Titles Available Now in my Amazon Store

The following works are now available at my Amazon page: amazon.com/author/philslattery.

The new cover for A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror as of November 15, 2019.

Available on Kindle. A revamped print edition is coming soon.

 

The Blonde cover fo The Scent and Other Stories

Available on Kindle and in Print

 

Available on Kindle and in Print

 

 

The new cover for Click as of November 15, 2019.

Available on Kindle and in Print

 

Available on Kindle and in Print. Note this story is included in A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror.

 

Available on Kindle and in Print. Note: These stories are included in A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror.

 

Shadows and Stars is my first, full-fledged novel. It is a science-fiction tale about a scientist who invents a portal and transports to an alien world where he becomes caught up in a revolution. I am finishing the first draft. The final draft will probably not require many changes. At approximately 135,000 words, it will be about 300 pages in 6 x9 format. This is how I visualize the cover currently.

 

Shadows and Stars cover 2

Coming hopefully soon.

 

Photo of man wearing a coronavirus mask

Prevent the spread of Coronavirus/COVID-19 for the sake of yourself, your friends, and your family.

A Tale of Hell Now Available at Your Local Bookstore by Print on Demand.

As of October 23, 2020, A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror is being printed and distributed by IngramSpark. With their immense distribution network of over 39,000 retailers, A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror is now available by print on demand. Be sure to ask for it at your local book retailer. It will continue to be sold via Amazon in Kindle and in print (though the IngramSpark version will be much nicer).

In this collection of published and previously unpublished stories of horror, I take you on a journey into the minds of people who perpetrate horrors, from acts of stupidity with unintended results to cold-hearted revenge to pure enjoyment to complete indifference. Settings range from 17th-century France in the heart of the werewolf trials to the Old West to the present and on to alien worlds in the distant future. Order yours today!

Marketing: New Headers for the Website

The other day I was surfing through Pixabay.com searching for header material, when I came across some strikingly beautiful abstract designs. Tonight I created some headers from them. Let me know what you think. I think that by making my website more appealing to the eye, I will attract more visitors and thus more potential buyers of my works.

Joseph Thomas Sheridan Le Fanu

LeFanu

Joseph Thomas Sheridan Le Fanu

1814-1873

Over lunch, I was reading the Wikipedia article on horror fiction and came across a reference to Joseph Thomas Sheridan Le Fanu, of whom I had never heard.   I went to the article and found out some interesting things (granted, Wikipedia is not the most respected source, but if even half of this article is accurate, Le Fanu bears some investigating by avid horror aficionados).

Le Fanu was a respected writer of ghost stories and Gothic tales in the 19th century.   I read his “The Ghost and the Bonesetter” (1838), which Wikipedia describes as “his first-published and jocular story”.   For our generation, this is more humor than horror, but Le Fanu’s talent is patently obvious from this work.  I look forward to reading more.

It fascinates me that, as well-read as I am, I have never heard of Le Fanu, but then I have only recently begun to delve into the horror genre to any great degree.   Based on the Wikipedia article, he was very well-known in his time and influenced 19th and 20th century writers such as M.R. James, Bram Stoker, and James Joyce.   His best known works are the vampire novella Carmilla and The Purcell Papers (a collection of short stories).   Apparently, he has also had something of an influence on modern cinema, with movies still being made of his work occasionally (Le Fanu’s mystery novel “Uncle Silas” was made into a movie in 1947, and then remade, starring Peter O’Toole, as The Dark Angel in 1987).

