Christopher Moore joins Thorne & Cross: Haunted Nights LIVE!


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This Thursday at 9:30 pm EST, we are thrilled to introduce Christopher Moore as our guest at Thorne & Cross: Haunted Nights LIVE! We’ll spend the hour talking to Christopher about writing, his hobbies, and his upcoming book, Secondhand Souls, available on August 25th.

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Christopher Moore is the author of fifteen novels, including the international bestsellers,Lamb, A Dirty Job and You Suck. His lastest novel, Secondhand Souls, will be released in August 2015.

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Chris was born in Toledo, Ohio and grew up in Mansfield, Ohio. His father was a highway patrolman and his mother sold major appliances at a department store. He attended Ohio State University and Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara. He moved to California when he was 19 years old and lived on the Central Coast until 2003, when he moved to Hawaii.

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Before publishing his first novel, Practical Demonkeeping in 1992, he worked as a roofer, a grocery clerk, a hotel night auditor, and insurance broker, a waiter, a photographer, and a rock and roll DJ. Chris has drawn on all of these work experiences to create the characters in his books. When he’s not writing, Chris enjoys ocean kayaking, scuba diving, photography, and painting with acrylics and oils. He lives in San Francisco.

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About Haunted Nights LIVE! hosts Thorne & Cross

Tamara Thorne and Alistair Cross joined forces in 2012 with the idea to write a short story together. One thing led to another, and they have since completed The Cliffhouse Haunting, and 8 installments of the successful Gothic serialized novel, The Ghosts of Ravencrest. In November of 2014, their horror-themed radio internet show, Thorne & Cross: Haunted Nights LIVE!, debuted to great acclaim as part of the Authors on the Air Global Radio Network, LLC.

Tamara Thorne’s first novel was published in 1991. Since then she has written many more, including international bestsellers Haunted, Bad Things, Moonfall, and The Sorority. Her novel, Thunder Road, hit bookstores in September, 2014. Tamara’s interest in the occult, mythology, and folklore began at an early age, and her interest in the paranormal has been life-long. She’s been a speaker for many paranormal groups and been involved in many investigations. She has appeared on the television show, Ghost Adventures, as well as gone on a five-day investigation to an allegedly haunted cabin in Gold Country with co-author Alistair Cross – an adventure that inspired The Cliffhouse Haunting. She has also been featured in various newspapers on the topics of haunted areas and local lore, and has been a guest on Anything Ghost, and many other syndications. Tamara is also a journalist who writes features for several southern California newspapers.

Alistair Cross grew up on horror novels and scary movies, and by the age of eight, began writing his own stories. He is an avid poet who has been published in multiple collections, and his poetry has been featured on several syndications. His first work of fiction was published by Damnation Books in 2012. Alistair’s fascination with the supernatural, combined with an affinity for psychological suspense, has shaped his writing and continues to influence his work. He became involved in paranormal investigations with Tamara Thorne, and their adventure, Five Nights in a Haunted Cabin, was the feature for an episode of Tales to Terrify, on the Lights Out podcast with paranormal expert, Sylvia Shults. Together, he and Tamara have also published articles for several publications, including Crystal Lake Publishing’s Beneath the Lake: On Writing Horror. Along with his multiple collaborative projects with Tamara Thorne, Alistair’s new release, The Crimson Corset, was released to rave reviews in August of this year.

Gross Encounters of the Absurd Kind


My collaborator, Tamara Thorne, and I have been sitting down together to write everyday for months. We’ve gotten a lot done, and we still have much to do. On top of the Belinda serial, we’re finishing up a horror novel  and have another novel  to edit and publish around the holidays. Needless to say, we don’t really have time to play around. And yet, that’s exactly what we do. Play is the reason we can Skypewrite together for 12 hours a day, every day. It keeps us sane and snickering.

We don’t wake up chomping at the writing bit every morning. In fact, most mornings we spend a little time waking up, gossiping, looking over media stuff, working on interviews, and, always, reviewing and tweaking our storyline. Then it’s time to get to work.

