Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Book Release Party for THE WITCHING HOUSE and OAK HOLLOW on Facebook



Tuesday, August 6th, my novella The Witching House releases as an e-book for all e-readers.

Join Sarah Donovan and her friends as they explore a boarded-up house hidden deep in the East Texas woods that had once belonged to a coven of witches. 

"Witchcraft, sacrifices, an abandoned house and a thing that has hungered for decades set the stage for this must-read expedition to The Witching House. The best advice anyone could offer a visitor is: Don’t go in the attic, don’t go in the bedrooms, but don’t, under any circumstances, go in the basement. You won’t come out the same...if you come out at all."

John Everson, author of NightWhere and Violet Eyes

"The Witching House represents Brian Moreland at his frantic, bloody best. He takes a clutch of highly-sexed characters and their dark secrets, plunges them into a historical house of horrors, and gleefully throws away the key as all hell breaks loose!"

—Frazer Lee, author of The Lamplighters and The Lucifer Glass

“Moreland’s prose is as strong it’s ever been here, breathing life into memorable characters and assembling a disastrous wall that’s sure to come crumbling down in the pages of The Witching House.

—Matt Molgaard, Horror Novel Reviews

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Also, that Tuesday night, at 9 PM Eastern Time, I'll be celebrating at a joint book release party on Facebook with author Kristopher Rufty. His horror novel OAK HOLLOW releases the same day.













Come join us Tuesday night, Aug. 6th at this Facebook link:

https://www.facebook.com/events/211105749048244/

Ask us questions, share your thoughts or just hang out with us. I appreciate your support,

Brian

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Guest Post: Art of The Vampire Noctuaries

Today, my guest author is Eric Muss-Barnes. You may know him from his vampire novels The Vampire Noctuaries. If you haven't discovered Eric's Gothic fiction yet, here's your chance as he talks about the artwork that helped him promote his books.


One of the aspects of my duology The Vampire Noctuaries I have always been most proud of is the artwork.

Back when I wrote the first book in the series, The Gothic Rainbow, I knew I wanted to create some cool fliers and images to go along with it. Although the sequel, Annwn's Maelstrom Festival: Concluding Volume of the Vampire Noctuaries was published in 2013, keep in mind, The Gothic Rainbow came out in 1997 and the Internet was just getting started. There was no such thing as social media yet. No job boards. No dating sites. Certainly no video streaming when everyone still had 56K modems. There was nothing. Therefore, if you wanted to market and promote something creative, you were still just going to coffeeshops on college campuses and posting fliers.

My three main resources for promoting my novel would be goth clubs, independent record stores, and punkrock clothing boutiques. Since my book was a dark and eerie vampire novel, set in the counterculture of the gothic/industrial nightclub scene, those locations contained my audience. Even in terms of printed promotions and reviews, I focused on things like underground and alternative music magazines, not literary ones.

All along, I knew this would mean I'd need really cool fliers.

The purpose behind the imagery wouldn't be to depict actual scenes in my novel, rather they would be created to elicit an emotional response - to give the same feel as the book; To put people in the correct mindset of the dreamy and surreal nightmare which are The Vampire Noctuaries.

Months before my novel was released, I started calling all my gorgeous punkrock and gothic friends from our club scene and began asking them to model for my Gothic Rainbow fliers. We were all just a bunch of kids, ranging from about 18 years old to 22 years old. We shot pictures in spooky cemeteries, and in makeshift livingrooms, and basements, and wherever else we could. All captured on film, of course. No digital cameras yet either. Then, I'd scan the 4x6 prints with a flatbed scanner and start playing around with them in Photoshop. All the digital manipulation was painstaking work, as computers were so wimpy back then, and a 20MB file could bring a system to its knees. Sadly, as a result, I don't have layered versions of any original fliers because I simply didn't have enough memory or storage space to save them. I'd have to work on an image in a few layers, flatten it, work on it more, flatten it again. That was the only way I could get anything done without the whole system crashing on me.



Not only did I composite these cool gothic images to use on fliers and postcards, but I also made some fliers that were pure text. White fonts on a black background. They were all written in second-person and had very poetic and dismal descriptions of why you need to read The Gothic Rainbow: Beginning Volume of the Vampire Noctuaries and why it appeals directly to the kind of person you are.


All of this worked better than I could have imagined.

Word got around town about these fliers and this book. When I started doing my initial promotions, before the book was released, I had a booth set up at a goth music festival and kids were coming up to me, asking me for extra copies of the fliers to autograph them. Several teenagers told me they had them hung up in their bedrooms as posters. I was stunned. At first, I figured they were pulling my chain. I thought they were ridiculing me. Slowly, I began to realize, they were completely serious. You want my autograph, on a flier, for a book that hasn't even been released yet? Really?














