Month: October 2015

Paying the Ferryman Facebook Questions Answered


Last night Charon Coin Press hosted a Facebook party to celebrate the release of their latest anthology, Paying the Ferryman. I’m not on Facebook (tried it and didn’t like it) so I figured I’d jot down the questions and answer them here. Feel free to ask any other questions in the comments below.

Margie Colton: Are you a plotter, a pantser, or a hybrid?

I’m a huge plotter. I like to have a solid story structure and outline in place before I turn on my computer. I’m talking things like character bios, major plot points, and settings. Once I get a feel for all of the different aspects of the story, I like to immerse myself in them, meaning they’re always on my mind. For me, it makes writing a lot easier knowing where I’m going. Taking the time to outline in the beginning means less revision work later.

Frank Edler: Do you see death as a dark end or a promising new beginning?

Each person will likely have a different opinion on this. I’m not sure anyone really knows for sure, and that’s what makes this an interesting question. I suppose I’m not sold on either the dark end or the new beginning. Personally, I hope that when I die that’s it. I’d like to finally be at peace.

Hayden McAnally: What is your favorite horror book?

the descent hardcover

Eric Jude: Do you use a pen name?

No. I don’t believe in using pen names. Even if I write in several genres, I plan on using my real name. I want credit for all the hard work that went into creating those stories, and books, no matter what genre they happen to fall under.

Brian Fatah Steele: Does your story in Paying the Ferryman fall into any particular horror sub-genre?

I don’t think so. Plain old horror.

Hayden McAnally: Did any of you ever get particularly creeped out by your own words?

No. Not much scares me. What I try to do is see through my character’s eyes, what scares them. Fear is such a subjective thing that each person will probably react differently to different situations. The key is presenting the scares in the most universal way possible so a greater number of readers will relate to them.

Tammy Hay Mitchell: Who is your favorite author and why?

Right now my favorite is Tim Lebbon. He does so many things well that I find myself wanting to write better. He usually finds a way to inject horror sensibilities into whatever genre he’s writing at the time. My all-time favorite is Dean Koontz. The way he lets his stories unfold (particularly his earlier works), giving readers enough detail (without over doing it) so they can finish the scares themselves, is masterful.

Frank Edler: What fellow author were you most honored to share the pages of Paying the Ferryman with?

Armand Rosamilia because he’s been in the business for a number of years.

Frank Edler: How did you approach the theme of Paying the Ferryman?

I immediately thought about what death would mean for someone like a car thief. Would they have regrets? Was this person bad or simply making the best of the hand they were dealt? Would they get, or even deserve, a second chance? I believe life is rarely black and white. It’s full of shades of gray, and that’s what I wanted to explore.

Margie Colton: What’s the best part of writing?

Getting to explore ideas and concepts I probably wouldn’t get to in real life. Plus I get to share my stories with readers who may get something more out of them than I ever intended.

Margie Colton: What is your favorite part of your story?

Can I go with the visuals? I bet most readers will remember the bacon scene the most though. ūüėČ


D. S. Ullery: What drew you to submit to this anthology?

The concept. Plus, the people behind Charon Coin seemed passionate about not only the creative side of publishing, but also the business side. Through experience I’ve learned to not submit to any/every press. It was easy for me to see Charon Coin was different in a good way. Working with Margie was a pleasure and I would definitely recommend Charon Coin to other writers.

Jenner Michaud: Did you learn any lesson as a writer writing your story for Paying the Ferryman?

Just about what kind of people Margie and Jerry are. Margie in particular made the entire submission process easy and approachable for everyone–from the first time author to a more seasoned author like me who’s been actively submitting projects for a couple of years. For those of your who don’t really know, Margie went above and beyond keeping everyone updated and on the same page. She was also very approachable and open to new ideas. One of the better experiences I’ve had to date in publishing.

Paying the Ferryman is available now! For more information visit Charon Coin’s official website.


Paying the Ferryman Releases Today

Paying the Ferryman releases today! Readers can get it from Amazon / Kobo / Barnes & Noble. Reviews would be greatly appreciated at this early stage. I’d like to personally thank every reader who purchases and leaves a review for this anthology. It means a lot to an up-and-coming author like me. Hope you like it!

