Thursday, November 19, 2015

Book Review: In Nightmares We're Alone by Greg Sisco

Okay, so I never do book reviews pretty much ever and of the few I've done in the past, I've never put them up on here, but what the hell. I liked this one a lot and I'd like to share it with the handful of you who still haven't found the secret button to get the hell out of my chamber of freakish horrors. You're welcome. ;-)

The Book:

Each nightmare is unique. All nightmares are the same.

Three interwoven tales of terror form a collage of human suffering as three separate victims are plagued by otherworldly horrors. A young girl finds herself stalked by the hypnotic eyes of her mother’s new doll, a womanizing con artist can no longer contain the plants that sprout from his fingernails, and a bitter old woman is haunted by the cryptic messages on her dead father’s typewriter.

Rattling the chains of their separate Hells, these desperate lost souls lash out against the unknown, inadvertently plunging one another deeper into their respective nightmares.

My Review:

Greg Sisco pulls off an amazing feat with this would-be novel, would-be collection. He takes three powerful horror novellas each from a different first person point of view character and tells one longer interweaving story. At times the story seems chronological until you run into situations from the other tales and realize that, while overall the story isn't just one happenstance from three angles, it's actually three stories that segue into each other like a hand of three Aces waiting to be played.

There are a few scenes where the author shows us the same situation from one of the previous novellas in the collection from another character's point of view and I must admit, typically, I loathe when authors do this, because all too often it's only self-serving and a complete drag on the story. But here, Sisco does it briefly enough and with such powerful character revelation as to execute each of these scenes practically flawless.

Sisco's prose is tightly weaved, engrossing, twisted as hell, at times serious and penetrating, at others darkly hilarious, and even sometimes, he manages to pull off both in an extremely moving and entertaining display of skill. I lost count of how many amazing lines he was able to slip into this book. Some sending me into fits of laughter while others grabbing hold of that existential cord that pulls together wonder and terror.

Fans of one-protagonist/one-viewpoint novels might have a hard time with the three separate viewpoints that make up this story, but I found it to be a fascinating balanced whole regardless. If you're to look at this book as a collection of stories, it has the further treat of each tale standing on its own. However, if you read these in order as I did (or maybe even out of order as well?), you'll likely find yourself unable to put the book down until you've read all three and know the complete story.

My only complaint would be that toward the end of the last story there was a moment when the prose became a tad bit too heavy with character internalization, but the moment is so brief it doesn't warrant me taking off any stars.

I own several other books by Mr. Sisco and have yet to read them. That will be changing soon for sure. It would appear to me after reading In Nightmares We're Alone that Greg Sisco is one of the best kept secrets in modern horror and dark humor. I think it's time we let the proverbial cat out of the bag!

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

The Final Cover for RFA is here!

Isn't it so pretty??? Luke Spooner of Carrion House did this one and he'll also be doing new covers for Books I and II as well.

When I first started writing SHINING IN CRIMSON, in about 2008 or 2009, I pictured everything I was writing with a sort of graphic novel/comic book aesthetic, so when I learned that my previous artist would not be able to do RISING FROM ASHES in time for the book's release, I immediately wondered what it would be like to go with that kind of vibe with all new covers.

It just so happens, I had just worked with Luke on the cover and interior artwork for a brand new book from Nightscape Press by K.M. Tonso called DARKLING INCIDENCE: OBSCURE REFLECTIONS.which by coincidence actually hit Amazon today, so if you're looking for a really well-written collection of weird/dark fiction check it out. It's of course, edited by yours truly, and we wouldn't be publishing it if we didn't think it was absolutely amazing.
Here's the description for the curious:

Herein are contained reflections of what, as Saint Paul says, we see in a glass darkly. And as this angle of incidence is so shadowed, so must be the reflections it derives. 

These sixteen stories provide obscure reflections of worlds much like ours yet different. Worlds that grapple with increasingly confused and distorted realities. 

Each reflection so vivid as to become an open doorway where unwary readers might just find themselves stumbling over the threshold... never to return.

