This Saturday: Nightmares Unearthed!

Dear Fans of Horror and the Macabre,

This Saturday night, March 27th, at 8 PM EST, is my pleasure to host NIGHTMARES UNEARTHED.

Join us for a night of delicious dread!

We will be summoning the collective perilous powers of six world-class horror writers–Zin E. Rocklyn, Cassandra Khaw, Mike Allen, Daniel Braum, Emma J. Gibbon, and Gordon B. White–for our horripilating entertainment!

Each of these authors had books out in 2020 or will be releasing books later in 2021. They will be reading from selected works, then participating in a Q&A with YOU, the audience!


After you register, you’ll be getting emails from us about the upcoming event.

On the day of the event, you’ll get a Zoom link and a password!

We are looking forward to seeing you there!


C. S. E. Cooney



Mike Allen is a two-time World Fantasy Award finalist. He edits and publishes the Mythic Delirium Books imprint. His short stories have been gathered in three collections: Unseaming, The Spider Tapestries and newly-released Aftermath of an Industrial Accident. His novella “The Comforter,” a sequel to his Nebula Award-nominated horror story “The Button Bin,” has just appeared in an anthology of four dark long-form tales, A Sinister Quartet. He’s also a three-time winner of the Rhysling Award for poetry.

Find him at:




“An incredible read. This collection of horror and dark fantasy poetry and short fiction needs to be on the shelf of any horror reader.”

— Cemetery Dance

“Allen overflows the tank with nightmare fuels . . . These horror shorts are sure to linger in the dark corners of readers’ minds.”

— Publishers Weekly, starred review

A Korean War veteran must rely on wits, improvised weapons, and words from the dread Necronomicon to escape the lair of a deranged cult. A ghost cannot communicate how she died, no matter how desperately she tries, while an unconventional ghost hunter incurs the venomous wrath of the Queen of Night. Murderous conspiracies reveal themselves in online video clips, a saint blasphemes as a serial killer prays for mercy, and corrupt families in ancient kingdoms trade blood and souls for leverage over foes. Enduring nightmares for a living can lead to a fate worse than burnout. A gruesome invasion from outside space and time tests courage—and corporate loyalty—past all rational limits.

In these twenty-three stories and poems, two-time World Fantasy Award nominee Mike Allen spins twisted narratives, some wound through the fabric of our world, some set in imagined pasts or futures, all plumbing the depths of human darkness.

“The consistency, here, is simply excellence,” writes Bram Stoker Award finalist and Punktown creator Jeffrey Thomas in his introduction. “You are holding in your hands an overflowing cornucopia of monstrous goodness. Mike Allen may be the premier poet of this era of weird horror and surrealist fantasy. His work is completely fearless. He takes no genre boundaries as sacred.”

—The Plutonian


Emma J. Gibbon is a horror writer, speculative poet and librarian. Her stories have appeared in various anthologies, Including Wicked Weird and Wicked Haunted, and on the Toasted Cake podcast.

In 2020, she was nominated twice for the Rhysling Award for her poems “Fune-RL” (Strange Horizons) and “Consumption” (Eye to the Telescope). Her poetry has also been published in Liminality, Kaleidotrope and Pedestal Magazine.

Emma is originally from Yorkshire and now lives in Maine in a spooky little house in the woods with her husband, Steve, and three exceptional animals: Odin, Mothra, and M. Bison (also known as Grim).

Her website is



Dark Blood Comes from the Feet is a strange and eclectic collection of seventeen stories from horror author and speculative poet Emma J. Gibbon.

Within its pages, you will meet secret societies who contract deadly diseases on purpose, dancers helping each other avoid “below,” monstrous children who must be loved before they return to the sea, a taxidermy-obsessed mother, small blue devils in the Maine woods, a black cat that retrieves the dying, the last witch in Florida, and “a huge fucking dog of potentially supernatural origin.”