Just a reminder that you can join Charon Coin in celebrating the release of Paying the Ferryman by attending their Facebook party, tonight. There will be prizes! Details:

Add Paying the Ferryman on Goodreads:

For all the latest news and updates about Paying the Ferryman, follow Charon Coin Press on Twitter.

CHARON_FERRYMAN_fulldesignFrom the publisher: Death is just the beginning…

Death. Just the word can trigger gut-wrenching fear. The kind of fear causing the heart to pound, cold sweat to run down and burn the eyes, and fingers to tremble with a loss of strength. Is our fear the realization that from the moment of conception, the clock starts counting down until we come face to face with death? More likely, it is the fear of what comes after the moment our last breath escapes. The exploration of this fear is contained within these pages.Join us as we follow a serial killer who tries to outrun the minions from Hell. Meet a man forced to relive his past hoping for redemption. What if your destiny begins after your death? Death is truly just the beginning.

After death has occurred, what could be worse? Paying the Ferryman answers the question of what comes next in twenty imaginative tales.

Paying the Ferryman Release Party

Ferryman wraparound

Charion Coin Press cordially invites you, yes you, to their Facebook release party for their newest anthology, Paying the Ferryman, on October 20. Chat with some of the authors and editors of the anthology. Expect hijinks and insight into how the anthology came together.

You like winning things, don’t you? Of course you do! THERE WILL BE PRIZES!!!

If you’re on Facebook, follow this link to the party page and RSVP today:¬†

Top Five: Zombedies

For those of you who don’t know, a zombedy combines the horror of zombies with the hilarity of a comedy. The end result is often something fun and memorable for even casual fans of either genre. There’s no better way to get through the zombie apocalypse than with a laugh or two.

Honorable mention – Doghouse (2009), Dead Alive (1992), and Dead Set (2008).

5) Cooties (2014) – This is the most recent film on the list. It’s about a group of summer school teachers who have to survive the first day of summer school after a tainted chicken nugget infects one of their students. Only pre-pubescent kids are affected, and even a baby gets in on the face chewing fun. Rainn Wilson is hilarious as the over the top macho gym teacher. This film won’t be out on home video until December but you can watch it on demand.

4) Cockneys Versus Zombies (2012) – This film follows two brothers as they try and rob a bank in order to save the old folk’s home where their tough as nails granddad lives. What sets Cockneys Versus Zombies apart is the old folks. The director has fun pitting them against the undead in various ways. In one scene, an older gentleman falls asleep outside. He wakes up after the zombies arrive and him trying to race back to the home before the shambling undead is pretty funny. Yes, this film is often over the top, but that’s what makes it so much fun, for fuck’s sake!

3) Zombieland (2009) – What makes Zombieland work so well is the interaction between Columbus (Jesse Eisenberg) and Tallahassee (Woody Harrelson). The writers poke fun at pop culture in fun and intelligent ways. Their zombie kill of the week bit always brings a smile to my face. Emma Stone plays a badass con woman which is a refreshing departure from what she normally plays. A cameo by Bill Murray, who plays himself, is also memorable. Anyone got a Twinkie?

2) Return of the Living Dead (1985) – This film broke the zombie rules back in the mid-eighties. These zombies talk, think, and need to eat your brains! Frank and Freddy are two dimwitted and bumbling security guards at a medical supply company who find a strange drum. They eventually damage it and unleash a military experiment, yeah it’s a zombie, who hungers for brains. Even though this film is often times downright silly, the humor is what drives the plot. One of my favorite scenes is when the zombies grab a police radio and call for more cops. They’re still hungry. Later more cops arrive and are immediately surrounded by the hungry undead. If you haven’t seen this film, you’re missing out.

