Thursday, 25 May 2017

Interview with J. Lincoln Fenn by David Kempf

J. Lincoln Fenn began her horror career in the 7th grade when she entertained her friends at a sleepover by telling them the mysterious clanking noise (created by the baseboard heater) was in fact the ghost of a woman who had once lived in the farmhouse, forced to cannibalize her ten children during a particularly bad winter. Strangely, it was the last slumber party she was allowed to have.

Her debut novel, POE, won the 2013 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award for Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Horror and went on to become an Amazon bestseller. DEAD SOULS was published in September 2016 by Gallery Books. The author grew up in New England and graduated Summa Cum Laude from the University of New Hampshire. Currently she lives in Seattle with her family, and is at work on THE NIGHTMARCHERS.

When did you first become interested in writing?

I think like all writers, I started out as an avid reader. I was the kid who checked out the maximum number of books from the library and wore holes in the fabric of the couch from reading. Then in college I knew I wanted to tell stories, but wasn’t sure what medium. So I took all the writing classes I could, from poetry, to screenwriting, playwriting, even acting and directing. My work is very dramatic - I look at it as a way to produce a movie in someone’s mind.

How did you get involved in fantasy/horror?

The strange thing is I started out trying to write a memoir about my parents’ deaths. And I just couldn’t nail it - it was too close. Then this character, Dimitri, started rumbling around in my head, and I wrote the first paragraph, so I wrote the first chapter, then the next, and these paranormal/urban fantasy elements surfaced, and I went with it. But it still has a lot of narrative details of things that really happened to me.

And then I’ve always been interested in the supernatural - in high school I had a copy of The Modern Witch’s Spellbook, I owned runestones and tarot cards, and as I grew older that interest pointed toward Eastern mysticism. I spent two years living in a Buddhist retreat center. And it seems to me that what we call reality is actually skimming the surface of something else. Fantasy/horror is where you can explore that creatively, and then walk away and say ‘ha ha, just a story, nothing to see here,’ when in actuality, there is.

Why do you think the deal with the Devil is so popular in horror fiction?

It’s interesting that you ask that, because Discover recently posted an article, The Origins of an Ancient Fairy Tale, where researchers think the ‘deal with the Devil’ story could possibly go back about seven thousand years. So it’s been pretty popular for a while.

It’s a story about human hubris and aspiration, avarice and ingenuity. There’s always this struggle between our base instincts and something higher. I think we’re all the characters in our stories - it’s a way to look at our complexity, try to make sense of it.

Why do you think horror and fantasy books remain so popular?

We’re very imaginative creatures, and we can’t quite be satisfied entirely with reality the way it is. We have to tinker with it, create new and different worlds. It’s also a place for us to look at the things that are too disturbing to look at directly.

The War of the Worlds was H.G. Wells’ attempt to get people to feel the shock and horror of a colonizing force with advanced weaponry and an agenda that’s unknowable. What that would feel like. A straightforward novel about British imperialism might have been harder to connect with emotionally.

What is it about Edgar Allan Poe do you believe is so timeless?

‘Worst ways to die’, hands down. It’s something we all worry about - how we’ll die - and he comes up with ingenious, torturous deaths that you will never, never get out of your head.

What inspires you?

The characters. I love it when I have a good idea of how the story will go, and then the characters take shape and change it. Something spooky happens in that I’m no longer the creator, but the recorder of what happens. I know it’s right when what I think doesn’t get in the way, and it just develops, like a photographic print in a chemical bath (yes, back when there was no such thing as digital cameras and dinosaurs roamed the earth).

What do you think the differences between American horror and British horror are?

What we’re afraid of plays a part in the kind of horror we’re drawn to. When I think about British horror, I think about societal collapse or the loss of order, like 28 Days Later, and with American horror we seem fascinated by the bogeyman, probably because we feel vulnerable to random acts of violence.

One of the things I love about British horror is the way it can blend suspense, horror, and comedy. It’s really hard to walk that line, adding a joke into a horrific situation, because it naturally releases tension. When I was writing POE, that was something I struggled with. I watched Shaun of the Dead and Being Human to see how they got away with it.

Do you see differences between the male and female writer’s perspective on the world?

If the writer is really good, it’s something you shouldn’t notice. I’ve read great work by male writers who really capture the experience of being a woman, and vice versa. To be a writer you need a high sense of empathy - the ability to feel another’s emotions. And you have to ruthlessly let a character be their flawed selves.

I had a few readers of POE complain the main character, Dimitri, was a bit misogynistic, (which he is), and then by extension think that I was misogynistic because I ‘wrote’ him that way. Others were surprised to find out I’m a woman because he was so ‘realistic.’ But human experience is human experience - we’re more the same than we are different.