Here is a paragraph from the Wikipedia article to whet your appetite for further investigation  of his work:

“Le Fanu worked in many genres but remains best known for his mystery and horror fiction. He was a meticulous craftsman and frequently reworked plots and ideas from his earlier writing in subsequent pieces. Many of his novels, for example, are expansions and refinements of earlier short stories. He specialised in tone and effect rather than “shock horror”, and liked to leave important details unexplained and mysterious. He avoided overt supernatural effects: in most of his major works, the supernatural is strongly implied but a “natural” explanation is also possible. The demonic monkey in “Green Tea” could be a delusion of the story’s protagonist, who is the only person to see it; in “The Familiar”, Captain Barton’s death seems to be supernatural, but is not actually witnessed, and the ghostly owl may be a real bird. This technique influenced later horror artists, both in print and on film (see, for example, the film producer Val Lewton‘s principle of “indirect horror”). Though other writers have since chosen less subtle techniques, Le Fanu’s best tales, such as the vampire novella “Carmilla“, remain some of the most powerful in the genre. He had enormous influence on the 20th century’s most important ghost story writer, M. R. James, and although his work fell out of favour in the early part of the 20th century, towards the end of the century interest in his work increased and remains comparatively strong.[1]

Thoughts?  Comments?

A Tale of Hell Now Available at Your Local Bookstore by Print on Demand.

As of October 23, 2020, A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror is being printed and distributed by IngramSpark. With their immense distribution network of over 39,000 retailers, A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror is now available by print on demand. Be sure to ask for it at your local book retailer. It will continue to be sold via Amazon in Kindle and in print (though the IngramSpark version will be much nicer).

In this collection of published and previously unpublished stories of horror, I take you on a journey into the minds of people who perpetrate horrors, from acts of stupidity with unintended results to cold-hearted revenge to pure enjoyment to complete indifference. Settings range from 17th-century France in the heart of the werewolf trials to the Old West to the present and on to alien worlds in the distant future. Order yours today!

“The Terror” from the Wen Fu

Here is an interesting section/stanza from the ancient Chinese work Wen Fu (The Art of Writing).  It is entitled “The Terror”.

I worry that my ink well will run dry, that right words cannot be found ; I want to respond to the moment’s inspiration.

I work with what is given ; that which passes cannot be detained.

Things move into shadows & they vanish ; things return in the shape of an echo.

When Spring arrives, we understand that Nature has its own reason.

Thoughts are lifted from the heart on breezes, and language finds its speaker.

Yesterday’s buds are this morning’s blossoms which we draw with a brush on silk.

Every eye knows a pattern, every ear hears a distant music.

Wen Fu was written by Lu Chi (261 AD – 300 AD), who was a scholar, a military leader, and the the Literary Secretary in the the Emperor’s court.  It is very short and may take an average reader 15-20 minutes to complete.  The hardcopy  translation I have was written by Sam Hamill and published by Breitenbush Books in 1987.   A far more poetic version can be found at http://web.mnstate.edu/gracyk/courses/web%20publishing/LuChi.htm.

I like to peruse Wen Fu occasionally, because the language is simple yet mystical while the ideas are straightforward yet metaphorical.   What fascinates me most about the work is that the principles it expresses are eternal and universal.   The underlying principles that guided Lu Chi’s art are the same ones that underlie ours nearly two thousand years later and in a society (and language!) that would have been completely alien to Lu Chi.  What’s more, Lu Chi describes the experience of writing from a very intimate standpoint to which any author who is passionate about his art could relate.

What are your thoughts?  What principles of writing are eternal and universal?  What do you see in the stanza above?

A Tale of Hell Now Available at Your Local Bookstore by Print on Demand.

As of October 23, 2020, A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror is being printed and distributed by IngramSpark. With their immense distribution network of over 39,000 retailers, A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror is now available by print on demand. Be sure to ask for it at your local book retailer. It will continue to be sold via Amazon in Kindle and in print (though the IngramSpark version will be much nicer).

In this collection of published and previously unpublished stories of horror, I take you on a journey into the minds of people who perpetrate horrors, from acts of stupidity with unintended results to cold-hearted revenge to pure enjoyment to complete indifference. Settings range from 17th-century France in the heart of the werewolf trials to the Old West to the present and on to alien worlds in the distant future. Order yours today!

A Tale of Hell Now Available at Your Local Bookstore by Print on Demand.

