he knew that this was all too real.