One kid even said he wanted to get a tattoo of the logo from the front cover of The Gothic Rainbow. Don't know if he ever did that, but the fact he even thought about it was mindblowing to me.

A local fantasy artist whom I really respect, Joe Vargo, complimented me on my "artwork", telling me how talented I was. In fact, when Joe first met me, he didn't even know I was a novelist. He assumed the fliers and the images were the art I was promoting! He didn't realize they were nothing but advertisements for a book.

To everyone else, these weren't just ads.

This was art. What? Artwork? These are nothing but fliers! That's how I saw them. This wasn't "art"... was it?

That was the first time I began to take the artwork a lot more seriously. Maybe I had something here. Maybe the creation of these images was more than just promotions for my book. The fliers-deemed-artwork had taken on a life of their own and were resonating with people in a way I never expected.

Therefore, I made a last-minute decision, before The Gothic Rainbow: Beginning Volume of the Vampire Noctuaries went to press, I'd put copies of all the images in the back of the book and allow people to buy them as posters, if they were so inclined.

As it turned out, some of that artwork resulted in a bigger financial success than the book itself. Back in 2002, a very large national company stole some of my Gothic Rainbow artwork and started printing it in a "vampire journal" and were selling it in retail stores all across the county. We settled out of court and the funds from their copyright infringement allowed me the financial freedom to pick up and move to California in 2003. 

When the time came to release the sequel, Annwn's Maelstrom Festival: Concluding Volume of the Vampire Noctuaries, obviously, I needed to create a new set of images, to match the flavor of the first book. Although I shot a large amount of new portraits, I also went back and occasionally picked up a number of old photographs which had remained unused from The Gothic Rainbow: Beginning Volume of the Vampire Noctuaries publication.

Today, you can still download copies of the original text fliers for free or purchase copies of all the posters and fliers in full-color in almost any size you can imagine, from little postcards up to giant movie posters.

Not only did the images gain a great acceptance and a fanbase independent of the novel, but when artist Joe Vargo opened his own art gallery, he requested my images from The Gothic Rainbow be part of the grand opening show.

The artwork of The Vampire Noctuaries changed my life and raised the bar of everything I thought my novels could become. Being featured in art galleries wasn't a thought that ever crossed my mind when I began shooting those images. Just goes to show, when you put in the work and effort to make your dreams a reality, you never know what other unexpected and fun opportunities will end up coming your way.

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To find Eric Muss-Barnes's unique vampire novels, you can buy them on Amazon. 

The Gothic Rainbow - http://www.amazon.com/The-Gothic-Rainbow-Beginning-Noctuaries/dp/1482082160/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1375036134&sr=8-3&keywords=Eric+Muss-Barnes

Annwn's Maelstrom Festivalhttp://www.amazon.com/Annwns-Maelstrom-Festival-Concluding-Noctuaries/dp/1300657774/ref=pd_sim_sbs_b_1

Also, check out Eric's website - http://www.ericmuss-barnes.com/

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Guest Post about My Characters in The Witching House

Here's an article about my upcoming book THE WITCHING HOUSE. Today, I'm a guest author on the blog Oh, for the Hook of a Book.

In the article, I share details about my main characters, Sarah Donovan and her boyfriend Dean Stratton, who go exploring in an old abandoned house in the woods that's where something lives in the basement.

The Witching House releases Tuesday, August 6th. Download it to your Kindle, Nook or Ipad or order it at Samhain Horror.

http://hookofabook.wordpress.com/2013/07/13/brian-moreland-discusses-how-his-female-lead-character-overcomes-her-fears-in-the-witching-house/

Monday, July 8, 2013

Another Book Checked Off the List

As a working author, I have a lot of story ideas in my head and characters prodding me to tell their story. Heroes and heroines, villains and supporting characters--they all want to be cast in a book. I also have, filed away in the most darkest regions of my imagination, monsters that would love to star in their own novel or short story. It can get pretty noisy inside my head as I decide which novel, novella or short story to write next. I'd love to write them all at once, but we haven't mastered cloning just yet.

One story that has always intrigued me is based on a short story that I wrote many years ago called THE VAGRANTS, about a mysterious group of homeless nomads living inside an abandoned building. The original was a simple story about two mafia men who dared to try to force the homeless out of their building and discovered an unexpected horror awaiting them. That story sat in one of my computer folders for close to two decades, because I had moved on from writing short stories to novels. But the story stuck with me and I happened across it a couple months ago--while going through a folder of unpublished short stories--and decided THE VAGRANTS is a story I eventually want to share with the world.

But it needed a lot of work and my writing style has changed over the years. So this past June and first week of July, I quieted all the other voices in my head and focused on reworking this beloved story. The end result is that yesterday I completed a novella-length story that I'm super proud of. It's Gothic horror in the realm of H.P. Lovecraft and Clive Barker, two of my favorite authors.

