The Invasion of Fear
Here’s an article I wrote about the inspirations behind my novel, The Invasion. In it you’ll read about my boyhood fear of home invasions, the Manson murders, and my thoughts on horror fiction writers writing stories from fear. Check it out at Shotgun Logic.
Five Real Life Home Invasions
I’m a true crime nut. The Invasion, like a lot of my fiction, is drawn from real life horrors (specifically the Tate-LaBianca murders). Over at HorrorTalk, I discuss five home invasion cases that have deeply disturbed and affected me over the years. You can read my article here
Top 10 Home Invasion Movies
Are you a fan of home invasion movies? I am. I’m a sucker for any and all horror/thrillers that deal either in part or wholly with the terrifying threat of a home invasion. I’ve seen a lot of home invasion movies, it’s one of my favourite sub-genres, and so I thought I’d narrow the pile down to the ten most memorable. My thanks to Matt and the good people at Addicted To Horror Movies for allowing me to invade their site.
Horror and the Slender Man
I was recently interviewed by writer and journalist Andrew Masterson about the Slender Man case specifically, and horror in general. The article has just been published in The Age. You can find the article here:
Aaron Sterns and myself will be at Dymocks, Melbourne, on the 14th of March, signing copies of the Wolf Creek prequel novels. It should be a great evening, so we’d love to see you there. Details of the event can be found here.
*UPDATE: The five winners have been decided, so the competition has ended. Thanks to all who played and congratulations to the five winners! For the record, my all-time favourite Aussie horror movie is: LONG WEEKEND (1978).
To help celebrate the release of the Wolf Creek novels, I’m giving away five signed copies of the second installment, Desolation Game.
As Wolf Creek is one of Australia’s greatest horror movies, I thought I’d make the competition Oz Horror related. All you have to do is guess my all-time favourite Australian horror movie (note: Wolf Creek is out of the running as an answer, for obvious reasons). The first five correct guesses each win a signed copy of Desolation Game: Wolf Creek Book 2.
Send your guesses to either my email address (firstname.lastname@example.org) or a PM on Facebook. Happy guessing!
Wolf Creek: The Novels!
Well folks, I can finally announce a project I’ve been eager to share for a while now. Coming soon from Penguin Books Australia – Desolation Game: Wolf Creek Book 2, by Brett McBean and co-written with writer/director Greg McLean. Penguin Books plan on releasing six prequel novels, all original stories that chart the bloody rise of Australia’s favourite fictional psychopath – Mick Taylor. The first two prequel novels (Origin, co-written by Aaron Sterns and McLean and Desolation Game) are scheduled for release January 2nd 2014, in the lead-up to the release of the second Wolf Creek film in February. I couldn’t be more honoured to be a part of this iconic Oz Horror film series, and I hope readers will embrace these original novels.
When sharpshooter and killer Mick Taylor searches for a place to keep a low profile, he finds somewhere where his peculiar talents are appreciated: a war. And in Vietnam, an out-of-control sergeant takes the amateur murderer and turns him into a pro.
Back home, Mick makes use of the sick lessons the army taught him, when hapless tour operators bring a Kombi-load of sightseers out his way into the Western Australian desert. Two suspicious flat tyres deliver an engaged Japanese couple, a father and son, a US army vet and his girlfriend, and a couple of cute girls to Mick’s lair. Middle of nowhere, population one. The group finds themselves in hell, as Mick makes sure their once-in-a-lifetime tour stays that way. And though one of the drivers escapes and goes for help, Mick sees no reason to stop the killing spree.
In the second Wolf Creek prequel novel, the cult film’s writer/director Greg Mclean and horror writer Brett McBean get to the heart of Australian horror’s most terrifying psycho killer. Is Mick Taylor possessed by some dark power in the landscape itself? Something ancient? Does the Red Centre demand blood?
Keep Notions Unlimited Open!
Notions Unlimited Bookshop has reported that, sadly, unless it sees a substantial growth in its customer-base, the Chelsea-based spec-fic bookshop will be forced to close its doors. The owner/manager, Chuck McKenzie, is a long-time friend and a big supporter of my work. He also works hard to help promote Australian authors and publishers, and his bookshop is one of the few specialist shops in Australia dedicated to all things horror, fantasy and science-fiction. It would be utterly sad to see such a wonderful place close. We need bookshops like Notions Unlimited and we need people like Chuck. So please, help spread the word. Buy all your spec-fic books at Notions Unlimited and tell all your friends and family to do the same.