Visit haunted houses, a Hollywood nightclub, limbo, Whitechapel, and other stops on a death tour, and a childhood hangout that spells destruction for kids and dogs alike. Listen to a punk rock sermon in a post-apocalyptic matriarchal society, witness crustaceans that have trouble staying dead, a cannibalistic romance, a gothic love story to tuberculosis and a downtrodden wife’s transformation.



“Careful, or you might cut yourself on these stories—little gems with sharp edges which deserve to be treasured alongside the jewels of Shirley Jackson and Sylvia Townsend Warner—in the tradition of the illuminating dark.” 

—M. Rickert, World Fantasy and Shirley Jackson Award-winning, author of You Have Never Been Here 

Gibbon is a compelling new voice in horror. Part punk, part metal, part crooner, her work resonates beautifully.”  

—Catherynne M. Valente, NYT/USA Today Bestselling Author


Cassandra Khaw is an award-winning game writer, and former scriptwriter at Ubisoft Montreal. Their work can be found in places like Fantasy & Science Fiction, Lightspeed, and Their first original novella, Hammers on Bone, was a British Fantasy award and Locus award finalist, and their forthcoming novella, Nothing But Blackened Teeth, will be published by Nightfire in September 2021.



(Forthcoming from from Nightfire in Fall 2021.)

“This is a glorious poem, a slow-motion collapse leading to the inevitable haunting. It is beautiful and it isbrutal and it is heartbroken. Absolutely recommended.”

— Seanan McGuire, New York Times bestselling author of Every Heart a Doorway

Delicate and disgusting…Each page holds an image more finely drawn and disturbing than the last.”

— T. Kingfisher, author of The Twisted Ones and The Hollow Places

Imagine chucking The House on Haunted Hill, Japanese folklore, Clive Barker, and Kathy Acker into aliterary blender. Nothing But Blackened Teeth reads like the ghost-punk noir you never knew you needed.It’s sharp, playful, and nasty as hell.”

— Paul Tremblay, author of A Head Full of Ghosts and Survivor Song

“Nothing But Blackened Teeth is a really bad idea for a wedding, and a really great idea for a nightmare-on-the-page. This book is so magnificently rotten it writhes with literary maggots, and deserves a place of honor among its peers in horror.”

— yours truly, C. S. E. Cooney, World Fantasy Award-winning author of Bone Swans: Stories


Gordon B. White is the author of the collection As Summer’s Mask Slips and Other Disruptions, as well as the forthcoming novellas ROOKFIELD and And In Her Smile, the World (with Rebecca J. Allred).

A graduate of the Clarion West Writers Workshop, Gordon’s short stories, reviews, and interviews have appeared in dozens of venues, including The Best Horror of the Year Vol. 12. You can find him online at



“White’s grisly, tantalizing debut story collection is a love letter to the horror genre… White conveys visceral terror through gorgeous, evocative prose … juxtaposing the macabre with the sublime for a truly pleasurable read.”

— Publishers Weekly (starred review)

Gordon B. White’s stories are weird and wise and always surprising. An impressive first collection.”

— Kij Johnson, author of The Dream-Quest of Vellitt Boe

“With his debut collection, Gordon B. White establishes himself as one of the major new voices of speculative fiction. A quiet creeping dread that never lets up, As Summer’s Mask Slips and Other Disruptions explores pain, loneliness, and horror through a deeply personal lens of family and outsiders. These unforgettable short stories are not to be missed.”

— Gwendolyn Kiste, Bram Stoker Award®-winning author of The Rust Maidens

“Tapping into the atmosphere, authority, and history of Southern Gothic fiction, Gordon B. White’s collection of horror stories is haunting, lyrical, and unsettling. There is a primal fear that lurks in us all: a worry that just beyond the end of the flashlight beam waits unimaginable horror—and this cornucopia of dark tales proves that point.”

— Richard Thomas, author of Disintegration and the Thriller Award-nominated Breaker


Zin E. Rocklyn is a contributor to Bram Stoker-nominated and This is Horror Award-winning Nox Pareidolia, KaijuRising II: Reign of Monsters, Brigands: A Blackguards Anthology, and Forever Vacancy anthologies and Weird Luck Tales No. 7 zine.

