Christopher Courtley lives in the vast, ancient, crumbling haunted house of his own imagination, perched precariously upon the windswept edges of the cliffs of insanity. There he spends his absinthe-fueled nights writing feverishly, whilst Nightgaunts dog his every step into the deepest regions of the netherworld of his darkest dreams and naked succubi call to him with lurid siren songs that would wake the dead.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Yes! I was in grade school. I had just seen the episode of the Original Star Trek series entitled "The Apple" set on a planet whose inhabitants worshiped a mysterious entity known as "Vaal". So I started writing a story about a group of astronauts who visit a volcanic planet called "Vol". My teacher liked it so much I turned it into a series. It was actually quite terrible.
What is your writing process?
I don't know if I can really call it a "process". It's very chaotic and sporadic. But typically I write a beginning and an ending (or sometimes I write the ending first) and then start on the middle. It's rare for me to start writing a story and not already have at least a vague idea of an ending in mind, but it does happen from time to time. I also tend to edit as I go, which is not generally considered a good habit to have as a writer, but I can't seem to stop myself.
Gothic stories and poems of romance and suspense; of love and death, and undeath; of lust and envy, betrayal and revenge; tales of nature and supernature red in fang and claw. Macabre, visceral, morbidly erotic, at times grimly humorous and often deeply disturbing, these blood-soaked yarns are certain to haunt your darkest dreams.
"Bride of the Chapbook!" The second volume in a series of free ebooks edited by Christopher Courtley. This issue contains some of his best fiction and poetry and also features two short story submissions by fellow Smashwords author Shana O'Quinn. Genres: Weird fiction, horror, D&D fantasy, fairy tales, poetry, LotR fan fiction.
Volume 1: "IT'S A CHAPBOOK!" First in a series of FREE ebooks containing various written pieces by the author, including fiction and non-fiction, both humorous and serious, but in all cases weird. Genres: Fantasy, fairy tales, sci-fi, horror, weird fiction, poetry, fan fic and parodies.
Having fled the wicked desert city of Bel-Athis with the wrath of the devil-god Baal-Zebub at their backs, the barbarian warrior/sorceress Vana Valruna and her trusted guide and companion the wily thief Jerob stop for a much-needed rest at a caravanserai on their way to the great port city of Rakasad, where the ultimate betrayal turns what at first seemed like a safe haven into a most deadly trap.
A warrior-woman/sorceress from the northern steppes visits the ancient and wicked city of Bel-Athis, "The Jewel of the Sands" while traveling through strange desert lands far to the south and east. There she comes into conflict with the vicious tyrant Ammon-Zul, High Priest of Baal-Zebub, "The Lord of Flies," a devil-god who demands human sacrifice lest he unleash a terrible plague upon the city.
This collection of original fairy tales and poems is sure to satisfy the cravings of any reader with an appetite for the unusual. Contains three works of short fiction, four works of flash fiction, and six works of poetry, all inspired by the darker side of Faerie. Due to the macabre nature of some of the tales and poems, this book is not recommended for young children.
This book brought back fond memories of playing Dungeons & Dragons and reading the Forgotten Realms fiction of R.A. Salvatore. Shana O'Quinn is a wonderful new author with a vivid imagination and the skill to bring her musings forth in vibrant colour upon the page, not only in her illustrations (the cover art is her own) but in her words as well. "Lady of the Sidhe" will take you back to a time and place that never existed, but perhaps should have; yet it never ceases to remain relevant to our current lives and times. A highly entertaining read that left me hungry for more.
Christopher Courtley, Author & Poet
In this first installment of what promises to be an exciting and unusual series, Shana O'Quinn does for the Sidhe what Anne Rice did for vampires. These ancient beings live amongst mortals in modern times, unbeknownst to all but a few, and the author's skill at characterization, and especially, the complex web of relationships she weaves, make them seem at once larger than life, and yet at the same time believable and real.
As far as I know, no author has ever blended the modern world with that of the Sidhe so seamlessly. Charles De Lint comes close, but O'Quinn's Fae seem somehow even more integrated into contemporary society. They exist in some ways separate from it, yes, but they are also very much a part of it. And of course, in addition to Elves, Half-Elves and Drow (Dark Elves), their hidden world also contains vampires and werewolves, making for all kinds of possibilities, which promise to be explored more fully in future installments.
O'Quinn's imagination seems to know no bounds, and her knowledge of European and especially Celtic lore is extensive. She also has a great sense of humour. These qualities combined with her considerable writing skill have made her one of my favourite up-and-coming fantasy authors. I eagerly await the next installment.
Christopher Courtley, Author & Poet