THE X-FILES: TRUST NO ONE – On Sale Now

download We all want to believe. The truth is still out there. The X-Files have been reopened.

IDW Publishing and series creator Chris Carter have authorized new investigations into the weird, the strange, and the mysterious. New York Times Bestseller and multiple Bram Stoker Award-winner Jonathan Maberry brings together some of today’s top storytellers, including Brian Keene, Tim Lebbon, Kevin J. Anderson, Max Allan Collins, and many more for a series of all-new X-Files. Scully and Mulder continue their journey into darkness as they face aliens, monsters, shadow governments, and twisted conspiracies.

In stores now. CLICK HERE TO ORDER.

DEAR ROSE: An Open Letter to a Fan I Met This Weekend (with stuff for the rest of you, too)

Joe Ripple and I, sending regards to our biggest fan.

Joe Ripple and I sending regards to our biggest fan.

So, like I said last week, I intend to start Blogging here regularly again, because Tumblr is a cesspool filled with nitwits on both sides of the political aisle, and I am too old for that shit.

Hi. I’m Brian Keene. Here’s this week’s Blog. I’ll be talking about the possible small heart attack I had on Saturday, and new book releases, and a regretfully cancelled upcoming appearance, and how the premiere of my new film, FAST ZOMBIES SUCK, went, and some other stuff.

But first, I’d like to talk to Rose.

The rest of you indulge me for a moment.

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I met a lot of awesome readers and fans at this past weekend’s 2nd Annual Scares That Care Weekend, a charity horror convention which took place in Williamsburg, Virginia. (And yes, there will be a third one next year). There was Tom, who is my age, and shipping off to Afghanistan soon, leaving behind his loved ones, and doing it without complaint because that’s what he promised to do when he enlisted. There was Syko, whose name I spelled incorrectly when I signed his books. There was the young couple who I met in the bar on Thursday night (whose names I regretfully can’t remember) who were nervous and excited and absolutely wonderful, and laughed with delight when I called their family member (also a fan) and wished him a happy birthday. And the couple who drove down from New Jersey whose names I also can’t remember (the guy wore an Opeth shirt). And these folks were just the tip of the iceberg. So many great and wonderful people stopped by during the weekend, and I appreciate them all.

But it is you, Rose, who stayed in my head during the six-hour drive home last night, and who has remained in my thoughts ever since. I don’t know your last name, and I don’t know if you’re on social media, and I don’t know how else to reach you, so I’m resorting to this. I apologize in advance for using this method, but I’m pretty sure I’ll keep your identity secret despite this public letter.

When you came up to my table, I saw the nervousness in your stance and your body language, and heard it in your voice. When you told me you suffered from agoraphobia, I was absolutely blown away. I can only imagine what attending a convention is like for you, especially inside the dealer or celebrity rooms, where masses of people are pressed together like cattle in chutes, and the cacophony of raised voices seems to batter at you from all sides.

Except that, as I told you, I don’t have to imagine it, because I get pretty anxious in such situations myself. I’m able to flip my “ON” switch — to transform into the public Brian Keene, rather than my real self, and cope with it long enough for everyone to have a good time, but yeah… when it’s all over, I need to go somewhere quiet and sit by myself and be alone and not talk for a long while.

The fact that you braved all that, and came out to support the charity — a charity that is near and dear to my heart — means the world to me. You have my absolute respect and admiration, and I would really be delighted to send you some more signed books. Email me at briankeene@live.com so we can make that happen. And to weed out the pinheads who will say they are you just to get books, tell me the location of that quiet spot I pointed out to you — because that’s our secret, known only to us (and maybe also to author Kelli Owen and my podcast co-host Dave “Meteornotes” Thomas).

Seriously, Rose. You rock. You touched me, and your grace and determination are something I won’t forget (and that’s saying something, because my memory ain’t what it used to be. I’ve apparently met author Armand Rosamilia seven times, and each time has been the first).

Thank you for braving it all to support the charity. The world needs more people like you.

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Mike Lombardo, myself, Matt Blazi, and Dave Thomas on stage at the premiere (photo by Lynne Hansen)

Mike Lombardo, myself, Matt Blazi, and Dave Thomas on stage at the premiere (photo by Lynne Hansen)

FAST ZOMBIES SUCK, a short indie film which I financed and served as Executive Producer on and was based on my short story of the same name, premiered in Williamsburg on Thursday night. We showed the movie, and then some of the folks involved with the production (Mike Lombardo, Matt Blazi, and Dave Thomas) came out on stage and we did a Q&A for about 45 minutes, followed by a general Q&A with myself for another 30. My favorite part of the evening was F. Paul Wilson getting the microphone and saying, “That didn’t suck nearly as bad as you said it would.”

