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Posted on February 10, 2017 at 2:00 AM

 

My poem Into Thin Air is published in the Febuary issue of Ink in Thirds, Issue 9.  I'm proud and honored to be included.  Ink in Thirds is always full of exceptional writing and this is an especially wicked cool issue ... not your ordinary Valentine.  You have to take a look.


Ink in Thirds  https://inkinthirds.com/2017/02/01/ink-in-thirds-issue-9/


Read it here free  https://issuu.com/inkinthirds/docs/issue_9_-_february


Suzette 10 February 2017

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Posted on December 19, 2016 at 1:00 AM

Life has been painful, like it is sometimes.  So today I sat at my window and wrote all afternoon looking out at the beautiful, cold bleakness.

I wrote a wicked little horror tale as a gift to you:  The Dark Elves.   

This story is definitely a metaphor for something, probably what you think it is,  and at the same time, it's not at all about what you think it is about, but I won't  write spoilers.

 Some parts are based on my real experiences.  Luckily, only parts.  


Happy Holidays. It's the best time of the year.

Suzette  19 December 2016

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Posted on December 12, 2016 at 1:00 AM

I am an official member of the Horror Writers Association!  The horror! The horror!

Suzette 12 December 2016



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Posted on December 11, 2016 at 1:00 AM


Characters are fallible, just like we are. They often have no idea what's happening to them the whole time we're shouting, "Watch out! Watch out!" It's easy for the reader to see the truth before they do.


Sometimes that character is us. Did you ever have something completely unexpected happen to you?  Then a terribly annoying friend says, "Well, I saw that coming a mile away." It was so obvious to the whole world, but not at all to you.  You had no clue.


We fool ourselves.  We are hopelessly optimistic, believing if we are good, then good will come to us and somehow all the bad things will miss us.  But we're never safe. The truth always bites us in the end. I know a character or two just like that.


Myself for one.


Suzette 11 December 2016

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Posted on December 9, 2016 at 1:00 AM

My poem, Into Thin Air, will appear in Issue 9, the February 2017 issue, of  Ink in Thirds magazine.

I'm honestly honored because this is one of my favorite magazines. It's sleek, artistic and the writing is exceptional. 

This issue is a bit of a theme issue ... wicked bloodyValentine ... fits me, right?   "The warm sluice of bloodied rage or the sharp blade of urgent passion ... make us bleed with your tales of love or unlove."

This is going to be a killer cool issue. I can't wait to read it all!

Suzette 9 December 2016

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Posted on December 8, 2016 at 1:00 AM


It's a paradox. The more specific you get, the more of your own personal truth you try to reach, the more universal you get, the more universal truth you reach. You have to be personally honest and naked to show what we all try to hide or deny. Then you reach all of us. Those are the good stories, the good poems. So I've been doing a lot of painful soul digging ...


I sound like a shitty Jim Morrison poem.

 

Suzette 8 December 2016

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Posted on December 5, 2016 at 1:00 AM


We can understand anyone once we know their story. We can identify with them, usually gladly if they're one of the good guys. But sometimes we identify even if we don't want to admit we can, even if it horrifies us. Can we understand a villain? A monster?


Can we even come to love them once we know their story?


Suzette 5 December 2016

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Posted on November 30, 2016 at 1:00 AM

It's been NaNoWriMo ~ National Novel Writing Month, and it's "over."  I reached my goal.  

I have a whole new perspective on writing and I learned a big lesson:  I can write and I can write hard.

I relearned for myself the most honest and valuable writing advice I've ever found (besides every single thing Neil Gaiman and Joanne Rowling EVER say).  It's about skill, failure, and never quitting.  And these bits of the best writing advice I know haven't come from writers at all.  

One piece comes from Michael Jordan:  "I've failed over and over and over again in my life and that is why I succeed."

The second comes from Will Smith:  "Talent you have naturally. Skill is only developed by hours and hours of beating on your craft.  I've never considered myself as particularly talented but where I excel is at having this ridiculous, sickening work ethic."  