Sometimes, we still have trouble focusing first thing in the morning – and there are always a few brain freezes during that day. That’s when we often start writing freestyle; we just let the words go where they want until we find our way back to the true course of the story. These passages are, to us, hilarious, twisted, and – in some cases -sickeningly disturbing. What the hell is wrong with us? We don’t know and we don’t care. We do this both to jar our brains loose and to crack each other up. This is not the kind of material we can use in an actual book (with a few exceptions – we’ll let you guess what they are when you read the books, maybe even have a contest).

Because of the pleasure these passages have given us, we’ve decided to stop throwing them out. Why not share the joy? The sick, demented, twisted, repugnant joy.

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So we had an idea. What if we post these ridiculous meanderings on our blogs? Many contain portions of real scenes you find in the books, which we think makes this extra fun.

So we’re going to do it. We’re going to begin posting our outtakes and bloopers today. They work for TV shows specials, so why not here? We may even include some of the best evil autocorrects from our texts, as appropriate.

With that in mind, here are yesterday’s best outtakes:

Belinda lay in her bed, her body deliciously warm under the down comforter, as the morning sun shot thin rays through the crack in the her buttocks. And her drapes. Her drapes were fucking ugly. She stretched and yawned and decided she’d buy new drapes. But not until the sun finished shining out of her ass.”

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* * *

Omar, a sleek, plump Siamese cat, snuggled into his mistress’s lap, then flehmened, mouth hanging open, eyes half closed, when he realized his human had forgotten to change her tampon for at least a week. He couldn’t contend with a stinking bloody human and decided he’d get a new one just as soon as she finished petting his glorious head.”

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* * *

“The room was large, luxurious, and honestly breathtaking, and every time Belinda stepped inside, she felt a little as if she were floating. This might have been due to the design of the floor, which was cobalt blue tile, patterned with gold stars, giving her the impression that she was walking on the midnight sky. Or it could have been the fact that she’d shot herself up with a homemade combination of absinthe, super-glue, and weed-killer, using a needle she’d found under the sofa. That might have accounted for the floating feeling in her head. But probably not. It probably really was the design of the bathroom.”

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* * *

(Warning: If any of the above grossed you out, skip this one.  It’s our favorite…)

“Margaret Massey stepped into the tub. It brimmed with sweet-scented lilac bubbles and as she settled into the water and rested her head against the cool rounded porcelain lip of the huge mint-green tub. “Heaven,” she said as she pinched her nipple and stuck an entire bar of Ivory up her wrinkled twat. “If only I’d remembered the toilet plunger,” she lamented as she queefed 100% natural bubbles that rose to the surface and popped like Lawrence Welk’s champagne music. Then her 70-year-old anus, the victim of one too many rounds with the local Hell’s Angels, sharted, but just a little. It didn’t even smell and what you couldn’t see beneath the bubbles couldn’t hurt you. She knew that from long experience.”

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Writing… and Riding the ‘One Day’ Wave


You know those books you’re going to write ‘one day’ but never seem to get around to? Well, for me, ‘one day’ has arrived, and let me tell you, Bub – it’s nuts. I rode the ‘one day’ wave for as long as I respectably could, but eventually, you have to get off – and for the past six months, I’ve been getting off like nobody’s business. I’m knee-deep in edits, world-building, cover art design, interviews, character development, and revising, re-hashing, and revisiting.

Tamara Thorne – my collaborator – and I have respectfully asked the publicist for a two to three-week hiatus from interviews. Not that we’ll get much relief. We have two written interviews to do and two or three radio and podcast shows scheduled for May and the rest of April. (In case you missed it, here is the podcast from last weeks live interview at Authors on the Air.)

Later today, Tamara and I will get together to finalize details for The Book We Can’t Say Much About Right Now. Meanwhile, the first draft of Grandma’s Rack is complete and sitting for a six to eight week period before we go back to it – with fresh eyes – for revisions. Belinda is coming along nicely and has become a wonderful escape from the chaos of the less pleasant things.

Belinda’s cover art – which Tamara and I asked for control over – is progressing, as well. After two photo sessions, we’ve  procured a generous handful of keepers – thanks to our wonderful models – which are being used as posters till it’s time to decide on covers. We have many more sessions over the next  months, and despite the madness of it all, I’m looking forward to it.  It’s been suggested that by adding cover art into the already heaping mix, perhaps I’ve bitten off more than I can chew. To that, I say, good. I hope so. Because that’s what gets shit done.

