2018 WRITING WRAP

Untitled design(4)

This is basically an extended version of a Facebook post I put up earlier, which I figured I’d add here too, with a little more in it.

At the start of the year, some folks might recall me setting myself something of a challenge, which was to try and release either a book a month or the equivalent of that. At that time, aside from writing, editing etc. I wasn’t working full-time, so time was in abundance, albeit never enough to get everything written I want. That’s just a standard state of affairs, regardless of how much time I might appear to have. Always too many ideas, be they for short stories, or novels, or short stories I wish to expand into novels or any number of things. I always work on multiple projects at any given time, and even so, I’m still being bombarded with ideas. Some are good, some are terrible, others tend to grow on me, but if they warrant writing or they need to be written they usually stick around until they get written.

In any case, that challenge did not come to fruition. Barely a month or so after setting that bold, and foolhardy, challenge, I was back working full-time, and time was no longer a commodity I had a lot of. After being out of full-time work for a few years, I must say I got used to the idea of having so much time in which I could get things written, and of course, in that time, I did get plenty written. Which is why, seemingly inundated with what should be enough time to either get new things written, polish up old projects, or compile stories into collections etc. etc. I threw myself under the bus by setting myself a challenge that would have probably only ever been met had circumstances and situations not changed in any way. But, naturally, they did, and after a few years out of full-time work I was right back into it. Consequently, as per usual, I didn’t get everything written I wanted, or planned to. Still, several of my earlier books were written while working another job full-time-Plebs was written in snippets on lunch breaks, sitting in parks and all kinds of things (Stay tuned for a post some time down the track which is going to explore a whole bunch of trivia and things you might not have known about various books, including Plebs and others)-so it’s not impossible to get things done; they just get done a little slower than they otherwise might. So after getting a new book out early in the year, things definitely slowed down throughout coming months. I was still writing, putting books together, working on an assortment of projects, but not with as much time as was afforded to me earlier on.

I did however get some books out there.

Harvester’s Trade, an all new novella revolving around a group of dangerous, violent convicts being transported to an unknown location by bus was my first release, and it came out while I was still swamped with plenty of time to set foolish challenges and work on new material. Then there was Disquiet: An Assemblage of the Unnerving. This one was a collection comprised of several of my lesser known stories and tales which were drawn from niche anthologies or books which didn’t particularly have a wide readership. Some works in here were quite restrained and dare I say, tame by my standards, while others were probably a little more what most folks familiar with my work would be expecting.

Extremes came along next, and this one is pretty much exactly what its name would suggest. This is a collection of some of my most extreme horror tales, again from myriad anthologies. The difference between this and Disquiet is that several of the stories contained within this book were originally published in books that were pretty big, featured some of the biggest names in the game, and hit a much broader audience than the works featured in Disquiet. Nonetheless, Extremes, despite being comprised solely of reprints still remains to this day my biggest, and fastest selling book. Page reads in Kindle Unlimited for this have also been pretty insane and continue to carry on that way. There are a lot of stories in here which were a hell of a lot of fun to write and while they might rank as some of my favourites in that regard, I wouldn’t necessarily say they are all the best of my work. Still, I have my own opinions on why this book in particular is so popular-some I’ve explored in earlier blog posts, some I plan to explore in a future post. Stay tuned for that.

Havoc Vulture followed Extremes, and unlike the two previous books this one was all new, a novella that originally started life as something else, as many of my books end up. The initial plan for this was for it to be a short story in a collection of tales which would all draw their names from some of my favourite black metal songs. The themes or subject matter or what-have-you contained within those stories wouldn’t essentially have anything to do with the song itself-for example, I planned to write one entitled Blizzard Beasts from the Immortal track (and album of the same name) which is pretty self-explanatory. Scary motherfucking beasts in the snow with a bunch of fools trapped in a cabin or some such shit. Instead, Havoc Vulture (which for those who don’t know, is a song from my favourite band Satyricon’s album Rebel Extravaganza) turned into more, a novella to be precise. Based around a bunch of sixteen year old black metal fanatics in a small country town who are first thrilled to discover an infamous band is coming to play a show in their town, and then distraught to find the powers that be in the town have stamped all over the idea of that happening. This one tossed up a conundrum regarding what various sub-genres of fiction and so forth can be construed as. I made mention of the fact that there are two schools of thought on what is considered young adult fiction. One suggests it is the material, topics, subject matter and so forth-things which are targeted directly at a young adult audience which makes a book YA. Another school of thought-and this is where I tend to disagree-is that if the main characters or protagonists of a particular book are teenagers or children or of a young adult age then that in itself makes a work YA. As I mentioned I strongly disagree with that notion for multiple reasons, but it’s something I’ve already covered elsewhere, and have no plans to reiterate it here.

After that I put out From the Vault, which was something entirely different for me, or at least for what most readers would expect from me. This was neither a novel nor a collection of short stories, nor was it by any stretch of the imagination new, at least not to me. This one was a collection of roughly fifty poems which I originally wrote way back in the nineties as song lyrics. These were drawn from a collection of hundreds I wrote way back then, and followed no theme whatsoever aside from the fact that most of them were works which explored darker themes. Essentially, the pieces here signify the very start of me blending horror and heavy metal, something I continue to do regularly (check out Havoc Vulture, Undead Fleshcrave, numerous other works for some prime examples of that). Not all of these poems/songs/what-have-you were horror, in fact many of them were not. However several were, and they serve as some of the earlier forays into horror from me. At this time I’d also written a couple of horror novels, but did little more with them aside from writing them. Anyway, that book acts as a nice little trip down memory lane, and also provides a bit of insight into the history of some of my writing.