What are your favorite horror books?

That would be a mighty long list, so I’m going to just point to a few of my new favorites. A Head Full of Ghosts by Paul Tremblay, The Troop by Nick Cutter, John Langan’s The Fisherman, The Devil Crept In by Ania Ahlborn and Harrowgate by Kate Maruyama. All guaranteed to keep you up a bit later at night.

What are some of your favorite horror movies?

The Grudge scared the bejeezus out of me and Stephen Spielberg’s War of the Worlds always leaves a disturbing taste in my mouth for days afterward. But my favorite popcorn/grab your partner’s hand/horror movie of all time is The Thing. I’d hate to see it remade with CGI.

What do you consider your greatest accomplishment as an artist?

Just getting published. It is a long, rocky, treacherous road and I’m so grateful to have been given the opportunity to reach so many readers.      

Do you have any advice for new writers?

Focus on writing the best book you can. Then toss it if you have to, and write a better one. There’s no shortcut, there’s no magic, it’s just a lot of sitting at your computer, typing, and your best move is to write a great book. Yes, social media is important, but if you have to choose between spending a half hour on social media or a half hour on writing, go for writing. It will open doors.

For some practical advice, when you’re writing a query letter to an agent or a book proposal, make sure it’s perfect. I mean perfect. If you write a good book, but toss off a query letter or synopsis that’s less than exciting or has a typo, you’re doing all that hard work a big disservice. Every writer hates writing a synopsis, but make sure yours is polished and interesting. Show it to friends and ask for an honest opinion.

What do you think of the rise in self-publishing?

It can be a great opportunity for people who enjoy the business side of things - I know writers who have been extremely successful with that model. On the down side, there’s so much out there for free it makes it harder than ever to get your book noticed.

What are your current projects?

Coming out next is The Nightmarchers, a twisty, Lovecraftian-style horror story set on a remote island, and then I’m working on a three-book proposal that my agent will shop around.

For our readers we'd love a paragraph about yourself & your work. 

Fenn began her horror career in the 7th grade when she entertained her friends at a sleepover by telling them the mysterious clanking noise (created by the baseboard heater) was in fact the ghost of a woman who had once lived in the farmhouse, forced to cannibalize her ten children during a particularly bad winter.

It was the last slumber party she was allowed to have.

Her most recent novel, Dead Souls, was called ‘wickedly entertaining’ by The New York Times, and Publishers Weekly gave it a starred review, writing that it was “one of the scariest and best to come down the pike in ages....The narrative twists and turns are reminiscent of Dean Koontz or Stephen King at their finest. This story is horribly, horrifyingly awesome.”

In 2013, her debut novel POE won the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award for Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Horror and became a #1 bestseller in both Fantasy and Horror on Amazon.

The author grew up in New England, graduated from the University of New Hampshire with a degree in English, and lives in Seattle with her family.


You can buy Dead Souls from the Amazon links below.
Dead Souls - Amazon UK
Dead Souls - Amazon USA

Thursday, 18 May 2017

Film News (UK): Horror Channel unleashes eight premieres for June

Horror Channel has eight prime-time weekend film premieres in June including the UK premieres of RETREAT, Carl Tibbets’ ‘ménage a trois of terror’ starring Thandie Newton, Cillian Murphy and Jamie Bell and R.D. Braunstein’s smartly gripping I SPIT ON YOUR GRAVE 3: VENGEANCE IS MINE – widely seen as the best of the series. There are also network premieres for Jennifer Lynch’s uncompromising and dark chiller CHAINED, William Malone’s gruesome cyber thriller FEARDOTCOM, starring Stephen Dorff and Natascha McElhone and Michael Reeves’s highly acclaimed WITCHFINDER GENERAL, starring Vincent Price.

In a deadly virus catching month, other highlights are first channel showings for John Pogue’s [REC] inspired scareline QUARANTINE 2 TERMINAL, Breck Eisner’s critically-acclaimed remake of George Romero's 1973 movie, THE CRAZIES and James Cameron’s directorial debut PIRANHA 2: THE SPAWNING starring Lance Henriksen and plenty of flying killer fish.

Full details of premieres in transmission order:

Fri 2 June @ 21:00 – QUARANTINE 2: TERMINAL (2011) *Network Premiere
A bizarre disease, unleashed in a run-down Los Angeles tenement killing everyone, has somehow mutated and got out. Now, aboard Flight 318, the first symptoms begin to show. As the infection begins to takes root, all on board begin to transform into terrifying, bloodthirsty killers. Forced to land at an isolated terminal, and surrounded by armed government agents, the crew and passengers grow increasingly desperate. The only question now is how far they will go to survive..