If you haven’t yet seen the latest Belinda poster, here it is… it’s my favorite so far.

First Installment

And a page has been added to my website at alistaircross.com  to showcase all the book covers and posters.

The deadlines are crushing. The days are short. The words are so abounding that – at times – I can’t stand emailing, blogging, IMing, or sending out a freaking Tweet. But the view of the future is vast and exciting, and – most importantly – we are on schedule.

Belinda’s first installment will be out this summer. Grandma’s Rack will come out later this year. The Book We Can’t Say Much About Right Now is running on time and will do whatever it has to do. It won’t always be like this…

Will it?

 

Scandalous Interview!


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Gingernuts of Horror has just published a wonderful and scandalously fact-filled interview with Tamara Thorne  and me. You’ll find out how we met, how we work, news about our horror novel,Grandma’s Rack,  and our erotic serial novel, Belinda. You’ll see news of Tamara’s  Candle Bay sequel, and my solo novel, The White Room.

We also give the skinny on how we met, what scares us, what influences us, our favorite brands of breakfast cereal, our preferences in shoelaces, and what makes us fight like cats and… cats.

And at least some of the above is true, we swear it.

Thorne & Cross Go Live!


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(Tamara Thorne)

Hello all,

The date and time for our upcoming interview is official. Tamara Thorne and I will be live at Authors on the Air with Pam Stack on Thursday, April 17th, 2014 at 8:00 pm EST. We’ll be discussing our upcoming projects Grandma’s Rack and Belinda as well as anything else that happens to come up.

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(Alistair Cross)

Grandma’s Rack is in the last stages of creation and – after we do an extensive edit of our own – the manuscript will head over to the editor. After that, it will go to the publisher who will provide the final finishing touches and get it on its way. We have no idea how long these processes will take so an exact date for release is still unknown.

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(Grandma’s Rack – coming in 2014 by Avalerion Books)

Belinda, our paranormally-inclined serialized erotica, is coming along nicely as well. Belinda’s story will be released in a series of installments beginning later this summer, also by Avalerion, and will showcase a few of our favorite personal topics – provocative characters, spooky vibes, and unrelenting sexual exploits.

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(A promotional poster for Belinda – coming this summer from Avalerion Books)

It’s an eventful year and we’re looking forward to the release of these projects. As soon as we have release dates, we will post them here on our blogs – along with any interview links and other promotional events – as well as on our websites, which you can visit if you want to learn more about us.

Tamara Thorne: http://www.tamarathorne.com

Alistair Cross: http://www.alistaircross.com

All best,

~AC

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Rackin’ it Up


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Grandma’s Rack, the short story turned novella turned full-length collaborative novel is bouncing right along with enough speed and determination to rival a pair of smooth, round, metaphorical melons bounding down a steep and obstacle-free figurative mountainside.

Today, my co-author – veteran horror novelist Tamara Thorne – and I spent three hours brainstorming new scenes and smoothing out the plot before heading separate directions to each spend several more hours writing. Tomorrow, we meet to establish and appoint the final components of the book’s third act which, once completed, will catapult us into an even more accelerated momentum. We realize that completing the project by the spring deadline will be pushing it, but we also believe it can be done. We’re in the last stages and luckily, we’re having enough fun that what’s left to write will hopefully flow smoothly by. I go through a series of mental and emotional stages during the course of completing a novel, and the one I’m in now is probably my favorite.

By the third act, the climax is rising, and all those things the characters said and did pages and pages ago suddenly start to make sense. This is where we are now in Grandma’s Rack, and it is my favorite because it assures me that my instincts to trust the characters were correct. It’s been said that writers don’t create story as much as they discover story – like some creative archaeologists of sorts, digging up pre-existing plots from the trenches of the mind, the universe… or wherever it is that stories come from – and I am inclined to believe that.

