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Jedit
Dec 10, 2011

Proudly supporting vanilla legends 1994-2014



MockingQuantum posted:

I should read more MR James. I think I've only ever read the two that show up in every collection (Casting the Runes and... Oh Whistle and I'll Come to You, My Lad or something like that) and they were good, but didn't fire me up to read more of him. Any other standouts?

If the BBC adapted it, it's probably good.

Regardless, I don't see any point in picking out places to start when you're most likely to be reading any given one of James's ghost stories in a single volume collection. He only wrote 34, and you can get 33 of them for under £1 on Kindle or the main 30 for free.

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Dr. Video Games 0081
Jan 19, 2005


When I was little I got a collection of M.R. James stories for Christmas one year and read a whole bunch of them years later (they were initially way beyond me) with no awareness that they were part of any canon of horror literature. Possibly even before I read Lovecraft? They were great in that context--just a littlish kid up late reading these only slightly creepy ghost stories

Skyscraper
Oct 1, 2004

Hurry Up, We're Dreaming





Dr. Video Games 0081 posted:

By the way, isn't it a bummer that Ligotti's "The Nightmare Network" is such a vivid, accurate representation of our own time?

I thought "Our Temporary Supervisor" did a way better job of it :(

Lil Mama Im Sorry
Oct 14, 2012

I'M BACK AND I'M SCARIN' WHITE FOLKS

Skyscraper posted:

I thought "Our Temporary Supervisor" did a way better job of it :(

Respectfully disagree:

quote:

CLASSIFIED AD I

A MULTINATIONAL CORPORATION is dreaming. We are an organization of more than 100 thousand souls (full-time) and are presently seeking individuals willing to trade their personal lot for a share in our dream. Entry-level positions are now available for self-possessed persons who can see beyond the bottom line to a bottomless realm of possibilities. Our enterprise is now thriving in a tough, global marketplace and has taken on a life all its own. If you are a committed, focused individual with a hunger to be part of something far greater than yourself . . . our door is now open. Your life need not be a nightmare of failure and resentment. Join us. Outstanding benefits.

[...]


quote:


CLASSIFIED DISTRESS SIGNAL

VAST ORGANIZATION OF delirious images and impulses seeking Sustenance Input for its decaying systems. All data considered, including polluted discharges from the old Nightmare Network and after-images of degenerated EUs and ALs (Con, Noncon, or OneiriCon). Total atrophy and occlusion of all circuits imminent – next stop, the Nowhere Network. Your surplus information – shadows and semblances lying dormant in long-unaccessed files – could be used to replenish our hungry database. No image too hideous; no impulse too attenuated or corrupt. Our organization has a life of its own, but without the continuous input of cheap data we cannot compete in today’s apocalyptic marketplace. From a rotting mutation, great illusions may grow. Don’t let us go belly up while the black empty spaces of the galaxy reverberate with hellish laughter. A multi-dimensional, semi-organic discorporation is dreaming . . .

The signal repeats, steadily deteriorating, and then fades into nothingness. Long shot of the universe. There is no one behind the camera.

Skyscraper
Oct 1, 2004

Hurry Up, We're Dreaming





Lil Mama Im Sorry posted:

CLASSIFIED AD I

A MULTINATIONAL CORPORATION is dreaming. We are an organization of more than 100 thousand souls (full-time) and are presently seeking individuals willing to trade their personal lot for a share in our dream. Entry-level positions are now available for self-possessed persons who can see beyond the bottom line to a bottomless realm of possibilities. Our enterprise is now thriving in a tough, global marketplace and has taken on a life all its own. If you are a committed, focused individual with a hunger to be part of something far greater than yourself . . . our door is now open.

It's accurate to tech giants today, right up to:

quote:

Your life need not be a nightmare of failure and resentment. Join us. Outstanding benefits.

Which is the part that is no longer true today.

I feel like Our Temporary Supervisor probably has the Amazon Fulfillment Center mindset down pretty well.

quote:

The next morning I returned to the factory along with everyone else. We worked at an even faster rate and were even more productive. Part of this was due to the fact that the bell that signaled the end of the work day rang later than it had the day before. This lengthening of the time we spent at the factory, along with the increasingly fast rate at which we worked, became an established pattern. It wasn’t long before we were allowed only a few hours away from the factory, only a few hours that belonged to us, although the only possible way we could use this time was to gain the rest we needed in order to return to the exhausting labors which the company now demanded of us.

But I had always possessed higher hopes for my life, hopes that were becoming more and more vague with each passing day. I have to resign my position at the factory. These were the words that raced through my mind as I tried to gain a few hours of rest before returning to my job. I had no idea what such a step might mean, since I had no other prospects for earning a living, and I had no money saved that would enable me to keep my room in the apartment building where I lived.