The story is still unpolished and will now go through the editing phase, so I don't have a release date yet. I'm aiming for early next year, a few months after I release my novel THE DEVIL'S WOODS in December. I've also got some short stories I'm touching up and plan to publish, like THE DEALER OF NEEDS and CHASING THE DRAGON. So keep your eyes out for my firs short story collection.

Until then, here's a sneak peek at the synopsis for THE VAGRANTS:


Beneath the city of Boston, 
evil is gathering.

For six months Daniel Finley secretly lived under a bridge with homeless people to study their way of life. He slowly began to grow paranoid as he witnessed a strange phenomenon occurring. A fanatical nomad who calls himself a prophet of the Apocalypse is brainwashing the homeless into believing the  human race is about to be wiped out. Only the chosen will be saved.

One year later, Daniel’s life appears to be going along perfectly. He’s lives in a wonderful home, has a new girlfriend, and a book deal that will make his money problems go away. But Daniel’s troubled past quickly catches up to him, and before he knows it, he’s caught up in a war between those who control the streets of Boston and those who roam the dark tunnels beneath.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013


Available today!


My FREE short story The Girl from the Blood Coven is now available for multiple e-readers. You can download it now at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Samhain Horror.


“Don’t go down to the woods today or you will be in for a terrifying experience. In The Girl from the Blood Coven, Brian Moreland writes with one eye on characterization and the other on scaring the life out of you.”
—Maynard Sims, author of Stronghold and The Eighth Witch  
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The Girl from the Blood Coven is a short story prelude to The Witching House. It’s the year 1972. Sheriff Travis Keagan is enjoying a beer at the local roadhouse, when a blood-soaked girl enters the bar. Terrified and trembling, Abigail Blackwood claims her entire family was massacred at the hippy commune in the woods. Sheriff Keagan knows that Abigail’s “family” is a coven of witches that inhabit the Blevins house. They’ve been rumored to be practicing blood sacrifices and black magic. When the sheriff and his deputies investigate the alleged murders, they discover what happened at the Blevins house is more horrific than they ever imagined.
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“Moreland’s prose is as strong it’s ever been here, breathing life into memorable characters and assembling a disastrous wall that’s sure to come crumbling down in the pages of The Witching House.

—Matt Molgaard, Horror Novel Reviews

http://horrornovelreviews.com/2013/05/06/brian-moreland-the-girl-from-the-blood-coven-review/


"Fair warning for those reading The Girl from the Blood Coven. Be ready to immediately download The Witching House to find out what happens next."

—Russell James, author of Sacrifice and Black Magic

 Coming Tuesday, August 6th




On August 6th, my novella The Witching House goes on sale. You can purchase it at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Samhain Horror.


"Witchcraft, sacrifices, an abandoned house and a thing that has hungered for decades set the stage for this must-read expedition to The Witching House. The best advice anyone could offer a visitor is: Don’t go in the attic, don’t go in the bedrooms, but don’t, under any circumstances, go in the basement. You won’t come out the same...if you come out at all."

John Everson, author of NightWhere and Violet Eyes

"The Witching House represents Brian Moreland at his frantic, bloody best. He takes a clutch of highly-sexed characters and their dark secrets, plunges them into a historical house of horrors, and gleefully throws away the key as all hell breaks loose!" 

—Frazer Lee, author of The Lamplighters and The Lucifer Glass
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Some houses should be left alone.

In 1972, twenty-five people were brutally murdered in one of the bloodiest massacres in Texas history. The mystery of who committed the killings remains unsolved.

Forty years later, Sarah Donovan is dating an exciting man, Dean Stratton. Sarah’s scared of just about everything—heights, tight places, the dark—but today she must confront all her fears, as she joins Dean and another couple on an exploring adventure. The old abandoned Blevins House, the scene of the gruesome massacre, is rumored to be haunted.

The two couples are about to discover the mysterious house has been waiting all these years, craving fresh prey. And down in the cellar they will encounter a monstrous creature that hungers for more than just human flesh.
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The Witching House starts with fear, moves into terror and ends with a horrific explosion of sensory delights.”
—Maynard Sims, author of Stronghold and The Eighth Witch  

"Brian Moreland writes a blend of survival horror and occult mystery that I find impossible to resist.  His writing is clean, precise, and, best of all, compulsively readable.  I know, when I've got one of his books in my hands, that I'm going to be lost to the world for hours on end.  He's just that good."

Joe McKinney, author of Dead City and Flesh Eaters
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Download The Girl from the Blood Coven at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or Samhain Horror.

Pre-order The Witching House at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Samhain Horror.