The entire thing was recorded, and we’ll be airing the Q&A portion on next week’s episode of my podcast, THE HORROR SHOW WITH BRIAN KEENE.

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Speaking of the podcast, Dave has created a Facebook page for it. He wants all of you to go ‘Like’ it.

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And speaking of FAST ZOMBIES SUCK, we’ll be putting the film up on my YouTube Channel shortly. Everyone just needs a few days to decompress before we do it.

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Speaking of having a few days to decompress, I may have had a small heart attack on Saturday afternoon, or I may have just staved one off in the nick of time. I’m not sure which. I was signing books and my arm started to tingle, and then go numb, and then a fist started squeezing my chest. These are symptoms I remember from my last one, so I excused myself from the table (and thanks to John Urbancik and Thomas F. Monteleone for keeping an eye on it for me), went upstairs, swallowed four baby aspirin, and rested for about an hour. I felt better afterward, but I am still tired, and my body is telling me to rest. At 47, I’ve learned to listen to my body. I’ve been doing too many appearances and too much traveling this summer, and it’s starting to take a toll. Later this month, we’ll be shooting the trailer for the film adaptation of THE CAGE. I can’t miss out on that, but I also need to do less, so something has to give.

Therefore, it is with my sincerest and deepest apologies that I regretfully inform you all I won’t be at the Lewisburg Literary Festival in two weeks. I was looking forward to it for many reasons, not the least of which is that I have a family reunion nearby the same weekend, and this would have been an opportunity to do both. But not having a heart attack is more important than either of those things, so instead, I’m going to take it easy for the rest of the summer.

Hopefully, you’ll all understand that. If not, then you probably suck.

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A reminder that KING OF THE BASTARDS, a Howard-esque Conan pastiche I co-wrote with Steven Shrewsbury, is out now in paperback and e-book. You should snag one.

The book features Steven’s recurring characters Rogan and Javan matched up against my character Meeble. It also serves as a stand-alone novel. You don’t need to have read anything else to read and enjoy this one.

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LIBRA NIGRUM SCIENTIA SECRETA by myself and J.F. Gonzalez, has shipped. Twitter and Facebook are full of readers posting pics of their copies. This was the last thing Jesus worked on before he died. Indeed, we were working on it the morning he went into the hospital. He never got to see the finished book, but I’m glad the rest of you did.

The book will never be reprinted, as it was designed as a collectible for collectors. If you missed out, I’m sure they’ll start turning up on eBay soon.

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This week will be spent boxing up manuscript critiques and getting them to the post office, sorting through the next batch of Lifetime Subscriber books I just received from Deadite Press, going through the bazillion emails that came in while I was traveling for the past two weeks, responding to a ton of business voice mails, writing a new chapter for Patreon, reading the galleys for WHERE WE LIVE AND DIE (coming soon), and finishing a novel called THE COMPLEX which has gone sideways on me.

Thanks for being patient.

 

KING OF THE BASTARDS Now On Kindle, Nook, and Kobo

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Part sword and sorcery, part extreme horror, King of the Bastards is wild adventure across seas, beaches, and mountains full of horrifying monstrosities, dark magic, and demonic entities.

Rogan has been many things — a barbarian, a thief, a buccaneer, a rogue, a lover, a reaver, and a king. Now, this prehistoric bane of wizards and tyrants finds himself without a kingdom, lost in a terrifying new world, and fighting for his life against pirates, zombies, and the demonic entity known as Meeble. And even if he defeats his foes, Rogan must still find a way to return home, regain his throne, save his loved ones, and remind everyone why he’s the KING OF THE BASTARDS.

 

A Trip to Miskatonic, New Books, Movie Premieres, and More

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Me with the manuscript for “At the Mountains of Madness”.

Last weekend, authors Paul Tremblay, James A. Moore, Charles Rutledge, Mary SanGiovanni, Nick Kaufmann, his wife Alexa, and my podcast co-host Dave Thomas, got to visit the John Hay Library at Brown University in Providence — which was the inspiration for H.P. Lovecraft’s Miskatonic University.

