HEYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY Check this shniz out!
HEYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY Check this shniz out!
It is four A. M.
Why am I awake right now?
Writers never sleep.
–“Hustle” by Yours Truly
It’s only one review so far, but it’s so awesome to see this book get such praise. Some snippets:
“An emotional rollercoaster.”
“You can perfectly imagine what Holton is narrating and that makes you grin more than once.”
“The tension is constant all through the book, and the author’s imagination tricks you and challenges your mind, even when you don’t expect it.”
“His writing is spotless and his effort in perfecting every detail is obvious.”
Now where is the ‘big grin’ emoji on WordPress…
I’m also polishing the script for These Walls Don’t Talk, They Scream, a novel coming soon from HellBound Books. It’s a big lower budget than the At the Hands of Madness film would be, but as my coffee mug says, Good things come to those who go out and fucking hustle.
No, it actually says that.
In cyborg/diabetes news, Methyldopa, a blood pressure medication, could have the potential to block the DQ8 molecule, which appears in 60 percent of people at risk for Type 1 diabetes! Obviously, this doesn’t help me, but it might help the people you love.
Allegedly, scientists can predict the illness with near 100% certainty, and Type 1 is only 5-10% of all diabetes anyway, but considering that Type 2 is preventable (or treatable) through healthy diet and exercise, we’re well on our way to stamping this bastard of a disease out!
Byte me, big pharma.
An article from last August states that we’re “one step closer” to a T1D cure through islet cell implants thanks to ViaCyte. This isn’t the first time we’ve seen researchers exploring this option, though, so I can only hope these clinical trials pan out.
I’m ending the post here so I can investigate further.
See you on the other side, kids.
Just found out that my latest release, At the Hands of Madness, will be available in print pretty soon. Within 2-4 weeks, most likely.
If you’re waiting for a physical edition, great! If you want to grab an ebook, go here!
If you’ve never heard of this book, here’s the back cover info:
When Medraka first appeared, humanity assumed it’d wipe them out in days. It did worse: it walked the Earth, uncaring, impervious to all attacks, and killing at random. A city disappears, a band of survivors kill each other, a family of four gets turned inside out. It’s easy to see where this psychic kaiju has been. The ravenous Phranna, the man-sized locust creatures that emerge from its flesh, swarm those it leaves behind. Few of the unprepared survive.
Hennessy never expected to survive confronting this nightmare, but found survival worse than death. Now, alongside a group of impulsive misfits that have banded together into a militia to protect Great Bend, he has to face it again. Between an explosives expert, a pyrokinetic lab accident, a mech-building mechanic, a veteran warrior, and a psybernetic superhuman, they might have enough power to keep it from destroying their city. Staying alive will be hard enough. The real question is, will they be able to keep their sanity?
“Holton provides a wild and gritty tour-de-force that pits humans, metahumans, and the combat robots they have built against a horror that combines the nightmares of H.P. Lovecraft, Ishiro Honda, and George Romero. All fans who think of the Apocalypse in terms of zombies only do so because they have yet to meet the Phranna… let alone the titanic terror that spawned them!” –Christofer Nigro, author of Megadrak: Beast of the Apocalypse and Dargolla: A Kaiju Nightmare.
Take your hands in mine
Let my ink stains will show you
Every world is ours.
–“It is Written,” by yours truly.
Holy balls, folks! I am VERY proud to say my release of At the Hands of Madness, Book One of the Longshot Trilogy, is doing phenomenally! In only the past twelve hours, it’s climbed from #4200 in its category to just under #2000!
I’m not sure how Amazon’s algorithms work, but that’s really damn cool.
So, for a limited time, I’m running a promotion! Anyone who buys a copy and shares their purchase on Twitter/Facebook, and tags me in the share (@TheHoltoning), will get a chance to win the next two books for free!
They’ll only come out if this one does well, so let’s keep it moving! The next two books get absolutely insane. Giant humanoid spiders, Hennessy “Heartbreaker” Jones gets a new call sign, Grover goes nuclear, and the gang is going to learn some harsh lessons about loyalty–but we gotta make sure book one sells well!
And, side note, I had “Glutton for Punishment” accepted into Fatal Fetish by J. Ellington Ashton press, as well as a bunch of interviews and promo articles I’ll be sharing as time goes on. Release just prior to Women in Horror Month as well as Black History Month isn’t ideal for a white male, but I don’t want to take away from either of these focuses, so I’ve told publishers to push some of my promo back.
So give this a share, because the fate of me, my books, and this little universe I’ve created rest in your hands!
Thank you for reading. You’re wonderful. Comment below to say hi!
You can click above to buy the book, or click here!
Two years ago, a psychic kaiju appeared on Earth, destroying at random, and driving people insane, content to revel in chaos rather than outright kill all the humans it could.
Now, a scrappy militia team attempts to defend their city from the Phranna, the locust-like swarms that spawn from its flesh. These battles are hard enough, but when Medraka, the four-armed beast of madness, threatens all they love, will they be able to keep their lives, and their sanity, long enough to stop it?
Check it on Amazon!