As of October 23, 2020, A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror is being printed and distributed by IngramSpark. With their immense distribution network of over 39,000 retailers, A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror is now available by print on demand. Be sure to ask for it at your local book retailer. It will continue to be sold via Amazon in Kindle and in print (though the IngramSpark version will be much nicer).

In this collection of published and previously unpublished stories of horror, I take you on a journey into the minds of people who perpetrate horrors, from acts of stupidity with unintended results to cold-hearted revenge to pure enjoyment to complete indifference. Settings range from 17th-century France in the heart of the werewolf trials to the Old West to the present and on to alien worlds in the distant future. Order yours today!

Shadows and Stars: Visualizing Sato

I was surfing through Pixabay, which offers public domain images, for some header backgrounds to use on my weblog, when I came across some graphics by a German artist, whose Pixabay userid is Anaterate. Some of his characters struck me as being good representations of how I visualize some of my characters in Shadows and Stars. His conceptions give me little nuances to add into the characters’ description that I had not imagined that will make them come to life for the reader (hopefully) and give them more depth. Here is an example:

This image is described solely as “man-5350603_1920” on Pixabay. I visualize him as a character named Sato (pronounce the a as the a in father), who is a reclusive monk living in a remote section of jungle. The belief system/philosophy he studies is called Pravojeco, which translates to something like The Ancient Way. This is similar to early taoism as found in the writings of Lao Tsu and Chuang Tze.

In particular, Sato studies the ways of the jungle: the balance of life, the roles of violence and birth, the creation of the world through the conflict of opposites, the relation of a person to the universe and his/her role in it, the possibility of an afterlife and/or reincarnation, and other topics of a metaphysical nature.

Sato does not think of death as an end, though he concedes that might be a possibility, but as a transition back to the forgotten world the spirit inhabited before birth. Sato sees reincarnation as a possibility for the spirit. though he concedes no one knows with any certainty what awaits for us in the afterlife or even if there is an afterlife. If reincarnation exists, in Sato’s mind the spirit is not limited by time and space. Someone may be reincarnated in the past or present as well as in the future. A person may also be reincarnated on another planet as a person or as an animal or as an insect or as any other life form. He/she might be reincarnated as a completely different life form in an entirely different universe or dimension.

Although Sato is not a sorcerer per se, he does seem to know things that he should not know. Sato is also not a warrior, but the monks of his order are known to be vicious fighters who mimic animals in their ferocity, mercilessness, and techniques.

Although Sato is a recluse, most of his home planet of Dagal knows of him, because one of his former pupils pilfered some of Sato’s writings when he left and published them. On occasion, some of the other characters may be seen reading The Musing of Sato the Recluse.

I had originally visualized Sato as an old man and mostly like Caucasians. Being Caucasian myself, this is my instinctive bias. However, upon seeing this photo, I thought why not go against the cliché? Sato could be a dark-skinned, young man. This would raise the question about how could such a young man become renown as a sage? I haven’t yet come up with a good reason behind the scars/tattoos. They might be a family or tribal tradition or they could have a philosophical reason. They might represent the elemental forces that afflict or benefit humanity. They might represent the winds of fate buffeting the individual. They might represent the metaphysical forces, like the Oriental chi or ki (similar to the Force in Star Wars), flowing within a person.

The Dagalian race that most resembles Caucasians is called the Sazhanoi (which is the plural of Sazhano). In appearance they differ primarily in their pupils being vertical slits like the eyes of cats or snakes. This is a distinguishing feature of all Dagalians regardless of race. Their color differs widely from albino to melanistic (pure black). Hair color also varies widely with many Sazhano dying their hair according to the prevalent fashion or their family tradition. Facial features, body shape, and other physical attributes are more or less Caucasian.

Tattoos are common among the Sazhanoi. In fact, instead of wedding rings to symbolize marriage, the Sazhanoi have an ornate ring of whatever design the couple chooses tattooed around the left wrist. The ring is tattooed before the wedding and traditionally covered until it is revealed immediately after the wedding vows. If the couple are separated by death or divorce, a black ring is tattooed above the wedding ring. The violent death of a spouse is sometimes indicated by a solid red ring.

