Crickets Sing for Naomi: A Release




OMG. I’m so excited to announce that my Southern Gothic fantasy short story “Crickets Sing for Naomi” is up on PodCastle!

I’ve been listening to EscapeArtists Inc.’s podcasts (PodCastle for fantasy, Escape Pod for sci-fi, PseudoPod for horror, and most recently Cast of Wonders for YA.), for ages now and it’s such and honor to have one of my stories accepted there.

The story is read by the golden-voiced Khaalidah Muhammad-Ali, one of the editors for the podcast. She’s done a wonderful job with the voices and the nuances of tone and enunciation. Which isn’t easy when all three speaking characters are women.



The idea for “Crickets Sing for Naomi” was born when I lived in an apartment in Northern Virginia. For some reason, crickets were everywhere–the sidewalks, the stairs–and they followed me around. At least they seemed to. So much so that one of my friends started calling me a cricket shaman.

As for the title of the story, it’s based on the song “Crickets Sing for Anamaria”, the English-language version of “Os Grilos” (“The Crickets”), written by Brazilian musicians Marcos Valle and Paulo Sérgio Valle.

Head on over to PodCastle and listen to the story for free. While you’re there, have a little nose around at their other stories. I’m sure you’ll find a lot to enjoy.



Black Girl Nerds Podcast: Halloween Special– This Sunday!

This Sunday, I am honored to be taking part in the Black Girl Nerds Horror podcast!

In the interview segment, I’ll be talking about my book, Spook Lights: Southern Gothic Horror as well as my outreach to other Black female horror writers. 51YOUAH3SBL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_

L.C. Cruell will tell us about 7 Magpies, the first all Black, all female horror film anthology: her inspiration for the idea and why this anthology will be an important dent in the horror genre.

A first of its kind: a horror film anthology written and directed by Black women.
A first of its kind: a horror film anthology written and directed by Black women. I’m the third.

Ashlee Blackwell will be telling us about about her creation, Graveyard Shift Sisters–how it came to be, the experience she’s gained, and the reception she’s gotten from it. (I’m also pleased to say, I write a feature for the GSS blog about other female horror writers of color.)

In addition, Ashlee will talk about her successful #FridayNightHorror, a monthly live-tweet hosted she hosts that selects various movies of the horror genre.

On top of all that horror goodness, we’ll be discussing our favorite things about Halloween.  (Hint: Scary movies and your horror crush…Every horror fan has one!) You don’t want to miss this!

Tune into the Black Girl Nerds Halloween Special podcast on Sunday, October 25th from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. EST at this link.

If you can’t make it, I hope it will be archived, so I can post a link to the show.

So You Think You Know Horror?

I am lucky to have the multi-talented horror queen Emerian Rich as a guest poster on the blog today.  Emerian is an author, editor, artist, and vocal talent who I’m pleased to have worked with on the new release The Horror Addicts Guide to Life. Without further ado, heeeerrre’s Emerian!

So You Think You Know Horror?   Night's Knight cover
by Emerian Rich

As a horror writer and hostess, I pride myself on seeing the world through zombie-colored glasses. I figure, I can riff on anything horror related and have a better-than-average grasp of horror topics. So, when I first contemplated creating a horror almanac to be included in our Horror Addicts Guide to Life publication, I thought…no sweat, right?

Wrong. The thing us horror addicts forget is that for most of the year we are pretty useless to the general public. Sure, we are cool to invite if you want a spooky campfire story and always called upon for costume advice, but when Thanksgiving rolls around, we’re utterly forgotten.

My task was to find something to say about every month. Tasks to do, events to attend, people to celebrate. 365 days becomes a daunting task when you have to fill every single day with horror content. Holidays can be punked, horror birthdays can be found, but what do you do on a month like August when there is absolute nothing going on?

In the beginning, it was fun. I started with October because that is the beginning (and end) of a true horror addicts calendar. I got six months filled without hardly a backwards glance, but then, the dreaded blank page stared back at me, mocking my ignorance for the task and my cocky belief that I could tackle every day of the year horror-style.

My first solution was to ask my horror friends and staff. When that turned dry, I asked non-horror people, then I scoured the internet for fun horror facts. But still, all of this left gaping holes in a calendar that I live every year and should have been a piece of Devil’s food cake. Having exhausted all my sources, I took a deep breath and had a talk with myself.

