Walter Lazo

Biography

“Our free short stories are intended as a doorway to our more mature premium works. Their purpose is to showcase the author’s writing style and use of evocative imagery. Although these are his earlier works—he has gotten much better since—they serve as a nice introduction to his thematic concerns as well as to his belief that a story has to be believed in to be effective. Therefore, what he presents in these stories are situations and the reactions of characters within those situations.”

Walter Lazo was born in Cambridge, MA, and now lives in North Carolina. As a child he discovered his love of Weird Fiction and large, epic, heroic stories, as well as German and Greek mythology, devouring the works of H.P. Lovecraft, Robert E. Howard, J.R.R. Tolkien, Stephen King, the Grimm brothers, Bram Stoker, and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

Walter grew up reading the short stories of Richard Matheson, and later discovered the works of the great science fiction writers of the 20th century; namely, Philip K. Dick, Ray Bradbury and Isaac Asimov.

He enjoys writing horror and science fiction stories with an occasional martial arts story thrown in for good measure. He is currently obsessed with the short story form and hopes that it will make a comeback in popularity. As an adult he has tried to create his own mythos, writing about the Demon World and other creatures that torment men’s dreams.

He is a longtime fan of Stephen King and of the works of J.R.R. Tolkien.

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Smashwords Interview

How do you approach cover design?
We tend to find something in the story that we find provocative and build from there.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
1: Dracula: I have read Dracula five times this year alone. It's February. Not kidding. What I like about Dracula is the normalcy of the storytelling mixed in with what is obviously a very fantastic, supernatural story. What I love about Dracula is the language and the greatness of both the heroes and the villain.
2: Watership Down: This story is just beautiful. I love the language and the sheer imagination.
3: Midnight, moonlight, and the secret of the sea by Darrell Schweitzer: This one may be hard to find. It is worth the effort. The most visual language I have ever read. Surreal story, bordering on the baroque.
4: Dune: Language and philosophy combined with compelling characters and a magnificent plot.
5: The Silmarillion: I know what you're thinking, but hear me out. Tolkien furnishes enough mythology in this book to write at least a hundred books. It is the most magnificent example of imagination and devotion to a project that I have ever seen. I love this book.
Read more of this interview.

