I suppose I ought to write something here. I wouldn't want you to think that I was an enormous, sentient computer from the Andromeda galaxy merely masquerading as a human to lull your suspicions until the time when my armada of conquering robot arachno-weasels reach Earth. No, that wouldn't do at all.

So. The basics. I'm a mid-forties, tall-looming, book-reading, cat-serving, Michigan-living, cheese-eating, beard-lacking data warehouse analyst and fiction writer--see my website, GaryWOlson.com for more information on the 'writer' part, and for news about my dark fantasy novel Brutal Light.

In addition to posting (and reblogging) pictures and items I find amusing, I also have entries from my blog on my main site crossposted here. I'm also on Twitter and Facebook and Google+ and heaps and heaps of other places. See any page of my site on the right-side column under the "Me on the Intertubes" heading.

I am not a taco.

 

Getting my brain cells all lined up and stuff [events | writing | pictures]

Authors at Schulers

(Left to right: Sidney Ayers, DJ Desmyter, Gary W. Olson (i.e. me), Cindy Spencer Pape, Megan Parker, Roxanne Rhoads, and Nathan Squiers)

A couple weeks ago, I did a couple of signings back-to-back: one at Schulers Books & Music in Lansing, Michigan, and one at the public library in Davison, Michigan. They were both multi-author events, as evidenced by the picture above. While they ended up being a bit sparsely attended, I had a great time nonetheless, talking with various readers and fellow authors. The library signing was especially cool for me, as it took place in my hometown’s library, which I observed had changed very little in the twenty-one years since I’d left, and it makes me happy to know that it now has copies of Brutal Light and Fading Light: An Anthology of the Monstrous in its system (which means that so does the Genessee District Library system its part of).

The following week was a blur to me, for various personal and family reasons not to be gotten into here. Much of this week was lost to distraction, both due to the recent U.S. election (the results of which pleased me overall) and getting a replacement smartphone (and having to fuss with it to get everything set back up right). But I’m getting back into the swing of writing.

I’m nearly done with the first quarter of my Untitled Mad Science Novel (which I’m tentatively calling This Island Monstrous, until I think of something better). It’s taken me much longer than I anticipated just to get this far, but I’m pleased with how it’s going. Soon, I’ll be switching gears and going back to work on my SF biopunk novella The Morpheist, with a goal of getting it rewritten, edited, polished, and ready to send out somewheres by the end of the year. That’s pretty much it for my rest-of-the-year writing plans; anything I may have blathered on about before (such as rewriting my old Electricity in the Rain serial fiction) is back on the shelf.

As for next year… that remains to be seen. Anytime I plan, it seems, life gets on with the thwarting, so I’m just gonna play it by ear.

Books on Shelves

(Picture from the shelves at Schuler’s, including both Brutal Light and Fading Light.)

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Gary W. Olson is the author of the dark fantasy novel Brutal Light and a contributor to the dark fiction anthology Fading Light. His blog originates here. First photo: Someone in the audience at Schulers. Second photo: Gary W. Olson.

Reminder: Signings in Lansing today (10/24/12) and Davison tomorrow (10/25/12) [events | brutal light | fading light]

Brutal LightJust a quick reminder for Michigan folks reading this blog, today (Wednesday, October 24th, 2012), at 7 p.m., I’ll be at Schuler Books & Music in Lansing, Michigan, participating in a multi-author panel discussion on paranormal fiction, then signing copies of my dark fantasy novel Brutal Light and the dark fiction anthology in which I have a short story, Fading Light: An Anthology of the Monstrous. Then tomorrow, I’ll be selling and signing even more copies of Brutal Light and Fading Light at the public library in Davison, Michigan… which will also be a multi-author event, the Flint Fang Fest Book Signing. Addresses for both are on the other end of the links.

Also, congratulations to Jen Lavinski, the commenter who won the PDF copy of Karina Fabian’s Neeta Lyffe 2 that I was raffling off last week!

***

Gary W. Olson is the author of the dark fantasy novel Brutal Light and a contributor to the dark fiction anthology Fading Light. His blog originates here. Brutal Light cover art: Dawne Dominique.