What would end up being my final release for the year was More Extremes, which again, is pretty much what its name indicates. More extreme horror tales, following in the footsteps of Extremes, and setting up a series which at this stage is open-ended. It could become just three books, it could span beyond ten. Who knows? For now, it’s just the two of them, though I already have numerous stories and ideas for the next installment, largely because several of the tales I planned to be in More Extremes didn’t end up in there.  I had intended to have eight tales in here, with an even split of reprints and new material, but of course since I was now working on stories amidst full-time work and numerous other activities which cut my writing time down drastically, it was taking longer than I anticipated for the book to come together. As a result I replaced one of the unfinished new stories with a much older piece, in fact a longer story from a book that is now no longer in print in order to get the book out before the year elapsed. Ultimately, with the inclusion of that tale, alongside a couple of others which were remarkably musically themed, More Extremes ended up quite heavy on the horror fused with metal I made reference to before. That was unintentional, but it worked out well given the fact I decided to dedicate the book to a good friend of mine who passed away earlier in the year, who was a massive metal and horror aficionado (also a metal musician with a hand in horror movies. RIP brother Killjoy.So while the end result wasn’t an even split, there are still several all new stories included in More Extremes, and you can rest assured that the next volume will be largely, if not completely, made up of all new stories.

I also put together Triggered, and Punk Vs Metal (with Michael Fish Fisher handling most of the editing for the punk side and the creation of the book’s cover), and wrote a few stories for various other anthologies, but since none of those were specifically just my work, they can’t be counted in the release of my books. Still, despite not hitting the original planned number, and knowing as soon as I was back at work, that I never would, I’m still pretty stoked to get the books out that I did. Now I have something of a head-start on next year, but again, we’ll wait and see how much of what I want to get out actually gets out. Stay tuned for these upcoming projects which will be coming out in no particular order. Murder Academy, The Forgotten, Greater Extremes, Clans (which is an expansion of my story in Punk Vs Metal. It has a few horrific moments, but genre-wise it isn’t intended to be horror at all. It’s actually more urban and is quite a lot like a long-running story I started writing when I was a teenager, and plan to revisit as a series some time down the track-probably sooner rather than later), and several others. Follow-ups to numerous novels as well as a crossover novel combining characters from at least two other works are also in the plans, but as mentioned above…time. We’ll see what happens. Anyway, links to the books that did come out are located just below. Check ’em out, leave ’em a review, good, bad, or ugly, and stay posted for new books coming in 2019.

If you spend your life doing bad things, sometimes bad things are going to come for you. Ten dangerous criminals are just about to find that out.

http://smarturl.it/harvesterstrade

HARVESTER'S TRADE

 

Don’t play in the woods after a storm, don’t assume you’re safe inside your comfortable family home, and whatever you do, don’t hold a giant party without inviting the locals.

That fear you’re starting to feel isn’t irrational, it’s real.

Terrible things are going to happen.

http://smarturl.it/disquiet

DISQUIET(3)

 

Assembled together for the very first time are several of Jim Goforth’s most extreme horror stories to date, though not merely extreme in terms of content and themes. These tales delve into the great pains taken when souls are confronted with situations that require a severe response, plumbing the depths of depravity, perversion, brutality, horror, and fear.

Horrific events can unfold when people are prepared, or forced, to go to extremes.

http://smarturl.it/extremes

EXTREMES

 

Freedom’s Way doesn’t see many heavy metal concerts. Certainly not those of the black metal persuasion.

There’s a good reason why they tried to stop this one.

Vulture are coming, whether they’re welcome or not.

http://smarturl.it/havocvulture

 

Copy of HAVOC VULTURE

 

Words from the past. From the dark. From the vault.

http://smarturl.it/fromthevaultdark

 

FROM THE VAULT(1)

 

Sometimes, people are pushed to their absolute limits, made to go to extremes. Sometimes it’s not enough.
Sometimes, they have to go to more extremes.

http://smarturl.it/moreextremes

 

EXTREMES(2)

 

 

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CARNIVAL OF CHAOS/FESTIVAL OF THE FLESH PLAYLIST

The last time I posted here I made mention of the fact that I had a playlist all sorted for Carnival of Chaos and Festival of the Flesh. Therefore, in the interests of shining a bit of light on those particular books, here is aforementioned playlist. Well, after a bit of standard rambling.

For whatever reason, these books (which are of course the same story spread over two volumes) have slipped a little under the radar in comparison to several of my other books. I suspect it might have a bit to do with the fact they first emerged as part of the Project 26 thing where 26 books came out with each one representing a letter of the alphabet. These included novels, anthologies, collections, novellas etc. and while this project was an ambitious one, it also turned out to be a little confusing for people. Consequently, Carnival and Festival, which were never originally intended for that project, but as standalone novel(s) on their own, I offered up because the alliteration in the titles went well with the whole alphabet notion. Nonetheless, various circumstances have several of the books from P26 being unpublished or released or what-have-you, so Carnival and Festival are now separate from that, so why not push them a little, because, why the hell not?