Sat 3 June @ 22:50 – WITCHFINDER GENERAL (1968) *Network Premiere
Set during the English Civil War, Matthew Hopkins (Vincent Price), a lawyer and self-appointed 'Witchfinder General', tours the Eastern counties instigating witch-hunts and extracting 'confessions' under torture. When a young woman, Sara (Hilary Dwyer), is raped by Hopkins and her priest father murdered, Sara’s lover, Richard Marshall (Ian Ogilvy), a soldier in Cromwell's army, vows revenge. The last and best film of director Michael Reeves's tragically brief career, Witchfinder General has received broad critical admiration

Fri 9 June @ 22:45 – I SPIT ON YOUR GRAVE 3: VENGEANCE IS MINE (2015) *UK TV Premiere
After her harrowing experiences in 2010, Jennifer Hills (Sarah Butler) has taken the name Angela and is now working in an anonymous office job. Attending a rape support group to find closure, she meets feisty Marla Finch (Jennifer Landon) and they become firm friends. Then Marla suggests that Angela join her in taking revenge by proxy on the abusers they hear about in their secret sessions…

Sat 10 June @ 22:55 – FEARDOTCOM (2002) *Network Premiere
When four bodies are discovered among the industrial decay and urban grime of New York City, brash young detective Mike Reilly (Stephen Dorff) teams with ambitious Department of Health researcher Terry Huston (Natascha McElhone) to uncover the cause behind their violent and inexplicable deaths. The only common factor shared by the victims? Each died exactly 48 hours after logging on to Also stars Stephen Rea and Udo Kier.

Fri 16 June @ 21:00 – THE CRAZIES (2010) *Network Premiere
Anarchy reigns when an unknown toxin turns the peaceful citizens of Ogden Marsh into bloodthirsty lunatics. In an effort to contain the spread of the infection, authorities blockade the town and use deadly force to keep anyone from getting in or out. Now trapped among killers, Sheriff Dutten (Timothy Olyphant), his wife (Radha Mitchell) and two companions must band together to find a way out before madness and death overtakes them all.

Sat 17 June @ 22:55 – CHAINED (2012) *Network Premiere
A trip to the movies becomes a nightmare for Sarah (Julia Ormond) and her young son Tim (Eamon Farren) when they are kidnapped by Bob (Vincent D’Onofrio), a deranged taxi driver, and taken to his remote home. There the nine-year-old sees his mother murdered - but it isn’t the last slaughter he witnesses for Bob enslaves Tim, chains him up and forces him to bury his victims’ bodies. As years go by, Tim is allowed some freedom only if he turns killer himself. Now the reluctant protégé must make a choice between following in Bob's bloody footsteps or breaking free.

Fri 23 June @ 23:00 – PIRANHA 2: THE SPAWNING (1981) *Network Premiere
James Cameron’s directorial debut centres on a mysterious batch of eggs that have been left unrecovered from a sunken naval wreckage off a popular Caribbean island resort. When a series of bizarre deaths occur, scuba diving instructor (Tricia O’Neil), her biochemist boyfriend (Steve Marachuk) and her police chief ex-husband Lance Henriksen) try to find the link between the mutant strain of piranha fish terrorising everyone and their lair at the bottom of the sea...

Sat 24 June @ 23:00 – RETREAT (2011) *UK TV Premiere
Taking an isolated break on an uninhabited island, Martin (Cillian Murphy) and Kate (Thandie Newton) are about to find that their island retreat is about to become a prison of unimaginable terror. When a blood-soaked stranger (Jamie Bell) stumbles through their door claiming an apocalyptic virus is sweeping across Europe, their lives are turned upside down as they face what could be the end of everything they know. Using all means necessary, they must fight to escape the approaching threat. But escape is only the beginning of their terrifying fight for survival...

TV: Sky 319 / Virgin 149 / Freesat 138 | Freeview 70 | |

Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Interview With Graham Masterton By David Kempf

Graham Masterton is a  majorly accomplished British horror author. Originally editor of Mayfair and the British edition of Penthouse, Graham Masterton's first novel The Manitou was released in 1976. This novel was adapted in 1978 for the film The Manitou. Further works garnered critical acclaim, including a Special Edgar Award by the Mystery Writers of America for Charnel House and a Silver Medal by the West Coast Review of Books for Mirror. He is also the only non-French winner of the prestigious Prix Julia Verlanger for his novel Family Portrait, an imaginative reworking of the Oscar Wilde novel The Picture of Dorian Gray. Masterton was also the editor of Scare Care, a horror anthology published for the benefit of abused children in Europe and the USA.