All these characteristics of Sato and the Sazhanoi play out in some fashion in Shadows and Stars.

Over the next few weeks, I hope to post more about Dagal and its inhabitants. Stay tuned.

Photo of man wearing a coronavirus mask
Prevent the spread of Coronavirus/COVID-19 for the sake of yourself, your friends, and your family.

A Tale of Hell Now Available at Your Local Bookstore by Print on Demand.

As of October 23, 2020, A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror is being printed and distributed by IngramSpark. With their immense distribution network of over 39,000 retailers, A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror is now available by print on demand. Be sure to ask for it at your local book retailer. It will continue to be sold via Amazon in Kindle and in print (though the IngramSpark version will be much nicer).

In this collection of published and previously unpublished stories of horror, I take you on a journey into the minds of people who perpetrate horrors, from acts of stupidity with unintended results to cold-hearted revenge to pure enjoyment to complete indifference. Settings range from 17th-century France in the heart of the werewolf trials to the Old West to the present and on to alien worlds in the distant future. Order yours today!

New Ad for Facebook

I created a new ad for displaying on Facebook today. Of course, I used the cover of A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror. I wanted to emphasize that it is out there waiting to be purchased, so in the biggest letters and in the most contrast to the background and to show the format that is most widespread based on my research, I put “Paperback Available Now”. I did not put it in all caps as some people might see that as (metaphorically) shouting at them and make them uncomfortable (ironic when you consider the subject matter of the book).

I then mentioned “print on demand” to suggest they probably won’t find it on shelves but can order it. I then listed the biggest chains where someone can find it.

Finally, I put “also available on Amazon Kindle at the end, because I am not emphasizing that as much as the print version or where it can be found.

To keep the text from seeming jumbled and to keep it varied, I put the most important points of my message in white, which has the highest contrast to a black background. Then I chose yellow, which will be a bit more subdued but still quite prominent for the rest. I chose black for the background because that seems to be the color most associated with death, evil, and all the other things a horror novel might encompass. Also, in my opinion, it makes the other colors pop out and it blends with some of the colors in the cover shot.

Of course I can use this in a lot of places besides Facebook.

Let me know what you think.

A Tale of Hell Now Available at Your Local Bookstore by Print on Demand.

As of October 23, 2020, A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror is being printed and distributed by IngramSpark. With their immense distribution network of over 39,000 retailers, A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror is now available by print on demand. Be sure to ask for it at your local book retailer. It will continue to be sold via Amazon in Kindle and in print (though the IngramSpark version will be much nicer).

In this collection of published and previously unpublished stories of horror, I take you on a journey into the minds of people who perpetrate horrors, from acts of stupidity with unintended results to cold-hearted revenge to pure enjoyment to complete indifference. Settings range from 17th-century France in the heart of the werewolf trials to the Old West to the present and on to alien worlds in the distant future. Order yours today!

Where You can Find A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror

Because Ingram Spark has a famously huge distribution network, lately I have been searching book retailers worldwide to find out exactly where A Tale of Hell… is being sold.

This in not just out of curiosity. I have a practical angle. I will use the information I glean in publicizing where to find my works (some of the retailers are apparently on Amazon’s distribution network, because I find my Amazon works there as well).

My theory is that it is one thing to say “My works can be found in many retailers.” It’s another to say , ” My works can be found at Powell’s Books”, because fans of Powell’s will key on to that, because it’s a place they like to go for whatever reason. Whereas a Powell’s customer may not like Barnes and Noble, so saying that it can be found at Barnes and Noble will probably have little to no effect on the Powell’s customer. This is a matter of appealing to customer loyalty.

Cover of A Tale of Hell by Phil Slattery

This is also a matter of customer convenience. A Powell’s may be across the street, while the nearest Barnes and Noble may be across town. As I try to utilize the full power of the Internet, mentioning where my works can be found in other nations works on the same principle.