And while you're at it, you should also really check out Amelia Mangan's debut novel RELEASE also edited by this guy (thumbs and all) and published by Nightscape Press last month. Some of you may remember Amelia's gorgeous dark morsel of a story The Souls of Stars from the Vampire/Sci-fi anthology I edited back in 2013 called BLOOD TYPE: AN ANTHOLOTY OF VAMPIRE SF ON THE CUTTING EDGE.

Both of these books are a fantastic treat for anybody who loves dark, gothic, or weird fiction. Amelia's novel leans more toward a gothic psychological sort of anti-romance/thriller. This gorgeous cover art was designed by the ever phenomenal Boden Steiner who did the covers for both THREE MILES PAST and STERLING CITY by Stephen Graham Jones and DAYS OF RAIN by Ray Wallace for Nightscape Press previously. Here's some more about RELEASE:

At the age of sixteen, Stanley Fitzgerald murdered his mother. He hasn't uttered a word since. Institutionalized for the last twelve years, he spends his days numb and unresponsive, shut away in a dismal, silent world of his own. 

Until he meets Marina. 

Large bright feline eyes. Long chestnut hair. Rough edges of bitten fingernails. Hands that once murdered an entire family. Marina talks to Stanley. And before long, Stanley talks back. 

As their friendship grows, Marina's influence draws Stanley out of his shell. The doctors, pleased with Stanley's progress, decide it's time for his release. 

Returning to the isolated Midwestern farmhouse where he grew up, Stanley is determined to start putting the pieces of his broken life back together. He never believes he will see Marina again. Not as long as he lives. 

Until, one black and rainy night, Marina appears on Stanley's doorstep. 

"They let me out," she tells him. 

Stanley wants so badly to believe her. 

Stanley has no choice but to let her in... 

RELEASE is a Gothic fairy tale of love, death, guilt, and madness. 

And it will never let you go. 

Advance Praise for RELEASE: 

"Reading Amelia Mangan’s Release is like being trapped in a slowly sinking ship while icy water rises all around you. It’s creepy, claustrophobic, and disturbingly vivid; I couldn’t put it down." 
—Kelly Braffet, author of Save Yourself and Josie and Jack 

"Beautifully written and utterly absorbing, Release is the story of a young man trapped in an insular world of memories and madness. Returning to the rat-infested farmhouse where he grew up, Stanley Fitzgerald settles into a routine. He cooks, he cleans, he listens to the radio. One day fades into the next, but there is a certain comfort in the mundane. A certain hopefulness in the simplicity of his new existence. Then a beguiling young woman shows up at his door and Stanley soon realizes that for a man such as he, there can be only one release. 

"Amelia Mangan’s writing is so rich and evocative, the reader will be tempted to race through the pages, but don’t. Release is to be savored, preferably on a moonlit night with a chill in the air." 
—Amanda Stevens, author of The Graveyard Queen series 

"Haunting and hard to shake off. Release wraps its chilled fingers around you and doesn't let go." 
—Kathy Charles, author of John Belushi Is Dead 

"Release is the novel you'd get if you put Stephen King and Angela Carter in a room together and got them good and mean drunk. Scary, thrilling, gimlet-eyed, and so sharp you could cut yourself on it, this is a triumph of horror novels, and heralds an exciting new talent in Amelia Mangan." 
—Jessica Alcott, author of Even When You Lie To Me

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Bad News, Short Delays, and What Not...

It is with much frustration and stress that I must inform everyone that the release date for RISING FROM ASHES has been moved up to December 8th, 2015. I am very sorry for the delay. I'll have more updates soon.

Friday, October 2, 2015

Can You Say Preorder??? Here Let Me Say It With You... RISING FROM ASHES!

The date is finally set! On Tuesday, November 24th December 8th, 2015, RISING FROM ASHES: EMPIRE OF BLOOD BOOK THREE will hit all the major e-stores! Pre-order is now available for trade paperback and hardcover editions from the Robert S. Wilson Big Cartel store and for eBook editions at all the major eBook chains. Click the icon of your preferred retailer below! I'm so excited to finally share the final Empire of Blood novel with you folks. It's been a long four years since SHINING IN CRIMSON hit physical and electronic bookshelves alike and one hell of a crazy ride! In celebration, you can get RFA for a special eBook pre-order price of only $2.99! Here's the deets:

Now with nothing left to lose, Hank Evans has transformed from a hollow shell to a military leader of the Foederati, hardened to the core with the cold unmerciful steel of revenge. He rightfully blames the Emperor for the death of his son and will stop at nothing to destroy the evil man and his twisted religious empire. 