Little known fact. I started writing the stories that would become these books back around the same time I started writing Plebs. Neither they nor Plebs were originally written with titles, and they were all intended to be just short stories, novellas at most. As it turned out, Plebs became a six hundred page monster, and Carnival/Festival even longer, so much so that it needed to be split into two separate entities-the Carnival, of course, and the Festival. Just on the off chance folks hadn’t yet cottoned on (the whole numbering thing of Project 26 muddied the waters a little and had a few people scratching their heads over which to read first) to the fact that these books need to be read in order for the story to make any sense, Carnival comes first, followed by Festival which is the culmination of the massive, sprawling story.

Anyway, as most would know by now, Plebs gained the upper hand in getting written first, and ultimately published a long time before Carnival/Festival were either finished or published. Nonetheless, those stories were eventually completed, quite some time after the initial concept occurred. Years down the track in fact, which was also the case with Plebs, with a re-reading of what I had written already re-igniting the desire to complete the tale. These are characters that I love as much as those in the Plebs series, and ones that have been around just as long. And if you thought Plebs was brutal, bloody, violent and so forth, but haven’t yet encountered Carnival/Festival, rest assured both of these books tend to make Plebs look a little tame. Definitely not works for the faint-hearted at all, so if you dig the thought of getting yourself well and truly blood-drenched and bathed in depravity, dive in.

But, enough of that, here are those playlists, one for Carnival of Chaos and one for Festival of the Flesh.

As is to be expected, there are a lot of metal tracks here, some brutal, uncompromising extreme metal to suit various components of the stories and some of the pretty heinous subject matter, but not exclusively. Compared to some of the other playlists I’ve whacked up here, these ones are pretty eclectic, spanning from the usual platter of heavy metal in numerous sub-genres to rap, rock, sixties tunes, even some dance going on here. And yeah, you’ll probably notice one or two tracks by Insane Clown Posse in here, and be all, what the fuck? Well, those fuckers have made a fortune writing tracks and albums about Carnivals and whatnot, and I genuinely don’t mind some of their songs, so in keeping with the themes of the books, they slot in here juxtaposed nicely against some of the other fare on offer.

Anyway, enough gibberish. Get in and check it all out, and if you haven’t yet Carnival of Chaos and Festival of the Flesh, go and rectify that situation right now. And if you have, perhaps re-reading them with the enhanced experience of these playlists cranking in accompaniment, then that would be a good idea too.

 

CARNIVAL OF CHAOS

Black Seeds of Vengeance-Nile

The Discipline of Revenge-Cannibal Corpse

Carnival of Lies-Obsession

Loyalty-American Head Charge

Knife Party-Deftones

Twist of Cain-Danzig

Tonight in Flames-Cradle of Filth

Stuck in the Middle With You-Stealer’s Wheel

Planet Caravan-Black Sabbath

Money-Pink Floyd

Dead Bodies Everywhere-Korn

Dog’s Out-DMX

Sledgehammer-Peter Gabriel

Bulls on Parade-Rage Against the Machine

Go With the Flow-Queens of the Stone Age

The Lonely Bull-Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass

The Hunt-Sepultura

Dreamhouse-Deafheaven

In Your Nightmares- KidCrusher

The Wild Hunt-Watain

Carnival-Project Pitchfork

Southern Comfort-X-Method

Tequila-The Champs

Jump in the Fire-Metallica

Sweet Leaf-Black Sabbath

Halls of Illusions-Insane Clown Posse

Blood Red-Slayer

Loco-Coal Chamber

Up All Night-Slaughter

Take Me Away-Insane Clown Posse

Hunting Humans-The Misfits

Blessed by Gore-Avulsed

Cannibal Crave-Broken Hope

Just One Fix-Ministry

Fuel For Hatred-Satyricon

Blades of Steel-Imperious Rex

Mirror, Mirror-Candlemass

Rain-The Cult

Let’s Fuck-Dope

Carnival of Rust-Shining

Freakshow-Skillet

Hounds At Ya Back-Destroyer 666

carnivalpromo

Part one of an ultra-violent, splatterpunk, visceral expedition into a world of revenge, pain, perversion and bloody death. Come along and snare a ticket to this carnival, but proceed with caution. Survival is not guaranteed.

http://smarturl.it/carnivalofchaos

 

festival cover

FESTIVAL OF THE FLESH

Total War-War

The Fight Song-Marilyn Manson

Hammer Smashed Face-Cannibal Corpse

Strength Beyond Strength-Pantera

Return to Serenity-Testament

Scratch My Back-Roxx Gang

Sex Action-L.A. Guns

Closer-Nine Inch Nails

Kings of the Carnival Creation-Dimmu Borgir

Murderer’s Row-Power Trip

Creepshow-Skid Row

Festival of the Flesh-Blessedbethyname

Carnival is Forever-Decapitated

Random Acts of Senseless Violence-Anthrax

This Shit Will Fuck You Up-Combichrist

Death Machine-Myrkskog

Rid You of Your Flesh-LIK

Eaten-Bloodbath

Feast of Flesh-Exmortus

Everyone Leaves-Mortiis

The Flesh and the Power it Holds-Death

Mercy, Severity-Mudvayne

Fear of the Dark-Iron Maiden

Violent Demise-Body Count

Hung on a Hook-Alice in Chains

Code of the Slashers-Cannibal Corpse

Covered in Blood-Insan0

Maze of Torment-Morbid Angel

Divine Art of Torture-Necrophagia

How You Gonna Reason with a Pyscho?-Insane Poetry

Sixpounder-Children of Bodom

Lords of Depravity-Sodom

The Perverted Beast-Darkane

Dead and Dripping-Cryptopsy

Justifiable Homicide-Dying Fetus

Heroines-Diablo Swing Orchestra

Carnival of Souls-Savage Messiah

Only One-Slipknot

Everyone I love is Dead-Type O Negative

Crashing Down-Trail of Tears

festivalpromo

Hidden within a seemingly innocuous horror-themed carnival exists something far more disturbing. Where those with dollars and depraved desires find everything they seek catered for.