October Events: Signings in Lansing and Davison [brutal light | fading light | events]

Brutal LightOn Wednesday, October 24th, 2012, at 7 p.m., I’ll be at Schuler Books & Music in Lansing, Michigan, participating in a multi-author panel discussion on paranormal fiction. With me will be authors Sidney Ayers, D.J. Desmyter, Bruce Jenvey, Megan Parker, Cindy Spencer Pape, and Nathan Squiers. After that will be the selling and signing of books, including my dark fantasy novel Brutal Light and the dark fiction anthology in which I have a short story, Fading Light: An Anthology of the Monstrous.

After that, I wake up naked in a cornfield outside of Grand Rapids, wondering what happened.

Fading LightOn Thursday, October 25th, 2012, from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., I’ll also be selling and signing even more copies of Brutal Light and Fading Light at the public library in Davison, Michigan… which just happens to be my home town! Once again this will be a multi-author event, the Flint Fang Fest Book Signing, with fellow authors Cindy Spencer Pape, Bruce Jenvey, Roxanne Rhoads, Nathan Squiers, and Megan Parker also on hand.

I once blinded (for a few seconds) Olympic hockey champion Ken Morrow at this library. True story.

So if you’re in either vicinity at those times, save the dates, as I hope to see you there!

***

Gary W. Olson is the author of the dark fantasy novel Brutal Light and a contributor to the dark fiction anthology Fading Light. His blog originates here. Brutal Light cover art: Dawne Dominique. Fading Light cover art: Jessy Lucero.

Fading Light News Roundup Part Deux [fading light]

Fading LightIt’s been about two weeks now since Fading Light: An Anthology of the Monstrous (which includes my short story “Goldilocks Zone”) dropped on readers like Godzilla on Tokyo, and it seems to be doing pretty well in sales so far. There was an issue with the manufacture of the print version of the books (e-books were not affected) due to some snafu by CreateSpace (the print was riddled with boxes with x’s in them). So if you got this print version via Amazon, you can either return it to Amazon for a refund, or return it to Amazon and get a corrected copy back. In addition, by way of apology (even though the fault was not on their end) Angelic Knight Press will gift you any two books from their library of titles (print or e-book).

There’s a giveaway of a couple of those (corrected) paperback copies going on over on Goodreads. Enter by October 1st for your chance to win one!

Reviews have been coming in for FL, by and large very positive. The Horror Fiction Review gave FL a very good review. Another good one popped up on Fantasy Book Critic. Plus more reader reviews have been coming in for the main volume and the companion on Amazon. Also, Goodreads.

Editor Tim Marquitz was interviewed by Lee Mather on his Livejournal about FL, his upcoming publications from Genius Book Publishing, what’s next in the Blood War trilogy, and more.

On Fantasy Book Review, contributor Gef Fox talks about where the idea for his story, “Where Coyotes Fear to Tread” came from. He also talks about the anthology in general on his own site.

***

Gary W. Olson is the author of the dark fantasy novel Brutal Light and a contributor to the dark fiction anthology Fading Light. His blog originates here. Fading Light cover by Jessy Lucero.

Fading Light Release Day! [fading light]

Fading LightThe day, she has arrived! Fading Light: An Anthology of the Monstrous, edited by Tim Marquitz, published by Angelic Knight Press, and including my short story "Goldilocks Zone", is now out and about for your reading pleasure!

Fading Light, for those just tuning in, is an anthology of thirty tales of monsters making their moves on the world of the living. The writing prompt was this:

"The light has failed: the era of man is at its end.

"Born of darkness, the creatures of myth, legend, and nightmare have long called the shadows home. Now, with the cruel touch of the sun fading into memory, they’ve returned to claim their rightful place amidst humanity: as its masters."

From that came an impressive set of stories, diverse in style, tone, genre, and monstrous vision. I read the early review copy a few months ago, and was thrilled to be included with such talented writers and strong tales. Hopefully, you’ll enjoy them as well.

Fading Light is available today in print and for the Kindle from Amazon, and in a variety of e-book formats (.mobi, .pdf, .epub, etc.) from Smashwords. And don’t forget the 99-cent e-book only companion volume, collecting five more monstrous tales (again, from Amazon and Smashwords).

FL already has a couple of good reviews, right here and here.

While I’m here, let me just also throw in some links to additional FL publicity that’s come out in the past week:

The fourth multi-author interview was on the Fantasy Book Critic site: part one and part two.

Contributor Peter Welmerink wrote a guest blog for Fantasy Book Review on writing longform fiction vs. writing short stories.