Both of these statement express the both humble and demanding self-disciplined attitude I've based my whole life on, long before I had the confidence to articulate my ideas.  I use this philosophy in absolutely every part of my life but for some reason, writing intimidated me.  I felt unworthy.  

Now, I just do the work.  Every little success I have inspires me to work harder. and I honestly love it.  I am often utterly exhausted.  But I never stop learning and experiencing and most important of all, I will never quit.  I'm going to earn my skill.

Suzette  30 November 2016










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Posted on November 28, 2016 at 1:00 AM


My theory: don't show the reader the whole picture, don't feed them the story. Make the reader put together the pieces of their own picture to see what they will see. Readers love a challenge, a riddle, a mystery. And readers love a story that's personal to them.  Make them work for it.  I like to.

 

Then the wicked side of me says: Readers also love to understand. Or think they understand. Let the reader think they understand. Then rip the rug right out from under them. Just when they think they have it all figured out, trick them like a bastard and show them they really didn't understand a thing.


I love those kinds of stories, the kind that hit me with something I never saw coming.  Those are the cruelest, greatest stories.


Or maybe I've just got an evil side.


Suzette  28 November 2016

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Posted on November 23, 2016 at 1:00 AM

I have several new poems and a new short horror story being published. I am excited to see them out there! I will post the links and credits to the magazines right after publication.  Enjoy all the good work out there and please support the magazines and publishers you like.

What an exciting time this is.  There are so many wonderful, quality publications available and so many talented writers. Like TE Grau just said about horror, "This is a golden age."  It really is, and not just for horror, but for fantasy, science fiction, speculative fiction, weird fiction, and poetry too. It used to be hard to find good science fiction, fantasy, horror and poetry ... and expensive when you could find it.  Now there's not only a large selection available, but it's GOOD.  Really, really good.  There's never been so much variety and so much good writing that destroys genre barriers.

Many magazines and authors offer what was once unthinkable ... a lot of the best writing for free.  It's a reader's heaven.   Try these, they're the best:

Tor.com ~ Science Fiction.  Fantasy.  The universe.  And related subjects.
Nightmare Magazine ~ Horror & Dark Fantasy

Suzette 23 November 2016

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Posted on November 3, 2016 at 1:00 AM

It's NaNoWriMo  - National Novel Writing Month.  This is my first but it won't be my last.

What you do for NaNoWriMo is write, every day, whatever you can, because every word you write is something you haven't written before or you wouldn't have written at all.  If you want, you can participate in the word count to earn badges and complete the goal of 50,000 words by the end of the month.  You can write a novel in one month!  It doesn't have to be perfect because you can revise it as much as you want, or you never even have to show it to anyone else. 


This month I'm participating in NaNoWriMo by continuing to write poetry and short stories instead of a novel. My goal is to finish and submit work I love. I know I'll reach my goal. And I know myself ... when I succeed, I won't stop at the end of the month.


I think that to create takes a kind of magic.  It does.  But it's not the magic I believed it was, a magical talent I couldn't possibly have or ever be worthy of. The magic is hard work that doesn't quit.  Yes, there are Neil Gaiman and Joanne Rowling, who are truly magical. And even though they're magical, they still work really hard and they fail.   

I have a lot of turmoil in my life right now that interferes with or prevents anything positive I try to do.  This turmoil makes writing impossible.  But impossible is not an excuse.  I still write.  Every day.  I'm doing the impossible.

I love every word of that Neil Gaiman speech, Make Good Art.  Please watch it.  It's universal.  Today may have been hell but besides that, today was a good writing day and that's all that matters.

Whatever your art is, don't quit.  I won't.  

Suzette  03 November 2016


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Posted on October 31, 2016 at 1:00 AM

Halloween and the autumn have always been a special time for my family.  It means all the best parts of childhood, imagination, mystery, crisp leaves, running amok, magic, bonfires, candy, and stories upon stories ... having a good scare, an adventure, and then ending up home safe and sound in comforting arms.  Autumn means the start of a hopeful new year, exciting new beginnings.   