Peel away the bright, colourful facade of the carnival and you’ll find the hideous heart that is the Festival of Flesh.

http://smarturl.it/festivaloftheflesh

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

EXTREMES/MORE EXTREMES PLAYLIST

GO TO EXTREMES

Just for the hell of it, I decided to throw together a couple of playlists suitable for Extremes and More Extremes, so if you haven’t read either of them yet, perhaps you can do so in accompaniment with the following playlists. Alternatively, if you have read one or the other, or both, you can now enhance the experience and re-read with that shit being soundtracked by a selection of tunes.

I originally aimed to have two songs for each story in the collections (which would have resulted in sixteen tracks for each playlist), but as per usual I went a little overboard. Consequently, there are four songs representing each story. The reasons for each song are varied. Some are mood creators, some pertain to what occurs in the tales, themes, and so forth, and still others are there because they are actually mentioned in the book. Since More Extremes in particular has a pretty heavy percentage of tales which involve music, that latter reason should come as no surprise.

Metal, of course, makes up the majority of these playlists, but rather than go with the painfully obvious choice of filling them up with extreme metal, there’s an assortment of stuff here. Yes, there is metal of the extreme variety in residence, predominantly black and death, but those songs relate to the various stories they’ve been included for-given one story revolves around a black metal band who inadvertently conjure up something more than they bargained for, that’s a no-brainer. Elsewhere there’s industrial, hair metal, hard rock, thrash, horrorcore, and so on; a lot of bands I have playing when I’m writing anything in general, but more importantly, material that is here because it serves a purpose.

Undead Fleshcrave was the first book I actually put together recommended playlists for, and that was a fun experience, hence the reason for knocking one up for the Extremes books, and plans to eventually create some for just about all my books. I actually have one for Carnival of Chaos and Festival of the Flesh, but I’ll post that at some stage down the track. Since More Extremes is the book I’m currently spruiking and promoting, and by proxy Extremes, it stands to reason that they’d be the obvious choice to jump in the queue first.

Anyway, enough rambling. Check out the following playlists, and check out Extremes and More Extremes, both available now.

 

EXTREMES

EXTREMES

There Goes the Neighbourhood-Body Count

Black No. 1-Type O Negative

Pride-SOiL

Necrophilia-Suicide Commando

Girl Money-Kix

Raise the Devil-Santa Hates You

Pleasures of the Flesh-Exodus

Cannibal Holocaust-Soulfly

Excellerate-Skinlab

Your Beloved Scapegoat-Soilwork

Bleed For Me-Dismember

Born Bad, Dying Worse-Running Wild

Six-KGP

Roll the Dice-Enforcer

Death’s Head-Slayer

Skulls-The Misfits

Run Rabbit Run-Rob Zombie

Rabbit Fighter-T-Rex

Snap-Slipknot

Psychotic Break-Jerry Cantrell

Coming Undone-Korn

Frayed Ends of Sanity-Metallica

Stripper Christmas Summer Weekend-GWAR

Black Xmas-Venom

A Forest-Carpathian Forest

Night Goat-The Melvins

Nightmare-Brainbug

Do You Wear the Mark?-Danzig

Freezing Moon-Mayhem

Carousel-Mr. Bungle

Down With the Clown-Insane Clown Posse

Hellequin-Therion

 

 

EXTREMES(2)

MORE EXTREMES

It Lives in the Woods-Necrophagia

Hunting Humans-Deeds of Flesh

Shreds of Flesh-Entombed

Cannibal Feast-Mortician

Don’t Know What You’ve Got (Till it’s Gone)-Cinderella

Suicide Solution-Ozzy Osbourne

Lake of Fire-Nocturnus

Lake Bodom-Children of Bodom

Demon Alcohol-Ozzy Osbourne

N.I.B-Black Sabbath

Hell’s Bells-AC/DC

Spheres of Damnation-Enthroned

Stalker Song-Danzig

Voyeur-Venom

Fetisha-Orgy

The Silent Voices of Perversion-Arkhon Infaustus

Beneath the Wings of Blasphemy-Necrowitch

The Reflecting God-Marilyn Manson

Wish-Nine Inch Nails

Wounded Veins-Society 1

A World of Bones-Carpathian Forest

Sculptor of Flesh-1349

Christraping Black Metal-Marduk

The Invoking-Suffocation

Marshlands-Mortiis

Swamphell-Kalmah

Swamp Devil-Circus of Power

Scourge of Malice-Graveworm

The Witch-The Cult

Seven-Boondox

Come to Daddy-Aphex Twin

All Hallow’s Eve-Type O Negative

 

Follow the links below to locate the books

http://smarturl.it/extremes

http://smarturl.it/moreextremes

…and stay tuned for the third volume. It will be coming along sometime in the future, perhaps when you least expect it.

GO TO EXTREMES. THEN GO TO MORE EXTREMES.

More Extremes

EXTREMES(2)

It came out a little later than I’d originally planned, with Halloween being the last date I’d aimed for (after not being able to make previous release plans), but it has finally climbed up out of the murk and mire in all its grimy, bloody excess.

