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Edgar Allen Poe

The Exquisite Horror

“Words have no power to impress the mind without the exquisite horror of their reality.”

Edgar Allen Poe

Friday Link Pack 07/31/2015 - Dang, July is a long month.

Friday Link Pack 7/31/2015

After a week hiatus, we’re back! Here is today’s Friday Link Pack! Some of these links I mention on Twitter, if you’re not already following me there, please do! Do you have a link I should feature in the upcoming link pack? Click here to email me and let me know! (Include a website so I can link to you as well.) Let’s get to it…

WRITING:

How To Deal With Harsh Criticism Of Your Writing
A great article from Charlie Jane Anders popped up on io9 this week. Criticism is hard, sometimes painfully so, but there are ways you can approach it. This is good advice.

Wake-Up Call: Amazon Serves Author Interests Better Than Publishers
Industry vet, Mike Shatzkin, breaks down Amazons recent innovative moves (like launching the follow button for readers) and how their success has translated into success for publishing and writing in general.

Ursula K. Le Guin Is Breathing Fire To Save American Literature
A great profile on badass Ursula K. Le Guin. (If you’re a follower of my blog it’s no secret how much I love her and her work.) Absolutely fantastic read, delving into her writing, her defense of sci-fi and fantasy (and books in general), and her activism work.

Why Horror Is Good For You (And Even Better For Your Kids)
Artist Greg Ruth gives us six fantastic reasons why we should all read horror.

Indie Or Traditional: The Cost Of Publishing
Creating a book always has a cost. It’s up to you as the writer to decide what that cost should be and how much you’re willing to pay.

ART:

Alicia Savage, Destinations
Stumbled across Alicia Savage’s ethereal photography work and knew I’d need to share it here. Obscured women float and drift through surreal glimpses of shattered Americana.

The Art Of Greg Ruth
He’s already told us why horror is good for us in the Writing section. Why not enjoy exploring some of his incredible work as well?

Artist Sam Van Aken’s Tree Grows 40 Different Kinds Of Fruit
Using grafting, Sam Van Aken grows some pretty incredible trees. [Big thanks to Ben for sharing this with me.]

RANDOM:

Perfectly Timed Photos That Make Dogs Look Like Giants
Because you needed something like this right now.

Abandoned Indonesian Church Shaped Like a Massive Clucking Chicken
Some people do strange things to get messages from God, things like build a strangely shaped church in the middle of the jungle. Apparently the builder had intended it to look like a dove but it’s clearly a chicken.

Kowloon Walled City
I have mentioned before that Lovat, the megalopolis central in my Bell Forging Cycle, was heavily influenced by Kowloon Walled City. This multimedia project by the Wall Street Journal is an incredible way to explore the rich stories and dark streets of the legendary Hong Kong settlement.

A Renaissance Painting Reveals How Breeding Changed Watermelons
We’re in the throws of summer here in the Northern Hemisphere. Why not take some time to explore the horticultural history of one of summer’s greatest treats: the watermelon.

WEIRD WIKIPEDIA:

Aroma Of Tacoma

“Seattle! Seattle! Death Rattle, Death Rattle; Tacoma! Tacoma! Aroma, Aroma!”

George Francis Train

“The “Aroma of Tacoma” is a putrid and unpleasant odor associated with Tacoma, Washington. The smell has been described as similar to the odor of rotten eggs. The odor is not noticeable throughout the city, but is rather concentrated in the north end of Tacoma and is frequently smelled by motorists traveling that section of the Interstate 5 highway.”

H.P. LOVECRAFT STORY OF THE WEEK:

The Night Ocean
This gloomy mood piece follows a melancholy artist who spends time alone in his cabin by the sea, and unlike most of Lovecraft’s protagonists he doesn’t throw himself into the way of terrifying monstrosities.

GIF OF THE WEEK:

In his house at R'lyeh, dead Cthulhu waits...

Bruce Pennington

Friday Link Pack – Halloween

It’s Halloween and it’s Friday! That means it’s time to share a few spooooky links I’ve found over the last few days. Some of these I mention on Twitter, if you’re not already following me there, please do! Have a link I should feature in the upcoming link pack? Let me know! All right, let’s get to it.

Writing:

The Biggest Little-Known Influence On H. P. Lovecraft
Lovecraft has influenced numerous horror/thriller/fantasy writers for generations, but who influenced him? The Airship looks into the writer M. R. James.

On Writing Horror And Avoiding Cliches
Writing horror isn’t easy, so Chris Freese has put together this article to help you craft proper scares for your readers.

How To Write A Modern Ghost Story
The Guardian asks, how does one write for an audience that is cynical, yet still wishes to be terrified? It’s a good question and one of the biggest challenges for the modern horror writer.

The Top 20 Greatest Horror Writers of All-Time
Who was the best of the scare? Mania pulls together a list and there’s a lot of big names on it. I’m pretty please to see who came in as number one.

Art:

The Art Of Bruce Pennington
I’m a big fan of 70s cover art. There’s something earnest about it. If you want to see some of the best check out the work of Bruce Pennington. He’s created a wide range of covers from macabre to the futuristic visions of science fiction.

The Bus by Paul Kirchner
I absolutely love this series of comics about a man and a bus. They’re more surreal than scary but they have that sort of Twilight Zone weirdness that makes them perfect for this time of year.

Mayokero Music Video
This music video by Israeli artist Roy Kafri takes classic album covers and brings them to life. It’s not really spooky, but it’s downright cool.

Random:

A Graphic Guide To Cemetery Symbolism
Great infographic from the fine folks over at Atlas Obscura explaining the meaning of common gravestone designs.

10 Scientific Explanations For Ghostly Phenomena
For the skeptics. Listverse explores 10 perfectly rational explanations for the spooky behavior people witness.

When The Stars Are Right…
A site attempting to set a definitive time line to the events portrayed in the fiction of H.P. Lovecraft and the Cthulhu Mythos. Mythos fans will love it.

Lovecraft Story of the Week:

The Thing On The Doorstep
A man makes a case why he’s not a murderer despite sending six-bullets through the head of his friend. His bizarre reasoning won’t be what you think.

Gif of the Week:

SpooOOOoooOOOooookky
Have a happy Halloween everyone!

The art of Allen Williams

Hollie and The Death of Trees by AllenWilliams
Hollie and The Death of Trees by Allen Williams

As many of you may know I am heavily influenced by art. I have a whole slew of Pinterest boards set up to organize things I find that inspire me for my various projects. So from time to time I want to share artists I have discovered with the hope that you will also be inspired.

The other day I was introduce to Allen Williams art and I absolutely love it. Working in graphite and mixed media his pieces are as beautiful and bizarre as they are stunning and scary. It’s a wonderful mix of H.P. Lovecraft and H. R. Giger with the technical expertise of M.C. Escher. There’s enough reality in his work that most viewers will find something recognizable, but he forces the viewer outside their comfort zone by twisting what is recognizable into something otherworldly. That’s hard to do, and do well, and it’s impressive how well Williams does it.

Some of my favorite pieces:

To see more of his work take a look the rest of his site, also follow him on twitter, and add his blog to your favorite RSS reader. If you want his work grace your walls as well check out his store, he has quite a few originals and prints for sale.