Where to find Walter Lazo online


Where to buy in print


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Books

Witch of the Defiled
By
Series: Chronicles of the Demon World, Book 1. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 100,250. Language: English. Published: April 28, 2014. Category: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic
Buro Durkierna set in motion the destruction of the world, inadvertently summoning the all-consuming Possessed Realm, ruled by the terrible Witch of the Defiled, Jazael. Now he seeks death as redemption. Unbeknownst to him, however, other forces seek him also, some to destroy him, others to save him. For it is only the hand that set in motion the destruction of the world that can save it.
We Were Good, Once
By
Price: Free! Words: 2,190. Language: English. Published: February 16, 2014. Category: Fiction » Horror » General
(5.00)
An eyewitness account of the last days of a dying world, told from the view of a young man...
In The Realm of the Wolf
By
Price: Free! Words: 8,210. Language: English. Published: January 22, 2013. Category: Fiction » Horror » General
(4.20)
Bart returns to his home town to await an evil he can no longer avoid. As he waits, he questions the decisions he has made that have led him to this fate, and he wonders if perhaps he has sacrificed his own happiness and the happiness of those he loves for the sake of a higher cause that may prove to be beyond him.
The True Story of Jonathan Vera
By
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 17,410. Language: English. Published: August 29, 2012. Category: Fiction » Fantasy » Short stories
Ex-soldier Jonathan Vera is having a tough year. Instead of despairing he chooses to barter his military experience for quick money. When his new potential employers tell him that the job involves hunting vampires, he suspects that perhaps they are not quite sane. Now Jonathan must decide whether his new employers are crazy or, much worse, telling the truth.
Slaughter Wolf
By
Price: Free! Words: 1,640. Language: English. Published: July 30, 2012. Category: Fiction » Horror » General
(4.00)
Three fierce werewolf hunters corner their prey outside of a ravaged village only to find the beast does not flee from them but calmly waits. The werewolf hungers, but what he hungers for they do not understand. Soon they will learn a lesson about the nature of evil. If they survive, they may well wish they hadn’t.
Werewolf Winter - A Short Story
By
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 15,990. Language: English. Published: July 14, 2012. Category: Fiction » Horror » General
(4.00)
Galein, the Terrible Man, fearing the darkness he sees in his own soul, has retreated into the monastery of Sheogarath, hoping to find solace and peace. But a new evil has come to the land of Uruad, a creature of such malevolent hatred that threatens to consume the earth. It is a werewolf. Galein will have to confront more than the darkness he sees in himself, or watch the world die.
Disciples of Oblivion
By
Price: Free! Words: 3,500. Language: English. Published: July 6, 2012. Category: Fiction » Horror » General
(4.00)
Walking home from work one night, a man sees an impossible thing: a rip in space. Out of this pours forth a malevolent being, a vampire. The existence of such a thing will challenge not only his sanity but his notions of Good and Evil. Can he resist the calling of oblivion?
It's Just a Job
By
Price: Free! Words: 2,300. Language: English. Published: June 28, 2012. Category: Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories
(3.80)
A specialist in photographing places that are not supposed to exist, from a safe distance, is enticed by an obscene amount of money into infiltrating an abandoned Research Facility. There he will discover that it is never a good idea to deviate from standard operating procedure. It’s just a job, but sometimes it’s not what the job pays, but what it extracts.
We Who Embrace The Night
By
Price: Free! Words: 1,050. Language: English. Published: June 12, 2012. Category: Fiction » Horror » Occult
(3.80)
The Bringer emerges from the shadows to claim another host for his terrible master, the demonic god, Tialith. Tonight is a night of tears and bitterness as the Bringer must not only obey his master but fight against the conscience still alive within him and bring his terrible master an innocent victim.
The Medusa
By
Price: Free! Words: 4,630. Language: English. Published: June 6, 2012. Category: Fiction » Fantasy » Short stories
(3.40)
Five friends, exploring ancient ruins in Greece, find an enormous rock mountain that is not in any of their maps. Imbued with an adventurous spirit they decide to explore it and find a door built into the mountain. The door is slightly ajar. They step through it and find themselves in another world, one which is both beautiful and deadly, for she dwells in it - the Medusa.
Sebastian - The Goblin Hunter
By
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 7,120. Language: English. Published: May 31, 2012. Category: Fiction » Fantasy » Short stories
When Sebastian lost his wife to a malevolent creature of legend, his life, in a very real sense, ended, and his obsession began. Now he is a man driven by only one purpose—revenge. But will this purpose lead him to the satisfaction he craves, or hurl him into a never ending nightmarish war?
Old Jack's Tale
By
Price: Free! Words: 1,680. Language: English. Published: May 23, 2012. Category: Fiction » Fantasy » Short stories
(3.67)
Fred the Bartender has heard many wild tales in his time, but the one Jack Matthews is about to tell him will challenge both his credulity and his sanity.
The Last Fight of the Dwarves
By
Price: Free! Words: 1,290. Language: English. Published: May 17, 2012. Category: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic
(4.00)
Modsognir leads the last army of dwarves in a desperate attempt to buy time for the race of humans to escape a dying world, consumed by evil.
Lamatsu
By
Price: Free! Words: 2,380. Language: English. Published: May 7, 2012. Category: Fiction » Horror » General
(3.00)
Frank is on his last delivery of the day when his world is turned upside down. Have his senses finally betrayed him?
Let The World Die
By
Price: Free! Words: 480. Language: English. Published: April 29, 2012. Category: Fiction » Horror » General
(3.50)
After years of saving the world, an exhausted hero decides that she has finally had enough—let humanity save itself, let the world die.
The Old Mansion
By
Price: Free! Words: 1,600. Language: English. Published: April 26, 2012. Category: Fiction » Horror » General
(3.80)
A short story of two young girls and a boy that set out on an adventure to discover elves.

