Posts tagged Ligotti

RESONATOR! Frequency Shifting with Matthew M. Bartlett


RESONATOR_313pxRESONATOR: New Lovecraftian Tales From Beyond is in the world! Pre-orders have been filled and shipped, and that tingle you feel between your eyes is anticipation! Also, your pineal gland. DOING IT’S THANG. No, no, the ointment won’t help this time… but perhaps this insightful interview that anthology editor Scott R Jones did with RESONATOR author Matthew M. Bartlett will! (We’ll be rolling out interviews with most of the contributors over the next two weeks or so, so check back often for added awesome.)

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Matthew, you’re the author of maybe the most genuinely weird collection of stories I (and many others) read and enjoyed last year, Gateways to Abomination. Can you speak a little bit about your strange locale of Leeds, MA,and its connection to your story in the anthology, Machine Will Start When You Are Start? 

In reality, Leeds is a village in the western part of Northampton, Massachusetts. The fictional Leeds is Northampton viewed through a funhouse mirror…or maybe a spookhouse mirror. Northampton still looks very much the way it did in the 1800s – most of the buildings are still there; only the banners and signs change. That visual proximity to the past is a daily source of inspiration for me. It is an art town, a liberal town, and as such it attracts a lot of New Agers, psychics, and weirdos in general. The Leeds of Gateways to Abomination is a place that draws witches, revenants, and wicked men. In my imagination I live on a line between my fictional Leeds and the real Northampton.

The guiding force behind the bad juju in Leeds (and beyond) is a corporation called Annelid Industries International (A.I.I.). In Machine Will Start When You Are Start, A.I.I. is the manufacturer, or, perhaps the distributor, of a knockoff of the Tillinghast Resonator. Or maybe it’s the “real” thing, acquired, repurposed as an “adult toy,” and then sold. Who can say?

Your writing has a wonderful visceral quality to it. Machine Will Start… is punchy, almost gonzo body-horror with a high surrealist edge. Who are your influences?

As you might expect, at least as far as Machine Will Start… is concerned, there’s a little bit of Cronenberg in there, a dash of Stephen King, a little Burroughs, even Donald E. Westlake. In general, I like my stuff dark…Ligotti, of course, Mark Samuels, Aickman, Lovecraft. There are too many contemporary authors to list, but I’ve definitely felt the influence of Scott Nicolay, Laird Barron, Scott Thomas, Ian Rogers, and others in the pieces I’m working on now.

This story is one of three in the anthology that pulls inspiration from the overcharged sexuality of Stuart Gordon’s film adaptation of From Beyond. Sex and horror are of course great bedfellows; do you find the pairing of the two easy, or is it a fine line to walk? Is it possible to cross the line, and how would you know if you did?

When I started this story, it was my intention to cross the line, to make myself uncomfortable, to do something that wouldn’t have fit at all in Gateways. In general I prefer to leave sex out of my fiction, or at least any description of sex, unless there’s something deeply twisted about it. This story seemed to unspool onto the page. It was terrific fun to write.

What’s coming up for you in 2015, Matthew?

So far I have new stories due to be published in High Strange Horror from Muzzleland Press, in Xnoybis, a Weird Fiction journal from Dunham’s Manor Press, and in the New England Horror Writers’ third anthology. In the next month or so I’ll be self-publishing an illustrated chapbook called The Witch-Cult in Western Massachusetts. The end of the year will see the release of my follow-up to Gateways to Abomination, a book maybe double the length of Gateways, with longer stories. That will be published by Muzzleland Press.

Happy Birthday, H P Lovecraft!


Here at Martian Migraine Press HQ, one need only take a cursory glance at our catalogue to understand a very basic thing about us: we love Howard Phillips Lovecraft, warts and all. From our authors, who work with Lovecraftian themes in their poetry, fiction, and weirdly arousing erotica, to our cover artists and graphic designers, and yes, our discerning readership (who can smell a weak pastiche from a mile away, the smartypants!) it’s clear: to be affiliated with MMP, you gotta be Keeping It R’lyeh, in one form or another.

And if you consider yourself Lovecraftian in any way, then you know the Old Gentleman’s birthday is this week, on the 20th. Yes, had Howie lived longer, he’d still be dead by now! Because 124 years is a long time for any organism, let alone one who subsisted on beans, crackers, coffee, and ice cream. Oh, and lengthy correspondence, let’s not forget that. Christ n Cthulhu, HPL would have loved chatrooms, we’re thinking. Can you imagine him utterly destroying Reddit these days? Yes.

Which is all to say we, like you, are celebrating Lovecraft’s birthday, his contribution to the literature of the Weird, and his influence on our own authors and various projects (more on which in a post of the very near future!) by offering readers a present or four. OK. Exactly four presents.

If you’re an Amazon customer and own a Kindle (or have a Kindle app installed on any device – they’re nifty that way) then scoot on over to the Big A for the following MMP ebook deals!

