A Slithering Offer

My short story, A Slithering Offer, is now available to listen to for free on The Wicked LibraryIt’s part of Episode 803: Extra Wicked Winter Anthology 2018

This story was originally published on the horror-fiction website, Pen of the Damned

A Slithering Offer starts at 1 hour, eight minutes into the episode

A Slithering Offer (Audio Podcast Version)


February 2018

On The Wicked Library

Episode 803: Extra Wicked Winter Anthology 2018

Judging Hellraiser: Judgment

As a long-time fan of the Hellraiser franchise, I had to watch this one. But I was hesitant to do so after the saturation of not-so-great Hellraiser movies. I’m not saying they’re complete garbage—some of them have their own charm—but the first two resonate with me in a way none of the others can.

If you haven’t read Clive Barker’s The Hellbound Heart I strongly encourage you to!

I won’t say that Judgment was the worst of the franchise. But I think it doesn’t belong there.

First off, any Hellraiser without Doug Bradley as Pinhead just doesn’t work for me. When the same actor has played a character for so long, it’s a hell of a thing to try and get the same effect with another actor. No matter their skill, it just isn’t the same. Another actor playing Pinhead is like someone other than Hugh Jackman playing Wolverine. No matter how badass they are at the role, the original character has been the same actor for way too long for it to really work.


I will say this, Paul Taylor didn’t do a bad job as Pinhead. He had kind of a Doug Bradley look and his voice and tone weren’t a deterrent to his performance. I was less disappointed with him than I thought I’d be. But like I said, I can’t see Pinhead as anyone but Doug Bradley.

There are some great things about this movie. And some not so great things as well.

The trailer for it looked promising, though I didn’t trust it. My mistrust was justified. The entire trailer is made up of snippets from the first 15 minutes of the film, which really, was the only truly enjoyable part of the experience. It then goes into a long, slow, boring story about some detectives investigating a serial killer. That’s the first place this movie went wrong. Too much talk, not enough… anything else.

If you manage to stay awake through the dialogue that doesn’t carry any real weight to the story, you’ll get to see some scenes that are worthwhile.


The man with the cut-up face and dark glasses was a great character! He was probably the best part of the entire movie. At first I wasn’t sure if he was human or a cenobite, and to be honest I’m still not completely sure. No spoilers, but I’m leaning more towards one of those conclusions than the other.

The entire idea of that character and his role in the story was the only thing that made Hellraiser: Judgment worth watching. If the story revolved around him it probably would have been a better movie. They focused too much on the less interesting aspects of the story (as well as trying to make it a Hellraiser movie by throwing bits and pieces of its history in without any true meaning). I won’t spoil it for you, but there were some really great ideas that were wasted.

I think if they removed the cenobites, took the name Hellraiser out of the title completely, and got rid of the boring dialogue, it could have been a great film. On its own, it had potential. Hellraiser: Judgment’s biggest downfall is that they slapped the franchise onto a movie that could have done well on its own. Excuse the pun, but that brought judgment down hard on a movie that might not have been looked at so harshly otherwise.

If you’re a die-hard fan of Hellraiser, you’re probably not going to like how it ends. I certainly did not. There’s only one positive side to its ending: they can’t do it again…

But don’t let my bad review stop you from enjoying this film. I enjoyed some of it (it really did have some good scenes), but it was a watch-once and never bother with it again deal for me. My best advice, see it for yourself and pass your own judgment.

If you enjoyed this article, please follow my blog for more movie reviews, articles, and all things horror!


‘A Slithering Offer’ on The Wicked Library

I’m profoundly excited to announce that my story, A Slithering Offer is up on The Wicked Library! It’s a Patreon exclusive as of now, and I’ll say The Wicked Library is well worth the support of its listeners! They do amazing work. They’ve turned a few of my stories into audio podcasts and they blow me away every time!

I’d like to give a special thanks to Daniel Foytik and everyone over at The Wicked Library for the work they do! They breathe life into stories, give them an edge that couldn’t be achieved by reading them alone!

Click HERE to become a Patreon member and get all the extra goodies The Wicked Library has to offer!

Author Interview – Origin: Stories on Creativity

I had the pleasure of being on Bryan Aiello’s podcast, Origin: Stories on Creativity. He’s got a great show (click here to check out his YouTube channel) where he talks with authors about all sorts of topics! He’s a great conversationalist and it was more fun than formal. Loved the experience!

Check out the podcast episode HERE on YouTube where we talk about movies, writing, publishing, and all sorts of random stuff!


Damned Words 27

6 Pieces of flash fiction inspired by the same photo. Brought to you by Pen of the Damned!

Lady of Sorrow
A.F. Stewart

She hides her face from me and weeps tears of stone, clutching the wreath she laid on my grave. A monument to her false grief and lingering guilt, forever enshrined in granite effigy. I stare at her from the shadows of the trees and laugh.

She thought to kill me.