Cover of The Horror Addicts Guide to Life.  Because who doesn't need a little help with the horror?
Cover of The Horror Addicts Guide to Life.

“Listen, Emz, this shouldn’t be so hard. You live the horror lifestyle. Calm down and think about what you do each month, each day, that makes your life happily horrific.”

And that’s when the blood started flowing. The almanac was done in no time at all once I tapped my inner horror addict, the silly, zany, spooky gal inside that likes to tell ghost stories and play corny zombie board games.

Inside the Horror Addicts Guide to Life, you will find twelve months of awesome horror addict-ness. What do to, what to wear, what to celebrate, as only a true horror enthusiast would. For just a little taste, I’ll share April’s to do list with you:

  1. Plan your epitaph.
  2. Appreciate your bat.
  3. Stock up on garlic (except for vampires).
  4. Stock your laboratory for World Lab Day (23rd).
  5. Tell a spooky story.
  6. Recycle, the spooky way, for Earth Day (22nd).

Don’t forget, April is contains a lot of spooky holidays such as Be Kind to Spiders week, the 1819 publication of the first vampire story, The Vampyre by John Polidori. It’s also home to Walpurgisnaught, the holiday quoted in Dracula, 1931 as the night of evil.

For more fun facts and horror-ific things to do year-round, check out the Horror Addicts Guide to Life.


Horror hostess Emerian Rich.
Horror hostess Emerian Rich.

Emerian Rich is the author of the vampire book series, Night’s Knights. She’s been published in a handful of anthologies by publishers such as Dragon Moon Press, Hidden Thoughts Press, Hazardous Press, and White Wolf Press. Emerian is a podcast horror hostess of To find out more about Emerian, go to:

The Horror Addicts Guide to Life: A Release and Podcast

*Best studio announcer voice*

Do you love the horror genre? Are normal people concerned about your love of the macabre?

Worry no more.  The Horror Addicts Guide to Life is now available, chock full of horror news, reading, and scary fun.  This book features articles, artwork , interviews with Midnight Syndicate, Valentine Wolfe, and The Gothic Tea Society.

Oh, and an article written by me about what it’s like to be a horror editor.  *Tremble*

Grab your copy here.

Cover of The Horror Addicts Guide to Life.  Because who doesn't need a little help with the horror?
Cover of The Horror Addicts Guide to Life. Because who doesn’t need a little help with the horror?

As a bonus, Horror Addicts have dedicated an episode of their podcast to the contributors to The Horror Addict’s Guide to Life.

Listen to Episode 111, in which I read an excerpt from my dark fantasy novella, “Containment” at 44:59, but the entire podcast is well worthy of your attention.

Podcast for the Ages: Running and Screaming and Giant Frogs

I love podcasts.  There’s something about them–maybe the fact that I can walk around and do other things while listening to them. So rare for me lately to not be tied to a computer screen. It also gives me a back in the day sort of feeling, listening to the radio while doing chores.

There’s a radio show on BBC Radio 4 called The Unbelievable Truth, that I also enjoy listening to. It’s a quiz show with comedian David Mitchell in the chair– love that term– and is described in the program’s introduction as “the panel game built on truth and lies.” The object of the game is for the participants to lie on a subject, while trying to include the truth without being detected. The other contestants have to spot the lies to win points. You can find episodes of it on You Tube. I used to listen to it while washing dishes, kitchening, packing, or daydreaming about what I need to write.

This... this is what I need to finish writing.  I mean, It's going to be released in another month or so.
This… this is what I need to finish writing. I mean, it’s going to be released in another month or so.

I also find not having the visual to focus on more stimulating to the imagination. If you’ve never listened to a podcast online, I recommend Crucible of Realms. It’s fun and crazy and geeky and always makes me laugh.

Some of the comments made are enough to inspire stories on their own.  I mean, check the title of this podcast:

Running and Screaming and Giant Frogs.

So listen to the latest Epoch iteration on the fantastic Crucible of Realms.  To quote the podcast: “Go out there and create something. The world needs more stuff.”

Disclaimer: There’s a little bit of a skip toward the end of my reading, but I don’t think it distracts from the excerpt.