R’LYEH SUTRA by skawt chonzzFREE AUGUST 19 & 20 (Amazon link HERE)
No less a Mythos luminary than Wilum H. Pugmire recommended this chapbook as “charming”, “delightful”, with “lovely poetic prose, all quite Lovecraftian”. Originally limited to a run of 50 chapbooks from Martian Migraine Press, R’LYEH SUTRA is now available as an electronic chapbook. Recalling Spicer and Burroughs, these are poems that explore the shifting, fractal edge of madness, that question the nature of identity, consciousness and language, and do it all with wry humour spliced with a species of alien sexuality. As the title implies, there is an obviously Lovecraftian occult inspiration to the work: in fact, the original, physical run of the book contained, in the form of an insert, a portion of a large hand-written document received in a brutal channeling session from an ultra-terrestrial entity, which chonzz experienced in the spring of 2011. Each copy is therefore utterly unique, a facet of a whole that perhaps should never be viewed in its entirety, and likely never will. This electronic edition seeks to replicate that reading experience with hidden links to previously unreleased segments of that occult document.

PRIESTESS (Blackstone Erotica Volume 1) by Justine Geoffrey
FREE AUGUST 19 & 20 (Amazon link HERE)
If you think that “Lovecraftian smut” can only be poorly written cheap rip-offs of standard hentai themes, then we couldn’t be more happy to educate you in just how weird and wonderful a truly loving approach to the sexuality that breeds between the lines of the Cthulhu Mythos can be. Justine Geoffrey’s BLACKSTONE Erotica series combines raw, character-driven eroticism with mind-melting horrors and a cheeky sensibility that draws from the best of the pulps, Hammer horror films, and of course Lovecraft and, in the case of the first BLACKSTONE book, the muscular energy of Robert Bloch’s classic Mythos tale The Black Stone. This collection brings together all four of the BLACKSTONE books in one massive volume! Follow a novice Priestess of the Black Stone as she calls up prehistoric sex-gods in the mountains of Eastern Europe, gathers power and partners in the glitzy dungeons of London’s BDSM scene, and mates with monsters in subterranean chambers of lust and horror! Priestess also contains excerpts from Blackstone Book 3, Yellow Sign Bound and Justine’s Orgy in the Valley of the Lust Larvae PLUS a special essay from the author on the weird-erotica writing experience.

CONQUEROR WOMB: Lusty Tales of Shub-Niggurath
Kindle Countdown Deal AUGUST 20 & 21 (Amazon link HERE)

(“What’s a Kindle Countdown Deal?” Starting at 8AM PST on Lovecraft’s birthday, the price for this book will be ONLY 99 CENTS. So get it then, because by 2PM another dollar gets tacked on. And so on, until the book is back at it’s regular price of $5.99 late on the 21st.) This anthology is easily the most popular MMP title of 2014! with Conqueror Womb: Lusty Tales of Shub-Niggurath, Martian Migraine Press and editors Justine Geoffrey and Scott R Jones bring you 18 pulpy tales of fertility and fear, hot sex and chilling sacrifice! Stories that squelch, tales that both titillate and terrify, from some of the best writers working in Lovecraftian horror and mind-bending erotica today: Wilum H. Pugmire, Molly Tanzer, Don Webb, Christine Morgan, Kenton Hall, Brian M. Sammons, Jacqueline Sweet, Copper Sloane Levy, Annabeth Leong, and Christopher Slatsky, along with fresh new voices. 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!

WHEN THE STARS ARE RIGHT: Towards An Authentic R’lyehian Spirituality
by Scott R Jones – REDUCED from $7.99 to $2.99 AUGUST 20 ONLY!
(Amazon link HERE)

Yes, the book you’ve been hearing about. The one Laird Barron says “gives Thomas Ligotti a run for his money in the Cosmic Horror Philosophy arms race.” The twisty little tome that Leeman Kessler of calls “a crime scene!” The appalling text the mere mention of which caused the venerable S. T. Joshi to raise an incredulous eyebrow! The one that’s making Lovecraft spin wildly in his materialist-atheist grave on his birthday this year. Are you “Keeping It R’lyeh”? Sons of Cthulhu, Daughters of Dagon, you know there’s only one way to know for sure, and that’s picking up Jones’ groundbreaking work on R’lyehian mystical thought and getting down with the Deep Ones in ways you can’t even imagine! Not yet. Not until you’ve taken the Cthulhusattva Vow and entered the Black Gnosis. With a Foreweird from noted Gnostic author Jordan Stratford and beautiful illustrations by Michael Lee Macdonald. When The Stars Are Right is currently out-of-print, so this electronic version is the only way to acquire the book at the moment. And at $2.99, it’s a steal. BUT ONLY FOR ONE DAY.

Thanks for celebrating with us, Migraineers! (As ever, feel free to drop a review on any of these titles once you’ve put yourself back together after reading!) Happy Birthday, H. P. Lovecraft. Here’s to another 125 years of new and exciting interpretations of your horrors.

Martian Migraine Press: the Best Kind of Headache!
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