Their story “Summer Skin” in the Bram Stoker-nominated anthology Sycorax’s Daughters received an honorable mention for Ellen Datlow’s Best Horror of the Year, Volume Ten.

Zin contributed the nonfiction essay “My Genre Makes a Monster of Me” to Uncanny Magazine’s Hugo Award-winning Disabled People Destroy Science Fiction.

Their short story “The Night Sun” and flash fiction “teatime” were published on Zin is a 2017 VONA and 2018 Viable Paradise graduate as well as a 2022 Clarion West candidate.

You can find them on Twitter @intelligentwat



This “dark, dazzling debut novella from Zin E. Rocklyn that reads like Rosemary’s Baby by way of Octavia E. Butler,” will be published by in Fall 2021.

Survivors from a flooded kingdom struggle alone on an ark. Resources are scant, and ravenous beasts circle. Their fangs are sharp.

Among the refugees is Iraxi: ostracized, despised, and a commoner who refused a prince, she’s pregnant with a child that might be more than human. Her fate may be darker and more powerful than she can imagine.

Zin E. Rocklyn’s extraordinary debut novella is a lush, gothic fantasy about the prices we pay and the vengeance we seek.



“Zin E. Rocklyn is already an essential and urgent voice in fantasy, and we’re unbelievably lucky to have their debut novella on our list. Flowers from the Sea is a gorgeous, gothic novella that devours what’s rotten about the legacies that came before it and will show readers something vividly, wonderfully new.”

— Ruoxi Chen, Editor at


Daniel Braum is the author of the short story collections The Night Marchers and Other Strange Tales from Cemetery Dance eBooks in 2016; The Wish Mechanics: Stories of the Strange and Fantastic from Independent Legions in 2017; and the chapbook Yeti Tiger Dragon from Dim Shores in 2016.

Underworld Dreams is his third collection and was released from Lethe Press in September 2020 and is out now as an Audio Book. The Serpent’s Shadow, his first novella, was released from Cemetery Dance eBooks in July 2019.

He is the editor of the Spirits Unwrapped anthology. His work has appeared in publications ranging from Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet to the Shivers 8 anthology. His most recent story appears in the Best Horror of the Year Volume 12 edited by Ellen Datlow.

He is the host of the Night Time Logic series. And the annual New York Ghost Story Festival.

He can be found at



Underworld Dreams is Daniel Braum’s third short story collection of genre transcending, strange stories full of tension between the supernatural and psychological.

Within the pages Braum’s multi-dimensional characters face dark underworlds and strange experiences that illuminate the human condition and world (we think) we know.

Appearing in the volume for the first time is the original story “Between Our Earth and Their Moon” and the original novella, the title story, “Underworld Dreams (Sogni del Mundo Sotteraneo)” along with an introduction and story notes by the author.



“The premises are creative, with the characters usually facing strange choices in unusual circumstances.”

– Kirkus Reviews

“Awesome reading that’s going to disturb you, make you think, and maybe even scare you a bit.”

– Damaged Skull Writer


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Our Surreal A.M.s

Hernandez and I have the strangest morning conversations, and I recently realized I’d love to preserve some of them.

Alas for the last 6 years of lost moments. Though I suppose some things OUGHT to remain private.

But really, sometimes it’s like we live in our own private cartoon strip!

This morning, for example:

Me: Imagine it. An ouroboros Möbius strip NESTING DOLL!
Carlos: *blinks*
Carlos: *blinks*
Carlos: *blinks*
Carlos: Come for the nightmare, stay for the mathematics!

Or, our running gag about poor Amelia Earhart. (CW: MACABRE!) We’d read this article about one of her possible demises via coconut crab.

So sometimes, of a morning, there might be a scene:

Carlos: (gnawing on my skull) Oh! Amelia! It is I, your beloved coconut crab!


