I Feel Horror-ific!

Rising up from the grave of 2020!

Let’s face it. Last year I didn’t write ANYTHING but my Ladies of Horror flash pieces. I did do the bookmarks for my Etsy shop, and made a few sales there, but on the whole, it was a wasted year of binge-watching and take out.

THIS year, however, things are looking WAAAAAY better. For one thing, I was accepted into SFWA and HWA. (I know, I know–shut UP about that already!–but I can’t help it. Dream come true time.)

Also, an old friend got tired of not being an editor and started a new venture Gravestone Press as an offshoot of Fiction4All. She is paying decent money for short stories, exposure for flash, and has several anthologies looking for stories at the moment. This has proven inspirational for me as I have written several new things for her and sold her a couple of reprints.

Remember, horror is where you find it. I am toying with a collection of stories based on song lyrics, and when you really think about some of the stories those songs tell–there is definitely a chance for horror. Like Lyin’ Eyes — what lengths does she wind up going to to “hide her lyin’ eyes”? or Bitter Green — such a haunting story. What songs inspire you? I’d love to hear about them in the comments!

Let’s Have a Toast!

(My allergies were bad last night, so I am going to share something Bruce wrote for Roxanne instead of getting too creative. This was the toast he gave at their wedding…)

Bruce’s Wedding Toast to Roxanne

Flowers are pink.
Flowers are green,
Your eyes are the prettiest
I’ve ever seen.

You stand by my side
Through thick and through thin
Including that time that
The zombies broke in.

The way that you hit
That one guy with a pan—
I knew then and there
That I was your man.

And when we moved to the hill
To that rickety house
My heart said “C’mon, you fool,
And make her your spouse.”

When you said yes,
My heart it did sing,
Though you got pretty mad
When I bought that earring.

‘Course, our adventures—
They were not done yet.
We flew off to Ireland,
And leprechauns met.

The wedding got closer
But there was a hitch—
That pretty young thing
Who became a real—witch.

But today is the day—
So what if it’s raining?
The clouds hide the sun,
So the vamps ain’t complaining.

Yes, today is our wedding,
And I wrote down this verse.
Roxanne—you’re my lady—
For better or worse.

(if you’d like to know what the hell he’s talking about, you need to check out Bruce and Roxanne from Start to Finnish from Yard Dog Press!)

And since I can’t get to any conventions at the moment to pass them out for free…if you would like one of Bruce’s certification bumper stickers, we will slide on the actual examination and send you one for $1 to cover postage and handling. This may be the last batch ever printed, as Bruce is tired of working so hard…so don’t miss out. Just use paypal.me/RieSheridanRose and be sure to include your address in the note section so I can ship out the sticker!

That IS Horrific!

I just looked at the last post, and it was a guest post from September! I severely neglected everything for the final quarter of 2020, but I am back to work on all fronts and hopefully will be keeping up better now that the dumpster fire is on its way out.

That being said, I haven’t been doing a lot of horror stuff lately–hardly anything at all, but pushing more horror into the reality that was so gut-wrenching felt even worse. I did my Ladies of Horror pieces each month, but that was about it. If you are interested in seeing some of those, here’s a link.

Haven’t even watched a lot of horror since the news was bad enough, but I did start a re-watch of The Walking Dead to try and get back into it. I’ve stalled out for the moment in Season 7, which is close to when I stopped watching it before. I wonder if that’s a sign…

Still need to watch the last four episodes of Supernatural, but I’ve kinda been putting that off for the opposite reason. I don’t want to see the end of something I’ve loved.

We are keenly awaiting the final episodes of Lucifer (though IMDB listed a 6th Season…what’s THAT about?)

Oh, and for Halloween, we watched Hubie Halloween, which was…odd. I don’t know if I recommend it or not, but it was fun.

So, I guess I did do a few horror-related things while I was hibernating. See if you like any of them. 🙂

Horror Doesn’t Have to Be Horrific

red monster night eyes closeup

Horror ranges from the silliness of Scooby-Doo to the terror of The Ring. But some of the most interesting and insidious horror comes when an everyday object becomes unexpectedly evil.

Look at Cujo. The book, and subsequent movie, are visceral and terrifying–and yet, they are about a rabid dog, not some demonic creature. Any dog can be bitten by a rabid animal and go on such a rampage. The story terrifies because it could happen to any household in any neighborhood.

Would Child’s Play have as much impact if Chucky were not a doll? One of the most innocuous toys possible…something in any little girl’s room.

If you are setting out to write horror, don’t think only of the monsters. Think of the mundane items in your world and see if there is something you can turn into the catalyst of your story. Perhaps the water fountain in the square suddenly starts poisoning people. Why? Is it a human intervention, or is there something more devious at work? Perhaps a vengeful water spirit?