Me, a thousand years her better in occult magic and deviltry. A poor attempt at murder and in the end she is the one entombed. Locked in her stone prison atop my empty grave.

She should have never come to the cemetery to gloat, to lay her wreath in two-faced mourning. But then, I have always laid the best traps. I savoured the priceless look on her face when she turned and saw me standing behind her, alive, and not a corpse mouldering in my grave.

That was the last thing she ever saw.

Feeding on…

View original post 839 more words

Best Episodes of Black Mirror


The best advice I can give to you if you haven’t seen the show already, is to not watch Season 1, Episode 1, The National Anthem. Trust me, you probably don’t want to see that…

The strange thing I noticed about this show is that the seasons and episodes are listed backwards on Netflix. Usually when you go to a show, the first season is listed at the top, and episodes follow in a top-down format. This show lists the latest season first, and has the previous seasons below it. I think it might be an intentional way to avoid people from seeing The National Anthem first. It could definitely ruin the show for a lot of people, making them not want to watch any more episodes if they’d seen that first. A lot of the episodes are hit and miss, many not appealing to everyone.

That’s why I’ve put together this list for the horror fans out there. To filter out the stuff you might want to skip. By all means, watch the whole series; I did. But some episodes I enjoyed more than others.

Either way, here is my list of recommendations:


Season 2, Episode 2: White Bear

I have to say this is probably my favorite of all the episodes in regards to horror. Great story, atmosphere, pacing, and ending.




Season 4, Episode 5: Metalhead

This is my second favorite. Post-apocalyptic scenereo with robots? Yes please! Again, great story, atmosphere (they did this one entirely in black and white), pacing, and ending. One of the best in the series.




Season 4, Episode 6: Black Museum

If you plan to watch the entire series, you should probably save this one for last. But the way the show is constructed, it doesn’t really matter. You’ll get the story. (There are just a few easter eggs in the episode you may see if you’ve watched other episodes).




Season 3, Episode 5: Men Against Fire

This is also a great episode. Has its fair share of horror and a good ending.




Season 2, Episode 4: White Christmas

This one strikes hard on fear of time. The cruelty of what occurs made me cringe.




Season 4, Episode 1: USS Callister

This one isn’t necessarily horror (it has its moments), but as a Star Trek fan it’s something I can’t ignore. By far one of the best Star Trek inspired pieces I’ve ever seen. Even if you’ve never seen Star Trek, it’s an enjoyable episode.



Hope you enjoy the show! And fair warning: don’t watch The National Anthem.

Still Dark by D.W. Gillespie – Creepy Roads, Take Me Home…

Today I’ll be hosting D.W. Gillespie on my blog in celebration of his novel, Still Dark. I personally read this book and fell in love with it immediately. That’s why I’m here to share this novel with you, and show the author support for this great story. I promise you’d be missing out not adding this to your to-read list!

Now for a few words by the author:



Creepy Roads, Take Me Home…

by D.W. Gillespie

With the release of my first novel, Still Dark, I’ve been thinking a lot about the different sources of inspiration over the years. I keep coming back to how important my environment has been in shaping my work. It’s not just the metaphorical environment, such as my family, friends, social status and all that. It’s the literal environment too.

Still Dark is set in and around Gatlinburg Tennessee, a few hours away from where I grew up. It’s a place that’s a ripe setting for horror stories. The mountains, the empty, quiet woods, the abandoned barns set in wide open fields. There are ghosts everywhere in those parts, whether you believe in ghosts or not.

I spent a lot of time at my grandparent’s farm when I was a kid. The road was, well into the 90’s, still gravel, and I can still remember the feel of it as a kid, under my shoes, under the tires as I nodded off to sleep. At night, the trees seemed to meet over the top of the road, making a roof that stars or moon couldn’t quite shine through. All you had was the headlights marking the road just in front of you, and beyond that, well, there could be anything.

My imagination would run wild at the moonlight rippling on top of a pond. Of the sounds of an owl, lonesome and terrifying. The kids would play around the yard at night, and that seemed to help, the sounds of our voices almost chasing back the darkness. But it was all just a trick of the mind. The dark was still there, and if you walked over to the barbed wire fence, you could hear things out in the woods, pawing and hooting.

Things sort of changed when the sun wasn’t around. Way out in the darkness, there were trees so wide that a dozen people couldn’t reach all the way around it. There was a family cemetery, some of the stones hundreds of years old. There were dead ponds so thick with algae that you couldn’t even see the water. During the day, in the light, these were all curiosities worthy of study and exploration, but at night… only a fool would venture out there at night.

Now, I’m a grown man, and I know woods aren’t all that different at night as they are during the day. That sort of thinking, it’s for kids, isn’t it? And yet… I can still remember that feeling, how small and helpless I felt alone in the dark. I see it on my own kid’s faces from time to time.

That’s my environment, the land that helped make me. That open country world that still holds secrets to this day. It’s all over my writing, but especially in Still Dark.