Hey everyone! My novel At the Hands of Madness should be out later this week! Check the cover and blurb below:
I recently put up another FREE story over at my patreon! Give it a look, and feel free to keep the PDF for your reading pleasure later. This will go into my annual collection, so be sure to pledge! All patrons get a copy at the end of the year.
The next TWO people to pledge get a free ebook, so sign up soon. This offer’s going quick.
Patience. Still your heart.
No good ever came from rushing.
Slow down. Breathe. Relax.
–“Virtue” A Haiku by yours truly
Not an overwhelming amount of stuff to share today–not even actual cyborg news, beyond ‘my blood sugars have been funny the past day or two’ and ‘I still have diabetes.’
I’ve mostly been holding out, waiting to hear back on a variety of subs. Painting the White City Red is still on hold-out for a particular press, as an editor expressed interest in those poems, but I haven’t heard too much yet. The Gospel of Decay, NOVA EXE, and Absolute Zero are still under consideration in various places. A bunch of short stories and poems are out in different venues, so we’ll see how that goes. I also sent Crimson, Inc. out last night. Oof. Waiting.
I did have four poems ultimately accepted for the upcoming issue of The Horror Zine, and a short story, “Sound and Furry,” accepted to the Endangered Species post-apocalyptic anthology from J. Ellington Ashton Press. All that’s been pretty fun!
The Call of the Void got rejected from Villipede Press. That’s okay–it’s almost a relief to have something out of the queue!
I made a New Years’ Resolution to hit my 100th short story pub this year, and while I’m well on the way (87/100), I have two ideas for longer works that are demanding my attention. Hm…
That’s the beautiful thing about writing, though. It’s all about momentum. We learn about this early on, usually in middle or high school: a body in motion stays in motion, while a body at rest stays at rest, unless acted upon by an outside force (which is why it’s so hard to get out of bed in the morning!).
With a career like this, self-driven, where everything depends on your ability to put your ax to the grindstone and get it done, there are always outside forces. There’s rejection, the day job, family matters, health crises (I should know), stress, mental illness (comes with the job, amiwrite?), and freaking out over the latest news blast about what the US President did this time, or what North Korea’s planning, or blah blah blah.
So keep going. That’s all the advice I have for you. Do not stop. Even if you write absolute garbage one day, hell, if you write poorly for a week, a month, don’t give up. If you’re a writer, your career depends on three things: skill, patience, and luck. Skill develops over time. Patience is the ability to tolerate time. And, as Thomas Jefferson once said, “I am a great believer in luck, and I find the harder I work, the more I have of it.” So work. Get it done. I don’t believe in luck. I do believe in you.
Thanks for stopping by. If you’re looking for fiction, check out my Patreon–it has some free content to give you a sample of what I’m cooking up!
Drop a line below if you’re feeling chatty. I love hearing from you.
Reviews are very important to authors, so after posting on Amazon/Goodreads/wherever, I like to repost here, along with a link to the product. Here’s my 4 star review of Attack of the Kaiju: Age of Monsters (Volume 1), an anthology edited by Matthew Dennion and Neil Riebe. If you buy it, be sure to leave a review, too!
Attack of the Kaiju: Age of Monsters delivers exactly what the title promises. Within the pages lie 15 stories of giant, smashy, beat-em-up doomsday creatures, each ready to deliver varying degrees of mayhem. As with any anthology, some don’t quite measure up to the others, but there’s enough originality and variety here to attract fans of most genres, so long as there’s a large enough place in their interests for a rampaging megabeast.
Overall, the collection is pretty solid. There are occasionally distracting typos (most notably, a few instances of pluralized words being written with apostrophe-s), but Dennion and Riebe clearly put a lot of care and concern into their work. Several writers, including Dennion, have more than one story in this anthology. This can make some tales feel familiar to the others in terms of writing style, but in a niche genre like this, it makes sense to gather several stories from those that are guaranteed to deliver, rather than scour the earth for newcomers.
Here are individual contents, briefly overviewed:
The Odyssey of Draugr, by Matthew Dennion
A Frankenstein-style kaiju created by Nazi scientists goes on a more or less accidental rampage while looking for companionship. “Nazi experiment gone awry” may not be too original, but it’s one of the few stories, in this collection or otherwise, that I’ve seen feature character development for the beast itself. It’s a refreshing change of pace for a genre that typically depicts its namesakes as a bunch of mindless destroyers.
Hunting Grounds, by Breyden Halverson
Revenge is a dish best served wandering around in a swamp, looking for God-only-knows-what. A research mishap leads to a rapidly mutating kaiju set loose just outside of civilization, and one man’s thirst for blood over his wife’s disappearance may be the only thing preventing the creature from harming innocent people. A little jumpy with the POV, but satisfying in the end.
A Day at the Beach, by Cody Bratsch
Kaiju destruction meets social criticism when three friends take a fresh-out-of-rehab heroin addict on a day trip. While the dialog isn’t always believable, the story deals with the subject matter in an engaging, sensitive way, balancing the existential horror of two massive creatures rendering humans insignificant against the much quieter, personal dread of never full escaping one’s personal demons.