Me: (gnawing on his skull) (to the tune of Joni Mitchell’s “Amelia“) “Amelia! It was just a false alarm!”

I was thinking I should name our coconut crab characters, and how they could psych each other out by crawling into Amelia’s skull and pretending she’s still alive.


and the other goes: “IS THAT YOU, AMELIA?”

and the first one says: “NAH M’CRAB, JUST MESSIN WITH YA.”

I’d have to make a study of Micronesian languages to give the coconut crabs really swell names though…

Anyway, that’s my morning. How’s yours?

Now just imagine us as coconut crabs.

It really isn’t too hard, is it?

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GHOUL 2 : a dorky rad vlog plus pics

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Elevators: A Pantoum(ish)

by C. S. E. Cooney

in my dreams, the elevators have no doors 
they're merry-go-rounds, roller coasters
too many buttons, none of them work
they move like trains through cities
we're roller coasters, merry-go-rounds
we cross the street when we see each other
half-empty trains moving through cities 
it's no longer polite to hold the elevator door
we cross the street when we see each other
like in dreams, our pacing's off
touch nothing, rush to close the elevator door
cover your masked mouth to cough
our pacing's off, like in dreams  
time feels like flying, or quicksand, or static
cover your masked mouth to cough
murmuring not "Excuse me," but "Not Covid!"
time feels static, or like quicksand, or falling
boundary-less, kaleidoscopic free-range
no excuses--but the ubiquitous corvid 
perched on my fire escape, inked like a headline
"boundary-less, kaleidoscopic free-range"
is how I dress these days, pajamas and ball gowns
nail polish chipped like my fire escape, ink for eyeliner
a door closes between me and the household voices
"I love your ball gown!" shouts the stranger in pajamas
we wait for the elevator, she with laundry, me with groceries
one goes first, one waits; a door closes between us
in my dreams, the elevators have no doors


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Diamond Sharks

Really fine mermaid story! Loved!

Mermaids Monthly

by Floris M. Kleijne

This story originally appeared in Leading Edge Magazine in 2008

“Has anyone explained the anatomical details to you yet?” the surgeon said, as the two gowned and masked assistants shaved and disinfected my entire body. Turning my head to my right, I could see her through the reinforced glass, but her mouth was open to the water on the other side of the glass and her lips weren’t moving. Instead, her voice—or rather a synthesized approximation—came from the teletransponder mounted over the glass. She was floating in a vertical position, her perfunctory white coat billowing with each rush of exhaled water. Because I was lying on my back and looking to my right, my whole perspective was tilted by ninety degrees, and her voice seemed to come from the transponder mounted to her left. The effect was disorienting.

I shook my head. I didn’t care about…

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In which Carlos Hernandez and I Narrate “The Book of May” on Podcastle!

Carlos and I met at Readercon in 2014 and became friendly Internet acquaintances. Then, in January 2015, Carlos accepted my Facebook challenge to collaborate on a short story.

We wrote “Book of May” over a series of VERY early mornings, and lo! Mike and Anita Allen at Mythic Delirium published it in Clockwork Phoenix 5.

Shortly after this, dear Reader, I married Carlos. (Well, relatively shortly after. Other stuff happened first. But this is where it all began.)

And now, six years later, “The Book of May” is live at! This is the first time it exists in audio form, and Carlos and I do the narrations.

Fun Fact I: Setsu Uzume mentions This Is How You Lose the Time War in their “Book of May” outro. At the time I was first becoming friends with Carlos, exchanging letters with him and collaborating on this story, my dear friend Amal El-Mohtar was also first becoming friends with Max Gladstone… with whom she later wrote This is How You Lose the Time War. She and I would write letters to each other about our new correspondents/collaborators/friends.

Fun Fact II: Carlos and I were chatting about how we’d love for “Book of May” to have a second life in reprints somehow. I proposed us sending it to Podcastle, even though it is a leeetle long for their guidelines. But their guidelines also say to query in that case. So I did. Funnily enough, the editor Jen Albert had recently been given our story to read by mutual friend, poet and essayist Dominik Parisien. She was just about to write to us about it!

