Archive for July, 2013

Sinister Reads – June 2013

Posted in Awards Announcements, Bloodthirsty Blogs, Book Launches, General Information, New Releases, Sinister Slices with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 9, 2013 by ahwasinisterreads

Sinister Reads

What a month!  A smorgasbord of new releases for you to sink your teeth into (and your knife if you prefer the non-vampiry ways… although I wouldn’t recommend stabbing a novel – particularly if you are one whom prefers to read online).

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Sinister Happenings


AHWA Members Critique Groups

The AHWA is pleased to announce the launch of two new critique groups.

The ever popular short story critique group is being resurrected – and we’re going to trial a brand new writer’s workshop that is open to all members of the AHWA.  That’s right – novels, novellas, short stories – all are invited to participate.  Membership to both groups is open to members of the AHWA by invitation only.

If you are interested in taking part in either of these two groups, you need to join the AHWA today, and check out all the other exciting opportunities, you as an author, are currently missing out on.  There are tips on writing, how to get published, competitions, group forums and so much more.

Check out the Australian Horror Writer’s Association web-site today and become a member.


The Australia Shadow Awards – 2014 Submissions Open!

The Australian Shadows are the annual literary awards presented by the AHWA and judged on the overall effect – the skill, delivery, and lasting resonance – of horror fiction written or edited by an Australian.

Winners of the Awards receive a hand crafted trophy from the masters of the horror special effects industry, Nightshade FX.

The awards are open to submission of any horror fiction published (or anthologies edited) by an Australian/New Zealand/Oceania resident or citizen in the 2013 calendar year—submissions until February 28th 2014.

Past winners of the Shadows include a who’s who of Australian Horror Writers; Lee Battersby, Terry Dowling, Paul Haines, Brett McBean, Kirstyn McDermott, Bob Franklin, Kaaron Waaren, Will Elliott, Deborah Biancotti, Amanda Spedding.

From 2011, the award has five categories: NovelLong Fiction (novellas and novelettes); Short Fiction (short stories); Collection (single author collections); and Edited Publication (anthologies and magazine issues).

Shortlists for each category will be determined by a panel of judges . The shortlisted finalists are announced in March/April every year.

Read the Award Entry Guidelines to find out how to enter works for consideration.

Follow regular updates on the Australian Shadows Awards Facebook page.


AHWA Creative Retreat

The Australian Horror Writers Association run three-day/two-night stays at haunted locations for writers, editors, artists, photographers, film makers and any other creative-type people.

They involve having the days to create and the nights to investigate how to be scared stiff.

Upcoming Event:

Mayday Hills Asylum Creative Retreat

Beechworth’s Mayday Hills Asylum was one of the largest institutions in Victoria. Opened in 1867 (the same year as Aradale), this building also housed thousands of people described as ‘lunatics’, ‘idiots’ and ‘imbeciles’. Closing in 1995 after 128 years of operation, this site is considered one of the most haunted locations in Australia. At its height, Mayday Hills consisted of 67 buildings and was home to over 1200 patients and 500 staff.

As you spend three days and two nights in the facility, you will be able to explore the cold and deserted buildings of what was once a notorious and feared institution in Victoria . Spend the days writing, drawing, filming or photographing the beautiful architecture, and spend the nights scared stiff in the haunted buildings.

Cost: $345

Keep an eye on the AHWA website and Facebook page for further details as they are arranged.


Sinister Reads


New Meridian.

Dark Meridian – Volume One

Matthew Tait

Illustrator: James Powell

Publisher*: DM Publishing

ISBN no.:  978-0615821665

RRP: $AUS7.99

Release date: 31sr May, 2013

Available here and here.

Peru,  1835, and the Order of Sant’Antonio have just witnessed something that goes  against all belief: a ball of light has penetrated their sanctuary. Nobody has  seen anything like it before and Brother Chabuca Cristal knows that one of his  own flock is responsible for its presence. When Brother Meridian is abducted by  the flying object and taken away, all except Brother Cristal breathe a sigh of  relief that the ordeal is over…

Two centuries later and half a world away, Adam Lavas has  returned home. After gaining momentum in the arena of rock ‘n’ roll in a way  nobody else predicted, his band Solid State became a global sensation known  throughout every continent. But there is a price – a price that not even  commercial or critical success can hope to balm. For in the corridors of the  creative heart, dark things have always lurked – taking the forms of depression,  addiction, and some things even worse. So when he finds a certain mansion named  Meridian hidden within the hills of Adelaide, it seems like the perfect home  where he can deal with terminating his celebrity status and perhaps even  himself.

