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10 December 2012

Cover Art for Arcane II Revealed!

Take a look at this amazing image by French artist, Nihil.
Look closely. Blow it up to full size. Soak it in. 
“Le grand ordonnateur”
Let it inhabit your brain a bit.

But not too much--it's pretty damn creepy.

I am thrilled to say that this fine image will reportedly be gracing the cover of Arcane II, the much anticipated second volume in the Arcane Anthology series, edited by Nathan Shumate and published by Cold Fusion Media. “Le grand ordonnateur” apparently translates to "the great architect," or "the main organizer." Both evocative, though I prefer the former. Props to Nathan for his impeccable taste, and to the artist for his unique vision.

Of course, my story "The Dubious Apotheosis of Baskin Gough" will be appearing in Arcane II, so I have particular reason to be excited.

I have always been of the firm opinion that, even when readers know better, cover art can have a huge impact on sales. How many good books have I passed on again and again because of the cover art, only to be surprised when I actually did pick them up at the quality to be found between the covers? Likewise, I've bought more books than I can recall that were great right up until I actually got down to the reading. But not to worry. With all due modesty, I have complete faith that the stories in Arcane II will live up to such a wickedly alluring cover.

On a related note, here is a complete list of the
stories that will be appearing in Arcane II:

Jean Graham, “Nightcrawlers”
Nicole M. Taylor, “The Pianist’s Wife”
Suzanne Sykora, “Palace of Rats”
Michael R. Fletcher, “Fire and Flesh”
Steve Toase, “Fate’s Mask”
Miranda Ciccone, “Orpheus and Eurydice”
Joanna Parypinski, “Lakeshore Drive”
Harry Markov, “Hurricane Drunk”
Brooke Miller, “The Last Laugh”
Gef Fox, “Tree Hugger”
Philip Roberts, “90 Day Notice”
Libby Cudmore and Matthew Quinn Martin, “Convention of Ekphrasis”
Michael Haynes, “In the Paint”
Milo James Fowler, “Beneath the Surface”
Andrew Bourelle, “What It Means to Love”
Priya Sharma, “The Beatification of Thomas Small”
Craig Pay, “His City”
Patrick McGinnity, “The Dubious Apotheosis of Baskin Gough
Adele Gardner, “Triptych”
Eric Dimbleby, “The House That Wept Puddin’”

Be on the lookout for the e-book in Mid-January, and the print version not long after. Of course, I'll keep you updated, so check back often.

01 December 2012

Weird Scholar charts...well, the weird

Something interesting from the Weird Fiction Review, Ann and Jeff Vandermeer's site dedicated to the celebration and exploration of The Weird. Stephen Graham Jones, author and associate professor of English at the University of Colorado, Boulder, has shared a flow chart that attempts to pin down the notoriously squirmy and tentacular genre of weird fiction.

I have to admit to having developed a special affinity for weird fiction of late, especially since the story I have forthcoming in Volume II of the Arcane anthology fits squarely into the genre. I didn't intend that at the start, but the final product was certifiably weird (and this chart only confirms my original assessment).

One of the Vandermeers' most recent projects (to tell the truth, it is hard to keep up with these two) is the World Fantasy Award winning The Weird: A Compendium of Strange and Dark Stories. They've also complied a pair of fine anthologies of New Weird writing, but don't let the idea of "newness" confuse you. The "Old" Weird is still very much alive and undulating.