What the actual fuck is he babbling about now, you may ask, and indeed, it’s a fair question.

What I’m babbling about this time, is of course, More Extremes.

The second volume in what will be an ongoing series of collections featuring some of my stories that venture into more extreme realms of horror is out now. This one, as I make mention of in the introduction, didn’t exactly end up as initially envisioned, where I aimed to have an even split of previously published works and new material, but all the same, rest assured there is some new stuff in there.

Unlike Extremes, which was comprised solely of reprints, and stories which were gleaned from bigger anthologies and books with a fairly wide readership, More Extremes only has two stories which featured in books that a fair few people would have been likely to read, namely the Tales From the Lake antho series from Crystal Lake Publishing, and Matt Shaw’s Masters of Horror. The rest of the tales that have appeared in other publications are lesser known, so there’s a good chance many folk won’t have even stumbled across them yet. One of them, and ultimately the last story I decided to add in (just clarifying, not the last story in the TOC) is one of my earliest originally published stories, and it first emerged in a book that is no longer available.

I went with this piece, not just because it fit the bill in terms of theme, but because I hadn’t finished any of the original lot of stories planned to accompany those that do appear, and also for the fact that it is no longer available in print anywhere. On a bright note, with all of those tales started that I was tossing up ideas on which would be in More Extremes, now means the third volume of the series is already well on the way. I anticipate there won’t be such a gap between this latest release and the next, with that in mind. In actuality, there are now five different (and all new) stories being worked on, and if I keep getting bombarded with ideas at the rate I am, I’ll have Extremes 3 and 4 sewn up before I know it. Considering I haven’t been writing for other anthologies of late-with a couple of exceptions-all of the new works I end up writing will be solely for either the Extremes series or for other collections of mine. I have numerous of those in the works, but whether they all see the light of day is another matter. There are novels I need to be working on as well. Just not enough hours in the day, particularly when so many other aspects away from writing tend to monopolise a lot of my time.

If you’ve read Extremes, you may have an inkling of what will be contained within More Extremes, but then again, you may not. None of the stories are connected in any way to those in the first book, nor are they all in your face, bludgeoning, bloody brutality, severed limbs and decapitated bodies. Well, to be fair, there is a good deal of that going on, but as I’ve stressed numerous times, that’s not at all the only type of horror that can be considered extreme. Extreme horror, despite what some may think, is not as narrow in scope as it may appear. It isn’t limited to as much violence as one can cram in to a few pages, it isn’t merely about marrying kinky sex with a fuckload of gore, and a string of increasingly ludicrous scenarios that are intended just to offend or repulse. Story-wise plenty of blunt force trauma and a constant battering of violent excess is always fun, but appreciating that there can be extremity in suggestion and a more nuanced approach adds much more depth. Getting bludgeoned over the head with a sledgehammer eventually gets monotonous, though I accept there is a market out there who will continue to lap that up even if it’s a continual stream of more of the same over and over.

Sometimes, people are pushed to their absolute limits, made to go to extremes. Sometimes it_s not enough. Sometimes, they have to go to more extremes.

Therefore, you can expect to find in More Extremes a couple of tales that don’t necessarily equate to what many people might construe as extreme, going by any narrow definition of the concept, but if you dig a little deeper into them, you’ll get what makes them suitable for this collection.

You will also find in here a relatively large representation of stories which are in some way heavy metal themed, or contain elements of metal music (three revolve around bands in various different scenarios). This wasn’t done deliberately in any way, but later when I was working on the introduction, I released that was quite fitting given who I decided to dedicate the book to. Aside from my family members-and a whole string of people I mention in dedications and acknowledgements in Undead Fleshcrave: The Zombie Trigger-I haven’t exactly dedicated many of my books to anybody.

In this instance I did, though not so much as a dedication section, but in reference in the introduction itself. On the day I was writing the introduction I realised it was, or rather would have been, the birthday of a friend who passed away earlier in the year, in fact roughly around the time the first Extremes came out.

This was Frank ‘Killjoy DeSade’ Pucci, a friend of me and my wife for well over a decade. Most folks will no doubt know him as the founder and frontman for Necrophagia, but of course there was much more to him than that. He was a great aficionado of all things horror, and we used to talk horror, metal, and other subjects at great length, so I decided the blend of horror and metal in this collection made it fitting to dedicate the book to him. There was also a long running joke between us that we’d get together and have a cannibal-themed barbecue when he next made a trip downunder, but unfortunately that never came to fruition, so it’s also fitting that there is a story in More Extremes that wanders into domains of those that like to gnaw on human flesh.

I reckon he probably would have gotten a kick out of that tale in particular, but also those others that bring two of our greatest obsessions-horror and metal-together in all their glorious excess.

Anyway, with that being said, I’ll sign off and direct you to More Extremes. Currently only available in Kindle, but will be coming in paperback when I can manage to scrounge up the time to get that all sorted.

And finally, keep an eye out for future Extremes volumes; they might be surfacing sooner than you might think. I do have a slew of potential titles for them, but at some stage I might even throw it open to the public to offer up their thoughts on titles, and consequent acknowledgement in the book for said title suggestion.