Contributor Adam Millard wrote a guest blog for This Is Horror on reasons for reading at least one H.P. Lovecraft story.

Contributor Edward M. Erdelac wrote a guest blog for Fantasy Book Review hailing H.P. Lovecraft’s recently passed birthday.

Aaaand… that’s it for now, I think. Hope you enjoy reading the stories in Fading Light as much as the lot of us did writing them!

***

Gary W. Olson is the author of the dark fantasy novel Brutal Light and a contributor to the dark fiction anthology Fading Light. His blog originates here. Cover of Fading Light by Jessy Lucero.

Fading Light Publicity Roundup and Giveaway [fading light]

Fading LightJust getting caught up on all the advance publicity things for Fading Light: An Anthology of the Monstrous that appeared while I was on vacation…

Fading Light Multi-Author Interview #1, part 3 on Lincoln Crisler’s blog.

Fading Light Multi-Author Interview #2, part 1 on The Nocturnal Library’s blog.

Fading Light Multi-Author Interview #2, part 2 on The Nocturnal Library’s blog.

Fading Light Multi-Author Interview #3 on Bastard Books’ blog. Get there before midnight (EDT) Sunday 8/26/2012 to enter a raffle giing away five e-book copies of Fading Light!

Interview with Editor Tim Marquitz on Fantasy Book Review’s blog.

Fading Light's page on Facebook, which you should like before the monsters get you.

Tom Olbert: Contemporary Horror and the Anthology — guest post by contributor Tom Olbert on Fantastic Book Review’s site.

Teasers and short excerpts for the Fading Light short story “Final Rights” by Peter Welmerink are on his blog here, here, and here.

***

Gary W. Olson is the author of the dark fantasy novel Brutal Light and a contributor to the dark fiction anthology Fading Light. His blog originates here. Fading Light cover art: Jessy Lucero.

Fading Light Multi-Author Interview The First (pts. 1 & 2) [fading light]

Fading LightThe first of the multi-author interviews regarding the anthology Fading Light: An Anthology of the Monstrous is out on author Lincoln Crisler’s blog. He saw it, reared back, and karate-chopped it into three parts, the first two of which are here and here. I’m not in these installments, but a number of my fellow FL contributors are—including William Meikle, Jake Elliot, Ed Erdelac, Nick Cato, Dorian Dawes, Gene O’Neill, Tom Olbert, Carl Barker, Tim Baker, TSP Sweeney, Adam Millard, Ryan Lawler, CM Saunders, and Gef Fox. Get some insight into Fading Light and the monstrous minds behind it!

I was going to ramble on after this (in another blog post) about things I’m currently writing, rewriting, considering, and so on, but as I was tired and headachey last night (when I would have wrote it), and I’m gonna be on the road much of today and gone ‘til Tuesday, so… next time. Probably.

***

Gary W. Olson is the author of the dark fantasy novel Brutal Light and a contributor to the dark fiction anthology Fading Light. His blog originates here. Fading Light cover art: Jessy Lucero.

Fading Light: An Anthology of the Monstrous… coming soon! [fading light]

Fading Light"The light has failed: the era of man is at its end.

"Born of darkness, the creatures of myth, legend, and nightmare have long called the shadows home. Now, with the cruel touch of the sun fading into memory, they’ve returned to claim their rightful place amidst humanity; as its masters.

"Fading Light collects 30 monstrous stories by authors new and experienced, in the genres of horror, science fiction, and fantasy, each bringing their own interpretation of what lurks in the dark."

(Click on the cover art by Jessy Lucero to see it in full-sized, tentacly glory!)

Fading Light, edited by Tim Marquitz, is an anthology of dark fiction (horror, fantasy, sf) coming out September 1st, 2012, from Angelic Knight Press, and will include my short story Goldilocks Zone. I’m really jazzed to have a story in this; there are a lot of amazing stories here, and its great company to be in.

Below is Tim’s introduction to the anthology, and the Table of Contents (including descriptions for the majority of the stories).

***

I started Fading Light with high hopes, but I wasn’t sure what to expect having never orchestrated an anthology before. There was a lot of uncertainty the night before submissions opened. What kind of stories would I get? Would any of the invited authors take me up on the offer to submit? What was I letting myself in for?

