Dripping death astride a bacchanale of bats from nigh-black ruins of buried temples of Belial? Don't mind if I do (a weird fiction thread)

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ledge, Friday, 13 July 2012 13:51 (eight years ago) link

My top two recommendations, somewhat off the beaten cthulhu track. House on the Borderland by William Hope Hodgson, which I already stanned for on the SF thread, and The White People by Arthur Machen, the most insane stream-of-consciouness trip into a young girl's faerie bewitchment.

House on the Borderland: http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/10002
The White People (published as part of The House of Souls): http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/25016

ledge, Friday, 13 July 2012 14:01 (eight years ago) link

Laird Barron is very good. Definitely some of the best Lovecraft-indebted short stories i've read in recent years.

Temporarily Famous In The Czech Republic (ShariVari), Friday, 13 July 2012 14:15 (eight years ago) link

i love the white people. i also love The Great God Pan by Machen.

Here are some good Clark Ashton Smith stories for The Late Great--
http://www.eldritchdark.com/writings/short-stories/66/the-eternal-world
http://www.eldritchdark.com/writings/short-stories/78/genius-loci
http://www.eldritchdark.com/writings/short-stories/143/mother-of-toads

chosen at semi-random as i scrolled down the list, picking a few i remember liking.

one dis leads to another (ian), Friday, 13 July 2012 15:25 (eight years ago) link

Was it Ashton Smith that had the story about explorers on Mars running into a cloth-like alien that wraps itself around their heads? That was great.

Temporarily Famous In The Czech Republic (ShariVari), Friday, 13 July 2012 19:03 (eight years ago) link

I just read Laird Barron's first novel "the Croning"
Good stuff.

President Keyes, Friday, 13 July 2012 19:41 (eight years ago) link

"The Vaults of Yoh-Vombis", right? That was great.

I don't really get this Pugmire fellow, tbh, but he seems like a cool internet person.

alternative riff (CharlieS), Friday, 13 July 2012 19:54 (eight years ago) link

there's a new collection of Stefan Grabinski translations soon/already out? Hurray!

alternative riff (CharlieS), Friday, 13 July 2012 19:56 (eight years ago) link

Would M.R. James or Algernon Blackwood fit in here?

Ned Raggett, Friday, 13 July 2012 20:03 (eight years ago) link

algernon blackwood for sure, don't know james

ledge do you know where i can purchase that cute lil cthulhu?

the late great, Friday, 13 July 2012 20:22 (eight years ago) link

also how does apple spell check not recognize cthulhu

the late great, Friday, 13 July 2012 20:22 (eight years ago) link

for sale:

http://dreamlandtoyworks.com/my_little_cthulhu.html

EZ Snappin, Friday, 13 July 2012 20:24 (eight years ago) link

Dang, was going to suggest both Machen and Blackwood.

emil.y, Friday, 13 July 2012 20:24 (eight years ago) link

sweet, thanks ez snappin

oh shit, papercraft!!!!

the late great, Friday, 13 July 2012 20:25 (eight years ago) link

Hell yes M.R. James, dude is scary

Brad C., Friday, 13 July 2012 20:27 (eight years ago) link

I don't know Blackwood so well but James is the master of the ghost story as far as I'm concerned. And they're both welcome here!

ledge, Friday, 13 July 2012 20:27 (eight years ago) link

This seems a good thread to cross-reference here:
Horror Novels/Short Stories: S/D

Brad C., Friday, 13 July 2012 20:30 (eight years ago) link

The thread is not dead that can eternal lie ...

Algernon Blackwood, The Willows

Lovecraft's favorite weird story. It develops very slowly but has a physicality that HPL never achieved in his own fiction. The slow build and realistic detail make the cosmic dread that much creepier when it finally kicks in.

Brad C., Saturday, 14 July 2012 00:07 (eight years ago) link

yeah, "The Willows" deserves its status. I've always wanted to see what my dad would make of it; his fave class to teach every year is something called "Nature Writing and the Sacred" or something. He'd probably be politely condescending, but there's some beautiful writing in there.

House on the Borderland, yes! I think about swine-things all the time.

It's come up on the other thread but that Vandermeer Weird anthology keeps giving. About halfway through (not in order) and haven't hit a clunker yet. Love how loose they are with the genre they've retroactively invented (or least re-envisioned). Thumbs down for having a "foreweird" and an "afterweird", though.