In any case, for the sake of your convenience and/or curiosity, here is my list as of today, November 22, 2020. I will be adding more to it.

Click on the link to go to that retailer. Most of these will take you to the latest print copy of A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror. A few retailers will also carry one or more of my other works. I was having problems with the Barnes and Noble link for whatever reason, so it is broken as of this posting, but you can find my works there.

I am keeping a running list of the retailers carrying my works on a separate page on my website now. Follow this link to go to it. Be sure to bookmark it.

Walmart

Barnes and Noble

Books-A-Million

Powell’s Books

Joseph Beth’s

Thalia (Germany)

Hugendubel (Germany)

Booktopia (Australia)

Blackwell’s (United Kingdom)

Half Price Books

Amazon

Protect yourself and your family over the holiday season.

A Tale of Hell Now Available at Your Local Bookstore by Print on Demand.

As of October 23, 2020, A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror is being printed and distributed by IngramSpark. With their immense distribution network of over 39,000 retailers, A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror is now available by print on demand. Be sure to ask for it at your local book retailer. It will continue to be sold via Amazon in Kindle and in print (though the IngramSpark version will be much nicer).

In this collection of published and previously unpublished stories of horror, I take you on a journey into the minds of people who perpetrate horrors, from acts of stupidity with unintended results to cold-hearted revenge to pure enjoyment to complete indifference. Settings range from 17th-century France in the heart of the werewolf trials to the Old West to the present and on to alien worlds in the distant future. Order yours today!

From YouTube: Typical Books Lists New Horror from HWA & Mentions A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror

Tonight I found out that on November 11, YouTube channel Typical Books mentioned A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror among its new releases in November. Check out the clip. My section is probably less than thirty seconds, but it is nice to be mentioned somewhere.

A Tale of Hell Now Available at Your Local Bookstore by Print on Demand.

As of October 23, 2020, A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror is being printed and distributed by IngramSpark. With their immense distribution network of over 39,000 retailers, A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror is now available by print on demand. Be sure to ask for it at your local book retailer. It will continue to be sold via Amazon in Kindle and in print (though the IngramSpark version will be much nicer).

In this collection of published and previously unpublished stories of horror, I take you on a journey into the minds of people who perpetrate horrors, from acts of stupidity with unintended results to cold-hearted revenge to pure enjoyment to complete indifference. Settings range from 17th-century France in the heart of the werewolf trials to the Old West to the present and on to alien worlds in the distant future. Order yours today!

A Tale of Hell Now Available at Your Local Bookstore by Print on Demand.

As of October 23, 2020, A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror is being printed and distributed by IngramSpark. With their immense distribution network of over 39,000 retailers, A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror is now available by print on demand. Be sure to ask for it at your local book retailer. It will continue to be sold via Amazon in Kindle and in print (though the IngramSpark version will be much nicer).

In this collection of published and previously unpublished stories of horror, I take you on a journey into the minds of people who perpetrate horrors, from acts of stupidity with unintended results to cold-hearted revenge to pure enjoyment to complete indifference. Settings range from 17th-century France in the heart of the werewolf trials to the Old West to the present and on to alien worlds in the distant future. Order yours today!

A Tale of Hell Now Available at Your Local Bookstore by Print on Demand.

As of October 23, 2020, A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror is being printed and distributed by IngramSpark. With their immense distribution network of over 39,000 retailers, A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror is now available by print on demand. Be sure to ask for it at your local book retailer. It will continue to be sold via Amazon in Kindle and in print (though the IngramSpark version will be much nicer).

In this collection of published and previously unpublished stories of horror, I take you on a journey into the minds of people who perpetrate horrors, from acts of stupidity with unintended results to cold-hearted revenge to pure enjoyment to complete indifference. Settings range from 17th-century France in the heart of the werewolf trials to the Old West to the present and on to alien worlds in the distant future. Order yours today!