Step into Meridian’s halls, and discover a doorway into  another world.


“Inventive and suspenseful, Dark Meridian is a story of  epic proportions, told in Tait’s distinctive, genre blending style.” – Tracie  McBride, Author of Ghosts Can Bleed.   



The First Bird – Episode 1

Greig Beck

Publisher:  Pan Macmillan – Momentum


RRP: $AUS1.99

Release date: June 1, 2013

Available here.

No.1 – HOT NEW RELEASES – Science Fiction and Alt Hist.


Matt Kerns, linguist, archaeologist and reluctant explorer from Beneath the Dark Ice and Black Mountain returns in his first full-time adventure. And this time he doesn’t have Alex Hunter to save him when the stuff hits the fan. When a fame-hungry scientist brings an impossible, living specimen of a creature long thought extinct back from the wild jungles of South America he unwittingly brings along a passenger. Something with the potential to destroy every living thing on our planet. The infestation begins, rapidly overtaking medical resources and resisting all treatment. One woman knows the danger, Carla Nero, chief scientist of the Centre for Disease Control. She makes Matt an offer he can’t refuse and together they join a team heading to the deep jungle in a desperate race to locate the hidden place where the specimen was taken. Only by finding the location of the specimen can the team – and the world – hope to uncover the secret of how to survive the ancient, horrifying parasite that has been released. Join the team, as they must travel to the heart of the Amazon jungle to find a world within a world – a place fantastic, terrifying and deadly.


– Jurassic Park meets Contagion. Mike Esola, Prehstoric Channel.

– In a book that seems like Jurassic Park meets Indiana Jones, Beck manages to inject realism into a very unrealistic concept. From the deadly jungles of the Amazon to a parasitic virus unlike any mankind has ever seen, from a lost jungle tribe to creatures lost in time, the unbelievable becomes acceptable, and we easily manage to suspend our disbelief. This is a well-written and flawlessly-executed read, and I only have one complaint – it ends where it does. Please, Greig Beck, get the next two parts out on time!  G.Brown – President, Australian Horror Writers Asc.

– If you love scientific/action/adventure stories, you should be reading Greig Beck. His stories never fail to keep you on the edge of your seat, in fear for the characters and in anticipation of their horrific discoveries. The Speed of Write.

– At last, another great adventure written by Greig Beck. Again Beck creates an intelligent and balanced mix of action, history, science, and romantic flair that clinches the attention of the reader. This story is highly engaging and equally reaches the level of quality of Beck’s past works. Frontlaven Book Reviews. Rating – High



The Devil’s Opera

Adrian Scott

Illustrator: Traci Markou

Publisher:  Whimsical Publications

ISBN no.:  978-1-936167-88-3

RRP: $US 2.99

Release date: June 2013

Available here.

Olivier Luchario is the son of a famed operatic star, and a composer at the age of eight years. But there is a certain composition hidden within his ‘Devil’s Opera’ that slips him over the edge and into a madness even he is not aware of. Set in Vienna in the 1850’s, the story sees a London detective and a retired Bobby pursuing Oliver through the city in a desperate race against time…before the sound of his music takes effect again, and another young girl dies…



The Nightmare Dimension: the Cthulhu Mythos and Weird Fiction of David Conyers

David Conyers

Illustrator: Traci Markou

Publisher:  Amazon

RRP: $US2.99

Release date: 5 June 2013

Available here (US) and here (UK).

Collected together for the first time are thirteen tales of the best Cthulhu Mythos horror and weird short stories written by award-winning Australia speculative fiction author, David Conyers.

A wartime spy rescues a woman from the Sahara who has walked unscathed from a massacre of a thousand men. A mother sailing the ocean on a family holiday finds herself lost on a cargo ship where all the crew are made of paper. A business man becomes trapped in his hotel room because gravity has unexpectedly reversed for him. A reckless driver commits a serious crime and is forced to see out his twenty year sentence as a dog. Every story is a nightmare from which the victims cannot escape.