Do any of you read, like, nasty-grimy horror? Like the horror fic equivalent of that "gross metal that smells bad and takes itself way too seriously" thread? I'm into the Ligottis and Aickmans and everything, but browsing through the store the other day David J. Schow's Seeing Red caught my eye and I had a small Poppy Z. Brite thing in high school and I've got an itch.

alternative riff (CharlieS), Saturday, 14 July 2012 00:37 (eight years ago) link

nasty-grimy horror?

I had a moment with this kind of fiction, but other than obvious stuff like Clive Barker's Books of Blood, I can't think of anything to recommend. I've always been too scared to read PZB's Exquisite Corpse -- that might fit the bill if you haven't already read it.

Brad C., Saturday, 14 July 2012 03:11 (eight years ago) link

I've really enjoyed Barron's short story collections so far- I'm done with The Imago Sequence, and about halfway through Occultations. The new(ish) novel, The Light Is the Darkness, sounds enjoyably batshit, and as far as I can tell shares a setting with his more Mythos-y stories (anything that mentions Belphegor, basically, or the wonderfully disgusting image/narrative scheme from "Bulldozer" of time as a ring that "contracts like a muscle").

muus lääv? :D muus dut :( (Telephone thing), Saturday, 14 July 2012 03:29 (eight years ago) link

xpost Books of Blood and Exquisite Corpse were both huge for me in high school! I lost interest with PZB when she (he now, apparently) started writing about restaurants. I stopped reading Caitlin Kiernan's novels around the same time but keep being surprised at how good her short stories are when I come across them.

That Schow is only 3 bucks as an e-book, so I got it and the damn thing is nearly 800 pages!

alternative riff (CharlieS), Saturday, 14 July 2012 14:57 (eight years ago) link

not really seeing the people on this thread i expected to see on this thread

exquisite corpse is piffle

thomp, Saturday, 14 July 2012 15:08 (eight years ago) link

haha yeah sorry

alternative riff (CharlieS), Saturday, 14 July 2012 15:59 (eight years ago) link

i really love robert e howard btw. conan, solomon kane, bran mak morn, the boxing stuff, the horror stuff. out of the lovecraft/smith/howard group he is the most accessible i think; his writing is direct--his vocabulary isn't as willfully obscure as smith's, and his stories are more action packed than lovecrafts, with the plot propelled by violence rather than a tense internal dread. he's the most fun of the three. he is maybe the most fun to read of all these guys for me.

one dis leads to another (ian), Friday, 20 July 2012 03:47 (eight years ago) link

the boxing stuff

haha yes, the Dennis Dorgan stories are like Three Stooges 2-reelers with real blood splashing around

Neil Jung (WmC), Friday, 20 July 2012 04:02 (eight years ago) link

two weeks pass...

I just finished Barron's debut novel, The Croning. Sadly, it didn't work out well- it felt like he really struggles with the demands of a novel, and it somehow manages to be both overstuffed and unfinished. Read "The Broadsword" in Occultations (or the S.T. Joshi anthology Black Wings) and you'll get a much more concise, scary and tightly edited take on the same basic material.

Next up will be Karl Edward Wagner, assuming the local library has him.

muus lääv? :D muus dut :( (Telephone thing), Saturday, 4 August 2012 04:56 (eight years ago) link

Or maybe I'll knock off his novella, The Light Is the Darkness, which I bought in those halcyon days of yore when I knew Barron as "that guy that writes amazing short stories" and not "that guy that writes amazing short stories and also The Croning."

muus lääv? :D muus dut :( (Telephone thing), Saturday, 4 August 2012 04:57 (eight years ago) link

one month passes...

Terrible review, interest book perhaps:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2011/nov/18/beware-the-weird-anthology

ledge, Thursday, 20 September 2012 10:06 (eight years ago) link

one month passes...

^ pretty dope so far, been steaming through reading two or three a night, but have been somewhat sandbagged near the halfway point by an overlong and unexciting "tales of the mysterious ocean" yarn.

ledge, Tuesday, 23 October 2012 08:30 (eight years ago) link

^picked that up last year, some great stuff in there. i love it most for introducing me to robert aickman.

second only to popcorn (or something), Tuesday, 23 October 2012 08:49 (eight years ago) link

Didn't really know what to make of the Aickman tale. Too guarded, or downright obscure, in its intentions. Was interesting to see the original "Don't Look Now" but that too was ultimately unsatisfying - amazed that the connection between the dead child and the murderer, was is central to the film, isn't in the story at all.