Walter Lazo’s tag cloud

action    action adventure    adventure    battle    bringer    curse    curse greek    cursed    darkness    demon    demons    dwarf    dwarfs    dwarve    dwarven    dwarves    elves    embrace    epic    epic adventure    epic adventure fantasy    epic battle    epic battles    evil    fantasy    fiction    goblin    goblin stories    goblin wars    goblins    goblins apprentice goblins    gods    gods and demons    gods and goddess    gods and goddesses    gorgon    goth    honor    horror    horror action    horror adventure    horror anthology short story stories    interdimensional    interdimensional realms    interdimensional vampires    job    lab    laboratory    lamatsu    lilith    medusa    mercenaries    mercenary    mercenary fiction    military    monsters    night    occcult    old    old gods    old man    sacrifice    sci fi    science    science ficition    science fiction    science fiction action    serpent men    shadow    short dark fiction    short ebook    short ebooks    short fantasy    short fiction    short horror    short horror stories    short stories    short stories fantasy    snakes    special agent    special ops    spy    spy action thriller    spy cam    stone    stone sculpture    supernatural    tale    thriller    vampire    vampires    vampires and demons    vampyr    werewolf    werewolf action adventure horror    werewolf attack    werewolf book    werewolf books    werewolf books for young adults    witch    wolf    wolf man    wolfman   

Walter Lazo's favorite authors on Smashwords


Smashwords book reviews by Walter Lazo

  • Roses for Cassandra on June 07, 2012

    A very pleasant but underdeveloped story with a glaring deus ex machina.
  • Aftermath: Found on June 07, 2012

    An interesting story, showing a lot of promise, that suffered somewhat from a lack of character development and description.
  • The Silver Shore on June 07, 2012

    A beautifully written subjective odyssey with mystical, magical overtones.
  • The Werewolf's Halloween Costume: A YA Paranormal Story on June 09, 2012

    Nicely written young adult fiction, with a really cool werewolf.
  • Special Delivery on June 10, 2012

    Very nice tension-filled story.
  • Strange Strangers on June 14, 2012

    Funny, scary and a bit gory, a fun read.
  • Blades of Hollow on June 15, 2012

    Magnificent visceral evocative story that very successfully uses the somewhat tricky second-person narrative mode.
  • The Tale of Isis and Osiris on June 15, 2012

    Some structural problems and weak grammar somewhat mar what is a very good story.
  • Purchasing Power on June 15, 2012

    Sharp prophetic vision of an all too possible future.
  • Yuni on June 18, 2012

    Very weird story, seeming pointless at times, but nonetheless enjoyable for all that.
  • Short and Stupid: Ten Somewhat Dark Short Stories for a Rainy Day on June 21, 2012

    An enjoyable collection of flash fiction, with the third and eighth stories approaching brilliance.
  • Yesterday, I died (The Devil's Forge) on June 24, 2012

    Very well-written and thoughtful story that is both a haunting and evocative reflection on mortality.
  • Terminator; Reborn on June 24, 2012

    What a fascinating angle! It's very short, however, and really needs to be worked into a longer story.
  • The Duel on June 24, 2012

    The grammar in this story needs work as there are far too many run-on sentences. The story, however, was interesting and entertaining.
  • Dawn Debris: A Comic Book Without Illustrations on June 25, 2012

    Weird, tongue-in-cheek, and enjoyable. A nice little satire.
  • Nightmare Beach on June 25, 2012

    Far too many commas are missing where they are clearly necessary; the story, however, is effective.
  • The Ghost of Hill Haven Road on June 25, 2012

    The story, or legend as the case may be, is intriguing, but the grammar, from verb-tense to punctuation, is simply dreadful.
  • Those characters In My Head on July 02, 2012

    An interesting take on writing. While I tend to see writing as a method for integrating experience, this author views it as separatist, almost escapist. Although I do not share this author's views on writing, it is always interesting to get another take on it.
  • "Mommy, there's something under my bed." on July 11, 2012

    Nice set-up, build-up, and delivery. Well done.
  • Young Subway Stalkers on July 14, 2012

    I read this based on a recommendation since the title did not appeal to me. I'm glad I did as these were surprisingly good stories.
  • Maynard Soloman Solves the War on Drugs (Funny Detective Stories #1) on July 14, 2012

    Maynard Soloman is a nice, fully-developed, ornery character. This was a fun story with surprising depth and stinging social commentary. Well done.
  • Beyond the Veil on July 14, 2012

