Coming Soon: Josh Viola, Yog SEA Award

Join us at the Denver BookBar, November 18th, from 6-8, for the Ninth Yog SEA Award, celebrating the life and art of Josh Viola, of Hex Publishers. The evening will begin with an interview discussing Josh’s writing, game design, and the formation of the most exciting Publishing Company in Colorado. He’ll read from new work, then take questions.

Gary Jonas: Buying Freedom

In October 2014, I took control of my writing career. I got the rights back to five books, and brought out a new novel (Anubis Nights). Within a year of getting my rights back, I was able to quit my day job and become a full time writer. Since then, I’ve written and published 14 novels, a holiday novelette, and some books under pen names that I’m not public with because I don’t want anyone messing up my Also-Boughts.

I still remember how I felt when I launched the books myself. Had I made the right decision? What if nobody bought the books? What if nobody liked the books? What if I couldn’t cut it as a writer and had to settle for working in management at a grocery store? But I took the chance, and it paid off.

I’m certainly not the most successful writer around, but I love writing these crazy books, and I make a solid income so I don’t have to worry about paying the rent. I make a lot more now than I could have made working in the grocery business, and I enjoy what I do. Who could ask for more?

If you have dreams, chase them! You never know, you just might catch them.

Mark Morris: Novelist, Editor, Great Friend

In September 2018 I’ll be celebrating thirty years as a full-time writer. Although as a kid I’d always loved writing stories, I guess I really started to become serious about it around 1984, when I graduated from college. Looking back now, what I most vividly recall is how much I floundered in those first couple of years. For a while, with no one to turn to for advice, I struggled to find my voice, my direction, my focus. Then in 1986 I enrolled on a genre fiction-writing course, to be run by Ramsey Campbell. Although the course was subsequently cancelled due to lack of funding, I began a correspondence with Ramsey, as a result of which he became a kind of unofficial mentor to me. His editorial advice on some of my early work proved so invaluable that one of the stories I sent him, ‘Against the Skin’ (rewritten and much improved thanks to Ramsey’s input), eventually became my first professional sale – and to Charles L. Grant, no less, who bought it for the final volume of his legendary Shadows series.

Fast forward thirty years, and having become something of a genre stalwart myself (or so people tell me) I thought it was high time to pass on a little of the experience and editorial know-how I’ve accumulated these past three decades. To that end, I now offer an editorial service on my website, whereby for what I believe are very reasonable rates I provide clients with a detailed, personal assessment of their work, concentrating on such aspects as plot structure, story development, characterisation, dialogue, pacing, setting, readability and focus.

I realise, this being the internet age, that there are many companies and individuals offering similar services these days, but when it comes to genre fiction I feel I hold the advantage over many of my competitors for several reasons.

First and foremost, I’m not only a practitioner of genre fiction, but I remain a huge fan of it as well. I know the genre inside out, and have a vast number of influential contacts in the field, so can offer practical as well as editorial advice, for those who require it.

Secondly, unlike many who offer an editorial service, I’m widely published, and therefore know exactly what is needed to become a success in the field. For the record, I’ve had around twenty-five novels, half a dozen novellas, over one hundred short stories, and countless articles and reviews published in the past thirty years. Primarily a horror writer (my novels include Toady (US title: The Horror Club), Stitch, The Immaculate, The Deluge and most recently the Obsidian Heart trilogy), I’ve also written tie-in fiction for such franchises as Doctor Who, Torchwood, Hellboy, Spartacus, Sherlock Holmes and Stephen Jones’s Zombie Apocalypse, the official movie novelizations of Darren Aronofsky’s Noah and Zhang Yimou’s The Great Wall, and the official tie-in novel for the computer game Dead Island. I’ve written audio drama scripts too, my most recent being an adaptation of the classic 1971 British horror movie Blood on Satan’s Claw. And over the years I’ve been published by a variety of publishers – among them Transworld, Harper Collins, Pan Macmillan, BBC Books, Titan, Leisure, PS Publishing, Subterranean Press and Cemetery Dance – and have won several awards and been nominated for many more.

As I’m sure pretty much everyone reading this article knows, self-publishing is both widespread and accessible these days, and as such it’s tempting for modern day writers to forego the editorial process altogether. But I sincerely believe that in order to become not only a good writer but a continually improving one, reliable and insightful editorial input is essential. When I was starting out on my writing journey, I would have jumped at the chance to get my work assessed by an established and experienced author. I hope that you feel the same way, and that you’ll check out my editorial service here:

Cover Artist Marine Stefanidi

Marine lives and works in Greece at this time, although she feels a kind of Dreams In The Witch House pull toward Baja and that wild reach of ocean. This is sample cover, but Marine does both pre-made covers and works from commission. Because she travels, the best way to reach Marine is to send a friend request.

Carter Wilson

Carter Wilson will appear May 26th, 2018, at the Denver BookBar to accept his third Yog-Sothoth award. He’ll read from his new novel, Mr. Tender’s Girl. This is Yog SEA event, six to eight, with dinner afterward. RSVP required.

Publishing Industry Q&A

HWAColorado’s latest education event was held at Belmar Library. Noted Author Jeanne Stein and Angie Hodapp, Director of Literary Development at Nelson Literary Agency, did a shared interview discussing Literary Agents, query letters, the business side of writing. Look for film of the event, as well as Angie and husband Warren trying out Angie’s Yog award, in the drop-down box.


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