While there, we had the pleasure of viewing many of Lovecraft’s original manuscripts, letters, and commonplace books (notebooks in which a writer records ideas or fragments of stories). We even got to see a mosquito that Lovecraft had squished in a piece of paper, along with a bit of his blood. A particular treat for me were the handwritten first draft of “At the Mountains of Madness” and a draft of “The Colour Out of Space” — my two favorite works by HPL.

We also got to preview some items from an upcoming public exhibit the library will be hosting later this year. It includes fan letters and artwork a then 14-year old Robert Bloch sent to Lovecraft. It was such a treat to view these historic artifacts. The items we previewed are amazing, and I strongly urge you all to see the exhibit when it opens. I’ll post more info about it here when it does. (Note: We are not posting pictures of the Bloch items online, so please don’t ask).

(Photo copyright Charles Rutledge)

(Photo copyright Charles Rutledge)

A very special thanks to Christopher Geissler, the Librarian for American and British Literary and Popular Culture Collections, for hosting us. Although the public can view scans of them online, it’s rare that anyone other than scholars and academics get to see these historical items and artifacts in person. We appreciate him giving us the experience, and allowing us to share it with you.

Below are a few pics — Lovecraft’s notes for “At the Mountains of Madness (including a sketch), a letter in which he has just learned about Robert E. Howard’s suicide, the handwritten first draft of “At the Mountains of Madness”, and the typed draft of “The Call of Cthulhu” (with handwritten corrections). Click the thumbnails to view them full size.

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THE X-FILES: TRUST NO ONE is available now. I have a brand-new story in it. Click here to purchase.

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LIBRA NIGRUM SCIENTIA SECRETA by myself and J.F. Gonzalez begins shipping today. Here are a few pics to hold you over until your copy arrives. Click the thumbnails to enlarge.

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The Tom Piccirilli Tribute episode of my podcast is live. Click here and listen. And if you are attending the world premiere of my new short film, FAST ZOMBIES SUCK, this Thursday night, you can be part of the podcast’s live audience.

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I’ve given up on Blogging via Tumblr, mostly because it’s a cesspool of far-Right and far-Left people who, as near as I can determine, are offended by pretty much everything the other group has to say. No room for nuanced discussion or middle-thinking there, at least as far as I can see.

Instead, I’ll start Blogging here again. Welcome back.

UPCOMING APPEARANCES

This weekend, July 16 through the 19th, I’m at NECON 35 in the Roger Williams Conference Center, Rhode Island.

Next weekend, July 23 through the 26th, I’m at the 2nd Annual Scares That Care Weekend in Williamsburg, Virginia. Thursday night is the world premiere of my new short film, FAST ZOMBIES SUCK, followed by a live Q&A. I’ll be joined on stage by some special guests, and we’ll be recording the Q&A for my podcast. Then, I’m signing books the rest of the weekend.

Next month, August 7th and 8th, I’m a guest at the Lewisburg Literary Festival in Lewisburg, WV. In addition to signing all weekend, I’m giving a talk and Q&A. I’m sure we’ll touch on the town being used as a setting in THE RISING, EARTHWORM GODS, and ENTOMBED.

And on September 26th, I’m a guest at the 2nd Annual Albatwitch Festival in Columbia, Pennsylvania. In addition to signing, I’ll be talking about the Levi Stoltzfus series, especially LAST OF THE ALBATWITCHES.

TOM PICCIRILLI R.I.P.

As you’ve no doubt heard, author Tim Piccirilli passed away earlier this morning, after a long and tenacious battle with cancer. He was one of my best friends for nearly twenty years. As I said on social media earlier, I always called him “Big Bro” and he always called me “Little Bro” because that’w what we were. I am too heartbroken to find and craft the proper words, but it occurred to me that I don’t have to. Tom wrote two pieces years ago that never fail to make me laugh. Indeed, there have been low points in my life when I re-read these pieces, and laughed all over again.

The first one is here, and every word of it is true. The second piece, inspired by the first, is here, and all of it is true, as well (until the point where we left the signing, at which point Pic turned it into a Hunter S. Thompson meets Butch and Sundance pastiche, because he knew that I would love that). As I have every time I’ve re-read them, I’m laughing again, even through tears.

Thanks for that, big bro. I fucking miss you already. Give Dick and Jesus and everybody else a hug from me.

THE RISING: DELIVERANCE Finally On NOOK!

The 4th book in THE RISING series — THE RISING: DELIVERANCE — is finally available on Nook.

It is also available in Paperback and for Kindle.