Melbourne Zombie Convention
Just a quick heads up: I’ll be at the Melbourne Zombie Convention next Sunday (October 6th). You’ll find me at the Notions Unlimited Bookshop stall, which will be stocking plenty of copies of the paperback edition of my zombie novel, The Awakening. So feel free to stop by and say hello.
German Audio Books
For all of my German readers: two of my novels have been made available as audio books, Die Bestien and Das Motel. They’ve been published by Audible.de. Click on the titles for more information, including the cool book trailers.
Buk and Jimmy Go West
I’m thrilled to announce the release of my latest book, Buk and Jimmy Go West. This wild and bloody novella combines my love of the cinema with my fascination for true crime. Available in both trade paperback and digital editions. Published by the wonderful Australian small press, LegumeMan Books. For more information, click here.
Tom Piccirilli is a wonderful writer who’s about to undergo surgery to remove a brain tumour. Show some love and support and buy his books.
ScaryMinds has reviewed my backwoods horror novel, Torment. Read the review here.
The Awakening – first review
First review is in for my latest novel, The Awakening. Read the review here.
Bendigo Writers Festival
I’m excited to announce that I’ll be appearing at the inaugural Bendigo Writers Festival. I’m on the panel, ‘The Horror!’ (Sunday, August 12th, 1:30-2:30pm) talking about ‘what frightens us now, and how writers are responding in books and on screen’, along with Geoff Brown, Cameron Oliver and Lucy Sussex. For more information, including the full program, go here.
Horror Trippin’ to the Mall of the Dead
I’ve finally uploaded my photos from my trip in May 2001 to the Monroeville Mall, which is where the original Dawn of the Dead was filmed. While I unfortunately didn’t take any photos of the inside of the mall (the law told me I wasn’t allowed to), I did take some shots of the outside. So step back to a time of flares, disco and undead Hare Krishnas, and check out the photos here.
My Top 100 Horror Films
Recently, Time Out London posted their top 100 horror movies. As you’d expect with any list, I disagreed with many of their inclusions and was left flabbergasted by the movies that didn’t make the cut. Well, being an obsessive list-maker, I thought I’d come up with my own top 100 horror list. One hundred horror flicks that have influenced, pushed the boundaries, terrified and left their cinematic footprints on the world. I tried to be as objective as possible, and so this isn’t a list of my hundred favourite horror movies, but rather the ones I believe are the best the genre has to offer. Enjoy!
An American Werewolf in London (1981)
The Birds (1963)
Black Sabbath (1963)
Black Sunday (1960)
The Bride of Frankenstein (1935)
The Brood (1979)
The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (1920)
Cannibal Holocaust (1980)
Cape Fear (1962)
Carnival of Souls (1962)
The Cat People (1942)
Dawn of the Dead (1979)
Dead of Night (1945)
Deep Red (1975)
Dellamorte Dellamore (1994)
The Devil’s Backbone (2001)
Don’t Look Now (1973)
The Evil Dead (1982)
Evil Dead II (1987)
The Exorcist (1973)
The Eye (2002)
Eyes Without a Face (1960)
The Fly (1986)
Funny Games (1997)
The Golem (1920)
The Haunting (1963)
Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer (1986)
High Tension (2003)
The Hills Have Eyes (1977)
Horror of Dracula (1958)
Hour of the Wolf (1968)
The Howling (1981)
The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1923)
The Innocents (1961)
Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956)
Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978)
I Walked With a Zombie (1943)
Jacob’s Ladder (1990)
King Kong (1933)
The Last House on the Left (1972)
Long Weekend (1978)
Near Dark (1987)
A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)
Night of the Demon (1957)
Night of the Hunter (1955)
Night of the Living Dead (1968)
The Old Dark House (1932)
The Omen (1976)
The Others (2001)
Peeping Tom (1960)
The Phantom of the Opera (1925)
Picnic at Hanging Rock (1975)
The Return of the Living Dead (1985)
Rosemary’s Baby (1968)
Shaun of the Dead (2004)
The Shining (1980)
The Silence of the Lambs (1991)
The Sixth Sense (1999)
A Tale of Two Sisters (2003)
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974)
The Thing (1982)
Village of the Damned (1960)
The Vanishing (1988)
Wake in Fright (1971)
What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? (1962)
The Wicker Man (1973)
Wolf Creek (2005)
The Wolf Man (1941)
Attention all writers! Tasmaniac Publications is running a writing competition, to coincide with the release of NEIGHBOURHOOD JUNGLE. To find out more, read on:
To celebrate the second release of Brett McBean’s Jungle trilogy, Neighbourhood Jungle, Tasmaniac will be holding a short story writing competition.