Still Dark

D.W. Gillespie

When a thunderous explosion rocks an idyllic cabin resort in the Great Smoky Mountains, animals and humans alike begin to act strange. Jim, along with his wife Laura and son, Sam, are cut off from the outside world, but they soon realize the true nightmare is just beginning…

Deep in the snow-covered woods, something is waiting. The creature calls itself Apex, and it’s a traveler. Reading the minds of those around it, Apex brings the terrifying fears hidden in the human psyche to life with a singular purpose: to kill any that stand in its way.

Locked in a fight for their lives, Jim and his family must uncover the truth behind Apex, and stop the creature from wreaking a horrifying fate upon the rest of the world!

Amazon Digital and Print: US | UK | Canada | Australia | Germany | France | Spain | Italy | Japan | Mexico| Brazil | India | The Netherlands

Kobo | Barnes & Noble (Digital or Print) | iTunes | Smashwords

ABOUT THE AUTHOR — D.W. Gillespie has been writing dark fiction in one form or another since he was old enough to hold a pencil. He’s been featured in multiple horror anthologies, both in print and online. Still Dark is his debut novel, and his second book, a short collection titled Handmade Monsters, arrives in 2017. He lives in Tennessee with his wife and two children.

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#Horror #Paranormal #MindControl

How I Found Horror

I’ve been doing some horror movie articles and reviews on my blog, and while I don’t do them as often as I’d like to (too many other projects to work on) I want to continue the process, and attempt to regulate it so that there’s some consistency to when I post them. That got me thinking about why I write them, how I discovered horror movies in the first place, and where and when I was exposed to some of my favorites.

Before setting a plan to post these articles I wanted to go back to the beginning, remember where it started, and how my obsession with horror grew. I wanted to know how and why I became a horror writer.

Exploring the past is difficult. Memories are faded, distorted, untrustworthy. But some clear pictures can be retrieved.

The first horror movie I ever saw was The Amityville Horror on TV when I was no older than 8 or so. There was one scene in particular that frightened me—the part when there are eyes staring in the window from outside in the darkness. I’ll always remember that first feeling of dread seeing that scene as a child. After that I saw The Exorcist. From then on, I was hooked.

Every time my parents took me to the grocery store they’d let me rent a movie (This was back when supermarkets still had video rental sections). I’d go for whatever had a cool picture or a horrible title. I had no idea which movies were good and which weren’t. I’d only seen the two, so I was dosed with random movies on a weekly basis. Some of the first movies I can remember renting were Dead Alive, The Ice Cream Man, The Evil Dead, Evil Dead 2, Army of Darkness, Psycho Cop, Night of the Comet, Night of the Living Dead, The Fly, The Fly 2, The Gate, and many more.

None of those movies frightened me. I laughed through most of Evil Dead.

The only movie that scared me other than that one scene in The Amityville Horror was Fire in the Sky. I know it’s not technically a horror movie, but nothing before or since has ever actually scared me in a horror movie. When I saw that as a kid I slept with the lights and TV on for almost two weeks. Monsters, demons, killers; none of that bothered me. But fucking aliens scared the hell out of me.

My love of horror led me to discover a book I’m sure most are familiar with. ‘Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark’ by Alvin Schwartz. The artwork on the cover was what drew me to it. I read all three of those books with great enjoyment. And I even read them to my own kid as bedtime stories (Horror runs in my family—4 generations now). That led me to reading more horror, which ultimately brought me to the realization that I wanted to write things I hoped would be terrifying.

Feel free to comment. I’d love to hear what horror movies have scared you the most!


Channel Zero Review


It’s not often I write about a television series, but Channel Zero appealed to me five minutes into the first episode. I kept saying, “I’d die in this show, because I know damn well I’d be first in line to go in that house.”

Oddly enough, I’d never heard of the show at all. Of course, I don’t watch cable TV and it was on the Sci-Fi Channel (I know it’s SyFy now, but I refuse to accept that). I was introduced to it on New Year’s Eve by my date as something to watch during dinner. I’m glad we were done eating before certain parts… We ended up watching an entire season in one sitting. I started with the second season, No-End House, as she’d already seen the first, Candle Cove. It’s sort of like American Horror Story where each season is a completely different storyline so it doesn’t matter which one you watch first.

Both are great, but I felt Season 2 had a more fast-paced flow than Season 1. I’d almost recommend starting with Season 2, No-End House. Candle Cove moves a bit slow in the beginning, but keep watching. The end is worth it.

That’s one thing I’ll say about this show. They know how to make a good ending!

I’m surprised the show hasn’t gathered more attention. I feel it’s underrated, which is why I’m writing about it. Season 3 comes out soon, within a month or two from what I’ve read. I’m excited to see where they’re going to go with it!

I made this post short, as not to spoil the show for you with details. Just here to spread my love for a good horror series.

Feel free to comment and share your thoughts on the show if you’ve seen it.

Thanks for reading! And be sure to follow my blog for more horror-related stuff!