itt: 'splaining men (ledge), Wednesday, 31 October 2012 09:18 (eight years ago) link

thought this was being revived cos of this article about arthur machen http://thequietus.com/articles/08758-leave-the-capitol-the-weird-tales-of-arthur-machen

make like a steak and beef (dog latin), Wednesday, 31 October 2012 11:49 (eight years ago) link

He's perhaps the most notable absentee from 'The Weird' anthology. 'The White People' is absurdly good, nothing I've read by him or anyone else approaches it for completely absorbing sui generis weirdness. Looks like there's a decent amount of his stuff I've yet to read though.

itt: 'splaining men (ledge), Wednesday, 31 October 2012 12:20 (eight years ago) link

thought this was being revived cos of this article about arthur machen http://thequietus.com/articles/08758-leave-the-capitol-the-weird-tales-of-arthur-machen

― make like a steak and beef (dog latin), Wednesday, October 31, 2012 11:49 AM (8 hours ago) Bookmark

quietus dude needs to be not biting on my essay on the same subject imo

http://theidiotandthedog.wordpress.com/2008/04/29/arthur-machen-and-the-fall/

Fizzles, Wednesday, 31 October 2012 20:16 (eight years ago) link

i mean ffs. i'm not imagining that am i? he even starts with the same quote.

Fizzles, Wednesday, 31 October 2012 20:32 (eight years ago) link

I read The White People on an ILX recommendation a few years back and loved it. Have since pressed it on several other people. I just picked up a copy of The Great God Pan and The Hill of Dreams, haven't read them yet.

something of an astrological coup (tipsy mothra), Wednesday, 31 October 2012 21:24 (eight years ago) link

xp they might have bitten you on the fall angle but you've still got exclusivity on the horlicks connection.

itt: 'splaining men (ledge), Thursday, 1 November 2012 09:33 (eight years ago) link

five years pass...

is this the main M R James thread?

MR James night tonight on bbc4:
https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/schedules/bbcfour/20171224

koogs, Sunday, 24 December 2017 15:54 (three years ago) link

how was it?

Here comes the phantom menace (ledge), Monday, 25 December 2017 20:58 (three years ago) link

The chances of me watching anything on the communal TV that isn't sport or the worst kind of popular entertainment are always slim to none at Christmas.

Even recording it and watching it the next morning is useless. I did see try and watch the barchester stalls bit but there was Christmas morning bustle happening and repeated "what is this?". Will iPlayer the documentary later and watch it on the laptop during the traditional 6 hours of boxing day darts / Dynamo specials.

Christopher Lee reading things out didn't seem to add a lot tbh.

koogs, Tuesday, 26 December 2017 07:25 (three years ago) link

when i saw the link for some reason i thought it was an audio thing on radio 4, not a repeat of the telly one. i saw the tractate middoth & the gatiss thing last year, latter was as you would expect, former was just ok, it's not the scariest of his stories. i've also seen a view from a hill, don't recall it so well, don't know if i've seen no.13 at all. might see if i can fit them in over the next few days.

Here comes the phantom menace (ledge), Tuesday, 26 December 2017 15:52 (three years ago) link

nine months pass...

Worth checking out? Was made aware of it by the presence of Matthew "Garth Merengi" Holness:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/New-Uncanny-Tales-Unease/dp/1905583184/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&linkCode=sl1&tag=chortlcouk&linkId=65479821d8b54161d53067d5f87d2de3&language=en_GB

Daniel_Rf, Friday, 28 September 2018 14:49 (two years ago) link

There was another book that might have been in the same series, from a decade ago. I haven't read either yet but I doubt they're the same kind of weird fiction (despite the presence of Ramsey Campbell).

Robert Adam Gilmour, Friday, 28 September 2018 19:13 (two years ago) link

man i so wish there was just a little more overlap between "weird fiction" and "good fiction"... desperate for quality recs

Larry Elleison (rogermexico.), Friday, 28 September 2018 19:51 (two years ago) link

I am not deeply versed, but if you haven't read Arthur Machen (referenced above), he's totally worth the time. Elliptical and mysterious.

if you're okay with "old" as well as "weird" and "good," Hoffmann, LeFanu, Bierce, Machen, Blackwood, M.R. James, and Henry James all deliver the hightone.

Brad C., Friday, 28 September 2018 20:19 (two years ago) link

Always William Hope Hodgson too (but be careful what you choose).