Other Places To Find Our Narrated Work

If you enjoyed “Book of May” on want to hear me narrate a few of my erotic fairy tales and/or ghost stories, there’s always my collection THE WITCH IN THE ALMOND TREE: AND OTHER STORIES/

I also narrated my novella DESDEMONA AND THE DEEP for Recorded Books, and my World Fantasy Award-winning collections BONE SWANS for Tantor Media.

If you loved listening to Carlos read “Book of May” for Podcastle, I gotta tell you about the Story Seeds Podcast. Carlos collaborated with two young writers (Zarana and Siri, age 10) to create a new story together. Hear him narrate their “The Paintbrush of Doom” here!

Last summer (2020), he also did this great “Volcanic Writing” vlog as a creative writing exercise for kids! (And the rest of us.)

Don’t forget, if you want to hear another WONDERFUL Carlos Hernandez short story narrated by a LEGENDARY narrator, Levar Burton narrates “Fantaisie Impromptu No. 4 in C#min, Op. 66” for Levar Burton Reads.

And last but not least, I want to mention Carlos’s two middle-grade novels for Rick Riordan Presents: SAL AND GABI BREAK THE UNIVERSE, and SAL AND GABI FIX THE UNIVERSE. (Spoiler, they don’t. They just break it some more.) They are narrated by Anthony Rey Perez, both Editors’ Picks on Amazon, both winners of the Earphones Award in AudioFile Magazine.

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New Dark Breakers collection, poetry in Ghoul Vol. 2, et al

I finished second-drafting a new story for my new(ish) Dark Breakers collection yesterday. I think I’m changing the title to “Longergreen.” It’s a Gideon and Analise story, essentially.

It’s 1000 words more than I wanted it to be (8500 instead of 7500), but I haven’t even attempted an edit yet.

First, this afternoon, I will read the RIGHTEOUS MESS to my mama, Sita. Then I send it to Patty, who asked for it. Maybe read it to Carlos tonight, and email it to him for his BIG RED MARKS. Maybe read it to Caitlyn, if our mutual mood is right. (It’s a story melancholic in its aspect. BUT QUITE LOVELY, if I say it myself.)

By the time ALL THAT IS DONE, I think I’ll have a working story!

In the meantime, later today, I will start again on the first draft of “Salissay’s Laundries,” modeled somewhat in structure after Nellie Bly’s famous exposé, and kindled in fury and sadness by the horrors I read about in several articles regarding the Magdalene Laundries. This was a topic of interest that started with Joni Mitchell’s song of the same name, and later with the movie The Magdalene Sisters.

But the story will be set in my imaginary city of Seafall. So, like, with goblins.

That, too, is gonna go in the collection.

After that, I’m going to finish revising and expanding the original The Breaker Queen and The Two Paupers novellas, both of which I previously self-published, and then went on to have second lives in Lightspeed Magazine and Rich Horton’s Year’s Best respectively.

My deadline to turn the manuscript in to Mike at Mythic Delirium is the end of April. Eep!

So. Yeah. Watch out, world. >.>

Also, I cannot WAIT to show you the new Brett Massé cover.

If you don’t know Brett Massé’s work… WELL!

Here is his website. He did my cover for the new Witch in the Almond Tree and other Stories (both the ebook and audiobook). And he did the interior design work for A Sinister Quartet, giving all of our stories individual black and white illustrations for our title pages. MINE HAS EYEBALLS. And DIAMONDS. For Alizar. And for Bellisaar. He’s VERY CLEVER.

What’s more, a new issue of his zine GhoulGhoul Vol. 2!–is forthcoming, and pre-orders are available, and I have THREE POEMS IN IT!