Pistol_Pete
Sep 15, 2007

I disagree! Only 2 Princesses have died. That is one of the smallest number of dead Princesses you can have.


Oven Wrangler

Jedit posted:

If the BBC adapted it, it's probably good.

Regardless, I don't see any point in picking out places to start when you're most likely to be reading any given one of James's ghost stories in a single volume collection. He only wrote 34, and you can get 33 of them for under £1 on Kindle or the main 30 for free.

The BBC always gently caress them up, though. They take a perfectly crafted, stand-alone short story, that James spent the best part of a year polishing and say: "Heyyyyy, this story is good, I guess, but what if we add this to it!" Like, they took Whistle and I'll come to You and added in a subplot where the dude's wife had Alzheimers and he was super-conflicted about it and the haunting all somehow fed into that and it sucked balls. It also completely missed the dry, understated humour that's an essential ingredient of an M R James story by making the protagonist a lonely, regretful old guy rather than an earnest young nerd who totally doesn't believe in ghosts... until he's faced with the evidence of his own eyes! An M R James story is already a near-perfect little tale: all they have to do is translate it into a visual medium but no, every time it's "We're updating this for the modern era!" and they poo poo out a high-budget, star-studded, impeccably produced failure.

Yeah, I'm mad.

Lil Mama Im Sorry
Oct 14, 2012

I'M BACK AND I'M SCARIN' WHITE FOLKS

Skyscraper posted:

It's accurate to tech giants today, right up to:


Which is the part that is no longer true today.

I feel like Our Temporary Supervisor probably has the Amazon Fulfillment Center mindset down pretty well.

I feel like the transition from that first ad to this is pretty perfect too, tho:

quote:

CLASSIFIED AD II

MAJOR SUPERCORP IN the process of expanding its properties and market-base has limited openings for Approved Labor in domestic and off-shore sites (real and virtual). We are among the biggest legitimate multi-monopolies on the world scene and our Corporate Persona is one that any AL can adopt in good conscience. Experience in sensory-deprived conditions preferred. Knowledge of outlawed dialects on the Nightmare Network a plus. Standard survival package of benefits. Prehistoric ALs okay with biologic documentation from transport agency.

I think I just personally find TNN funnier and so I like it more. They're both great stories tho.

MockingQuantum
Jan 20, 2012





Anybody read Final Girls? I just finished it not that long ago, and I enjoyed it more than I thought I would, though I'm not sure if I'd say it was better than I expected. It feels like a guilty pleasure horror novel, which is fitting given the gimmick of the book (the main character is the so-called Final Girl of a real life slasher movie-esque killing). Also it's kind of more a mystery novel than a horror novel, in a lot of ways. It doesn't push too many envelopes or anything, but I still liked it a fair bit.

CestMoi
Sep 16, 2011



i'm reading songs of a dead dreamer and its good but not as good as teatro grottesco. i dont really know how to describe the difference but there's something qualitatively different in where the horror comes from between the two, which is a thing i am enjoying thinking about

Flopstick
Jul 10, 2011



Top Cop

Pistol_Pete posted:

The BBC always gently caress them up, though. They take a perfectly crafted, stand-alone short story, that James spent the best part of a year polishing and say: "Heyyyyy, this story is good, I guess, but what if we add this to it!" Like, they took Whistle and I'll come to You and added in a subplot where the dude's wife had Alzheimers and he was super-conflicted about it and the haunting all somehow fed into that and it sucked balls. It also completely missed the dry, understated humour that's an essential ingredient of an M R James story by making the protagonist a lonely, regretful old guy rather than an earnest young nerd who totally doesn't believe in ghosts... until he's faced with the evidence of his own eyes! An M R James story is already a near-perfect little tale: all they have to do is translate it into a visual medium but no, every time it's "We're updating this for the modern era!" and they poo poo out a high-budget, star-studded, impeccably produced failure.

Yeah, I'm mad.

Yeah, but there would be no point in them just doing another straight adaptation of OW&ICTYML; they already broadcast the definitive, 1961 (iirc) Jonathan Miller version. Any new version is inevitably going to suffer by comparison to that one, unless it tries to do something completely different. Personally, I'd rather they just re-broadcast the Miller one or adapt something else, but the new one wasn't terrible by any means. Just very different to the source material, and didn't really need to be tied to it to tell the story it clearly wanted to. I really like the 1970s, ITV version of Casting The Runes, which moved it to a contemporary setting, too: more interesting to do that than just try to re-film Night Of The Demon. (And adaptation is never just a matter of 'translate it into a visual medium'. There are always trade offs and editorial decisions involved. You can't just turn written dialogue into spoken, point a camera at it, and assume it will work. You need to find ways to convey, visually, things which can just be stated as fact in print, such as what a character is thinking and why. When scripts try to stick too closely to a prose original, the story telling can get very messy. You should respect the source material, of course, but part of that is accepting that you are working in a completely different medium and need to make accommodations for that.)