Turns out, the process went better than I could ever have imagined. Not only did I receive amazing stories from the vast majority of my invitation authors, I received a ton of great pieces from a wide range of folks from all over the world. Even better still, the stories were all diverse and original, each author taking the anthology prompt and making it their own. I ended up with way more stories than I could accept. Because of this, Angelic Knight Press and I decided to do a companion book so we could say yes a few more times.

In the end, I’m proud to say Fading Light features a number of debut authors alongside a cast of seasoned veterans, all poised to send a chill down your spine. So, dive into the darkness and experience the monstrous.

Tim Marquitz
El Paso, TX
July 5, 2012

Table of Contents

"Parasitic Embrace" by Adam Millard: A volcano erupts, sending an ominous ash-cloud across the ocean. The ash-cloud is the least of our worries. Contained within the hellish plume are millions of micro-parasites that have been dormant, waiting to find their host.

"The Equivalence Principle" by Nick Cato: Steve Burke is a man suffering from a severe case of agoraphobia. He treats himself with a homemade cocktail of natural herbs and over the counter pain killers. But what he has spent most of his life avoiding becomes real in the ways he’d always feared.

"A Withering of Sorts" by Stephen McQuiggan: The author has opted to keep this story a surprise.

"Goldilocks Zone" by Gary W. Olson: Amita has had a trying evening––and it’s just getting started. People are becoming monsters, buildings are slipping into sludge, gravity is turning optional, and assorted parts of her body are mutating. A voice in her head tries to explain, but somehow, understanding only makes it stranger.

"They Wait Below" by Tom Olbert: The world is near dying. An ecological inspector stationed on a deep sea oil rig suspects something is very wrong with the rig’s crew. His investigation into the mystery leads him to an ancient cosmic evil that has slept for eons, waiting for its chance to return.

"Buck" by Mark Pantoja: This is a tale of humans trying to survive on our Earth which has been infected with an extraterrestrial ecology. It isn’t personal, it is just life. This story is about revenge––a sad and hollow revenge.

"Blessed Be the Shadowchildren" by Malon Edwards: The Sun is dying––mortally wounded by an asshole god and his jealousy. There’s hope (and love) in the slow, dark death promised. Hope hangs on fifteen-year-old Levi and Lali reaching the warm arms of the Bright Lady before a horde of pursuing Biloko devour them––intestines first.

"The Beastly Ninth" by Carl Barker: The Sorcerer Napoleon is free, having escaped from his island prison and returned to France, to begin re-raising Hell. The only man standing in his way is Lord Arthur Wellesley, and this time, the Duke of Wellington has a few tricks of his own.

"Late Night Customer" by David Dalglish: The author has opted to keep this story a surprise.

"Rurik’s Frozen Bones" by Jake Elliot: It is Scandinavia, 819AD. The Vikings rule the North Atlantic through both warfare and trade. A beast hunts the cold waters between Sweden and Denmark, a monster unchallenged by the bravest of sailors.

"Wrath" by Lee Mather: Steven hasn’t touched a drink in months and now the time is right to take his son back from his brother’s custody. What he hadn’t counted on was the end of the world. Steven stopped believing in God a long time ago, but seeing is believing––will belief be enough to deter God’s wrath?

"Friends of a Forgotten Man" by Gord Rollo: The author has opted to keep this story a surprise.

"Altus" by Georgina Kamsika: The Altus is a free-diving submersible whose helmswoman aims to break depth records. She finds more than she bargained for at the bottom of the sea. Something monstrous lurks in the darkness with her and her submarine.

"Angela’s Garden" by Dorian Dawes: The author has opted to keep this story a surprise.

"The Long Death of Day" by Timothy Baker: For John and the love of his life, a terrifying shadow threatens to tear them apart. The world is at its end, and a blanket of darkness has spread between the Sun and Earth, turning day into deep gloom. With it, something monstrous writhes within the unnatural night, intent on devouring our dying planet.

"Out of the Black" by William Meikle: 300-years after the great dimming, the energy resources begin to run out. A man is sent from the underground city to the surface to scout for survival-necessary ore. All he finds is a dead world and a great blackness; a blackness that will not be kept out.

"Degenerates" by DL Seymour: The author has opted to keep this story a surprise.

"Dust" by Wayne Ligon: The author has opted to keep this story a surprise.

"Der Teufel Sie Wissen" by TSP Sweeney: The author has opted to keep this story a surprise.