Maybe a pet songbird suddenly starts singing words–words that prophesize murder. (Wait…I think I want that one…)

The point is, horror doesn’t have to be full of ghosts or demons or vampires to bring a shiver to the spine. And, sometimes, it is better when it isn’t.

Let’s Talk About Monsters…



Monsters. The mainstay of horror, aren’t they? Vampires, werewolves, mummies–these are the creatures that everyone turns to when they hear the word “monster.” Perhaps that should be qualified–these are the stereotypical creatures that American readers/writers turn to automatically. And that’s why they inundate the pages of books and the frames of films we are familiar with.

But there are other dark things in the world, and some of those are fascinating. For example, here is one list of Asian monsters, and this one is specifically Japanese. Here is a list of creatures from Indian mythology.

Celtic mythology is rife with incredible creatures. They even have their own television series. Here is a list of specifically Irish mythological creatures.

African monsters are often animalistic in nature rather than humanoid.

Australian folklore has some interesting creatures to consider.

Even if you want to stick to American monsters, Native American myths are full of unusual beings.

The point is that there are so many under-used monsters in the world that putting aside the vampires, mummies, werewolves, and ghosts for awhile and exploring these lesser-known creatures in our fiction and film might be to everyone’s advantage. 😉

Here are some resources for further study:

World Mythology

World Mythology: The Illustrated Guide

Bulfinch’s Mythology

Mythology: Timeless Tales of Gods and Heroes, 75th Anniversary Illustrated Edition Deluxe, Illustrated, Anniversary Edition

The Book of Yokai: Mysterious Creatures of Japanese Folklore

Celtic Tales: Fairy Tales and Stories of Enchantment from Ireland, Scotland, Brittany, and Wales

The Complete World of Greek Mythology

Gods and Heroes from Viking Mythology



Things that Go Bump in the Night…

Phone Download 8-28-19 815 - Copy


Everyone is afraid of something…whether it is walking alone down a dark street at midnight or losing one’s job. These fears are real and tangible. They are depressing and often out of our control.

Perhaps this is why we gravitate to horror so readily. The monsters in a novel or movie aren’t usually real. Pennywise is not going to pop out of the sewer. Dracula is not going to swoop into your bedroom window. But the thought of these iconic creatures in our lives gives us a scare we can control–we can put It down, or pause Dracula if it gets to be too much. Campfire stories fade with the light of dawn.

When I was a kid, I would rush home for Dark Shadows. I was so in love with Barnabas Collins. Of course, fifteen years later when I watched it again in reruns, it was so cheesy and badly filmed I just laughed, but it was one of my first introductions to the horror genre. (And I still think Jonathan Frid was amazing–though Barnabas was almost his only role.) Did the camp of the series impress itself in my head even then? Is that why I like to write humorous horror most of all? Maybe.

Dracula Has Risen from the Grave was the first time I remember feeling all tingly over a vampire. He was so sexy and masculine…to the ten-year-old watching it on the couch at a friend’s house. There is just something so alluring about a cape…

So, horror can affect us in many ways. It isn’t always terrifying. It can be compelling, or attractive as well. And, while vampires and werewolves might be things of legend, I find some of the scariest horror deals with people who could live next door.

For example, Stephen King’s Mr. Mercedes trilogy. Especially the first book. This story could happen tomorrow down the road. Similar stories have happened. And the only monster here is just an evil man.

This flavor of horror is almost too real. We can dismiss the supernatural as unlikely to interfere with our lives. We can’t dismiss the evil that men do so easily…

What scares you? Do you like monsters better or the wickedness of the world? What do you recommend watching or reading if someone likes to be scared in a way they can control?

Phone Download 8-28-19 1976

Welcome to the Home!



Well, I’ve gone and done it. As if two daily blogs weren’t enough, I decided to start one for my horror antics as well. 

I will be talking about Bruce and Roxanne (it is their house, after all) and linking to my Ladies of Horror pieces, my horror short stories, and Skellyman…and my horror poetry…

Plus, I plan on exploring the history of horror and monsters, RieViewing other people’s books and movies. Adding bar-be-que tips and recipes…

The possibilities are endless.

Of course, that’s a lot of territory to cover…so I think that I will change things up a bit. I will be focusing on one blog a day and RieViews on Friday starting next week. (And that includes “Here’s the Clean” so maybe I will finally get some housecleaning done!)

I haven’t decided on the order of days yet, and I may rotate all of them but Fridays. We’ll see. For now, here are some of my credentials for doing a horror blog in the first place. 🙂




        By Candlelight  By Candlelight 

  (only available on Audible ATM)