Category Archives: Writing
Everyone’s A Critic Part II:
I’ll share some of the comments from “Cookers” my story that revolves around a small family traveling through a wasteland filled with man-eating plants and legions of super heated undead. I’ll leave out comments that include spoilers
Here’s a link to the story:
OK…believe it or not…there were NO negative comments. Huzzah, mead and salted meats for all!
omg! i am blown away by the amount of good stories on this site! nice one Matt, the cookers is seriously intense and entertaining. =) much like the other writers i am hoping you will keep adding more to this story.
This sotry is out of this world yet never fails to make that human connection.
The best stories use the environment of its worlds
to drive a point into that mystery we know as the human soul.
This is the best example ive come across on this site.
Thanks Matt, i hope you make this a series..
Id really like to know what happens to the characters.
I really liked grandma, if you turn this into a novel………..
Thanks to all the writers, no the wordsmiths on this site.
Just killer. Nice take and VERY well written. Can’t wait for more… hopefully.
CREEPY,GROSS,TWIZTED,WELL WRITTEN WHERE WE CAN PICTURE THE CHARACTERS IN OUR MINDS OF WHAT THEY LOOK LIKE.
A VERY GOOD JOB
Definitely a diff. take on “zombies”. Reminiscent of “The Road” & the animal zombies of those books by Keene & I kinda saw the cannibalization part from the 1st mention of them eating but very good w/brief backstory & good action scenes depictions. This site is great not to add just typical zombie stories but all kinds. Thanks all authors
Just…wow. The world-setting was an original twist, while borrowing in the best sense from I am Legend in a couple ways, and the characterization/byplay between grandmother and Brie was both intense and savagely touching..Awesome, awesome story. Bravo!
And the Greatest Comment of All:
holy fucking hell up the ass with a chainsaw that was an awsome story dude please write some more
Feel free to take a read and write your own!
After months of writing a longer piece, in which I’m currently soliciting input for a third draft, and re-writing a few recently rejected pieces I have found inspiration for a new story.
I was listening to “Hexagon” by Jason Rizos on Pseudopod.org (the very ones who published Infestation by yours truly) and it hit me. The story revolved around bees which then got me thinking about Colony Collapse Disorder, one of natures more ominous mysteries at the moment. I got to thinking about what it meant for the buzzing little bastards and then what it would mean if applied to the human condition….and would it be a good or a bad thing?
Thus I present to you “Untitled Work That I started Today Which I hope Won’t Suck.” I’ll keep you posted on its progress or lack there off.
And in case you haven’t checked it out yet, here’s the link to “Infestation”:
I was fortunate enough to touch base with Vladimir Petkovic who illustrated my short story “The Key” coming up in Morpheus Tales.
Morpheus Tales is of on the UK’s finest Horror Magazines and I am pumped to be published in its pages. However, we need to wait until January of 2012 to see it in print. I can’t wait.
I love the interpretation that Vladimir has made of a scene in my story. Obviously I can’t get into it now but come 2012 I’ll be happy to go over the scene and the gorgeous illustration.
Vladimir is a talented dude. Check out his work here (I also added him to my blogroll):
Because I haven’t written a short story in a while I figured I would collect some of the positive and negative comments of my published stories. I will leave out comments by anyone I know, because lets face it, they are probably considered ringers.
Thankfully there are more good than bad reviews. Just an FYI, if you plan to check out the story, there are spoilers in the reviews. First up, “Infestation.”
“this one had me covering my eyes and gritting my teeth.It takes a lot to get this reaction from me,but if anything will-its large flying flesh eating insects. Excellent performance from the narrator,keep up the good work psuedopod.”
“Spooky should be made into a short film so the audio is done proper justice”
“Whew… what a ride.”
“Insects-in-your-body stories are always among the most horrific, and this was very well done. Only way to make it worse is to involve genitals a la Scott Sigler’s “Infected.”
Kudos on the story, and doubly so for the reader!”
“oooooo, foo, this one made me nauseous. Yet I couldn’t turn it off. I hate you all.”
“Makes me afraid of the strange looking plants that pop up in my flower bed. I think I’ll go pull them up and burn them now…”
“Loved it; wished it was longer.”
“Absolutely horride! I loved it! Keep up the good work!”
“Wow. I haven’t had that kind of physical reaction to a story in quite a while. I was driving while I listened, and was squirming, flinching and writihing while trying to steer. Made it to the studio, thanks to cruise control.”
“Very descriptive story. Kept me interested until it was over.
Very scarey story. Right up their with Stephen King.”
“I hope I can sleep tonight… the reading of this was amazing. ugh! Amy….ps.. I think I’m going to puke.”
“Gentlemen, excellent episode! THIS is the kind of story I’d write if I was about 160% more talented than I am. Kudos, Mr. Piskun!”
“This was classic horror. Very scary, fast, witty, and leaving just enough slight room for hope to keep you listening intently ’till the final, horrific ending. Very good reading performance, too!”
“Yukkkk. Great episode that made me uncomfortable.”
“I listened to this story twice it was so good! I loved the narrator and the story was just chilling!”