Halloween is really about celebrating our family, being grateful for who is still here with us and remembering those who are gone.  The veil between worlds is thin at this time and maybe, with a lot of love, we can reach each other again and somehow connect, touch each other one more time. With a lot of love.  Someday I'll be on the other side reaching back to my children with love and I hope they feel me there.

Two years ago my daughter almost died right at Halloween in a horrible way.  It was the most awful time of my life out of all the many awful times.  But it could have been so much worse; it can always be so very much worse.  I was grateful she lived.  I didn't want her to be one of the gone ones.  But it was still devastating on top of years of heartbreak and we weren't sure there was going to be any future.  As always, I was trying to be strong for my children and I felt so alone.  My son Oliver and I were broken.  All the joy was dead.  It was the end of our one life and all that remained was "after."

On Halloween my son and I laid on the sofa together all night with our two jack-o-lanterns burning against the darkness.  I cried almost all night and I think he might have too, but we tried not to let each other know. 

We weren't alone.

I think this is the worst kind of horror and the importance of horror ... pretending we can face any monster even when we know we can't and at least hoping we aren't alone to face the dark.

This year, it's just me, alone in the dark.

Suzette  31 October 2016

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Posted on October 23, 2016 at 1:00 AM


I've quit everything else to write full time now, and I mean constantly. The stories are all I think and all I breathe. It's wonderful and terrible all at once.


So read my work.  And thank you for reading.


Suzette  23 October 2016

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Posted on September 2, 2016 at 5:00 AM


I'm in Germany this month, but I'll be back writing soon. I find a lot of inspiration here, beauty, excitement, rich folklore, fun-loving friends.  But sadly there's also inspiration of the horrific kind all around.  I'm staying in a place that was once a center of Nazi activity so there are some terrible, solemn sites nearby.


I wander around at night a lot.  Maybe I think I can't write about fear if I never experience it.  The more fear and horror I experience, the better story I'll write.


Yes, I always end up regretting that.  It wasn't smart when I was the only one who got off a train late at night in Germany at a dark, deserted underpass beneath deserted city streets  ... deserted except for a group of unoccupied thugs waiting in the underpass.  But that's fear of the known, human kind.


One night I came across some monstrous old Panzer hangars when I was exploring an old Nazi barracks in the dark. I was suddenly very aware of how exposed I was and how isolated this place was. I couldn't hear any sound but I knew I wasn't alone. It wasn't just that I couldn't hear anything, but I couldn't hear any sound at all.  Not even the wind that had been blowing, the owls that had been calling.  Everything was deadened, hollow, like the air was almost sucked out of the night.  Dead.  I started to fear that I may have gone back in time.  Or something evil had remained.  It was fear of the unknown, the inhuman.


Haunted or just horrific?  Places like this, abandoned or repurposed, with such a history in them have an eerie feeling that can't be denied, even if the experience is only in our own minds.  These experiences  make us very aware of the atrocities we are capable of and how vulnerable each of us is, how very fragile our lives are.  


They make me aware of how the passage of time doesn't ever erase the faces of the dead or ever silence their voices. Especially out walking alone after midnight in places no one sane should never be.


Suzette 2 September 2016

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Posted on August 29, 2016 at 1:00 AM


My new collection of short stories is under way. I've always been fascinated by the questions of individual perception.  Isn't it exactly when we're at our most certain that what we perceive to be reality is truly real that we're at our most deluded? I can't put this unsettling question out of my mind, or won't.


The novel is still haunting me but I've set it aside to quietly stew for a little while. The characters want to figure several things out for themselves and live together in peace for a little while longer before we intrude on them.


Suzette  29 August 2016

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Posted on May 7, 2016 at 1:00 AM


I am working on my new novel. Of course there are ghosts. Everyone's story is haunted in its way. There are two very lost people and one true friend and one overwhelming tragedy.


I'm writing this story about fear. Fear can crush all our hopes.  What do you fear most? Death?  And is it always your own death you fear most?  Fear, loss, death ... these terrible things are immense, but love is bigger than any of them. The terrible things often win for a time, but love beats everything in the end. Love wins. Love always wins. At least in the good stories.


And I promise you I'll make this one a good one.


Suzette 7 May 2016


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