Archive for Weird Fiction

Update 05/10/2020: Quarantine Blues VI, Mother’s Day Edition

Posted in Black Sabbath, Blood Ceremony (band), Bloody Mary (ghost), Greetings from Krampus, Heavy Metal Music, Hippocampus Press, John Entwistle, literary criticism, Literary Journals, Mother's Day, Penumbra (Journal), Rise Above Records, S.T. Joshi, Spectral Realms, Stay-at-home order, The Beldam / Other Mother, The Hell of Mirrors, The Who, Updates with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 10, 2020 by Manuel Paul Arenas

Happy Mother’s Day to all you mothers out there! I may not be able to see my ma today, but I called her yesterday and last week I dropped off a little something for her in honor of the day. I think the hardest part of this pandemic has been the postponement of any family gatherings until the lockdown is lifted, and maybe even a little after that, just to make sure. I know our governor is anxious to get the economy moving again, but I am not anxious to be rubbing elbows any time soon with the masses, most of whom brazenly flouted the CDC’s prescribed safety precautions. Anyway, since I can’t be with my own mother today, I am putting in a few extra hours at the call center (I do phone captioning for the hard of hearing) today to help out with the anticipated barrage of holiday greetings.

Yesterday, I stayed in  for most of the day, save for a quick run in the morning for supplies. After several hours of climbing my apartment walls, I decided in the evening to go out and pick up a couple of slices of pizza for supper. On my way out, I checked my mailbox and found two much anticipated items: the first was a package from Zia Records containing a 45 RPM of the song Lolly Willows by Blood Ceremony. The single came out last year but was still available in the collectible purple vinyl edition. It came in a protective sleeve and it is really a lovely package, replete with an ornamental sleeve and a lyric insert. The B-side is the song Heaven and Hell, by the Who. I am a fan of the band’s early work, especially John Entwistle‘s macabre little ditties, but (IMHO) this song never lived up to it’s title, unlike the song of the same name by Black Sabbath, which is a Heavy Metal classic. I’d love to hear Blood Ceremony cover that one!

The purple vinyl edition of Lolly Willows by Blood Ceremony. (2019, Rise Above Records)

Also in my mailbox was an envelope from S.T. Joshi with the contract from Hippocampus Press for the inclusion of my story The Hell of Mirrors in the debut issue of the weird fiction/ literary criticism journal, Penumbra. I was especially relieved to finally receive it, as I had noticed some of my colleagues mentioning on Facebook that they’d already received their respective contracts for their contributions to the issue, and I began to fret that I’d been passed up. As soon as I opened and read it, I signed it, and I put it in the mail first thing this morning! I believe that journal is coming out in July.

I also notice my fellow poets posting acceptance notices for submissions to Spectral Realms for issue #14. I must get cracking on that as well! I am currently working on a few different prose pieces, and I may try sending more of my older revamped poems. I have even considered sending Greetings from Krampus, as it will be the Winter issue. I may send Mr. Joshi a message tomorrow, to give him a heads-up to keep an eye out for the contract, and include that poem as well.

Anyway, that’s all for today. Take care, be safe and remember to call your moms and show them some love… Or else the Other Mother will come for you and sew buttons on your eyes!

The Other Manny


Update 06/06/2018

Posted in Black Hymeneal, Clark Ashton Smith, Denisse Montoya, Gothic Poetry, Gothilocks, Grimscribe Press, Poetry, Self Publishing, Test Patterns: Creature Features, The Audient Void, The Fell Fête, Vastarien, Weird Poetry with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 7, 2018 by Manuel Paul Arenas

I have had a lot of stuff going on over the last month or so and many of my previous plans and aspirations have been put on hold till further notice. My friend Denisse, who was helping me put together Black Hymeneal has had some personal concerns which demand her time and attention so the work she was doing for me has been put indefinitely on hold, which may work out for me in the end since it has been suggested to me by some friends in the field that publishing a book before one has an audience to sell it to may be an unsound investment.

So, instead, I have been focusing on getting my work published. At present, there are five publications which I am waiting to hear back from. I have sent poems to The Audient Void, Vastarien, and Mirror Dance for consideration and I have also sent The Fell Fete to a UK publisher which is putting together a book in tribute to Clark Ashton Smith, and just last night I sent Gothilocks to the magazine Test Patterns: Creature Feature for their next issue. I’m not sure that I understood their requirements and may have just made a futile submission, but we’ll see what Fate has in store for me in that regard.

I have been thinking that I want to do some video recitals of my poetry for a proposed Youtube channel. In the interim, I have contacted my good friend Rand to see if he knows anyone who can perhaps shoot a video of a brief recital to post on here. I’d like it to be up close and personal, as if I were reading directly to the viewer and maybe even have a moody setting. I might even dress up a bit for it. We’ll see what we can pull off.

Update 6/14/2018:

Vastarien sent a very polite rejection notice recently for Moribond. I was surprised, since they emphasized their interest in poetry of the Park Barnitz persuasion, and Moribond is definitely within that charnel house genre, but I think my little poem may have less to do with the artful poesy of that doomed scribe and more to do with lurid Gothic broadside ballads. Either way, they didn’t take it.