Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Colour Version of Sci-Fi Artwork "Barixas Hunt": Now with New Background

Check out the new background consisting of clouds rendered in GIMP for the colour version of my sci-fi art "Barixas Hunt":
"Barixas Hunt"
Originally appeared as a black and white filler artwork in Dreams & Nightmares 83, May 2009.
Copyright © 2009 Richard H. Fay

Monday, April 27, 2015

Five Stars!


One of my stories up in the Kindle Store has had its first customer review, and it's a five star one!

This is what the reviewer had to say about my fairy fantasy story "Father Ryan's Fright":
"I loved the story and felt that it was extremely well written."

Nice! I feel that "Father Ryan's Fright" is my best story so far, and those readers who have commented on it seem to like it well enough. I'm quite pleased it has received a five star review over on Amazon.com.

Onwards and upwards!

Saturday, April 25, 2015

No Regrets Having Sent Works to "4 the Luv" Zines

Over the past eight years, I have submitted a number of works to non-paying venues, to "4 the luv" zines. Over the past eight years, I have seen a number of my works published in various "4 the luv" zines. For those writers who think I was wrong in doing so, I have this to say: TOUGH!

I have no regrets.

Over the past eight years, I have also submitted plenty of works to paying venues. Over the past eight years, I have also seen plenty of works published in various small-press zines that pay contributors at least a token payment for publication. The first acceptance letter I ever received, back in March 2007, was from a paying venue.

I have had poems originally published in non-paying venues see subsequent publication in paying venues as reprints. I have had artworks published in an online zine that didn't pay for works published online subsequently appear on merchandise sold through my online stores.

I don't seem to be suffering much because some of my works have appeared in "4 the luv" zines. I have had works published in a mixture of paid publications and "4 the luv" ones since I started submitting works to various publications back in March 2007. If that's a problem for certain editors, clients, customers, and colleagues, I probably don't want to deal with those people anyway!

Friday, April 24, 2015

Sold a Kindle Edition of a Story!

Yay! I finally made a sale through the Kindle Store! I believe the story sold was this one:
"Father Ryan's Fright".

Of course, I would love to see many more sales, particularly of this tale. So far, those who have read "Father Ryan's Fright" seem to have liked it well enough. Readers of the piece have said things like "very well written" or "beautifully written" or "good story". For me, the hard part isn't so much getting people to like the story once they've read it as it's getting people to read it in the first place!



A Reminder: Kindle Editions of Stories Now Available

Here's a reminder that three of my previously published stories are now live in the Kindle Store. All three are available for just $0.99 each.

"The Redcap of Glamtallon", my horror story inspired by borderland lore, was first published in Cover of Darkness, Issue 14, March 2013.

"Father Ryan's Fright", according to one reader a "beautifully written Irish folk tale", was first published in the November 2013 issue of Anotherealm.

"Those from the Shadows", according to one reader and editor a "beautiful piece" that puts a "new spin on vampire lore", was first published in Bete Noire, Issue #14, February 2014.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Revised Descriptions for Kindle Editions of Stories

I'm making a slight change to the descriptions for the Kindle Editions of my stories.

For the Kindle Edition of my horror short story "The Redcap of Glamtallon", the updated description will read:
"In this fascinating horror story inspired by borderland lore, an American graduate student and her Scottish beau visit a haunted peel tower. Hoping to encounter a ghost or two, they instead come face-to-face with a bloodthirsty redcap!"
The previous version read:
"In this horror short story inspired by borderland lore, an American graduate student studying abroad and her Scottish beau visit a haunted peel tower. Hoping to encounter a ghost or two, they instead come face-to-face with a bloodthirsty redcap!"

For the Kindle Edition of my fairy short story "Father Ryan's Fright", the updated description will read:
"In this beautifully written Irish folk tale, a Catholic priest who speaks ill of belief in the Little People suffers the fright of his life when he is called out to a farmhouse sited within the shadow of a fairy hill."
The previous version read:
"In this short fantasy story inspired by traditional fairy lore, an Irish Catholic priest who speaks ill of belief in the Little People suffers the fright of his life one night when he is called out to a farmhouse sited within the shadow of a fairy hill."
For the Kindle Edition of my horror short story "Those from the Shadows". The updated description will read:
"In this beautiful piece putting a new spin on vampire lore, an occultist summons shadow beings who demand blood."
The previous version read:
"In this horror short story that puts a new spin on vampire lore, an occultist summons shadow beings who demand blood."

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

"Beautiful" Stories

I just realized that two different people have used some form of the word "beautiful" to describe my stories. In the e-mail accepting "Those from the Shadows" for publication in issue #14 of Bete Noire, the editor thanked me for putting a new spin on vampire lore and called the story a "beautiful piece". Over on the Anotherealm forum, a commenter called my fairy fantasy story "Father Ryan's Fright" published in Anotherealm back in November 2013 a "beautifully written Irish folk tale".

Here's a question: what words would you use to describe my horror short story "The Redcap of Glamtallon"? I'm not sure "beautiful" would be appropriate for that one. I know one person used the word "fascinating".

