Scott Nicolay

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Garrett Cook: Narrative Tyranny and the Gilawalrus in the Living Room | The Outer Dark: Episode 28 — JANUARY 21, 2016

Cook-HungryWallsGarrett Cook discusses his latest novel A God of Hungry Walls, an extreme, brutally transgressive and claustrophobic haunted house tale that not only pushes the limits of Bizarro but provides the latest twist on a lineage of “malevolent genius loci” that starts with Shirley Jackson’s The Haunting of Hill House. Twisted topics include the influence of “growing up in a grim and antiquated place,” i.e. New England, his commitment to make each story “really different,” literary and cinematic influences from Robert Marasco’s Burnt Offerings to Clive Barker’s Coldheart Canyon, uncomfortable intimacy among roommates, using narrative to invoke an unpleasant hypnotic state, his poetry roots, Dante (yes, that Dante), existential psychosis that doesn’t trace back to anything, avoiding haunted house story tropes such as the psychic, the microfiche research scene, the occult detective and the Scooby Doo ending, a Nouveau Roman approach that makes the novel seem like Jack Ketchum’s Last Spring at Marienbad,” the tyrannical nature of surrealism versus Bizarro’s narrative omnipotence, Jeff Burk’s couch, and bench-switching and writing in his own swan spot. Garrett also talks about some of his other works, including his first novel Murderland, his first foray into Bizarro Archelon Ranch, his intentionally historically inaccurate science fiction novel Time Pimp, and his short story collection You Might Just Make It Out of This Alive (Eraserhead Press).

widenerThe conversation then veers to the relationship between weird and Bizarro and Bizarro Central’s New Bizarro Author Series, which Garrett edited, including Karl Fischer’s Towers, Betty Rocksteady’s Arachnophile, Madeleine Swan’s Rainbows Suck, Chris MeekingsElephant Vice, Anthony Trevino’s King Space Void, Christoph Paul’s Slasher Camp for Nerd Dorks, Pedro Proença’s Benjamin and Lee Widener’s Rock n Roll Head Case, which Garrett calls the “absolute buy-ticket-and-ride” of the series or “Bill Plimpton’s Laser Blast.” He also “screams” about Autumn Christian, Danger Slater, and John Skipp, who is publishing them both via his Fungasm Press, a groundbreaking new imprint from Eraserhead. Finally: Garrett’s new performance series in Portland, Ore., Gilbert Road Grotesque, co-hosted by Alicia Graves, and hats.

furnace_cover_sm-662x1024News from the Weird:. Arkham Digest columnist/Strange Aeons fiction editor Justin Steele joins Scott once again with the latest about Livia Llewellyn, Richard Gavin, Xnoybis 2, Nightscript 2, Lost Signals, and more. Then special guest Michael Griffin unveils The Lure of Devouring Light, his much-anticipated first collection, now available for preorder from Word Horde Press and scheduled for release in April 2016. I have no erection, and am afraid that Levitra 20mg may be a problem. And Justin reviews Christopher Slatsky’s Alectryomancer and Other Weird Tales (Dunhams Manor Press).

This archival episode will be available again at This Is Horror soon. In the meantime, subscribe at iTunes or Blubrry to make sure you don’t miss an episode.

Next week’s guest: Mark Shapiro, marketing/brand management at Laika Studios (ParaNorman, Coraline) talks about this innovative stop-motion animation house’s upcoming release Kubo and the Two Strings.

More Links:

http://www.amazon.com/Autumn-Christian/e/B006QJ5USQ

http://www.theionpublishing.com/books/the-benighted-path-primeval-gnosis-and-the-monstrous-soul/

Orrin Grey: Who’s Afraid of the Painted Monster? | The Outer Dark: Episode 19 — NOVEMBER 11, 2015

pm-cov72dpiOrrin Grey, author of Painted Monsters & Other Strange Beasts, shares the secret origins of his latest collection including how artist Nick Gucker deftly worked details from all the stories into a monstrously macabre cover, the dialogue with horror cinema from Universal to Hammer to giallo that runs through his wonderfully plotted works, what he describes as a “Clive Barker influence,” exploring “philosophy” through narrative, using tropes as shorthand but in surprising, unconventional ways, ghost stories not about ghosts as we expect them to be, similarities to Robert Aickman, acknowledging and celebrating dramatic influences from William Shakespeare to William Castle, the extraordinary significance of Peter Bogdanovich’s Targets starring Boris Karloff and how that film juxtaposed an older Gothic, creepy school of horror with the modern paranoia-laced violent horror of the Sixties, scholarly approaches versus jazz riffing on many different traditions of horror film and literature especially in the title story, his love of wax museums, the dialogue between the stories in both of his anthologies, John Langan who wrote the introduction, his obsession with obsession, The Prestige, twin novella finales about selling your soul to the Devil, what he learned about pacing from Mike Mignola and giving the Golem the Universal treatment via Hellboy pulp expressionist styling, affinities with Belgian Weird author Jean Ray and buried Malpertuis in “Painted Monsters,” Old Dark House movies, death as a recurring theme in every single story, what’s next for Orrin Grey including stories, novellas, and a nonfiction book about horror films, talking movies with Gemma Files, musing about seeing his own work someday on film, and his recent reading recommendations including previous The Outer Dark guest Silvia Moreno-Garcia and Amanda Downum.

Justin Steele reviews Orrin Grey’s Painted Monsters & Other Strange Beasts, and joins Scott for this week’s installment of News from the Weird including coverage of World Fantasy Convention 2015 and the World Fantasy Awards, as well as exciting upcoming collections, novels and other works by some of the biggest names in Weird.

This archival episode will be available again at This Is Horror soon. In the meantime, subscribe at iTunes  or Blubrry to make sure you don’t miss an episode.

More Links:

https://www.patreon.com/orringrey?ty=h

http://www.paulchadwick.net/

http://www.strange-aeons.com/

Next week’s guest: Mike Davis, editor/publisher of Lovecraft eZine. and the upcoming anthology, Autumn Cthulhu.

John Langan: Aspiring to Restlessness | The Outer Dark: Episode 4 — JULY 14, 2015

wcskyThis week John Langan discusses Readercon, the creation of the Shirley Jackson Awards and that award’s intimate connection to the Weird Renaissance, his upcoming third collection Sefira and Other Betrayals and second novel The Fisherman, rewriting classic monsters for the 21st century–from vampires to Frankenstein to Godzilla, the importance of Jeffrey and Scott Thomas to The Weird, approaches to narrative and the tricks of his trade, literary models from Henry James to William Faulkner, why character is key to keeping the cosmic horror worldview interesting, the importance of reading widely, who to read, and why the current Weird Lit movement is more exciting than ever.

This archival episode will be available again at This Is Horror soon. In the meantime, subscribe at iTunes  or Blubrry to make sure you don’t miss an episode.

Additional Links:

The Wide, Carnivorous Sky and Other Monstrous Geographies

The Wide, Carnivorous Sky and Other Monstrous Geographies, Deluxe Special Edition

Mr. Gaunt and Other Uneasy Encounters

NEXT WEEK’S GUEST: Nicole Cushing, author of Mr. Suicide 

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