Today, during our three-hour brainstorming stint, all the misfit pieces of the puzzle fell wonderfully and magically into place, revivifying my passion and magnifying my feeling that this was going to be a great story. In fact, although I always knew it was going to be good, today I realized that it’s going to be even better than I thought because I realized it has all the ingredients that are key to the kinds of books I love to read: characters of both the loathsome and lovable kind – traits which are often found within the confines of the same character –  a seductive setting,  an intriguing plot with a fair blend of humor and horror, a series of little scandals, and enough human truth to sustain the creative inventiveness of fiction.

And so… we plug on, and as we do, I become more excited as the end draws ever-nearer. I suspect it will be a bittersweet farewell once the final words have been written… and this is why we have decided to continue working together. Tamara and I both have our solo projects to write, but we’ve decided our power as a unit is too total and too dynamic to end at one collaboration… and this is just one those little life wonders that forces me to think that maybe… there’s some method to the madness around us after all.

To see more of Grandma’s Rack and other projects, visit me at: www.alistaircross.com

Yours,

~AC~

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One Writer’s Journey


In ten days (January 13th, 2014) the interview Tamara Thorne and I did for Penny Ehrenkranz’s site, One Writer’s Journeyis set to go live. I will post the link here when it does, but until then give her a visit and have a look at all the author and illustrator interviews, writing tips, and other fun stuff going on there.

In this interview Tamara and I discuss our upcoming novel, Grandma’s Racka witchy novel of magic and mayhem in a small town called Milkwort – which is scheduled for release sometime this spring. Be sure to check me out at my website (The Dungeon) or Tamara Thorne’s website to keep up with our progress and recent news.

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Also, if you’ve been keeping up on our Five Nights in a Haunted Cabin posts, night four is underway and will be posted sometime within the next week, we predict. Follow the links below for the prior nights:

First Night

Second Night

Third Night

The holidays have come and gone and we’re getting settled back into the rhythm of writing. We expect to have a busy 2014, filled with the release of new material – both collaborative and solo.

Wishing all of you a prosperous new year…

AC~

Real-Life Holiday Horrors



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(Pawpurrazzi aka Stalker Kitty, sticking her tongue out at me)

Hello, all,

It’s been a good – but very busy – season, complete with all the nerve-rattling, teeth-grinding fiascos we’ve come to expect from the holidays. This year, however, my dithers and dilemmas were not of the usual variety. I learned some things… and I’d like to spread the knowledge…

My feline companion, Pawpurrazzi, has reached the age when they say you should have them spayed… so I made an appointment and took her in. The surgery went well, and the next day I picked her up… a perfectly simple act which spawned a mind-boggling string of theatrics that  left me with cuts, bruises, and a possibly permanent embittered scowl. Oh yes… there was drama to be had…

In the parking lot, as we strode merrily back to the car, the kitty went into some kind of shock. She looked at me and her eyes were strange. Somehow I could tell she didn’t recognize me. Not at all. She panicked very suddenly, clawed herself free of me, and ran as fast and far away as she could. I chased after her, staying close behind and finally cornering her in a stairwell behind the clinic where she sought refuge.

When I caught up to her, I was winded, but I slowed my breathing, not wanting to scare her any more than she already apparently was. Her eyes still had the wild glint of survival mode in them, and she began jumping, easily eight feet high, trying – and failing – to get out of the well… and away from me. I would gently tip-toe down the stairs toward her, I decided. And whisper her name as I delicately approached.

It was then that I slipped and took a violent and undignified spill down the ice-covered steps. My flailing, arm-waving, leg-kicking, 90 mile per hour, hair-whipping-in-the-wind descent down the stairs somehow only startled and confused her more. She puffed up, darted past me, and had disappeared before I even finished off my first, and only, vibrato F-bomb.

The guilt was heavy though, and I returned to the clinic, this time with two friends assisting in the search. Three, if you count a dear cat-loving friend I had on the phone who gave me much excellent cat-advice. I was certain the kitty was gone though, and I was feeling grim to put it lightly.

After about twenty or thirty minutes, though, we found her in a thicket of dead bush branches near a fence at the edge of the property. She’s a very talkative kitty, and we heard her before we saw her. When she poked her head out, I snatched her up, expecting the same uncharacteristic craziness of earlier, but by then, she was back to herself, purring gleefully, washing my face and combing my hair with her tongue. She was genuinely happy to see me, and no doubt eager to be home.