Masterton's novels often contain visceral sex and horror. In addition to his novels, Masterton has written a number of sex instruction books, including How To Drive Your Man Wild In Bed and Wild Sex for New Lovers. Masterton also spells Djinn different than I do in my books. Djinn as opposed to Jinn. One of us wrong. It was very generous of Graham to take the time to be interviewed by Masters of Horror U.K. today.

When did you first become interested in writing?

At about the age of 7 when my parents took me to see the movie of Jules Verne’s “Twenty Thousand Leagues Under The Sea” with James Mason and Kirk Douglas. I was so impressed by the submarine’s adventures and the battle with the giant squid that I rushed home afterwards and wrote my own novel about fighting giant squids. My hero was a harpoonist called Hans Lee. When I had finished the book I stuck a cardboard cover on it and drew a picture on the cover and sold the book to my best friend for a penny. After that I never stopped writing stories…and even wrote and illustrated my own comic, Flash! with a space pilot called Don Kenyon who bore a distinct resemblance to Dan Dare in the Eagle comic.

How did you get involved in fantasy/horror?

I started reading Edgar Allan Poe stories when I was 10 or 11 and loved The Pit and The Pendulum and other gruesome tales. That was when I started writing short horror stories for my friends and reading them at break time in school. One of my friends got in touch with me years later and said that I had given him nightmares for years with a story about a man whose head is cut off but continues to sing “Tiptoe Through The Tulips” out of his severed neck.

Do you think vampires are werewolves are overrated in horror fiction?

Very much so. I admit to have written two vampirish novels, Manitou Blood in which vampires are employed by Native American demons to strike at the white man in modern-day New York, and Descendant, which is about a vampire hunter in the closing days of World War Two. The vampires in Descendant, however, are the Romanian strigoi which have been recruited by the Nazis, and they don’t do anything as ridiculous as bite people in the neck to drink their blood. I wanted to write a vampire novel that was as close to the original mythology as possible. I didn’t want them swooping around in long black cloaks or turning into bats. But my general feeling is that horror writers should look for different and unusual threats…there are so many scary demons in the mythologies of various countries that you would never have time to write about them all.

How do you spell Djinn? (I think I made my own spelling for my book). 

It’s Djinn, all right.

Why do you think horror and fantasy books remain so popular?

The horror/fantasy market has had its ups and downs, but one of the main reasons is that readers can immerse themselves in really scary stories while at the same time knowing that in reality they are quite safe. The real world is frightening enough, and sometimes it’s reassuring to get yourself involved in a fictitious world in which you know that good will eventually triumph and in which you won’t be bombed or starved or fall victim to some ghastly sickness.

What inspires you?

Life. People. I was a newspaper reporter from the ages of 17 to 21 and I learned then to talk to people about what made them happy and what made them sad, and to ask penetrating questions that most people wouldn’t dare to ask. There are stories everywhere.
You only have to look for them, and there they are.

The idea of the wish gone wrong makes for great dark fiction. Did W.W. Jacob’s The Monkey’s Paw inspire you?

I did read The Monkey’s Paw and thought it was a great idea. Life for most people turns out to be a wish gone wrong, so there’s plenty of inspiration everywhere.

What do you think the differences between American horror and British horror are?

You have me stuck there because although I write horror fiction I never read it. I am critical enough of my own writing without picking up a horror novel by somebody else. I have never read a novel by Stephen King, for example, or even by my late friend Jim Herbert. The last novel I started to read was The Process, the story of a journey across the Sahara, which was given to me in 1970 by Brion Gysin who was a friend of William Burroughs. I have got to page 37.

What are some of your favorite horror movies?

I enjoyed both the Japanese and American remake of The Ring.

What do you consider your greatest accomplishment as an artist?

I think I have managed to develop my writing to the point where readers feel very involved with my characters and backgrounds, which is what I have been working hard to do for years.

Do you have any advice for new writers?

Keep at it. I have helped a young woman Dawn Harris to write her first novel Diviner and she slogged away at it without losing heart despite my very sharp criticisms. It ended up brilliantly. Don’t be disappointed by rejection and don’t be put off by bad reviews. Keep believing in yourself. Don’t try and copy anybody else…always try to be original and surprising. And put moisturiser around your eyes because you’re going to be peering at a computer screen for many years to come.

What do you think of the rise in self-publishing?

I believe that new writers need professional editing and promotion. Sometimes a self-published book can turn out to fantastic, but mostly they need a great deal of editorial attention.