Following in the bloody footsteps of Extremes, comes a new collection of horror tales, plunging headlong into worlds where fear, bloodshed, violence, vengeance, depravity, and death rule all else.
What will you do when monstrous things are happening all around you, when desperation drives you? When the extraordinary becomes your ordinary, when terror stalks you around every corner?
What will you do to get what you want? What will you do to escape? What happens when you discover that not everything is as it appears to be?
Gathered here are another selection of Jim Goforth’s more extreme horror stories, some of which are brand new, crawling out of the darkness in the company of others, to share blood-splattered pages for the first time.
Sometimes, people are pushed to their absolute limits, made to go to extremes. Sometimes it’s not enough.
Sometimes, they have to go to more extremes.

 

RIP Brother Killjoy

 

 

Upcoming titles

The first half of this year was pretty hectic with a rush of writing activity, and a few different books coming out. That was largely due to the fact that I wasn’t working full-time, and had some of those works already mostly assembled. I still do have other projects largely put together, but will be releasing them at a later date.

The second half of the year has slowed down, at least in terms of putting books out. I know I’d set myself the challenge of releasing one book a month or the equivalent, but again, as I’ve mentioned in previous posts, that fairly bold claim was made when I had surplus writing time, and wasn’t engaged in myriad other time-consuming factors. Nonetheless, there are still books coming.

First off will be More Extremes, which I’ve made reference to around one or ten times already. Following in the footsteps of Extremes (which is still my current best-selling book so far), this will be a collection of my more extreme horror tales, though of course that doesn’t essentially mean they are all loaded up with blood, gore, and violent extremity. There are far more levels to the definition extreme than that, and subtlety can often trump blunt force trauma. A constant wash of the same sort of extremity, or merely choosing to stay in that one lane deadens the impact of what is considered extreme, when one can do more with it than just sever heads and eviscerate bodies. Shit, there doesn’t even have to be blood, gore, and shock for the sake of shock, when simple themes can conjure up extreme thoughts and provoke curiosity.

Unlike Extremes, which was comprised of all reprints, mostly from books which had a pretty wide readership (go figure why this book is my biggest seller at the moment), More Extremes will be split equally down the middle, being made up of half reprints and half new stories. At least that’s the plan. If I happen to suddenly find a fuckload of time where I manage to get more new stories completed than the four I’m currently working on, then maybe that will tip the balance a little. But as it stands, that’s what I’m looking at. Any other Extremes books following this will however, be mostly, if not wholly, comprised of new tales.

Work on this has been slower than I’d have liked, because, again, life, and all those other aspects of it taking ownership of all the time I used to be able to spend writing. However, it is getting there, slowly, but surely, which is a fairly new thing for me. I’m used to writing and getting through things at a rapid rate, so it’s a bit of a change having to contend with things not coming together as quickly as I’ve become accustomed to.

I’d like to say this will be emerging in the next few weeks, and I’ll boldly predict that will be the case, but we’ll see. Keep your eyes peeled for it.

EXTREMES(2)

Once that beast is let loose, I’ll have another book coming along. This one, currently being written, is either going to be a novella or perhaps a full-length novel. Initially I’d planned for it to be a novel, but if I can manage to wrap up the story in novella format, then that’s what it will be. However, I have my doubts that will be the case. I suspect the story will take off and the characters will run themselves far out beyond a simple novella length.

I’ve revealed nothing about this one yet, in regards to what it is even about, and nor will I, at least not immediately. I did reveal the cover on a couple of social media sites last night, but at this point in time, that’s the extent of what I’ll be revealing. It’s not connected with any other novel, series, or anything else I’ve written, it’s something completely new, something I planned to do some time back, but had sitting on the back burner for a bit while I worked on other projects. In the meantime, while you wait for these books to emerge, as well some others which will be along in the future (including Plebs 3, Global Death: The Zombie Trigger, another couple of collections, and a book which will combine characters from two of my books), you can check out the cover for the book that will chase More Extremes out of the gates. Murder Academy.

I actually made a couple of covers for this, one without the tagline, but I reckon it looks better with it. You might disagree, and that’s fair enough, but I’m digging a little slash of red among the austere greys and blacks. I’m looking forward to getting it out there. As always, stay tuned.

MURDER ACADEMY(1)

How to tell you’re in a Jim Goforth story (Extended edition)

 

I’ve seen this floating around, so I figured I’d jump on it too. I posted the first five on Facebook, which is where the majority of these posts have been, but after I did, I immediately thought of a pile of others, hence the extended version post here.

How to tell you’re in a Jim Goforth story.

 

You or your friends make incredibly bad decisions. Repeatedly.

There are monsters lurking just about everywhere, human and otherwise.

One way or another, you’re going to be drenched in blood.

You’ve had a good night out. Which goes bad really fucking quickly.

You can’t quite figure out where that soundtrack of heavy metal is coming from.

Your survival is not guaranteed.

You can’t ever be sure who to trust, including friends and others that seem to be close to you.

Not everybody is as they seem.

There is violence. Lots of violence. You might often be on the receiving end of it.

There is sex. You might or might not be involved in it.

There is swearing. Sometimes a fuckload of it. Probably coming from you and everybody around you.

You can rely on other people, at least for a while. If you truly want to fuck things up, you should probably do it yourself.

You drink. Because, well, reasons. An assortment of them.

You wake up in strange places. Which isn’t overly surprising, given you go to sleep in strange places.

Even seemingly normal and mundane locations can be loaded with menace.

What appears to be a safe place of respite isn’t necessarily so.

Like it or not, you’re probably going to have to kill somebody. Or they’re going to kill you.

You think you’re the main character. Until you’re not.

