Migraineers … it’s time. Time once again for the Annual Martian Migraine Anthology! This years theme: Shub-Niggurath, that most neglected of the Cthulhu Mythos deities. Now, earlier this week (on Facebook and elsewhere) we thought it would be funny to do a gag cover reveal and so posted this high-LAR-ious little number to our page and shared it with a few select Lovecraftiana groups. We were not prepared for the approval ratings we received back from what was, essentially, a prank. So, long story short, we will likely be offering CONQUEROR WOMB: Lusty Tales of Shub-Niggurath with this as an alternate cover, just as soon as we suss out any existing copyright issues for that image. Thanks, Baffling Mysteries #5!
And now… the real CONQUEROR WOMB Cover Reveal! (Totally legit this time, we swear.) We’re extremely pleased to have Scottish comics wunderkind Garry Mac (of Unthank Comics) provide us with this uniquely gonzo rendering of the Monstrous Momma of the Mythos! Shrink before her haughty mein! Tremble at her … things, stickin’ out all over like that there! Huh. Coo adorably at her Dark Young (but try not to let your fingers get too close)! Bow before the Black Goat of the Woods!
You’ll have noticed there are some names on this beautiful thing. So, without further delay, the Table of Contents! Pulsing with some of the best writers working today in Lovecraftian horror (Wilum Pugmire, Molly Tanzer, Brian M. Sammons to name a few!) and mind-bending erotica (Shon Richards, Annabeth Leong, Jacqueline Sweet to name a few more!), plus a host of fresh talent! (Feel quite free to bow before the ToC, too, we won’t mind…)
Praise & Abundance! – introduction by editors Justine Geoffrey & Scott R Jones
This Human Form – Lyndsey Holder
That Hideous Thing – Ran Cartwright
Unsatisfied – Brian M. Sammons
Mater Annelida – Victoria Dalpe
The Potboiler Sigil – Luke R. J. Maynard
All This For the Greater Glory of the 7th and 329th Children of the Black Goat of the Woods – Molly Tanzer
Babymama – Kenton Hall
Our Child – Annabeth Leong
Boy – Don Webb
Pieces (2) for String Octet – Copper Sloane Levy
The Whisperer in the Vagina – Shon Richards
Obsidian Capre Aegagrus – Christopher Slatsky
Dirtymag – Jonas Moth
With Honey Dripping – Christine Morgan
In the Down Deep Down – Jacqueline Sweet
The Scarlet Scripture – Ambrosius Grimes
Within Your Unholy Pit of Shoggoths – Wilum H. Pugmire
Blossom – Rose Banks
The Conqueror Womb: Parsing Shub-Niggurath (essay) – Scott R Jones
From nighted glades where frenzied orgiasts work unholy magic to slick urban dungeons of unbridled pleasure; from fertility clinics to fevered dance clubs; from the misty depths of the past to the unthinkable future, join us as we offer praise and abundance! Iä! Shub-Niggurath!
CONQUEROR WOMB: Lusty Tales of Shub-Niggurath launches in multiple e-storefronts February 10, 2014 (just in time for Valentine’s Day!) but you can pre-order the title directly from MMP until February 9, 2014.
It is the Yuletide, that men call Christmas though they know in their hearts it is older than Bethlehem and Babylon, older than Memphis and mankind. It is the Yuletide, and we here at MMP HQ have some Saturnalian-next-level gifts for the weird-reader on your list to consume all Goya-style, if that’s their bent. AND WE KNOW IT IS.
From Friday December 20 through to Christmas Eve, The Ecdysiasts (a flash fiction collection by Scott R Jones), will be free for download to your Kindle or Kindle-enabled device from (where else?) the juggernaut that is Amazon, right here. Don’t have a Kindle? Well, you’re probably still a good person, and for that reason alone, if you’d like your free PDF or EPUB file of The Ecdysiasts, simply pop us a little Christmas card (or, y’know, an email, we’re not picky) indicating how you’d like your MMP Xmas gift formatted and we will get it out to you within 24 hours. Maybe even sooner, because we are frighteningly efficient that way.
Also, during that same time period, Justine Geoffrey’s collected Blackstone erotica volume, PRIESTESS (with killer cover art by Jim Pavelec), will be discounted with the Kindle program’s new Countdown Deal promotion. Starting at $0.99 on Friday December 20 (the deep discount! Starts on the 21st in the UK) and getting progressively more expensive each day until Christmas, when it shall return to its usual pricing. Yes, it’s wacky, and we’re not sure how interesting that will make the book, but there it is. We’re all about the experimentation at MMP.
STRIPPED DOWN & TAKEN
Speaking of which, our latest lab work down in the steaming porn vats of Amazon is an experiment in (re)packaging. We love Justine’s Blackstone series, of course, and think it’s just fine the way it’s presented, odd titles and all. Red Monolith Frenzy is, for us, evocative of so much subtle deviancy that we are loathe to change it. And yet, dinosaur erotica. Yes, saurian-based smut does better at the end of the day. So, a test: with Justine’s approval, we’re stripping down the Blackstone series to bare text files (no extra graphics or links), re-covering them for maximum pop, and re-titling the stories with the ever-popular prefix Taken by the [ BLANK ]. This is strictly for new readers on Amazon, of course, (we won’t be featuring the titles here on the MMP site, so as to avoid confusion) and at $0.99 we’re semi-confident that we’ll see a pick-up in sales for Ms Geoffrey’s excellent work. And in case you’re already a Blackstone fan with the original books on your device, don’t worry, the new stripped down Sex & Horror series is clearly labelled with a “previously published as…” caveat, so there’s little chance of doubling up. Unless of course you feel like doubling up, in which case go ahead, we won’t say no. Here are the covers so far. Wish us luck!