    One of the best stories I've read this year--richly imaginative and well-written. As soon as I started reading, I knew this was something special, and will now be on the lookout for more works from this author.
  • Copper Soldiers (The Devil's Forge) on Aug. 05, 2012

    The story is rough at spots; however, the author has a good feel for storytelling, has a very compelling protagonist, and the story itself is fascinating.
  • Curse of the Gargoyle Abbot on Aug. 22, 2012

    Very odd and also very intriguing. I am quite fond of mystical narrative writing styles, and found this story sweetly satisfying. The story itself is wonderful to read just for the sheer experience of it, but can also be enjoyed at a deeper, more thoughtful level.
  • Dappled Harmony on Aug. 22, 2012

    Nice, like watching a scene from a movie, or being high and hallucinating.
  • Dead! on Aug. 22, 2012

    Although I'm not a zombie lover, I really enjoyed this story. Clever, original, and unexpected, with a very well-developed character, this story left me wanting more, which is a good thing. Well done.
  • Now Recruiting on Aug. 23, 2012

    Promising story that can easily be expanded into a much longer one. The main idea of this story, in fact, is so strong that it can even be stretched into a full-length novel.
  • Peril At The Pop-up Library on Aug. 26, 2012

    Interesting story idea, but the grammar needs work. In general, the story is very choppy and would be much improved if the syntax were to flow more naturally--something that can be accomplished through the use of conjunctions and other connectors.
  • Its Dead Leave It Alone on Nov. 02, 2012

    Still trying to figure out how one would go about “desiccating” a grave—pretty sure what was meant was “desecrating.” There are three major problems that stand out with this story: grammar, characterization, and imagination. The grammar in this story is quite atrocious, characterization nearly nonexistent, and, as far as imagination, this story feels ‘borrowed’ from movies and television. It’s really not very imaginative. More, it did appear as if the story lacked a protagonist. This story could be improved significantly simply by bettering its grammar and focusing the events narrated through the eyes of one main character.
  • Life in Fiction on Nov. 13, 2012

    This is a very nice story. The writing is clear and evocative, and the characters are well-developed and believable. More, reading it was just plain fun.
  • That's All the Time We Have on Nov. 13, 2012

    This is such a beautiful and melancholy story, superbly written, and powerful in its empathy. For a moment it made me feel as if I were somebody else.
  • Of Secrets, Letters, and Lions on Feb. 20, 2013

    An enjoyable read, which builds nicely and delivers a satisfying conclusion.
  • Deeper Than Blood on March 10, 2013

    Impressive, moody, and atmospheric, with a nice and flowing style, tragic in parts, macabre in others, very satisfying, this is a richly imaginative and somewhat disturbing story. Brilliant.
  • Soldier of a Once Free Nation on March 10, 2013

    Awkwardly written, grammatically nearly incoherent, with an abundance of run-on sentences and shifting points of view, never morphing into a real story but more of a semi-rant, this is, nonetheless, an interesting idea that deserves to be developed either into a full story or a full rant.
  • Twas The Night Before Christmas (When The Aliens Appeared) on March 10, 2013

    Silly and funny, and it put a smile on my face.
  • A Fools Revenge on March 13, 2013

    Overall this is a very enjoyable and imaginative story. It would greatly benefit from a longer treatment, though.
  • Zeus on March 16, 2013

    More of a scene than a story, a strange encounter, really. The writing is nice and the encounter works. Although it can easily be expanded into a longer story, I appreciate the beauty of flash fiction. This is a very good example of how to set mood and feel.
  • Devotion on March 16, 2013

    This is a nicely written and melancholy story that needed just a little bit more exposition.
  • Delightfully Twisted Tales: Fire, Fangs and Brimstone (Volume Two) on March 24, 2013

    Weird, nicely-written, and fascinating, this collection is different--told from the other side, so to speak--and very entertaining. Nicky Drayden is a magnificent writer, and in this collection the stories run the gamut from funny to bitter to wickedly amusing to slightly disturbing.
  • Don't Let Her In on March 24, 2013

    A great example of what can be accomplished with the short story form. This is one of the moodiest, most atmospheric stories I've ever read. It is an amazing story with very evocative imagery, which manages to build tension with every page. Very satisfying.
  • Horse-Flesh on April 03, 2013