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(After my shoulder or the top of my head, this is Stalker Kitty’s favorite post)

I tell this story because I committed a cat-owner no-no, and I hope to reduce some of my guilt by possibly preventing another cat daddy or mommy from making the same mistake. Pawpurrazzi is the first cat I’ve had as an adult, and until this debacle, I’d forgotten the vast differences between cats and dogs. Cats are far less domesticated than dogs, and they slip into feral mode pretty quickly. I knew they weren’t entirely tame and I had a harness on her when I dropped her off, but the vet had to take it off for the surgery. When I paid the bill, they handed me the cat, then the harness, and I didn’t bother putting it on her. I reasoned it was a mere ten steps from the exit to the car… what could go wrong?

I have a new rule now: Never take kitty anywhere without a crate. And a harness. It seems harsh to confine them this way, but not as harsh as the other potential issues. If I’d never found her, she’d be wandering around in the cold with stitches in that need to come out in ten days. These would have become infected more than likely, and eventually, it could kill her.  Plus, some cats might survive well outdoors, but Pawpurrazzi isn’t one of them. Wherever it was she came from on that fateful day that she appeared stalking me and meowing at my window, it wasn’t from the wild. Someone domesticated her… and then apparently lost her, deserted her, or dropped her off somewhere. So, she might have found someone else and conned them into adopting her like she did me, but what if she didn’t find a good person? What if they took her to the pound? I can’t stand to think of it…

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(Sven, watching over Pawpurrazzi while she heals)

So… my adventures and lessons in feline fatherhood continue. As I write this, Pawpurrazzi is perched on my shoulder, showing her forgiveness by rubbing her purring head along the edges of my jaw, an activity that I’ve learned means something happy and positive. I assume she was somewhat traumatized by the experience at the vet clinic, and have since learned that these kinds of reactions are not entirely uncommon. In hindsight, it wasn’t smart of me to assume she would be content after something like that, but I’m happy to report that she’s healing happily at home… and we are friends again…

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(Kitty in the window)

Take pity. Crate the kitty.

Yours,

AC~

Welcome to the Dungeon…


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After a grueling couple weeks of getting everything together in order to set my website live, success has been obtained. It’s been over a year since I decided I really needed to get one, and almost nine months since I’ve been been actively working at making it happen. Naturally, there were bumps in the road: domain availability complications, changes in SEO, design delays, and content and development learning curves on my part… to name a few. But at long last, it is done… and it is live.

I’ve lovingly termed my site The Dungeon, and I think you’ll find it fitting. My vision was to create a little online haunt where lovers of horror, dark humor, and maybe even a little kink could kick back, browse around, and feel at home… and with the help of many hands, I am satisfied with the outcome.

I’ve included personal photos, a library of my work – including my poetry – a collection of interviews and guest posts, a page dedicated to future works where you can view the cover of the upcoming novel I’ve been working on with Tamara Thorne, and an “Ask Alistair” page, where I will answer readers’ questions.

Many thanks to all the people who advised me, worked on the design, and devoted their time to making it happen:

Berlin Malcom

Mike Rivera

Andrew Harderson

Cheryl S.

Zeb Jenkins

Jon Deem

and Heidi in the “slicing” department.

To visit The Dungeon, go to http://www.alistaircross.com, or click on “The Dungeon” above. Have a look around. Stay a while. Become one with the darkness…

Yours,

~Mr. Cross~

GRANDMA’S RACK Revealed!!


 

There’s a new coven in town…

War of the Witches

The plague witches have declared war, and ten-year-old Joey is in more trouble than he can even imagine. As the town of Milkwort becomes a battleground of magic and mayhem, the only thing he seems to have on his side is the sweet, soft-spoken woman who cares for him – his grandmother. And Grandma has a secret…

Grandma’s Secret Weapons

When a gruesome murder is committed, the residents of Milkwort suddenly don’t seem to be themselves. Little Joey is going to have to grow up fast if he wants to survive. Can he and Grandma uncover the heinous secrets and unravel the twisted mysteries that lie just beneath the surface of this seemingly quiet, small town?

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Thorne & Cross

Grandma’s Rack, the first collaborative novel from Tamara Thorne and Alistair Cross arrives this spring.