You manage to piss somebody-anybody-off with no apparent effort at all.

You like music. Music doesn’t always like you.

You have the uncanny knack of finding trouble around every corner. Even where none should be.

You don’t listen to somebody’s advice. And things go terribly wrong.

You do listen to somebody’s advice. And things go terribly wrong.

You have good intentions. And things go terribly wrong.

You have bad intentions. And things go terribly wrong.

Anything that can go wrong will go wrong.

Anything that can go right will go wrong.

The woman you like is probably bad for you.

The man you like is probably bad for you.

Everything you do. Probably bad for you.

Staying alert, staying afraid, and staying alive are good policies to go by. The staying alive bit isn’t so easy to achieve.

I could probably go on and on, but I won’t. I’d say you get the gist, and if you’ve read any of my books, short stories etc. then some of this would be pretty familiar. If you haven’t, then what are you waiting for? Get cracking on fixing that.

Goforth and horrify...

JIM GOFORTH HORROR AUTHOR(7)

 

 

METAL IS THE LAW (OR THE BOOK OF HEAVY METAL…OR, YOU GET THE GIST)

 

Over the last couple of months there has been a dominant theme occurring in the books I’ve been involved in, and if you’ve been following in any capacity you will already know what that is. Of course, I’m talking about heavy metal.

I’ve been known to appropriate a couple of phrases from various reviews and refer to my work from time to time as grindhouse splatterpunk horror driven by heavy metal, but that doesn’t always mean the musical element is in the content, but moreso the spirit. In this case however, the heavy metal is well and truly alive in the content of these latest few books.

Firstly, the tail end of June saw the long-awaited release of a new battle anthology (and the last one I aim to be part of for some time, with a concentration on other projects being more in my plans) Punk Vs Metal. Here I use the term long-awaited not so much to refer to hordes of readers eagerly anticipating its arrival, but more in reference to the incredibly patient authors involved. As anybody is well aware, metal and punk music aren’t exactly mainstream chart-busting types of genres, so consequently any book dealing with them is likely to be a niche one, not something targeting a massive cross-section of the public.

The long-awaited part is due to the fact that those involved with Punk Vs Metal had to wait longer than one might anticipate for this book to finally see the light of day, courtesy of a pile of factors impacting on it and delaying release. Initially the whole punk versus metal as a battle anthology notion came about in early 2017 or thereabouts when a whole host of competitions were being bandied about, and while teams were decided on back then as well, the various members chosen for each side didn’t remain constant. There were line-up changes, drop-outs, replacements, and a whole bunch of shit going on that made progressing with the book a difficult task. What was more, PvM was originally going to be one of those battle anthos that followed the same trajectory and template of all those that came before it. By this I mean a panel of judges would go through the stories round by round and vote on them, with winners in each round, culminating in an overall team winning at the conclusion. The delay on all of that was such that eventually I took control of the book and decided to cut the whole judging part out of it, not merely so the authors involved didn’t have to keep waiting and waiting for some shit they’d been waiting for far too long as it was, but for a different approach to the battle antho template. After all, going into a book such as this with a preconceived notion of who is going to win, or having already been told who the judges voted as winner, tilts readership in a sort of bias or predetermined mindset, whether intentional or otherwise.

Therefore PvM is the only battle antho where judges aren’t involved and the results of which story wins in each round, or which teams ultimately wins, is determined solely by the readers themselves and nobody else.

It was a fun idea for a book, and there were some top notch authors writing for it, but in all honesty, after all was said and done, it was just a relief to finally have the book out there and be finished with it.

One upside to take away from it was the fact that my story in PvM is something that I now plan to do more with. If you’ve read the book and encountered my tale, Clans, then you’ll know what it is all about. If not, well you will discover all about it when I expand it into what will either be a novella length work, or (less likely) a full length novel. In any case, it is something that I’m debating turning into an ongoing series, as the tale itself revolves around a city where there are no wars or conflict between races, or anything of that nature, but instead ongoing conflict between people who swear allegiance to various musical genres. The Metal clan and the Punks of course are the prime characters in this particular story, but should I choose to expand the universe more, the other clans mentioned in the tale, as well as others that don’t feature will also come into play at some stage.

Again, if you have read this story, the first thing you might have taken away from it is that it isn’t horror at all. There are probably a few bits in there that could loosely fall under the horror banner, but for the most part, it’s more of a love story than a horror story. A twisted musical metal-infused love story set amidst a backdrop of warring clans, but one nonetheless, and one that tends to hark back to my early days of writing when I worked daily on a long-running urban story featuring youth gangs.

So, with that said, be sure to keep an eye out for the expanded, extended, uncut version of Clans, coming along sometime in the future, and then potentially, more books in the same universe. There will be horrific moments in there of course, but their base genre will not be horror.

In the meantime, check out PvM, and feel free to drop a review detailing your thoughts on the stories within, let us all know who won, and decide once and for all whether metal prevails over punk, or vice versa.

punk vs metal proper cover

What happens when a team of writers who swear allegiance to punk are pitched into brutal, no-holds-barred story war with a squad of scribes pledging loyalty to metal?

http://smarturl.it/punkvsmetal

The second book, which came out at the start of this month (July) was the novella, Havoc Vulture. This one is also very metal oriented, revolving around a group of teenagers obsessed with the black metal genre, first excited about the prospects of an infamous black metal band coming to their town, then deflated by the knowledge the powers-that-be running the place have quashed any hope of the performance proceeding.