OUR SPLOOSH PILE RUNNETH OVER!
Submissions are now closed for the second Martian Migraine Press annual anthology, Conqueror Womb: Lusty Tales of Shub-Niggurath. Our editors would like to thank everyone who sent in work and are even now beginning their first tentative dips into what Editrix Justine has termed her sploosh pile. (Get it? Slush pile, sploosh pile? Hyuk. Archer reference.) We’re told there are a lot of woodland orgies in the sploosh so far, which was expected. Geoffrey and Jones will be reading over Christmas and starting to make yea-or-nay decisions by New Years. If you’ve submitted a piece for consideration, expect a response on or before January 15, 2014, and if you haven’t heard from MMP by then, do please drop us a line. Conqueror Womb: Lusty Tales of Shub-Niggurath is set to birth horribly into the world the second week of February, just in time to serve as a cautionary collection of tales for Valentine’s Day. Ah, breeders… you know not what you do!
Martian Migraine Press: the Best Kind of Headache
If there’s a trick at all to writing weird smut, it’s finding that balance between the background tang of strangeness (that sharp, shocking flavour that is essential to the good stuff) and the sex itself. That, and of course maintaining a consistent voice throughout the piece that brings the two (seemingly at odds) elements together. It’s a tough trick to pull off: you want the Strange and the Sexy to mesh, to actually merge. Not to put too fine a point on things, but you want them to fuck, and fuck well. This does not happen with the rote paranormal (“you can’t spell paranormal without normal!”) erotica; often the weirdness is merely set dressing.
A tough trick to pull off. Unless you’re Shon Richards. (Note: I am so glad to have discovered Shon Richards!)
The Dark Lords of the Earth is a lot of things, and I like all of them! It’s supremely weird, for starters: Richards has taken as his subject the DERO of Richard Shaver, a completely crank pseudo alien abduction conspiracy theory I hadn’t even heard of until reading this book (and I know my crank, ladies and entities!) involving little hairy men from beneath the hills. Little horny men, in vast subterranean caverns crammed with bizarre sex-machinery and super-powered fuck-batteries. They’re abductors, stealing people from the surface: drugs, hypnosis, weird chakra-tweaking technology.
That’s the weirdness. The ditzy narrator of The Dark Lords of the Earth is “Leanne”: she provides both the sex and the voice and what a voice! An ultra-conservative right wing “good Christian woman” who, along with her two gal pals, is abducted by the Deros while on a girls-only camping trip. Her narrative voice is not only hilarious in its naiveté, it’s incredibly fun and utterly consistent. Not once does this woman break character! I kept waiting for her to eventually crack and start referring to her anatomy by more commonplace porn-y terms but nope! It’s her “no-no zone” all the way! The more times she dropped this term, the funnier it got, and it reminded me in a lot of ways of old William Lazenby’s Victorian heroines in The Pearl: so stuck in their social and mental constrictions that even as their sexual vistas are being stretched beyond sense, their language remains prudish. It creates this remarkable tension which is highly amusing but also hot.
Leanne finds that the suppressed memories of her abduction by the underground men rise to the surface of her consciousness when she engages in the same sexual acts that she performed while under their influence, and this quest to learn the truth of her experience is what drives the plot. Richards has a deft hand with this material, nicely playing off Leanne’s present playtimes against the flashbacks she experiences during the sex. As a result, the reader gets a brilliant kind of double-exposure effect. It truly is twice the bang for your buck!
Leanne’s supporting characters (her dopey husband, her secretly promiscuous chubby church-lady friend, her neighbour’s horndog college-age son) are all clearly less naive than Leanne, and it’s definitely delicious watching the interplay between the sweet-but-seeking Leanne and her disingenuous partners. Is she being taken advantage of? Kind of, but then again, she’s also using them to plumb dark secrets about herself and the Deros to advance herself beyond the strictures of her own life. But if I say anymore, I’ll ruin the ending!
Shon Richards has been doing this stuff a lot longer than me, and I am only just getting into his books, but if The Dark Lords of the Earth is any indicator, I’m going to be having a great time going through the catalogue!
I was going to post this review to the Amazon page for the book, but what with all the censorship crap that is happening over there these days (and on the Kobo and B&N shelves, too — lock it down, publishing behemoths! “Good Christian women” aren’t your only customers!) I’ve decided to just keep my thoughts here for now (once things have calmed down over there, I’ll post it on Amazon) and instead give you links a-plenty below. Go get The Dark Lords of the Earth if you want a fun, kinky, strange time! (Don’t be fooled by the nature scene on the cover, either… that’s some clever smokescreening on Shon’s part to baffle the censors.)
Buy it direct from Shon’s website > http://shonrichards.com/buy-my-e-books
Buy it from Amazon