Goregod, by Robert Galvin
Blurring the lines between occultism and mad science, “Goregod” lives up to its name, unleashing all sorts of hell on any biological material nearby. From turning mortals into undead warriors, to resurrecting the skeleton of a long-dead dinosaur in a local museum, the kaiju in this story obeys no rules, and leaves no soul unscathed. Not for the faint of heart, or those who dislike weird/Lovecraftian fiction.
The Price of Violence, by Matthew Dennion
Returning for his second of three stories in this collection, this five-page story goes into the fantasy realm, focusing on a league of fairies trying to prevent a newborn dragon from destroying the land. Rife with ecocriticism and a vaguely solarpunk influence, “The Price of Violence” is very conscious of its place in this collection. However, a lot of ‘telling’ without much ‘showing’ leads to an overbearing moralism in the final moments, unfortunately diminishing the impact of an otherwise very original story.
Poseidon’s Wrath, by Breyden Halverson
A story featuring kaiju inspired by real mythological creatures, this tale focuses on a teenage anti-kaiju combat unit, since the kaiju let off radiation that destroys human immune systems, but this effect is diminished in the young. Ultimately, the protagonist, James, plays second fiddle to the brawl between Poseidon’s brood and a single beast of a far different nature–one that might not want to rule the seas, but protect them, instead.
Sky Horror, by Jesse Wilson
Another fantasy-style piece featuring a fledgling mage sent off to stop a mighty creature from ravaging the locals. The mage, Saziz, soon meets a guy named Bill, and in a story like this, an ordinary name can only mean trouble. There are some loose ends, and other matters that perhaps should’ve been addressed, but the writing itself is solid.
A Hard Day at the Office, by Timothy Price
One of the more unique stories here, if only because it’s set entirely in one man’s corner skyscraper corner office, overlooking the city as it comes to destruction. There’s a far more personal story here, as we’re limited to his thoughts, rather than given an overarching view of incredible destruction, but those who’ve come for carnage will still find the ending they’re looking for.
Massive, by Alex Dumitru
Fans of Ant-Man will love this story of a regular human being who, through science and a special suit the narrator doesn’t even pretend to understand, can grow to a “Massive” size, fighting the kaiju in a one-on-one grudge match. There’s a vague threat of something terrible happening if his suit’s battery runs out, but this is never full explained or capitalized, undercutting the tension. Still, reading about a human punching a hundreds-of-feet-tall monster in the face is an easy thing to love.
Four Horsemen, by Zach Cole
Though it draws from obvious source material, “Four Horsemen” is still a clever piece of kaiju fiction, with four beasts descending from asteroids to lay waste to Earth. When society appears destroyed, they turn on each other–and the survivor faces off against a human warrior, neurologically linked to a battle mech constructed from scrap metal. Anyone who wants a religiously-inspired Pacific Rim style story will get a kick out of this one.
Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the Roof Top Ripper, by Matthew Dennion
For his third and final story here, Dennion gives us a story featuring The Great Detective against a creature that, by all accounts, shouldn’t still exist. Another tale of ecologically-inspired events, this one more subtle, it tracks an older, Waston-less Holmes as Scotland Yard calls on him one final time–to stop a series of murders that, according to all evidence and human limitations, shouldn’t be possible. It’s a slower story than the others, but necessarily so, considering the source material.
Christmas Wish, by Jesse Wilson
When a young boy makes a Christmas without thinking through the consequences, a giant red gorilla with a flaming skull appears to deliver havoc onto his little town. The only way to stop it is by summoning his hero, an Ice Dragon of mythic proportions, but all wishes come with consequences. It’s kaiju-meets-the-monkey’s-paw for this story, though the dialog isn’t always that natural.
Bringing of Chaos, by Breyden Halverson
A deranged older scientist resurrects a prehistoric kaiju, Tiamat, also known as Chaos, to essentially commit a monster-themed purge of society’s evils. Naturally, this doesn’t go according to plan, and it soon becomes apparent that there’s more than one massive creature lurking in the shadowy corners of the globe. The character development feels too fast, but there are some interesting twists and turns here.
The Criminal and the Kaiju, by Christofer Nigro
Drawing on his long-standing love of the genre, Nigro delivers a story full of varied, dynamic characters, swapping perspectives as needed to show his kaiju from every angle. Though this can get a little disorienting, it’s another human-becomes-god-sized piece, leading to a rather epic session of mano-a-mano action. The narration/word choice can get in the way of the pacing/tension, but it’s one of the harder-hitting stories here.
Noregon, the Blue Steel Kaiju, by Neil Riebe
In what’s apparently his first work of original fiction, Riebe delivers a novel premise: in a world full of giant monsters, a cabal of shadowy figures have learned to psychically control these beasts, using them to wage war instead of using their respective armed forces. While it never feels like Noregon’s actually in danger, this creature’s internal struggles fuel the plot quite well. Told from the beast’s perspective, this has the most kaiju character development of any story I’ve read in the genre, leading to the perfect ending for this unique collection.
While you’re here, be sure to stomp on over to my Patreon for short stories, signed copies, and mystery gifts!