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Apologies for radio silence on this blog for the past year or so. I've been hyper-focused on completing edits on my next novel, and have neglected to work on short stories or other smaller projects. So while I've been busy writing every day, there hasn't been much to report as far as new content that you can actually read just yet.


This particular novel is a bit of a long one, and it's taken me far more years than I expected to whip into shape. I've been trying to make it both as short as possible and also as developed as possible, and those two goals fundamentally conflict.


Fortunately, the end is in sight. I've critiqued the book extensively with my writing group, I've made all the changes I wanted to make, and I've finally cut it down to under 150K words. (I know, I know, editors want everything under 120K words, but 150K words is a huge relief after the 200K-word draft I had at the beginning of the year.) I'm currently wrapping up my final editing pass.


What does this mean?


What it means, my friend, is that I will soon be querying agents. A nerve-wracking, soul-crushing, eye-gouging endeavor, but an endeavor that is exceedingly important to take. If I can get an agent, it will dramatically increase this book's chances of getting a publisher and be a huge leap for my career.


So. What can I say about the book?

-It's a Dark Fantasy / Biopunk / Lovecraftian Horror hybrid set in a nightmarish dystopian-future Earth.

-There are 3 POV characters.

-It explores mental illness and PTSD. (Empathetically. I struggle with mental illness and PTSD myself.)

-There's a LOT of body horror.

-There's a LOT of tentacles.

-There's also magic and mystery and humor and romance and heists and epic battles.

-It tells a complete story with an actual ending, but my plan is to make it a trilogy. I've got Books 2 & 3 plotted out, and I'm hoping to start writing Book 2 shortly.


Here's hoping someone will take a chance on my latest mutant baby.


Until next time!


~ Jonathan




HorrorAddicts.net recently launched HORROR ADDICTS GUIDE TO LIFE 2, which contains my essay 25 of the Most Metal Movies (That Aren't About Metal). The essay was originally written as a blogpost to promote my black metal-themed short story REQUIEM IN FROST.


It was originally written in 2019, so any movies released since then could not be considered. (THE NORTHMAN and THE SPINE OF NIGHT would be shoe-ins for a revised list.) I'd also like to clarify that some of the films listed aren't ones I particularly enjoy, even if I felt obliged to include them. (For example, I find Conan the Barbarian quite dated.) Nonetheless, I hope you enjoy the list and are encourage to seek out the entries you've never heard of.


Here's an excerpt:


25 of the Most Metal Movies

(That Aren’t About Metal)

by Jonathan Fortin


Black Sabbath, one of the world’s first heavy metal bands, took their name from Mario Bava’s

classic 1963 Horror film of the same name. In the years since, Horror and metal have continued

to have an ongoing conversation, from Horror-themed metal bands such as Cradle of Filth, The

Great Old Ones, or Carach Angren to metal-themed Horror films.


My short story Requiem in Frost continues this tradition, telling the story of a Norwegian girl

who moves into a house haunted by the ghost of a black metal musician. In honor of its release,

I’ve decided to make a list of movies that, to me, feel “metal.” However, I’m not going to limit

this list to Horror, and I’m going to avoid films that are specifically about metal. This is because

every other list of “Most Metal Films of All Time” takes it literally, and focuses exclusively on

the same ten or so movies that have explicit references to the genre. The internet can only

withstand so many posts containing Deathgasm, The Gate, The Devil’s Candy, and Lords of

Chaos. So instead, I’m going to focus on movies that feel like they capture the essence of metal.


Here’s my criteria: Do the images in the movie feel like they could be metal album covers?

Could you put metal on the soundtrack and have it feel right? Does the story feel like it could

also be that of a metal concept album? And finally, does it feel powerful and meticulously

constructed in the way that good metal must? As the metal genre means different things to

different people, I cannot speak for the entire metal community, and I am sure that other people

may have different choices. Nonetheless, here are my selections, organized by year:


BLACK SABBATH (1963): Let’s just get this shoo-in out of the way. Black Sabbath is a Horror

anthology with three segments, one which is focused on a vampire. It isn’t as explosively metal as some of the other entries on this list, but given that one of the first metal bands took its name

from this film, you can’t really not include it. 


WIZARDS (1977): Ralph Bakshi’s animated feature establishes a world in which, following a

nuclear apocalypse, humans have all died or mutated into fantasy races. An evil wizard uses Nazi

propaganda footage to inspire his troops, a robot finds redemption, and fairy tits jiggle. It’s a

strange, over-ambitious film, but the subject matter and imagery would feel right at home in a

strange, over-ambitious metal concept album.


HEAVY METAL (1981): A token inclusion, this adult animated anthology feature contains

aliens on drugs, women with big swords, and copious amounts of sex and violence. It’s very

dated, particularly in the treatment of its female characters, but there’s no denying it is as metal

as its name.


CONAN THE BARBARIAN (1982): Look, the poster for Conan the Barbarian looks just like a

Manowar album. It opens with the forging of a sword. It’s full of Vikings. It has to be on this list.


To read more, go to: https:/www.amazon.com/dp/B09YNF5QM3

******************************


Do you love the horror genre? Do you look at horror as a lifestyle? Do the "norms" not

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Click here to buy your copy of the HORROR ADDICTS GUIDE TO LIFE 2.

One year ago today, LILITU: THE MEMOIRS OF A SUCCUBUS launched, courtesy of Crystal Lake Publishing.


Since then, the book has come out on Audiobook (thanks to an amazing performance from Nadia Van Der Westhuizen) and was listed as one of the Best Books of 2020 by Books of Blood.


Anyone who has supported it--either by purchasing the book, sharing a post about it, sharing word of mouth, or writing a review--has my undying gratitude. Thank you with all my heart.


For those who have yet to experience LILITU, now is an excellent time to check it out. Here's the link: http://getbook.at/Lilitu

B L O G