Here’s your chance to further expand Brett’s apocalyptic vision of nature destroying modern civilization as we know it, and maybe carving yourself a slice of infamy under this dangerous canopy, for the lucky winner will see their story published in the final instalment, Suburban Jungle, as well as receiving a set of the trilogy in hardback form.
Stories need to be set around a year from when nature stamped its authority on the world, to coincide with the novel’s timeline. With a word count around 5000, we’ll be looking for stories with well thought out characters thrust into a story worth telling – whether they’re struggling to cope with their new found environment or quite the opposite.
Submissions will be accepted from now until mid-July.
Send as a word document, double spaced with standard text, along with ‘Jungle Mania’ in the subject heading to: email@example.com
Hardcopies are also accepted and can be sent to:
P.O. Box 45
Best of luck to all entries…and remember, it’s a jungle out there!
Two New Interviews
One in English: Should Have Killed the Blog
One in German: Fantasyguide
I Went To The Last Motel…
Imagine if my novel THE LAST MOTEL had really been an early ’80s horror movie; an Australian-made low-budget exploitation flick in the vein of Motel Hell or Friday the 13th. That it had fallen into obscurity in the years following its release in 1981, and more than twenty years later I had written a movie tie-in novel.
Well, that’s exactly the premise the folks at LegumeMan Books and I took with the re-release of my first novel.
Since my novel was heavily influenced by low-budget horror movies of the ’70s/early ’80s, we thought it would be fun if this re-release tied in with the cinematic nature of my book. Initially the publishers and I were simply going to design the book in the mould of a movie tie-in, and leave it at that. But the more we talked, the more we liked the idea taking the concept further and actually creating a faux trailer, poster, lobby cards…
So no, there was no LAST MOTEL movie; no ‘Butch’ Callaghan and no Brazilian video containing the only known trailer for the movie. Everything you see in the offical website was created by the talented people at LegumeMan Books (with a little help from me and some friends). The trailer was filmed by us up at Creswick in April, 2010. The cast (including Butch) was played by our friends (I played the corpse!). The music was composed and performed by myself and Matthew Revert. The poster, lobby cards and video cassette were all created specifically for this re-release.
Apologies to anyone convinced this was a real movie and were hoping that one day a copy of this long-lost movie would turn up.
Still, we hope this re-release concept will be taken in the same way the book was written – with a sense of fun and entertainment, and with tongue lightly pressing on cheek. With that in mind, here is the IMDB page for the ‘movie’ THE LAST MOTEL: THE LAST MOTEL (1981)
And here is the trailer: THE LAST MOTEL TRAILER (YouTube)
Lastly, the official website for the movie that never was: The Last Motel – The Movie.
Vincent Preis Awards 2010
I’m pleased to announce that my novel Die Mutter (The Mother) has come in 2nd place in the German horror literary award, Vincent Preis (Vincent Price), for ‘Best International Literary Works 2010’. Sitting among the likes of Stephen King, Jack Ketchum, Brian Keene, Joe Hill and Simon Clark, I must say I’m humbled and awed. Thank you to all of my German readers for voting for Die Mutter.
The Truth is Out There…
The truth about my first novel, THE LAST MOTEL, can finally be told!
THE LAST MOTEL was a 1981 Australian horror movie that was moderately successful upon its initial release, but soon fell into obscurity. In 2002 I wrote the novel based on the movie, and, with the writer/director’s OK (in fact, on his insistence) the book was marketed as an original novel, rather than a novelisation. Now that the film’s writer/director – Butch Callaghan – is gone, I’ve decided to come clean and let the world know about this little-seen horror movie. Also, the novel will now be re-printed as a movie tie-in, and will be coming soon from LegumeMan Books.
More details about both the novelisation and the movie to follow. You can go here to watch the trailer for THE LAST MOTEL, listen to select tracks from the soundtrack, and view behind-the-scenes photos and production stills: The Last Motel – the movie.
Special LegumeMan Books Signing
A group of LegumeMan Books authors (Matthew Revert, R. Frederick Hamilton, Steve Gerlach, Andrew Gallacher, and myself) will be at Dymocks, Southland, on May 14th, for a group signing. If you live in Melbourne, feel free to come by and say hello, buy books, get books signed, and maybe you’ll even get a hug or two. More details can be found here.
Dorchester Publishing has been screwing their authors over, and some of them have decided that they’re as mad as hell as they’re not going to take it anymore. To read about just how Dorchester have been behaving, and what you as readers, writers, artists, etc, can do, go here.