Like many of my books, the original intentions for it were rather different to how it turned out. Initially I was planning to write a series of short stories each titled after the names of some of my favourite black metal tracks, and release them all in a themed collection. (Story content would have nothing to do with the songs themselves of course-these would be horror stories merely inspired by the various titles e.g Blizzard Beasts or something of that nature would be pretty self explanatory, but nothing thematically to do with the Immortal song’s content). While I still might delve into something like this down the track a piece, the first story I started writing was Havoc Vulture, and though the initial story-line remained the same as I’d pictured it, it became evident that it was going to span into a novella rather than just a story.

Given I have a tendency to write quickly, this one took a little longer to complete than I would have liked, but I suppose writing time on it sandwiched between editing for others and working on an assortment of other projects at the time accounts for that.

It is a horror story, of course, venturing into the extreme territory, but the ages of the main eight protagonists (sixteen) got me pondering over something.

There’s been a lot of conjecture of late-and probably not just of late-over what exactly constitutes young adult as a genre. Personally, I was always of the mindset that for something to be considered young adult it was essentially a book with a young adult readership as the target audience, and therefore something where the subject matter and content would be suitable for such an audience i.e light on violence and sex and that sort of thing. However, I’ve seen an assortment of interpretations floating around social media and so forth with people suggesting that the ages of the actual characters might play a part in a book being deemed young adult. I’ve never seen it that way, certainly not with a book that could be loaded up with content that is far from suitable for a young adult (ages variable) crowd to be delving into, even if the protagonists or main characters are teenagers or whatnot. Yet, apparently there’s a school of thought that deems any book featuring those of a certain age to slot into that young adult genre, regardless of the kind of content.

Therefore, since all of Havoc Vulture’s main characters are sixteen (and young adult age), and others that make appearances aren’t much older, and any adults don’t spend enough book time to have any real bearing, should I be pushing a book that is bordering on extreme horror as a young adult work? Definitely something to mull over. There’s some grey areas there, and despite these strange suppositions that it would be construed as a young adult book, I’m going to go with my original stance on that particular blurring of lines genre and suggest otherwise. Merely having young adult characters in your book isn’t always going to indicate it’s going to be suitable for that particular audience.

Nonetheless, if young adult readers do want to read Havoc Vulture, then I’m not planning to dissuade them. There’s plenty of messages in there they can walk away with.

Copy of HAVOC VULTURE

Freedom’s Way doesn’t see many heavy metal concerts. Certainly not those of the black metal persuasion.

There’s a good reason why they tried to stop this one.

Vulture are coming, whether they’re welcome or not.

http://smarturl.it/havocvulture

Finally, keeping with the metal theme, is my most recent book. From the Vault came out a couple of days ago, and while it isn’t a novella or anthology focused on heavy metal or featuring metal or anything along those lines, it is a collection of poetry which was originally written as lyrics for metal songs.

Since I make mention of the origins of all these lyrics/poems/whatever one wants to refer to them as in the book introduction and afterword, I won’t repeat myself too much again here, but all of the forty pieces that are included were written way back in the 90s. All of them were written as lyrics; some of them actually had music written as well-some in full, others in bits and pieces. Unfortunately much of that has been lost along the way, and I’d be lucky to remember how to play half of it in any case, but all the lyrics themselves I’ve kept intact for decades.

Going back to that point above where I say I generally write things fast, all of these pieces are no exclusion that rule. I’d say almost all of these pieces, as well as a large number of others I have that I’ll consider for future collections (potentially themed) were penned very quickly. At least one a night is the general standard, while there were multiple occasions where several were completed in a single night. Bar changing a word here or a line there, they didn’t get changed; I didn’t spend a lot of time tinkering around with them or agonising over getting them just right. They spilled out onto the page as they were-hand-written of course, since I wrote everything by hand once upon a time-and that’s how they remained. I’ve always written just about everything like that, and continue to do so to this day, which is part of the reason I write fast. Often the final result isn’t exactly as I’d envisioned it, but different ideas steal in to replace ones I had originally, so it balances out well. Half the time I write lines, paragraphs, scenes etc. in my head while I’m doing other things, and by the time I get around to typing or writing them out, the core elements might remain the same but the actual wording becomes somewhat different. That usually wasn’t the way with writing these lyrics; I’d sit down with pen and paper and write, and what came out then and there generally accounted for the final product.

Anyway, From the Vault: A collection of dark poetry and lyrics is out now, and doing well, and for only a dollar you too can read some of the things I was writing well over twenty years ago (in addition to novels and stories, which I was also writing way back then). At some stage I might write up another post that focuses solely on that particular book and goes into a little more detail on some of the works, and stories or reasons behind them, but we’ll save that for another day.

FROM THE VAULT(1)

Words from the past. From the dark. From the vault.

http://smarturl.it/fromthevaultdark

In the meantime, feel free to check out any of the aforementioned metal-themed books-Punk Vs Metal, Havoc Vulture, From the Vault-and headbang your way through some horror. As I mentioned earlier, I know very well that metal is really something for a niche audience, hardly something targeting a mass mainstream readership, but hey I’m in this writing game because I fucking love writing, and that’s the bottom line. I’ll keep writing all kinds of shit, but rest assured, I’ll always be dropping a few stories in there revolving around heavy metal, or inspired by heavy metal; that’s never going to change.

Now Go Forth and Headbang. And Horrify. And be Horrified.