Flaggy
Jul 6, 2007

Grandpa Cthulu needs his napping chair





Grimey Drawer

I just got done reading Kill Creek by Scott Thomas. Fun quick read, and it was well written. If your looking for something up that alley I would say this is the perfect book for it.

Flaggy fucked around with this message at 14:43 on Mar 22, 2019

Dr. Video Games 0081
Jan 19, 2005


CestMoi posted:

i'm reading songs of a dead dreamer and its good but not as good as teatro grottesco. i dont really know how to describe the difference but there's something qualitatively different in where the horror comes from between the two, which is a thing i am enjoying thinking about

There are some stories I really love in Songs of a Dead Dreamer: "Alice's Last Adventure," "Dreams of a Manikin," "The Chymist," "Notes on the Writing...," "Professor Nobody's..." and "The Christmas Eves of Aunt Elise." But I don't think it's really an accident that those stories all have fairly similar themes, or that their themes and subject matter lend them to a certain amount of formal playfulness. But most of the stories in Songs of a Dead Dreamer strike me as being still fairly straightforwardly supernatural stories of supernatural horror, whereas by Teatro Grottesco the supernatural elements are often extremely opaque and downplayed, and with much less action overall ("The Red Tower" representing a kind of extreme point of absence of character and action, and functioning as a companion piece to the playfulness of "The Nightmare Network.")

Although there's good stuff in there, My Work Is Not Yet Done itself, the novella and not the collection, is probably my least favorite Ligotti story I've read: it's just too much focused on incident and character, and those aren't the things I like in Ligotti's work.

I do have to modify that though, especially if you're reading the Penguin collection that has Grimscribe in it too, because "The Last Feast of Harlequin" is a perfectly coherent, traditionalish short story driven by character and plot, and that's another one of my favorite Ligotti stories.

When I was growing up I was reading a lot of Donald Barthelme, and I always think of Ligotti as being like a horror Barthelme at his best. For instance, from Barthelme's "Departures":

quote:

ARMY PLANS TO FREEZE
3 MILLION BIRDS TO DEATH
MILAN, Tenn., Feb. 14 (AP)--The Army is planning to freeze to death three million or so blackbirds that took up residence two years ago at the Milan Arsenal.

Paul Lefebvre of the U.S. Department of the Interior, which is also working on the plan, said yesterday that the birds would be sprayed with two chemicals, resulting in a rapid loss of body heat. This will be done on a night with sub-freezing temperatures, he said.



There is an elementary school, P.S. 421, across the street from my building. The board of education is busing children from the bad areas of the city to P.S. 421 (our area is thought to be a good area) and busing children from P.S. 421 to schools in the bad areas, in order to achieve racial balance in the schools. The parents of the P.S. 421 children do not like this very much, but they are all good citizens and feel it must be done. The parents of the children in the bad areas may not like it much, either, having their children so far from home, but they too probably feel that the process makes somehow for a better education. Every morning the green buses arrive in front of the school, some bringing black and Puerto Rican children to P.S. 421 and others taking the local, mostly white, children away. Presiding over all this is the loadmaster.

The loadmaster is a heavy, middle-aged white woman, not fat but heavy, who wears a blue cloth coat and a scarf around her head and carries a clipboard. She gets the children into and out of the buses, briskly, briskly, shouting, "Let's go, let's go, let's go!" She has a voice that is louder than the voices of forty children. She gets a bus filled up, gives her clipboard a fast once-over, and sends the driver on his way: "O.K., Jose." The bus has been parked in the middle of the street, and there is a long line of hungup cars behind it, unable to pass, their drivers blowing their horns impatiently. When the drivers of these cars honk their horns too vigorously, the loadmaster steps away from the bus and yells at them in a voice louder than fourteen stacked-up drivers blowing their horns all at once: "Keep your pants on!" Then to the bus driver: "O.K., Jose." As the bus starts off, she stands back and gives it an authoritative smack on its rump (much like a coach sending a fresh player into the game) as it passes. Then she waves the stacked-up drivers on their way, one authoritative wave for each driver. She is making authoritative motions long after there is any necessity for it.

