Saturday, January 20, 2018

Done Writing. But Why?

I announced recently via social media that I have "retired" from writing. Some of my friends expressed surprise. The truth is, I stopped writing a long time ago.

I completed my last two original stories back in May of 2017.

I have not felt the urge to write anything since.

Sadly, I let my interactions with a few editors poison my attitude toward the whole process. I need to walk away for a while. Some editors play favorites and trade favors (whether they realize it or not). I'll leave it at that. I have also noticed a dramatic increase in markets seeking submissions from very specific demographic groups which I am not a part of.

Despite receiving praise from best-selling and award-winning authors for my work, I have not built up a readership. I have maybe a dozen loyal readers. After ten years of writing and working hard to improve, I hoped there would be more.

My first collection, amateurish and embarrassing in retrospect, got 16 Amazon reviews and all but 2 were five star. My second collection, a vast improvement over the first, got two reviews. My third collection, professionally edited and published by a small press publisher, contains the best work of my career, but has received ZERO reviews.

So, as the quality of my writing improves, interest wanes. It's inexplicable to me.

I don't like the so-called "Juries" the Horror Writers Association uses in the Stoker Awards process. Any member can make a recommendation, but the 4-5 people on the Jury for each category determine the short list. I've come to think of them as "gatekeepers" and I believe that system is seriously flawed.

My official web site is a thing of the past. It's embarrassing to admit, but I paid more money in 2017 to be a writer (for my HWA membership, my web site, and a subscription to a list of markets) than I made BEING a writer.

I might be back someday, but right now I feel burned out, disillusioned, and in need of something different in my life.

I want to extend an honest and heartfelt "thank you" to everyone who has ever read one of my stories.
I enjoyed the ride.
Adrian Ludens

Thursday, January 18, 2018

New Releases for Winter Reading!

Here's an update on several new publications that feature my short fiction.

Note: These are NOT reviews. I have not read these yet.

Hinnom Magazine #3. Where things go bump in the night and dimensions fold within one another. Beasts lurk in shadows and nightmares take physical form. In this tome, you will find the most exciting dark fiction and cosmic horror from the best up-and-coming authors in the genre. Embrace the Unknown. (Excerpt from Amazon's product description.)

My story, "Home Again," follows Adam's return to the town of his childhood after many years away. He's surprised to find everything the same as when he left. But something isn't quite right, and as the facade starts to fall apart, it becomes clear that someone doesn't want him there.

Hinnom Magazine #3 featuring Home Again

Realities Perceived. Perception is Reality... or is it? Do we create our own reality? Or does our view of it shape our world? Neither heroes nor heavens, victims nor villains, may grasp the true nature of our being.

From science fiction, to horror and the supernatural, to dramas about the fabric of our existence, this anthology features an international fusion of artists who will thrill you with an eclectic selection of tales. (Excerpt from Amazon's product description.)

My story, "Cobwebs and Cold Truths," is a psychological thriller/horror story where an ominous old man's Halloween tales shred the veil between madness and monsters.

Realities Perceived anthology featuring Cobwebs and Cold Truths

Whispers of the Apoc: Tales from the Zombie Apocalypse.
"No one knew how it began. The world fell in just a few weeks.
These are the stories of those people strong enough, lucky enough or crazy enough to survive." (From Amazon's product description.)

My story, "Crave New World," follows Mara as she hunts and harvests zombies. In the near-future, humans crave the dried brains of zombies. In fact, it's the hottest drug on the market. And Mara must make the hardest decision of her life when she comes face to face with a zombie she recognizes...

Whispers of the Apoc featuring Crave New World