    I found this story to be a very effective incident story, very similar to the rampant news stories I used to hear back in the 70s when I was a kid. It brought back some nice memories. Back then it seemed like just about everyone you met could tell you about some unexplained phenomena they had either encountered personally or had heard about. What I got from this story was reminiscent of that uncanny feeling of wonder and dread--which suggested that the world was perhaps larger and darker than our sheltered philosophies wished to allow--that in the very young tends to breed a sort of morbid curiosity, one that wishes to challenge the darkness because it does not yet understand what darkness is, what it can be. In short, I liked this story. It was very good.
  • Kill on April 03, 2013

    Quite brilliant. Excellent character development and plot set up, followed by a very satisfying conclusion. Great story.
  • Framed by a Phantom on April 03, 2013

    Not a bad story, but far too much telling and not enough showing. It just needed to be fleshed out a little more.
  • A Divine Tale on April 06, 2013

    This one is a bit difficult to rate as it came off more as an outline to a story than a story in its own right. Still, it is very intriguing and full of nice visuals and ideas. It has great potential and can easily be fleshed out into a full novel.
  • Reverend Rapist on April 06, 2013

    Reverend Rapist is a very daring, provocative, and bitter story. Although the subject matter can be seen as controversial, this story is well-written, with solid character development, good build-up and delivery, and nice pacing.
  • The Empty Man on April 08, 2013

    I really like this poem. It's classy in its vulgar moments and very funny
  • Right to Life? on April 08, 2013

    Nice writing, very daring, and thought provoking, this is a good and demanding story.
  • Destined To Be Damned on April 08, 2013

    This is an expertly-written story, dealing with the themes of alienation and belonging, reminiscent of the pulp stories of the early 20th century. I found it to be both beautiful and melancholy.
  • Breakfast In Paris on April 08, 2013

    A clear example of great writing. This brilliant little gem accomplishes more in a couple of pages than others do in full novels.
  • The Sleeper With The Restless Eyes Who Sleeps Beneath A Sleeper on April 09, 2013

    Good, spooky, menacing and evocative poem, with just a twinge of sadness. It reminded me of Lovecraft's The Outsider.
  • The Sign of the Fiddler Crab on April 09, 2013

    The Sign of the Fiddler Crab is a wonderful story, and James Hampton is an extraordinary writer. This story is a frightening vision of a very possible future where the government controls everything--including behavior--through regulations. The writing is magnificent and fluid, and the story itself is beautiful and deeply moving.
  • Images on April 11, 2013

    Surreal, heartbreaking and hallucinogenic science fiction story. This is a very ambitious and mature story, and it is well-told.
  • The Ghost Of A Chance on April 11, 2013

    This one is an ambitious and epic story, richly imaginative and moving. If anything, I wanted more. Also, great cover.
  • Boom on April 16, 2013

    A nice engaging story with strong philosophical undertones.
  • No Sense And Nonsense on April 16, 2013

    Amusing and funny, but also very weird.
  • Ride The Wild Worm on April 16, 2013

    Michael Carter is rapidly becoming one of my favorite authors here. His sentences are very fluid, which makes his prose a sheer delight to read, and his imagination, while retaining traditional elements, is refreshingly unique.
  • dancer, zero on April 20, 2013

    The writing needs to be smoothed out as some sentences are clearly awkward. Overall, however, the story is quite intriguing.
  • Mourning The Sun on April 20, 2013

    This strange, richly imaginative, melancholy tale is one of the better short stories I've read this year.
  • Hunting Comp. on April 27, 2013

    If Gene Roddenberry and Philip K. Dick ever had a baby, it would be this story. Fascinating, very smart, and entertaining.
  • The Place Of The Shoggoths on April 29, 2013

    I love poetry that has nothing to do with love. This one is a nice, creepy little gem meant more for those familiar with the Cthulhu myth. Still, it is very strong in its own right and may introduce newbies to the great works of H.P. Lovecraft.
  • Earthborn - Emergence on April 29, 2013

    Great imagination somewhat marred by weak grammar and quite a few spelling errors. Still, an enjoyable story.
  • The Unforgettable Names Of the Forgotten Gods on May 03, 2013