1) Shaun of the Dead (2004) – What can I say about this film that hasn’t already been said? You’ve got a bit of red on you! Shaun is a normal guy who works his life away at a dead end job until the dead rise and he’s presented with a chance to do something epic with his life. And all he wants to do is get his on and off again girlfriend to safety…at his favorite pub. What makes this film work so well is the perfect balance between laughs and horror. The writers and director really nailed it. For most horror, and zombie fans, Shaun of the Dead is a film they keep going back to time and time again. I know I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve seen it and I still keep coming back for more.

What are some of your favorite zombedies? Which films would you have included on this list? Sound off in the comments below.

You’re a Writer. Deal With It.

Writing means many different things to many different people.

I mean, you’d have to be absolutely insane to write something you don’t know anyone will like, or want and send it off into the world. Yet many of us do just that. We get an idea. We get it down on paper. We submit it to agents and editors. Most of the time it results in rejections. But that’s to be expected. Sometimes, if you’re good enough and lucky enough, you get an acceptance.

The thing is sometimes even acceptances can turn into rejections.

Things happen. Publishers go belly up. They can change how they conduct business. I know, it happened to me.

You’re a writer. Deal with it. It may sound harsh, but it’s true.

If we want to be successful in this business, we must learn to adapt, evolve, and find a way to press forward. No excuses.

I had and lost a three book deal. I had and lost a literary agent a few months later. Those were tough decisions I had to make on my own. There is no guidebook. Bad things can, and often do, happen. If I can keep going you can too.

The thing is, it’s hard when you’ve been knocked down, kicked, and left for dead. For me, there is no quit. I plan on writing for many more years. I write these words because somewhere out there a writer is on the verge of taking their ball and going home. They’re about to quit.

If writing is important enough we’ll find a way to keep going. Maybe it’s rejection, the business side of publishing, or something else is twisting the knife in our writerly guts. Those of us who want if bad enough will walk through hell to make our publishing dreams a reality. I know it hurts. I know you feel like shit. You can do it.

If we can concentrate on how badly we want to be successful instead of how shitty everything seems, we can push through the worst of days. If every literary agent on the planet rejects your book, write another one. If every editor rejects your short story, writer a better one. Show them why they shouldn’t have overlooked you. Prove that you belong. But do it through your writing.

There’s a saying that says a published writer is one who never gave up.

Goonies never say die. Writers shouldn’t either.¬†Persevere. Even when writing is the last thing you want to do.

36 Goonies GIFs That Never Say Die

Paying the Ferryman Has a Release Date

If you follow me on Twitter, you’ve probably seen this information. If not, why aren’t you following me on Twitter?


Charon Coin Press are gearing up for the October 20 release date of their forthcoming anthology, PAYING THE FERRYMAN. What’s this PAYING THE FERRYMAN ANTHOLOGY, you ask? In each of the stories in this anthology, the main character dies and passes through to the other side. Each author brings a different perspective, and definition, to their other side. Sounds pretty cool, right? I thought so too and was so inspired by the concept that I penned a short story called Death Blossoms.

When I sat down to write Death Blossoms, I knew I wanted a main character of color. They had to be someone from the street. A hustler of some sort. Someone who did what they thought they had to in order to survive. I drew on my earlier years for this character–one of my good friends from high school in particular. I’m no hustler, but I’ve been around them enough to know how some of them think. Despite what some of us may think, not all hustlers are bad people. Desperation and fear can drive even good people to do bad things. My father started out robbing the offering plate from his local church so he could feed his brothers and sisters. All of those things went into Armando Castillo, a young car thief who only wants to get his mamma out of the projects and into a better life. He’s someone, I believe, we all can relate to.

Without giving too much away, the heart of my story is about overcoming our darkest fears (whatever they may be). And, if you’ve read any of my other work, you know I’m big on redemption. Did I mention killer bacon? Don’t adjust your eyes. Yes, I said killer bacon. Bacon…that kills!

Death Blossoms was a lot of fun to write. Turns out it was easy for me too. I can’t wait to see how readers react in a few weeks. Expect more promotion leading up to PAYING THE FERRYMAN’S release.

Mark your calendars. Have your payment ready. The Ferryman is waiting.

The official press release can be found on Charon Coin’s website. Follow this link.

You can find Charon Coin Press on Twitter / Facebook / Official Website