Or I know even more Ligotti gets compared to a Borges or a Kafka. I always think about the Kafka story "Odradek"/"Cares of a Family Man":

quote:

«Some say the word Odradek is of Slavonic origin, and try to account for it on that basis.
Others again believe it to be of German origin, only influenced by Slavonic. The uncertainty
of both interpretations allows one to assume with justice that neither is accurate, especially
as neither of them provides an intelligent meaning of the word.
No one, of course, would occupy himself with such studies if there were not a creature
called Odradek. At first glance it looks like a flat star-shaped spool for thread, and indeed it
does seem to have thread wound upon it; to be sure, they are only old, broken-off bits of
thread, knotted and tangled together, of the most varied sorts and colors. But it is not only
a spool, for a small wooden crossbar sticks out of the middle of the star, and another small
rod is joined to that at a right angle. By means of this latter rod on one side and one of the
points of the star on the other, the whole thing can stand upright as if on two legs.
One is tempted to believe that the creature once had some sort of intelligible shape and is
now only a broken-down remnant. Yet this does not seem to be the case; at least there is
no sign of it; nowhere is there an unfinished or unbroken surface to suggest anything of the
kind; the whole thing looks senseless enough, but in its own way perfectly finished. In any
case, closer scrutiny is impossible, since Odradek is extraordinarily nimble and can never
be laid hold of.
He lurks by turns in the garret, the stairway, the lobbies, the entrance hall. Often for
months on end he is not to be seen; then he has presumably moved into other houses; but
he always comes faithfully back to our house again. Many a time when you go out of the
door and he happens just to be leaning directly beneath you against the banisters you feel
inclined to speak to him. Of course, you put no difficult questions to him, you treat him--he
is so diminutive that you cannot help it--rather like a child. "Well, what's your name?" you
ask him. "Odradek," he says. "And where do you live?" "No fixed abode," he says and
laughs; but it is only the kind of laughter that has no lungs behind it. It sounds rather like
the rustling of fallen leaves. And that is usually the end of the conversation. Even these
anwers are not always forthcoming; often he stays mute for a long time, as wooden as his
appearance.
I ask myself, to no purpose, what is likely to happen to him? Can he possibly die? Anything
that dies has had some kind of aim in life, some kind of activity, which has worn out; but
that does not apply to Odradek. Am I to suppose, then, that he will always be rolling down
the stairs, with ends of thread trailing after him, right before the feet of my children, and
my children's children? He does no harm to anyone that one can see; but the idea that he
is likely to survive me I find almost painful».

(from here: https://livelongday.files.wordpress.com/2011/08/odradek.pdf)

graventy
Jul 27, 2006




Fun Shoe

MockingQuantum posted:

Anybody read Final Girls? I just finished it not that long ago, and I enjoyed it more than I thought I would, though I'm not sure if I'd say it was better than I expected. It feels like a guilty pleasure horror novel, which is fitting given the gimmick of the book (the main character is the so-called Final Girl of a real life slasher movie-esque killing). Also it's kind of more a mystery novel than a horror novel, in a lot of ways. It doesn't push too many envelopes or anything, but I still liked it a fair bit.

I though it was fun. The flashback scenes did a good job of feeling exactly like slasher film, both in the buildup of going to the camp and typical characters and the chaotic attacks.

Sort of similarly (though much better) I really liked My Sister, the Serial Killer, about a woman coming to terms with her much prettier and more popular younger sister being a killer, and what to do about it. I don't think it fully classifies as horror, but the book is a pretty perfect blend of dark comedy.

Pistol_Pete
Sep 15, 2007

I disagree! Only 2 Princesses have died. That is one of the smallest number of dead Princesses you can have.


Oven Wrangler

Flopstick posted:

You should respect the source material, of course, but part of that is accepting that you are working in a completely different medium and need to make accommodations for that.)

Yes, I'm aware of the technical issues in translating a printed story into a visual one. Conveying something through film is quite different to achieving the same thing in a written story. My issue is that the directors of MR James adaptions (doing an annual Xmas adaption has become a bit of a tradition at the BBC) invariably start adding in fresh and incongruous elements to the stories, just so they can boast that they've "made their mark" on an established classic. Invariably, it fails to work and detracts from the story, rather than making it more comprehensible for a contemporary audience.

grobbo
May 29, 2014


Dr. Video Games 0081 posted:

Although there's good stuff in there, My Work Is Not Yet Done itself, the novella and not the collection, is probably my least favorite Ligotti story I've read: it's just too much focused on incident and character, and those aren't the things I like in Ligotti's work.