    Darse Yole? Maybe I misinterpreted this, but when I read it, I laughed so hard I'm pretty sure I broke a rib. This is the most irreverent, funny story I've read this year. As far as spelling and grammar errors, if you set out specifically to look for them, I'm sure you will find some. Personally, I'm a stickler for grammar; however, I do realize that the purpose of grammar is not rule-following but clarity and understanding. This is a four-star story--it is that funny. Here's a little something about grammar: even among the greatest writers of all time, you will sometimes find grammar and spelling errors. And these are people with expensive editors. I just finished reading a collection of Sir Isaiah Berlin's essays,for example, and on his essay on Tolstoy, on the third page, a paragraph repeats itself and periods are missing on the first two sentences. It happens. Further, there are some writers who deliberately disregard the rules. Friedrich Nietzsche, considered one of Germany's greatest prose writers, pretty much ignored every rule of punctuation; yet, he is of all philosophers the easiest to read. Why? He understood that writing is about meaning, about making yourself understood, about sharing a subjective experience with another human being. Sorry about the mini-rant; great story. By the way, "Gelly Larts?" Freaking awesome.
  • A round shiny object on May 03, 2013

    Flash fiction, to be effective, has to hit you between the eyes like a sledge hammer. This piece did not do this for me. It did not really accomplish anything, really. I can't mark it too low, however, because the writing itself is quite good. Still, nothing that occurs within the story connects with the reader.
  • Little Straggler on May 03, 2013

    This was a nice kid's story with meaning.
  • Out of a Cloud on May 03, 2013

    This was very beautiful--would definitely like to hear the song.
  • The Plague on May 03, 2013

    Nice poem, daring and provocative. David Attenborough would definitely agree with this poem.
  • Humans Can Lick, Too (Urban Legend) on May 03, 2013

    Von Stoller's writing has improved significantly since last I read him. Still, comma usage needs to be improved, and he, also, needs to get past the habit of telling instead of showing. It is possible to get three or four pages out of every paragraph in this story with the 'show don't tell' paradigm. I'm going to give this story three-stars for two reasons: Mr. Von Stoller is clearly willing to improve his writing, and he obviously loves the horror genre--a plus in my view.
  • When the Family Gathers on May 10, 2013

    Another great story from James Hampton, and, as usual, the writing is very good. This one is a character study, with a bit of social commentary.
  • Halloween's Perfect Storm on May 16, 2013

    Tongue-in-cheek, a bit derivative, but enjoyable.
  • He Who Drinks From Lethe... on May 16, 2013

    First of all, love the title. It is very evocative. Now, on to the story. Good writing, intriguing premise, and interesting characters, this is a very good and enjoyable story.
  • Gandalf on May 16, 2013

    Well-written and, much more importantly, enjoyable. Gory, too, which I like.
  • Esther's House on May 16, 2013

    For my taste, this is one of Michael Carter's best stories, in that it's very subtle and builds up slowly, and then keeps piling on the tension, bringing it to a boiling point, finally catering off in a very thoughtful manner.
  • First Mistakes - A Guide For Smashwords Fiction Writers on May 17, 2013

    This very useful tutorial is quite brilliant and spot-on.
  • Frank The Friendly Ogre on May 17, 2013

    Very nice and sweet, and well-written.
  • Ya Can't Catch A Kipper With A Spider on June 10, 2013

    For my taste, this is one of Mr. Strickland's strongest stories. It is, of course, very funny but, also, thrilling. It has some nice tense moments. The narrative style, though tricky--I thought the guy was from Jersey, at first--is very effective, and the protagonist, though an egomaniac, is strangely endearing.
  • Blue on June 18, 2013

    This magnificent and provocative science fiction story clearly demonstrates that Mr. Carter cares about his craft. The writing is clear and distinct, and the ideas presented herein are both fascinating and coherent. More, and this is the most important thing in fiction, the story is very enjoyable.
  • O Clever Wolf Am I on June 18, 2013

    I really like this story. It is very visual, and that is quite magnificent, to create powerful and evocative imagery with words. The story itself is very enjoyable, and a nice twist on the Red Riding Hood fairy tale.
  • Turning Point on June 18, 2013

    Very effective and enticing. Left me wanting to know more of this person, who she was, and what led her to this point.
  • You Are The Monster on June 20, 2013