What are your current projects?

I am finishing a second crime thriller set in the 18th century featuring Beatrice Scarlet, the daughter of a London apothecary, who is something of a Georgian CSI. I will also be writing a 9th novel featuring Detective Superintendent Katie Maguire, and a new horror novel which is almost finished but must remain a secret for the moment!

Please in your own words, write a paragraph about yourself & your work. 

The best thing that ever happened to me was being expelled from school and starting work as a trainee journalist at the age of 17. By the time I was 21 I had four years’ experience as a news reporter and feature writer and so I was able to land a job as deputy editor of Mayfair the new men’s magazine. I worked there for four years before having a bit of a barney with my boss and leaving to become deputy editor and eventually executive editor of Penthouse magazine. This gave me the opportunity to talk intimately to many different girls and what I gleaned from them I was able to use as the basis for a series of best-selling how-to books about sex, such as How To Drive Your Man Wild In Bed (which is still in print).

After the sex-book market began to wane, I submitted a horror novel that I had written for my own amusement to my publishers – The Manitou. That became an instant best-seller and was filmed with Tony Curtis in the lead role. I continued to write horror novels but also branched out to write historical sagas, political thrillers and disaster novels. My late wife Wiescka and I lived in Cork in Ireland for several years, and my experience of life in Ireland led me to write a series of crime novels featuring Detective Superintendent Katie Maguire. The murders in this series are sufficiently grisly for me not to have lost my horror readers (although, as I say, I am working a new straight-out horror novel) but obviously the crime audience is very much bigger. Thanks to Wiescka I became very successful in Poland and in January I launched the Graham Masterton “Written In Prison” Award which is a nationwide contest for inmates of Poland’s prisons to write a short story. It has been a great success and recently I visited HM Prison Holme House in Yorkshire to talk to the inmates about launching a similar contest in the UK. You can read more about me and see a full bibliography at

Wednesday, 3 May 2017

Competition: Win Frankenstein: Complete Legacy Collection [Blu-ray]

Frankenstein: Complete Legacy Collection is out on DVD & Blu-ray™ on 8th May and to celebrate we have a great competition for you a Bluray set to give away.

Universal Pictures’ classic monsters are unleashed onto Blu-ray™ on 8th May in four bonus-packed box sets; The Mummy Legacy Collection, The Frankenstein Legacy Collection, The Dracula Legacy Collection and The Wolf Man Legacy Collection.

Combined the four box sets contain 27 classic monster movies, 22 of which have never been released on Blu-ray before.

The Mummy, Frankenstein, Dracula and The Wolf Man are some of the silver screen’s most unforgettable characters. Collectively these four classic monsters have inspired generations of filmmakers for years and paved the way for a rich and varied genre.

Old fans and new can now own the complete Legacy Collections, digitally restored to look and sound more terrifying than ever!

Check out the release on Amazon by clicking the link below: (Opens in a new window)
Frankenstein: Complete Legacy Collection (BD) [Blu-ray] [2017]

Competition Closed
To enter Email us on with your answer, along with your name and address.

The Mummy Legacy Collection, The Frankenstein Legacy Collection, The Dracula Legacy Collection and The Wolf Man Legacy Collection releases on Blu-ray™ on 8th May in four bonus-packed box sets

Terms and conditions
1. Closing date 15-05-17
2. No alternative prize is available
3. When the competition ends as indicated on this page, any and all entries received after this point will not count and emails blacklisted due to not checking this page first.
4. Winners will be chosen randomly and will be informed via email.

Monday, 1 May 2017

Competition: Win "XX" on DVD - Released May 8th

XX is out on DVD on 8th May and to celebrate we have a great competition for you and 3 copies of the DVD to give away.

XX is a new horror anthology featuring four murderous tales of supernatural frights, thrills, profound anxiety, and Gothic decay.

Written and directed by four fiercely talented women the film stars female leads and is framed around innovative animator Sofia Carrillo.

Vigorously challenging the status quo within the industry, this collection of tightly coiled short films by some of horror’s most influential women offers a refreshing jolt to the senses.

Check out the release on Amazon by clicking the link below: (Opens in a new window)
XX [DVD] [2017]

To enter all you have to do is answer this easy question...

On what day is "XX" released on DVD in the UK?

To enter Email us on with your answer, along with your name and address.

Terms and conditions
1. Closing date 15-05-17
2. No alternative prize is available
3. When the competition ends as indicated on this page, any and all entries received after this point will not count and emails blacklisted due to not checking this page first.
4. Winners will be chosen randomly and will be informed via email.