The state of things is constantly in flux. I am currently doing revisions on Lane Bowden 1973. The story remains the same, but little things and structures are changing to reflect my own changes as a writer over time. I will put it back into submission and decide the next steps before the 50th anniversary of The Houston Mass Murders which are its true crime backdrop. The tone is interesting in that it is primarily a gay coming of age tale set in a working class neighborhood with hints of the true crimes, until later on when the horror takes the forefront. Lane Bowden 1973 also has flights of fancy, as the main character is a dreamer, and a sense of the car culture and rock and roll music of the era. A cautionary tale, it is more dark YA than splatterpunk, making it original but hard to pin down. After I finish, I will go on to revise my Rebel’s Edge trilogy—another pass at the material—and then on to a second draft of my cyberpunk, sci-fi novel, Future-Thrill.
I have also begun a new screenplay, Modulator, which is my first giallo influenced thriller. The outline and character bios are done and I am a few scenes along. The scenario involves left behind listening devices in a remote cabin that are found, leading to recordings of murder and a mystery to solve as the killings begin again. It feels good to mix up formats. Another screenplay, Timber Tantrum, that Lee Webster and I wrote, won Best Original Screenplay at the Grindsploitation Film Festival in Winchester, VA on April 25th, 2021. A table read almost happened but was pulled at the last minute due to casting availability and the pandemic, but winning an award on the day of the Academy Awards is cool.
The first part of 2021 has brought a reevaluation of my past works. I have updated and made some changes and am continuing to do so. In January, I created a new version of Dark Lands, a collection of short horror stories, to offer as a free incentive to subscribe to my mailing list on my website—my other free book is Where the Road Roams, available on most major platforms. I broke up Wild Boys into its original three novellas and leaned into gay western, rough and tumble, romance style covers with Dusty’s Revenge, Jake’s Tale, and Trail’s End. I subtly changed both Anarchy - Strange Tales of Outsiders and The Trouble with Furries and I created a more horror style cover for Escape from Dolphin Street with a dark, decrepit house and Polaroids of the runaways. And I am proud to announce both Escape and Wild Boys novels are in hardback for the first time. Those editions are really nice and I am glad to hit a milestone of having what feels like a legitimate books to hold in hand. This feeling goes back to the first hardback I bought as teenager—after many Stephen King paperbacks—of The Talisman.
Other odds and ends, include a piece of flash fiction, IMPRINT, which I submitted to Queer Sci-FI’s upcoming “Ink” themed anthology. Another short, Dysphoria, about fear of one’s true self is in submission at HellBound Books after missing the mark with a blind submission to HWA’s Other Fears Anthology (sic Other Terrors). I am looking forward to the virtual StokerCon May 20th - 23rd. I am a member of the HWA (Horror Writer’s Association) and have served as a Bram Stoker Award juror in the past. This will be my first convention as I had to refund tickets to the Grand Rapids, MI event in 2019 due to a travel change with work. Virtuosity will be interesting as everything from Comic-Con to Fantasia has been during these strange days. As the world opens up in new ways, I will keep moving forward and making moves in flux. New times are coming soon and I look forward to sharing new works.