Armed with the knowledge that he alone is the biggest threat to the monster who rules the American Empire, Hank needs only to learn the secret that will allow him to kill this terrible creature who ripped apart so many lives. 

But as the vampire Queen's belly grows larger and the time for her to give birth grows near, new visions of the future distract Hank from his plans of vengeance with glimpses of a boy hidden in shadows... A boy who looks so very much like Toby. 

And in the end, a new litter of vampires is born and they will change everything.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Quick Rising From Ashes Update!

I just wanted to throw up a quick news flash that RISING FROM ASHES: EMPIRE OF BLOOD BOOK THREE is now available for Nook pre-order on Barnes & Noble for the special pre-order price of only $2.99! That is all for now, if you're looking for news about the Kindle pre-order you can find that here! I'm getting really pumped about finally dropping the last book in the trilogy! Can't wait to share this book with you guys! Until next time...

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Couch To 5K Plan: Week 3-ish... Or Is it Week 4 Now? Who Fucking Knows...

I've been very liberally following this plan for a number of weeks now. It's hard to keep track as I've just been walking eight out of ten days regardless and jogging every other day without any two day breaks like the plan calls for. The first week, I mostly followed the schedule, which I shared in my last Cto5K post, however, I threw in a few extra two to three minute jogs here and there as I mentioned in said post. I thought that was just the greatest thing because, while it exhausted me, it didn't make me feel like I was going to die or anything. HA!

The second week, the first day I did the initial walking, then three minutes of jogging, then walked a good ten minutes more then jogged for four and that's where I really started to feel something. That four minutes wasn't just, "Yay, this is easy, I can do this! Woo hoo!" and mystery confetti fell from the sky as a crowd of anonymous cheery folks in jogging suits greeted me with applause...

No... it was more like, "Holy fuck, I have to stop, I can't breathe, I need to stop, I can't breathe--MY LEGS! MY FUCKING LEGS! HOLY SHIT, MY LEGS!" The last minute seemed to stretch on for the rest of my life. Every little bit would pass and my lungs would feel like they were going to burst or my leg would give an extra painful twitch and I'd have to tell myself, "Don't stop, mother fucker... don't do it. Just keep going, asshole." And as miserably cliche as it may sound, I finally got a glimpse of what it means to have to dig deep within yourself and instead of pulling out a rabbit or perhaps an old shoe, you have to pull out determination and really push when you feel like you can't push any goddamn more.

What it really comes down to is that it's easy for me to do four or five two-to-three minute jogs, but what really matters most in this race is endurance and when you do one or two longer jogs, that's when your lungs (or at least my motherfucking lungs for goddamn sure!) really start to feel it (FUCK YOU VERY MUCH, PHILIP MORRIS!).

For some of you, that may sound pathetic, but you know what? That's where I'm at. That's what I've gotten myself into after years of sitting at a desk and not seriously consistently putting any care into my body... And of course twenty plus years of smoking probably didn't help either. To be even more fair, I haven't done this much jogging since I was in my early teens. I was smoking by the time I was 13 years old for fuck-sake and by the time I did my Senior finals for gym class, I was dead last in the class when we had to run.

Dead. Fucking. Last!

And while I did get plenty of exercise in my years of singing live on stage, by the time I was 23 or so, that was mostly behind me, save for the few shows I did with Kobayashi in 2008-ish.

Anyway... I digress... On the next day of Jog Til You Drop, I planned to do three minutes and then four like I had before and that three minutes nearly waylaid my lungs, so I had to walk the rest after that. And then the next day I was supposed to jog, I let myself get distracted with other stuff and didn't go. Mind you, as I've said... most days I had been walking on my off days, the days the program says to rest. I don't know if my body is in bad shape to the point that I should have been doing more rest in between or not. Or if that's even how this shit really works... However, this week, I'm resting between days instead.