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Stuck in limbo again...

Ugh! I currently have an artwork stuck in submission limbo over at one venue and another artwork stuck in publication limbo over at a second venue. I don't know which is worse; never receiving an acceptance or a rejection of a submitted work, or never seeing publication of an accepted one! I received the acceptance e-mail for the work in publication limbo back in June 2014, and it originally looked like it would see publication October 2014. Any wonder why I've decided to concentrate on stuff for my stores?

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Kindle Edition of Horror Short Story "Those from the Shadows"

My previously published horror short story that was an editor's favourite when it was accepted for publication in Issue #14 of Bete Noire, one that puts a new spin on vampire lore, is now live in the Kindle Store:
Those from the Shadows [Kindle Edition]

Cover Design for "Those from the Shadows"

Okay, everybody, what do you think of this as a cover for a potential Kindle edition of my horror short story "Those from the Shadows"? I think I found a great commercial use allowed freeware font to use for the text on this one. I think it looks cool, especially with the added drop shadow effect!

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Where do Writers Find the Time to Waste on all that Arguing?

You know what? Whenever a writer spends hours arguing with me on the crazy-net, whether it be on Facebook or elsewhere, I can't help but to think that writers have a hell of a lot of free time on their hands. It certainly does little to convince me otherwise!

I've said this before and I'll say it again: shouldn't these writers be spending more time writing and less time quarreling? Where the heck do they find all the time for both arguing and writing? I know time I waste on stupid spats is time lost doing more productive things, like drawing, or managing my stores, or writing.

(And, yes, it does tend to be writers who spend an inordinate amount of time bickering and squabbling, though I have run into some non-writer trolls who do the same.)

Meanings and Persona in Poetry

I ran across this article on the The Guardian website:
Dear Ms Morgan: your guidance is a mini-syllabus on how to wreck poetry
In this piece, Michael Rosen is quite critical regarding how the guidance approaches teaching kids about poetry. Certain comments and criticisms made by Mr. Rosen got this poet thinking. I must say, I agree with much of what he says.
You cannot prescribe and measure children’s reaction to a poem, or confine it to exact or correct meanings
Indeed. Learned adults see varied meanings to poetry. Different adult readers often see different meanings in verse. Why would children, which their marvelous imaginations, be any different?

A fellow poet once told me he thought my poem "The Dark Host" about the Sluagh of Irish and Scottish folklore was actually about a plague. Even the editor who accepted the poem for publication thought it sounded almost like a symbolist piece. That wasn't really my conscious intent when I wrote the piece, but I was flattered that others read more into it than what I originally intended.
the examiner hasn’t noticed that it’s not “the poet” who is in this poem
Duh! I guess they've never heard of poets using personae. I've talked about this before (see my post "J. Bruce Fuller's Article about Persona"). The Poetry Archive site has a definition of persona.in its glossary. Poets have been known to use personae in their works. Poets don't always write poems about themselves. Poets aren't always the narrators of their own poems.

Being mostly a speculative poet who writes mainly science fiction, fantasy, and horror poems, I must say I'm rarely "in" my poems! I often use a persona in my works. Personae I've used include: a wandering ghost ("Souls Adrift"), a fairy looking to entrap mortal, ("An Invitation to Elfame") a homicidal artist ("My Final Masterpiece"), a demonic serpent, ("Serpent of Storms") a woman in love with an incubus ("The Incubus"), a human in love with an alien ("Marriage of Earth and Antares"), a life-draining vampiric entity ("Life is the Life"), a haunted isle ("The Haunted Isle"), a haunted castle ("The Haunted Castle"), and various victims of malevolent supernatural beings.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

"Bluebell Spell" Published in APHELION

My reprint dark poem "Bluebell Spell" has been published in the April 2015 issue of the web-zine Aphelion. This piece, which was inspired by some of the lore surrounding the bluebell, originally appeared in parABnormal Digest, Issue 4, September 2012. I'm glad it's found its way into a more seasonally-appropriate issue of a zine. After all, it's really a spring poem (in a dark sport of way)!

Yet Another Genre World Controversy: Who Cares?

I'm starting to think who writes genre fiction is actually more important to some people in the genre world than what's actually written. Also, I'm reminded yet again why I think that world can be a kids' playground populated by a bunch of snot-nosed brats! I have my reasons for deciding to concentrate on my art, especially art for stuff in my stores. Less insanity!

To be quite honest, being a small-time artist/poet/writer who has had works published only in "lesser zines", I really couldn't care less about the brouhaha over the Hugo awards nominations. It seems to me to that this controversy is merely the latest in an almost never-ending string of such genre world controversies. Actually, aside from the entertainment value of watching some people in that world act like bratty little children (which can be highly entertaining), I find it to be rather tiresome.

Here's my question: shouldn't these genre writers spend more time writing and less time raising a stink? Where the heck to they find all the time? It must be nice!

Now, pardon me while I actually spend some time this Easter night working on my art business.