Keep on Keeping On

I’m not gonna lie, gang. 2019 has gotten off to a rocky start. It’s been tremendously hard to keep it together. There have been some family issues that I can’t share here. The death of my brother’s dog. And most recently the implosion of a writing community that I hold dear.

Too many people have weighed in on that last bit, so I don’t really feel the need to add anything (though I’m sure, like most things in my life, parts of it will bleed into my fiction). All I’ll say here is that it’s been a difficult few weeks, full of decisions I didn’t want to face. I watched people I love say absolutely loathsome things on Facebook (I’m not really on Facebook, but I do lurk every once in a while). I’ve seen friends treated unfairly. I’ve seen people who aren’t even involved in the scene speaking out to make themselves look good. I’ve witnessed people use the suffering of others to sell more books. I’ve seen outright lies held up as truth and attempts to reveal facts branded as “mansplaining.”

So, yeah. It’s really sucked this week. Now for something completely different.

We’ve added a new guppy to the fish tank. His name is Bruce.

The cover of Saint Sadist continues to generate buzz.

I got my author copies of We are the Accused. Reviewers have gotten their copies as well. The book even got its first review from Ian Muller (a bright up-and-comer in his own right). He calls We are the Accused “A bleak, ultra-violent take on small town horror that will appeal to both fans of Peter Straub and splatterpunk. “

The Crossroad Press edition of Engines of Ruin also seems to be doing well. In fact, it’s ranked higher in its category than pretty much anything else I’ve put out before. Dunno what that actually means, to be honest, but it sounds good.

I’ve also got 65% of Extinction Peak, my gory dinosaur novel, finished.

So, all in all, it has been rocky. But I’m moving forward.

Sometimes I think moving forward in the face of awful things is strength. Other times I think it’s foolish and cruel. I doubt I’ll ever really know either way. What do you think?

Saint Sadist to be Published in March

Super-excited to announce that my super dark book, Saint Sadist, has been accepted for publication this March by the fine folks at Grindhouse Press.

Here’s a brief synopsis:

Pregnant with her father’s child, nineteen-year-old Courtney is a girl on the run, willing to do anything to make her way on the road. When a car accident leaves her wounded by the side of a desolate highway, she is taken in by an environmentalist doomsday cult led by the enigmatic Saint Ambrose. Ambrose is a charismatic preacher and ex-environmental scientist who gave up everything after claiming to see the face of God. When he meets the seemingly vulnerable Courtney, he is taken by her beauty and her wounded soul. Now, with the promise of salvation hanging in the balance, Courtney must undergo a series of trials, each more painful and humiliating than the last, her incestuously conceived baby growing in her womb and a strange presence visiting her at night telling her that Ambrose has lost his way and it is she who must overthrow him. Much blood will be shed. Saint Sadist is a dark erotic thriller for fans of Martyrs and Nymphomaniac.

So yeah, it’s a pretty gnarly story. Very nasty, but not without moments of transcendence and beauty.

Grab it in March on paperback and ebook!

Mo(u)rning Thoughts

I used to think that making myself not feel anything made me a badass. The truth, however, is that the opposite is true. Feeling feelings takes tremendous courage.

My brother lost his dog last night. Though I now live in a different state, I’ve always had a soft spot for that dog. Whenever he saw me, he’d get so excited, his whole body (not just his tail) would wag. He had hound in him, so his barks always had a mournful, howling quality to them. My brother found him almost eleven years ago as a tiny, starving puppy and had to bottle feed him in the beginning. This feels like the end of something big.

RIP Huey, 2008-2019. I hope you enjoyed your life.

Introduction and Invocation

A new era is upon us. I welcome you to an unfamiliar place you’ve been before. 2019 is nearly here, but we do not live in the world of Blade Runner, at least not in this universe. I, for one, hold out hope that the nineteen-eighties vision of the future is a reality in at least one plane of existence other than our own. Maybe there, we’re androids in love and on the run, dreams of California in our circuitry, but Hollywood is in flames.

I have returned here to speak truth. Here there are no brands and this is not a platform for anything other than jumping into a pool of primordial ooze. Here, there is only me: Lucas Mangum, cranky but cultured author of some books and reader of many more. I will never again return to the hostile wastelands known as Facebook and Twitter. This is my new and permanent home. Expect regular updates, stories, essays, and a whole lot more if you follow me. If you become a patron, you will gain exclusive access to the expanded universe of my debut novel FLESH AND FIRE, with apocryphal chapters, behind the scenes musings, and a serialized sequel called BLOOD AND BRIMSTONE.

As we begin this new journey that is really another leg of a much longer and comprehensive journey, I feel an invocation is appropriate.

Alexa, sing me a song.

My invocation is a cry across the Void. If the old gods still live, their home lies beyond that emptiness. Chaos! Carry my screams so that they may fall on those long-forgotten ears. I invoke Prometheus, so that I may illuminate everything, and then burn it all down.

Patterns of Chaos

Goodbye, and hello, again. I hope you’ll enjoy your stay. While you’re here, feel free to browse the sacred texts and welcome scars of revelation.