The collection includes the following stories: “Dream Machine” (Australian Shadows Finalist), “The Nightmare Dimension”, “Cactus”, “The Lord of the Law” (Australian Horror Writers Fiction Award Finalist), “Sister of the Sands”, “The Dream Quest of a Thousand Cats”, “Winds of Nzambi” with David Kernot (Australian Horror Writers Fiction Award Winner), “Sweet as Decay” with David Witteveen, “The Swelling”, “From The Sick Trees”, “Homo Canis” (Australian Horror Writers Fiction Award Winner), “Six-Legged Shadows” with Brian M Sammons and “Subtle Invasion” (Australian Shadows Finalist).


– “David Conyers can make reality terrifying and quantum physics understandable and interesting. He is, undoubtedly, one of the best Mythos authors since H.P. Lovecraft invited us all in to play.” — C.J. Henderson, author of The Things that are Not There

– “David Conyers writes the most wonderfully horrific kinds of stories—the rational, well-explained ones that can’t be written off or brushed aside, and just make too much sense.” — Peter Clines, author of the Ex-Heroes series and the acclaimed 14

– “Whether writing science fiction, horror, or Cthulhu Mythos fiction—often combining the tropes of thriller and military fiction, and frequently pulling off all of these things at the same time—the versatile David Conyers greatly impresses. He is gifted with much imagination, the knack for intriguing plot, suspenseful pacing, and compelling characters. I suspect the man can do it all, and will.” — Jeffrey Thomas, author of Deadstock

– “When it comes to eldritch espionage action, nobody does it better.” — Cody Goodfellow, author of Silent Weapons for Quiet Wars and Radiant Dawn

– “David Conyers is like the physicist who is all too happy to remind us that the solid world is only an illusion. Time and again, Conyers rips open the universe for us, to show us how empty it is, and how dark.” – D.L. Snell, author of Pavlov’s Dogs


TEOE Cover

The End of Ever

Troy Barnes

Publisher:  Troy Barnes Publishing

ISBN no.:  987-0-9805492-1-8

RRP: $25.00

Release date: 23 November 2013

Available here.

Zach stopped to survey the never-ending wasteland. His exhausted companions waited by his side. Their weary eyes followed the crumbling road that continued beyond the bleak horizon of the mysterious place they found themselves in.


An odd reality filled with strange creatures and morbid mutations. In a world where nightmares reign, the unlikely group of friends must face the unknown and travel through the sinister heart of Ever in search of a way home.

Friendships will be torn apart.

Lives will be lost.

Will anyone live happy after Ever?


Read reviews here.



The White of Weeping Cove

Kristian Becker

Publisher:  Bookpal Australia

ISBN no.:  978 0 9873798 01

RRP: $9.99

Release date: 1st June 2013

Available here.

There is a storm torn place called Weeping Cove, now half consumed by the sea. Beneath the wailing wind there are whispers of horrible secrets that the town’s people know of but none speak of. They know of the misery that lives high on the peak that shadows their town and who hunts them at night.

A lonely boy will arrive who will discover that reality can be more vivid, wild and frightening than any dream He must confront what lurks in the dark. It’s the only way to learn the hard lesson. You should never wish for anything because you might just get it.


Sinister Slices


Slither and Squeeze

by Tracie McBride

Published in Shifters: A Charity Shapeshifter Anthology


Art, Ink

by Jason Fischer and Martin Livings

Published in Antipodean SF


Sugar Shack

by Steven Gepp

Published in Song Stories Vol 1 (anthology, Wakefield Mahon)


A For Adelaide – City Of Churches

by Steven Gepp

Published in A-Z Cities of Death (anthology, Static Movement Press)


X For Xanadu

by Steven Gepp

Published in A-Z Cities of Death (anthology, Static Movement Press)


Love Of His Life

by Steven Gepp

Published in Under The Knife (Cruentus Libri Press)


The Dream Quest of a Thousand Cats

by David Conyers

Published in The Nightmare Dimension