The Bad (and Ugly)
“Meh. It’s been done before, and done better. One thing I did like was the way that the narrator lapsed into religious metaphor at the end – it was a nice character touch that, when he’s pushed to the point of breaking, that was emerging”
“The commenter who called it graphic and intense was absolutely right, however, I was a little disappointed. This story was my first introduction to Pseudopod, and I have to say, my first reaction was “Haven’t I read/heard this before? People are still writing/reading stories about bugs crawling under skin and eating people alive?” I know it’s a tried-and-true horror theme, but I just didn’t think this version added much. I seem to be alone in this assessment, though, as this seems to be a very popular story!”
“In all honesty, this is probably one of the stories I’ve liked least so far in Pseudopod. (I’m working my way back; I’m down to the sixties now.) It was just gross-out horror for the sake of gross-out. Don’t get me wrong; the language was evocative and cringe-inducing and the reading was spot-on, but “bugs under the skin” is one of the old reliable tropes and this story didn’t really do anything interesting with it. Heck, it doesn’t even give it a decent foundation.
There’s no reason for the bugs. They’re just… there. From a plant the girl scouts were selling. So presumably there are now dozens of homes being filled with these plant-bug monsters that breed faster than bacteria. I guess that would be scary if the bugs weren’t so ludicrous. The whole thing is wildly implausible, but doesn’t have the resonance of a strong thematic/symbolic structure to give us a reason why these impossible creatures exist. I’m okay with hallucinatory, surreal action, but I’m less okay with it when it doesn’t serve any purpose other than increasing the shock value. I was reminded of “Sealab 2021″ and the discussion of putting human brains into robot bodies rapidly devolved into requests for an Adrienne-Barbeau-bot with chainsaw hands. The story became so unrealistic – after such a lovingly-detailed ’slice of life’ at the beginning, too – that it stopped being scary and just started seeming kind of goofy to me
It was well written, and very well narrated. As I said, I enjoyed it, I just didn’t find it special.”
“I like to masturbate. So I did. Later, my wife comes home with a strange plant filled with ravenous alien bugs, and they kill her, my unborn child, and force me to kill myself just to stop them. The end.”
No my supernatural tale is not publication #7 but has gone down in flames once again, albeit kicking and screaming this time as it spent nearly 2 months on the Shroud short list.
But hey, “Little Pieces” can still be read in the fine pages of Necrotic Tissue. Treat yourself at the following link:
“Desert Walker”, a supernatural tale of family and determination in a barren world of sand and death, was added to the short list of stories to be accepted in Shroud Magazine. I was notified of this on August 23, 2010, so at this point I figure no news is still good news.
Not much else to speak on at this point. My writing resume to this point reads like this:
1. “Infestation” story #145, Pseudopod, June 2009
2. “Painkiller”, House of Horror issue #10, April 2010
3. “’Til Death”, Dark Gothic Resurrected Magazine, July 2010
4. “Cookers”, Tales of the Zombie War, August 10th 2010
5. “Little Pieces” to be published in the October 2010 issue of Necrotic Tissue
6. “The Key” to be published in Morpheus Tales #15, January 2012
So, obviously I’m hoping Desert Walker will be lucky #7.
I have about 3 to 5 more short stories that I think are fit for publishing. I would love to hit double digits for when I finish my grand attempt at a novel. I’m at about 11,000 words in on the first draft. All my stories published to date are basically horror but the novel will be more of a dark, young adult novel. It’s going well so far although I am not sure how a novel manuscript should look, but let’s not put the cart before the horse.
One of my favorite stories has found a home. “The Key” will be published in a future issue of Morpheus Tales, a beautiful looking magazine of horror, science fiction and fantasy.
In “The Key” a young man finds a key in his father’s coffin that he hopes can answer the mystery of his father’s difficult life and their strained relationship. Will he find what he is looking for or regret that he ever lay eyes upon the key? You’ll have to wait until 2012 to find out. That’s right 2012! Hey, good magazines have a long waiting list.
In the meantime, while you’re waiting, please check out:
“‘Til Death” my vampire story available in Dark Gothic Resurrected Magazine, which is chock full of Vampire goodness. You can download it for a measly $5 or buy the print copy for $10 here:
“Cookers” a story about a family making there way through a world of overheated, man-eating zombie. Oh, the vegetation has mutated to eat flesh as well. This is truly an After School Special loaded with lessons in family values. Check it out FOR FREE here:
My story “Little Pieces” was selected today for issue#12 of Necrotic Tissue due out in October 2010. Necrotic Tissue is a quarterly print magazine and I’m thrilled to be in it.
In “Little Pieces” the main character is dealing with the death of a close friend so he does what any of us would do. He tries to bring her back from the dead. This story was one of my favorites. I wrote the first draft in about two sittings which I don’t think I’ve ever done before and I really enjoyed the ending so I’m glad it found an excellent home.
Now we wait. Until October. More details to come.
Check it out at : http://www.houseofhorror.org.uk/#/painkiller/4539822890
Let me know what you think. I found a couple of editing issues and I e-mailed the editor so we’ll see what happens.