    A very risky and tricky writing style is here employed to great effect by Mr. Strickland, creating sympathy and understanding for what would otherwise have been nothing more than an incomprehensible beast. Although this story is heavily influenced by Greek myths, it reminded me strongly of Lovecraft's The Outsider. This is a good, strong, emotionally resonant story.
  • Ming Learns the Praying Mantis Kung Fu Technique, Tang Lang Ch'uan on June 20, 2013

    This is a nice little story that can be greatly expanded upon. There is enough material in these few pages to fill an entire novel. In fact, this story works very nicely as an outline for a novel.
  • Tiffany on July 09, 2013

    Melancholy and romantic, and very well-written, with evocative language. It is very impressive to see how much Mr.Blake accomplishes with so few words. This is a very satisfying and moving story.
  • Super Fred and his Sidekick, Super Charlotte on July 09, 2013

    Very nice action story for kids.
  • The End Of Time on July 09, 2013

    Not bad, and I really liked the way the story was executed. There were, however, some awkward elements, such as point of view shifts. Overall, though, good story, very entertaining.
  • The Last Vigil on July 09, 2013

    Remarkably well-written, both subtle and clear.
  • The old trucker on July 09, 2013

    This is more like a scene or the opening of a story more than a story in its own right.It doesn't really have an impact; however, the writing is very good, which makes it enjoyable, after all.
  • The Purple Planet on July 09, 2013

    This one is a tough one for me to rate because I really like the premise, yet it feels underdeveloped. The imagination on display here is first-rate; the writing, however, needs to slow down. It's the old adage of show, don't tell. There's an awful lot of telling in this story. It needs to slow down and go into detail--What are the names of the gods? How do they look? Still, I really appreciate the imagination.
  • The Sensitive on July 09, 2013

    I really like this story. The quality of the writing is very high, and the story itself is emotionally engaging, and beautiful in a sorrowful sort of way.
  • The Steps At Silloth on July 15, 2013

    Dazzling and hypnotic. Michael Carter's control of language never ceases to impress me. Here, in this story, his sentences achieve a melodic quality; more, the story is very good, great even. It is reminiscent of Lovecraft in his more hallucinogenic moods. Also, at least for me, I found there to be a touch of Robert E. Howard--although the story is very different, it reminded me of Children of the Night. Great story.
  • The Box on Aug. 11, 2013

    Brilliant and melancholy, with a rare sensibility and a "The Lost Generation" outlook, but without the despair.
  • It's The End Of The Universe As We Know It [And I Feel Scared] on Aug. 13, 2013

    This one made my day and put a smile on my face. Sci-fi comedy has rarely been funnier.
  • A Week And A Day In The Lives Of Two Angry Young Men on Oct. 01, 2013

    By the Glorious Beast, this story made my day. Funny and vicious at the same time, I couldn't help laughing, even when I knew I shouldn't--large wooden spoon, indeed!
  • A Little Vampire Story on Nov. 07, 2013

    This is one of the most entertaining vampire stories I've read in a long time, creatively subverting the genre and mixing in humor with pathos. Magnificent and highly imaginative. Very groovy.
  • Oblivious on Feb. 18, 2014

    Michael Carter has written a magnificent and macabre horror story, dealing with the themes of cruelty and viciousness. This one greatly appeals to my sensibilities. Mr. Carter's use of imagery to create mood and atmosphere is wonderful. This is good horror.
  • 26 Minds on Standby on Feb. 19, 2014

    I followed the instructions and read this in disparate fashion, and then I read this straight through. Both methods were really fun, but the effect was uncanny. Although I knew I was reading the same words, seeing the same events described, it did feel very different, as if the mood of the entire piece had changed. Very impressive word alchemy, Mr. Strickland.
  • The Long Slog Back on Nov. 30, 2014

    This is one of my favorite of Mr. Strickland's stories. While still containing his trademark humor, it is a much deeper work. The Long Slog Back contains a pair of characters that upon first encounter seem little more than dimwits; however, as the story progresses these characters gain in stature, so that by the end I actually cared about them. This is a very good horror/comedy. After finishing the story, though, I was left with a strange craving for a pint.