Macabre Happenings

The Kickstarter for Café Macabre II is now live! The anthology features 13 horror stories with 13 art pieces all by women and is collected by Author and Editor Leah McNaughton Lederman. This volume is coming out strong at over 75% funded in 6 hours! It features my story The River with art by Keyla Valerio.

Check it out here: http://kck.st/3sZqunC

Kickstarter Update!

The Kickstarter campaign for Last Road to the Backwoods is heating up. As a thank you to our backers, we have added free swag with every physical tier pledge

You will now receive a bookmark, sticker and print with your pre-order of a physical copy!

We also celebrated hitting the $5k mark by adding a thank you page to the printed and digital editions listing the names of all of our wonderful backers, as well as including chapter 1 of our as-yet-untitled sequel as an epilogue.

At the time of my writing this, We are only $812 from being fully funded! Thank you all for your incredible support!!

If unsettling, dark fiction with a twist of occult noir sounds interesting to you, consider pledging here: http://kck.st/30Vxaqp

Last Road Updates

Kickstarter has chosen Last Road to the Backwoods as a “Project We Love”! Which has thrilled us! We hope that you take the time to check out what the fuss is about: http://kck.st/30Vxaqp

Enjoy this sneak peek of some interior art Matt has been working on:

As well as this excerpt from an early chapter, regarding Agent John Elyard :

Come be unsettled with us!

Earth and Sky

Sky

I’ve been plugging along on my anthology based on the Sylacauga meteor event. I was inspired to write it after reading an article about Ann Hodges, and seeing her photograph. She looked overwhelmed and alone. As alone as I could imagine one would be, having been the only person in known history hit by a meteorite. I’ve started with other tales based around the event because I think when I finally sit down with Mrs. Hodges, my heart will ache.

Ann Hodges (center) poses with her meteorite, Alabama mayor Ed Howard (left) police chief W.D. Ashcraft.  (Image credit: University of Alabama)

I’ve most recently been writing a story based on Julius McKinney’s discovery of a piece of the same meteorite on his property. Julius was alerted to its presence by his mules, who refused to move until he removed the meteorite from their path. Realizing its significance later, he retrieved it from the underbrush he had tossed it in and took it home. He’d later sell it and make enough money to afford a house and car from the profits. I’ve felt at home with Mr. McKinney, and have enjoyed writing about him, even if the tale I’m telling is a highly fictionalized version of events.

The McKinneys and The Meteorite. (Image Credit: Ebony Magazine)

Mr. McKinney and Mrs. Hodges had vastly different experiences both in how they were affected by the meteorite and how their stories were covered in the press. Mr. McKinney being subject to the widespread prejudices of the time, was still a footnote on all the information found in my research. He is merely an aside, even though his life was drastically changed by his discovery.

Astronomical Institute of the Charles UniversityJosef Ďurech, Vojtěch Sidorin – DAMIT – Database of Asteroid Models from Inversion Techniques: for (1685) Toro

Astronomers have pinpointed the source of the meteorite as 1685 Toro discovered in 1948 by Carl Wirtanen and takes 584 days to orbit the sun. Its proximity to earth in November of 1954 make it a likely candidate.

Earth

Café Macabre II has been officially announced by author and editor Leah Lederman! It is an anthology of 13 dark tales and illustrations by women. I have the honor of having my short story “The River.” included, illustrated by amazing artist Keyla Valerio. A quote from “The River” as well as Keyla’s illustration served as the opening salvo of promotion for the project, which will go live on Kickstarter April 6.

This anthology is a follow up to Café Macabre, published in 2019, which I also had the honor of being a part of.

If you’d like to start at the beginning, Café Macabre is available on Amazon and signed copies are available at my storefront.

Thank you for reading. More updates to come for both Sylacauga and Café Macabre as well as other things in the works!

Below the Surface

My February Ladies of Horror piece is live on spreadingthewritersword.com! These pieces are short stories, flash fiction & poetry inspired by a prompt sent by the wonderful ladies at LoH.

Day after day she tested her strength and range of movement. The water carried her closer to the other bodies, creating a sort of vortex of misery. Fish fed on her mindlessly. She tried batting them away but was still too weak. On the 4th day below the surface, she saw a disturbance and realized with horror it was another woman’s body being tossed in with the rest

Below the Surface by Michelle Joy Gallagher

Sylacauga

My anthology in progress is centered around the Sylacauga meteor event outside of Oak Grove, Alabama in 1954. The fireball was seen from 3 states, eventually crashing through the roof of the Hodges house at 12:46pm local time.
The wound inflicted on Ann Hodges by the Sylacauga Meteorite as she napped on her couch. She is the only person in recorded history to be hit by one. (Jay Leviton/The LIFE Images Collection via Getty Images/Getty Images)

Unfound

I created this site in 2015 with the intention of posting regularly to it. I did, for about a year. It was a tumultuous time for me personally. I only had enough energy to survive. I ran on autopilot. The years bled. I busied myself with the minutiae of life.

 

Writing has always been like breathing for me. An autonomic response. It has also served as a bone setter when I’m shattered. I continued to write and heal, buried in the sediment, a wholly unfound thing.

 

My mind wanders often to all the myriad things lying unfound. Relics and ruins. Pieces of terror and beauty scattered and hidden. Some eternally. I can’t help but feel a kinship with them.

 

Slowly, I came back to life. Watching my children grow, reveling in the light they bring to the darkness. Adopting a dog named Arya, half German Shepherd, half Husky, all brat. Caring for my mother, whose unconditional love has carried me through. I met and married my true love just as Covid was spreading its tendrils across the sea. I live in a strange state of dissonance, knowing some of my happiest, most joyous moments have come during some of the darkest times in human history.

 

Along the way, I have been lucky enough to participate in some amazing projects; Trusted with poetry pieces for the The Rejected, a comic series written by Stan Konopka. A short story called Red Woman for the all women’s horror anthology Café Macabre compiled by Leah Lederman, as well as one called Awake for Blackhawk vol. 2 with one of my favorite authors David Brown and various other authors. I wrote my first 8 page comic Under the Root for the comic anthology Get in the Game compiled by Pat Kawula. I’ve become a regular participant in the Ladies of Horror monthly picture prompt writing challenges. These are things I am immensely proud to be a part of, have helped me grow as a writer, and am thrilled to share with you now.

 

There are several projects coming in 2021, including a novel I wrote with my husband, two more anthologies, a comic, and an anthology of my own in early stages. I’ve revamped my site to include links to my Ladies of Horror archive, a storefront where you can purchase most of the books mentioned above, as well as other goodies. I’m also still writing poetry. The ultimate catharsis.

 

There is a part of me that will always remain unfound, but I am far overdue for an unearthing. 6 years of life has passed between us, and I hope you can pick up where we left off. I am humbled by your readership, your love, and patience. Watch this space!