Wish I could recommend more because I've got an absolute ton of it but of recent reading I really liked Aliya Whiteley's The Beauty ((women die off and are reborn as fungus creatures that slowly alter the male population, in this case semi-hippies who live in the wilderness)) and Farah Rose Smith's Almanac Of Dust ((kind of a dying earth story with frequent philosophical rants about nothingness)).

Some short stories by Karin Tidbeck are very good.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Friday, 28 September 2018 20:33 (two years ago) link

I mean wish I could recommend more because I haven't read much of my To be read pile.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Friday, 28 September 2018 20:35 (two years ago) link

RogerMeixco- Can I ask what you haven't liked?

I should note that Whiteley's The Beauty feels closer to science fiction than the main tradition of weird fiction.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Friday, 28 September 2018 20:37 (two years ago) link

two months pass...

is this the main MR James thread? (redux)

This week Radio 4, 15m each, 10:45 and 19:45
https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m0001l7c

M The Mezzotint
T Casting The Runes
W The Stalls Of Barchester Cathedral
T A Warning To The Curious
F Rats

and then

Christmas Eve BBC Four
22:00
The Dead Room
A Christmas ghost story about a long-running radio horror series.
(Gatiss channeling MR James)

22:30
Lost Hearts (1973? last shown 1994)
An orphan finds himself haunted by the ghosts of two children.

23:05
The Ash Tree (last show 2005)
A 17th-century squire is haunted by a curse his great uncle brought upon the household.

koogs, Wednesday, 19 December 2018 15:28 (two years ago) link

also, in more christmas ghost story news, tonight on gideon coe

Muriel Spark's The Girl I Left Behind Me read by actor Bronwen Price with a specially commissioned soundtrack by Alison Cotton.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m0001nbl

not heard it but i know alison (Left Insides) and everything she does is quality.

koogs, Wednesday, 19 December 2018 15:31 (two years ago) link

RogerMeixco- Can I ask what you haven't liked?

I should note that Whiteley's The Beauty feels closer to science fiction than the main tradition of weird fiction.


Oh crap. Sorry I missed this. Now I’ll have to go back and see what I was reading.

Larry Elleison (rogermexico.), Wednesday, 19 December 2018 16:04 (two years ago) link

xp took me a while to work out why you'd labelled the radio programmes with a sequence ending in 'WTF'.

Toss another shrimpl air on the bbqbbq (ledge), Wednesday, 19 December 2018 17:44 (two years ago) link

(Ava once noticed it somewhere when I was visiting: "I know what wtf stands for! Wednesday Thursday Friday!")

koogs, Wednesday, 19 December 2018 18:56 (two years ago) link

ha!

Toss another shrimpl air on the bbqbbq (ledge), Wednesday, 19 December 2018 21:50 (two years ago) link

i'll give the gatiss thing a shot, his version of the tractate middoth wasn't totally disastrous. there is a dedicated MR james thread around here somewhere...

Toss another shrimpl air on the bbqbbq (ledge), Wednesday, 19 December 2018 21:55 (two years ago) link

(searching for M.R. is useless, as is MR. so you're left with James which is useless. i tried a posts search for tractate and middoth and "the ash tree" and didn't find a thread.)

ah, 'Tis the Season = M.R. James (via "Antiquary")

koogs, Wednesday, 19 December 2018 22:15 (two years ago) link

Christmas Eve BBC Four
22:00
The Dead Room


30 minutes of build up to a bog standard jump scare. Exceedingly meh.

large bananas pregnant (ledge), Tuesday, 25 December 2018 08:29 (two years ago) link

was trying to decide which would be the best thread to complain about it on

Gatiss is terrible at making his influences cohere into anything that works

Driving Drone for Christmas (Noodle Vague), Tuesday, 25 December 2018 09:17 (two years ago) link

jump scare was fluffed too

Driving Drone for Christmas (Noodle Vague), Tuesday, 25 December 2018 09:24 (two years ago) link

If they looking for ideas to save money for when the gov stop subsidising pensioner tv licences - sack off mediocre nobs like Gatiss, just stick on some Hitler docs at xmas.

calzino, Tuesday, 25 December 2018 09:44 (two years ago) link

OTM

Driving Drone for Christmas (Noodle Vague), Tuesday, 25 December 2018 09:47 (two years ago) link

"why does everything have to be so meta", I ask myself.

Wasn't really a jump scare to me, any more than the blankets are a jump scare.

Gattis know his stuff and it's great to hear him talk but his writing is often a let down.

koogs, Tuesday, 25 December 2018 12:01 (two years ago) link


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