The first day, I did my walking, then four minutes jogging, and then a short couple-minute jog. Today, day two of this week--which if I'm counting right puts me at week three after all--I walked, did a two minute jog, walked some more, then moved up to a five minute jog. So, while I'm three weeks in and behind on the overall numbers, I at least feel like I'm getting more on track.

So... that's where I'm at with the Couch to5K plan for now...

I suppose while I'm on here, I should mention that I also deactivated my Facebook account today. On one end, I've been spending entirely too much time on Facebook lately and that's completely fucked my productivity in a number of areas. For two, it's a source of a lot of stress that I can certainly do without for at least a little while, if not for the long term.

For three, I'm seeing maybe 50% of the posts I'd like to be seeing, if not less than that. Especially if you count in pages for things like bands, authors, publishers, and what not. In place of real (virtually real?) human interaction, Facebook has slowly evolved into a network that makes you feel like it's normal to spend all of your goddamn time reading and sharing memes that span the gamut from braindead bigoted attacks to  heartfelt emotional pick-me-up quotes, arguing about politics, or arguing about just about any other fucking thing that could possibly and even quite improbably end up being argued about.

Here's a reminder, for those of you who might have forgotten:


So, anyway... all around, it all adds up to one big, middle finger poking me in the face every time I get on there.

That said, I'm still on Google +, Tsu, and Twitter. So, if you want to keep up with more of my day-to-day bullshit, along with posting more on my blog, I'll still be on those social networks until they too become a problem... (which I don't foresee happening anytime least... I hope). For now, however, I must rest... eat... and shower! Until next time... completely random Bob time... completely random Bob channel... err, something...

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Doth Me Smell the Scents of Autumn? And Perhaps a Sale, Too? Aye!

The weather is cooling off some and the days are dropping away until my favorite time of the year! Even if Halloween wasn't smack in the middle of the best goddamn season on Earth, I would probably still love absolutely everything about Fall. Bonfires, the grim look of bare trees, that crisp smell in the air, the dry blanket of fallen leaves covering the ground, the earthen aromas of harvest crops and burning wood, that sense of cozy ethereal ambiguity that seems to somehow tow the line between the natural and the impossibly supernatural...

Oh yeah...


I'm still here. Promise. Just got carried away for a moment there.

And of course... there's the fact that Halloween is in the Fall that greedily squirts out the proverbial icing on the (pumpkin-flavored) cake! Ah... Halloween. I loved it before I'd even read my first horror story. But post-horror fiction love? It's like, for one month a year, this big huge rocky globe kicks back (err... tilts?) and says, "Ah... It's that time again. Time to motherfucking ROCK!"

And so in celebration of this beautiful and fine goddamn season, I've dropped the prices on all of my eBooks (that aren't already free) down to a measly 99 cents EVERYWHERE! Kindle? 99 cents or less. Nook? 99 cents or less. Kobo? 99 mother-loving, kickass cents or less! iBooks/Apple/Whatever-the-Fuck-You-Call it? Hell yeah, man! 99 cents or less! Google Play? Oh fuck yeah! 99 hard-earned, Abraham Lincoln-engraved, shiny, imaginary-because-we're-talking-eBooks-here cents or less! And yeah, Smashwords and all those other places where supposedly people also buy eBooks too. So, if there's an RSW title you've had your eye on... now's the time. And if you've got them all and you enjoy them well (or at least a little bit), you have my hearty thanks(!) and if by chance you'd be so kind as to share the good news with your friends, family, dogs, cats, dolphins, or any other aquatic, anthropomorphic, or geometric pets you may have, that would be the cherry on top of my already-lathered-with-icing pumpkin-flavored MEGACAKE!

And for those who are asking themselves:

"Why did I click on this link?"

Or "Who the hell is Robert S. Wilson, anyway?"

Or "What the fuck kind of shameless self-promotion bullshit is this?"

Or "Holy shit, man, calm down, it's still hot as motherfucking Mount Doom out there!"

I would just like to take this moment to thank you for reading my humble post here and for not sending me hate letters threatening me to go away and hide in my Squash-Covered Cave of Uber Autumn-Love in the woods "OR ELSE!"...

So, without further ado, I bid thee farewell and a Happy HOLY SHIT IS IT FALL YET ALREADY?!?!?