This prequel takes place before the events in the first novel, and shows how Reverend Thomas Martin survived the zombie apocalypse in the weeks before he met Jim. It’s my favorite in the series. I hope you enjoy it, as well.

Those wishing to see more of Ob and the Siqqusim should be reading THE SEVEN: THE LABYRINTH Book One web serial.

HOLE IN THE WORLD – Sneak Peek

Yesterday, on Twitter and Facebook, I promised to post excerpts from HOLE IN THE WORLD and RETURN TO THE LOST LEVEL (the forthcoming prequel and sequel to THE LOST LEVEL) if we reached a certain number of pre-orders on KING OF THE BASTARDS. Well, we didn’t quite reach the numbers, but to thank the folks who did pre-order, I’m posting an excerpt from HOLE IN THE WORLD anyway.

As I said, this is a prequel to THE LOST LEVEL, and details the adventures of a busload of people who arrive there some time before Aaron Pace. The second draft is 3/4 of the way finished, after which it will go off to pre-readers, and then Camelot Books (who are publishing the hardcover) and Apex (who will publish the paperback and digital versions after the hardcover).

Continue reading

FAST ZOMBIES SUCK PREMIERE

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FAST ZOMBIES SUCK, a short film based on my short story of the same name, premieres this month at the 2nd Annual SCARES THAT CARE WEEKEND in Williamsburg, VA.

The first showing is Thursday night, July 23, as part of the conventions ‘An Evening With Brian Keene’ event for early arrivals. It will be immediately followed by a live Q&A with myself and others involved with the film, which will be recorded live for my podcast. If you’re in the audience, you’ll have the opportunity to be on the podcast, as well. We’ll start out by talking about the film, but (as you know if you’ve listened to any of these episodes) we’ll end up talking about whatever you want to discuss.

The second showing of the film will be Friday night, July 24, as part of the convention’s film festival.

SCARES THAT CARE is a 501C charity. All proceeds will go directly to those in need. For complete details, click here.

Nick Cutter Has Lost His Damn Mind

Nick Cutter (aka Patrick Lestewka aka Craig Davidson) is one of my favorite modern authors. He is also bugfuck crazy, as evidenced by a video he posted last night, in which he urges me, Stephen King, JK Rowling, Rio Youers, and others to immolate ourselves for his new book, THE ACOLYTE. Sort of the like the Ice Bucket Challenge, but with fire.

I know the thought of me setting myself on fire will please some of you, so…challenge accepted. Click below for the details.

KING OF THE BASTARDS Pre-Orders

Extreme horror meets extreme sword & sorcery!

My new novel KING OF THE BASTARDS (co-written with Steven Shrewsbury) is now available for pre-order. Paperback and digital release date is July 21st.

King of the Bastards is wild adventure across seas, beaches, and mountains full of horrifying monstrosities, dark magic, and demonic entities.

Rogan has been many things in his life as an adventurer — a barbarian, a thief, a buccaneer, a rogue, a lover, a reaver, and most recently, a king. Now, this prehistoric bane of wizards and tyrants finds himself without a kingdom, lost in a terrifying new world, and fighting for his life against pirates, zombies, and the demonic entity known as Meeble. And even if he defeats his foes, Rogan must still find a way to return home, regain his throne, save his loved ones, and remind everyone why he’s the KING OF THE BASTARDS.

CLICK HERE to pre-order the paperback and receive FREE domestic shipping and a 40% discount code for any order from the publisher.

First Look Inside LIBRA NIGRUM SCIENTIA SECRETA

If you saw last week’s update, then you know that LIBRA NIGRUM SCIENTIA SECRETA by myself and J.F. Gonzalez is at the printer and expected to ship in two weeks. The book is now being bound. Below is your first look at the interior. Click on the pics to make them bigger.

A reminder — this will be the only edition of this book ever published, and there are less than 15 copies remaining for sale. Click here to order one.

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LIBRA NIGRUM SCIENTIA SECRETA Shipping Update

LIBRA NIGRUM SCIENTIA SECRETA, by myself and J.F. Gonzalez, has had a difficult production. J.F. passed away as we were working on the final draft. Then there were delays with the artwork. And the layout has been tough for the designers — trying to make the pages look old and crumbling, using the correct binding materials, etc. But all of that is finished now, and Miskatonic Books reports that copies will ship to customers in three weeks.

There are less than 50 copies left, so if you’ve waited, you might want to order one now. Through n arrangement with the publisher, this volume will be the only edition of this book ever published, making it a true collector’s item.