Draft 1, plus source materials: The Complete Works of Nellie Bly


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Boskone 58: Distant Stars Concert (2)

“Strange Babes,” by Caitlyn Paxson…

Model Carla Kissane for “Strange Babes”

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Boskone 58: Distant Stars Concert

“Jenny’s Song for John,” by C. S. E. Cooney…

Jenny’s Song for John
By C. S. E. Cooney

My love, his name is John Fitzgibbon
Strong as oak and tall as yew
Soft as pine and so sweet-smelling
Ne’er was any man so true
Down he went with lamp and hammer
Down into the blackest seam
Where the rock burns bright as diamond
Daylight’s but a dead man’s dream

Oh, they came in flame and thunder
Oh, they came in ice and steel
Came and snatched my John Fitzgibbon
Bound him to a silver wheel
Where’d you go, my John Fitzgibbon?
Johnny, would you leave me so?
John, I’m cryin’, John, I’m dyin’
John, you’re gone and I’m brought low

My love he shouted loud as lightning
Broke his chain and smote his foe
Ran those halls of pearl and sapphire
Where no mortal man may go
“Turn this ship, O turn it back now!”
Shouted John, so bold and brash
“Bring me to my love, my Jenny
Lest I burn this ship to ash!”

Oh, they laughed like flame and thunder
Oh, they laughed like steel and ice
“John,” said they, “she must be dandy
“You’ll not need to ask us twice.”
Down they drove their iron casket
Down through darkness wide and deep
Found me stretched across my bower
Sore with grief and fast asleep

My love, he spake to me so softly
“Jenny, rise, we must away
If we do not go this instant
We’ll not live to see the day.”
“John,” said I, “I love you dearly
Johnny, whither thou wouldst trod
There will I put down my footprints
This I swear by Holy God.”

Oh, I wept like flood and river 
Oh, I wept like sea and rain
Wept and left my bower forsaken 
There to ne’er return again
Down we flew, in night and starlight
Down into abyssal gleam 
Down into the vast forever 
Where no mortal maid has been 

For the love I bore for John Fitzgibbon
I gave up the world I’d known
Sought those distant stars forbidden
That I could not call my own
Far we flew, and rough we landed 
Cracked the sky and cracked the hull
Cracked our ship of ice and silver 
Spilled out from our prison walls

Oh, they wept like flame and thunder
Oh, they wept like molten ore
Even Johnny couldn’t save them
And their proud race is no more 
Down we delve with lamp and hammer
Bearing children on the way
As we dig, we sing forever:
“We’ll fly homeward bound one day.”

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The Twice-Drowned Saint on Locus’s Recommended Reading List: 1st Novel Category

My short novel The Twice-Drowned Saint (found with three other works of fiction by Jessica P. Wick, Amanda J. McGee, and Mike Allen in Mythic Delirium’s The Sinister Quartet) is recommended by Locus Magazine FIRST NOVELS category!

I did a short review round-up for The Twice-Drowned Saint a while ago. To read about it, go here!

This is a great year for Mike Allen and Mythic Delirium. In addition to The Twice-Drowned Saint making the Recommended Reading list, so did Mike Allen’s collection Aftermath of an Industrial Accident, as well as the whole anthology of A Sinister Quartet!

In celebration of this, Mike says:

In celebration of both of our 2020 titles appearing on the 2020 Locus Magazine Recommended Reading List and the Locus Poll, we at Mythic Delirium Books (that is, Anita and I) have put together a special deal on signed paperbacks of both books that we weren’t able to get to in those final frenzied weeks of … 2020!

And this is the deal — and I’m afraid we have to make it U.S. only (though see parenthetical below) — for $25, as long as supplies last, you get signed copies of Aftermath of an Industrial Accident and A Sinister Quartet, as well as the four post cards created by Paula Arwen Owen that illustrate the four stories in Sinister: “The Twice-Drowned Saint” by C.S.E. Cooney; “An Unkindness” by Jessica P. Wick; “Viridian” by Amanda J. McGee; and “The Comforter” by yours truly.

Too participate, please click through to Mythic Delirium!

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