"Born of Darkness" by Stacey Turner: After clouds block out the sun, Jeb struggles to keep his family safe and his faith intact. With his wife’s unexpected pregnancy and two strangers seeking refuge, things go from bad to worse. How do you tell who follows the path of light when you can no longer see who’s immersed themselves in darkness?

"Lottery" by Gene O’Neill: The author has opted to keep this story a surprise.

"Where Coyotes Fear to Tread" by Gef Fox: The world is shrouded in darkness and people have started acting strangely. Only two people can save the world from an ancient evil rising out of the Tennessee River––a ne’er-do-well redneck named Lester and his ex-girlfriend, Carla. Carla might be up for the challenge, but all Lester wants to do is get the hell out of Knoxville.

"The Theophany of Nyx" by Edward M. Erdelac: A fissure opens in the moon’s crust and swallows Earth’s first lunar colony whole, resulting in a thick cloud of dark dust that drifts into our planet’s atmosphere, blotting out the sun. Night falls across the entire world and vegetation begins to die. After eons of exile, something driven from the Earth in its primordial past is at last returning…

"Double Walker" by Henry P. Gravelle: Psychoanalyst, Dr. Maria DOBBS has a new client who believes his shadow has murdered his parents and others. She attempts to decipher whether he is a clever killer feigning insanity, an unwilling victim of an electrical storm jolting his senses, or the victim of a lifestyle placing his emotions in turmoil. Will she discover the truth before it is too late?

"Light Save Us" by Ryan Lawler: It has been months since Ted last saw the Sun. Hideous beasts lurk in the darkness outside the compound, waiting for the lights to fail. Ted works hard to keep the lights running, but the longer he fights, the more inviting the darkness becomes.

"Dark Tide" by Mark Lawrence: The author has opted to keep this story a surprise.

The following are bonus stories, available only for NOOK and Kindle:

"Roadkill" by CM Saunders: Jimmy and Tito make up one of the freelance ambulance and recovery crews patrolling the notoriously dangerous roads and highways of Brazil. Their job is not to the common man’s taste, but the money is worthy, and they’ve become very good at it. Everything worked great until the night they stumbled across an accident victim who refused to die.

"Torrential" by Regan Campbell: The author has opted to keep this story a surprise.

"Night Terrors" by Jonathan Pine: Dr. Mark Jacobs is a well-meaning physician just trying to do his best for his patients. But after a chance encounter, he ends up taking his work home with him in a way he could never imagine. Now he will have to face his own night terrors.

"Final Rights" by Peter Welmerink: The world has been cast into the cold embrace of Nuclear Winter, the Earth withering towards a dreary demise. The once-glorious daylight hours, now a perpetual dusk as the last bastions of humanity hold beneath the brightly-lit, but slowly dying vestiges of the larger cities. On the perimeters of our cloud-cloaked countryside, light succumbs to deep shadow–where a myriad of mutated beasts hungrily await civilization’s light to wink out.

"Evensong" by Alex Marshall: Demons rule the outside––but devils stalk within. These are the hidden halls of Agartha—perhaps the last of Earth’s buried strongholds where, for countless centuries, Morya’s folk have been enslaved. But now, rebel-soul Morya and her lover Seth have a chance to escape the hated Seers; a chance to breathe clean air and see the sun’s fading splendor for themselves…if only they dare…

***

Gary W. Olson is the author of the dark fantasy novel Brutal Light. His blog originates here. Fading Light blurb and intro by Tim Marquitz, story descriptions by the identified authors. Cover art: Jessy Lucero.

i said free links, not free drinks

New on my blog: Fading Light, Reading Pics, Site Maintainance, Free Links In which I share some random link stuph for Friday, plus news on upgrading the Joomla installation for my website, pictures from the reading/q&a/signing I and other authors did a week and a half ago, plus this: Fading Light CoverI got some good news recently — my bizarro/horror short story Goldilocks Zone was accepted into the anthology Fading Light: An Anthology of the Monstrous, edited by Tim Marquitz. That’s the awe-inspiring cover on the left, with artwork by Jessy Lucero—click on the image to see it in its full-size tentacly glory. Fading Light's gonna be droppin' on September 1st from Angelic Knight Press, and in addition to my story, it features monstrously good tales from Malon Edwards, Jake Elliot, Lee Mather, Edward M. Erdelac, and more.