I do have to modify that though, especially if you're reading the Penguin collection that has Grimscribe in it too, because "The Last Feast of Harlequin" is a perfectly coherent, traditionalish short story driven by character and plot, and that's another one of my favorite Ligotti stories.

When I was growing up I was reading a lot of Donald Barthelme, and I always think of Ligotti as being like a horror Barthelme at his best. For instance, from Barthelme's "Departures":


Or I know even more Ligotti gets compared to a Borges or a Kafka. I always think about the Kafka story "Odradek"/"Cares of a Family Man":


That Barthelme comparison is really fascinating, and I completely agree about the experimentation and influences in TG that make it feel like so much more of a unique work.

I re-read My Work Is Not Yet Done recently and I enjoyed it much more on the second go, but I don't think there's any doubt that the longer form exposes Ligotti's weaknesses by forcing him to work with a more action-driven plot and a bigger cast of characters, which he doesn't particularly seem to enjoy.

The first third of the book is this brilliant little sketch of office politics and social paranoia as 20th century horror, focusing on the narrator's Underground Man fantasies that everyone around him is out to get him, undermining him, cheating him...but then there's nowhere for the plot to go afterwards at that kind of length, other than the office workers actually being a parade of deliberate villains, who he then kills off one by one in a slightly weary succession of Ligotti's Greatest Thematic Hits.

Dr. Video Games 0081
Jan 19, 2005


I do think there's some real great stuff at the end of that story, too. It just sags in the middle. Kind of interesting to see a revenge narrative that eschews a lot of the things that I find gross about revenge narratives, but the pattern still isn't super interesting to read.

I haven't read the The Spectral Link yet though it's available for not that much as an ebook last I checked. I think those are novellas too? So I'd be interesting to see how Ligotti works in the longer form there.

ravenkult
Feb 3, 2011




A book I edited years ago is a featured deal on Bookbub and I thought it might be of interest here.
It's a 50's USA themed collection that I would describe as kind of old school in terms of stories. Not very gory or violent but not really new wave of weird either.

https://www.bookbub.com/books/american-nightmare-by-max-booth-iii-and-tim-marquitz?ebook_deal

Bilirubin
Feb 16, 2014

The sanctioned action is to CHUG




ravenkult posted:

A book I edited years ago is a featured deal on Bookbub and I thought it might be of interest here.
It's a 50's USA themed collection that I would describe as kind of old school in terms of stories. Not very gory or violent but not really new wave of weird either.

https://www.bookbub.com/books/american-nightmare-by-max-booth-iii-and-tim-marquitz?ebook_deal



Nice!

Dr. Video Games 0081
Jan 19, 2005


grobbo posted:

That Barthelme comparison is really fascinating, and I completely agree about the experimentation and influences in TG that make it feel like so much more of a unique work.

Suddenly hit again today about the relationship of Barthelme to contemporary horror when I was flipping through the first few pages of Annhilation and it reminded me of how much Barthelme's story "Game" (the first I ever read by him) resembles the split between the rational and abstract language of the narrator in Annihilation and the absurd and weird situation they're in:

quote:

In the beginning I took care to behave normally. So did Shotwell. Our behavior was painfully normal. Norms of politeness, consideration, speech and personal habits were scrupulously observed. But then it became apparent that an error had been made, that our relief was not going to arrive. Owing to an oversight. Owing to an oversight we have been here for one hundred thirty-three days. When it became clear that an error had been made, that we were not to be relieved, the norms were relaxed. Definitions of normality were redrawn in the agreement of January 1, called by us, The Agreement. Uniform regulations were relaxed, and mealtimes are no longer rigorously scheduled. We eat when we are hungry and sleep when we are tired. Considerations of rank and precedence were temporarily put aside, a handsome concession on the part of Shotwell, who is a captain, whereas I am only a first lieutenant. One of us watches the console at all times rather than two of us watching the console at all times, except when we are both on our feet. One of us watches the console at all times and if the bird flies then that one wakes the other and we turn our keys in the locks simultaneously and the bird flies. Our system involves a delay of perhaps twelve seconds but I do not care because I am not well, and Shotwell does not care because he is not himself. After the agreement was signed Shotwell produced the jacks and the rubber ball from his attaché case, and I began to write a series of descriptions of forms occurring in nature, such as a shell, a leaf, a stone, an animal. On the walls.

I don't know if horror fans normally have Barthelme on his radar as most of his work isn't particularly horror-y, but "Game" could easily be a straight up horror story and aspects of The Dead Father would be of real interest to fans of weird fictin.

Skyscraper
Oct 1, 2004

Hurry Up, We're Dreaming





https://subterraneanpress.com/hellraiser-the-toll

quote:

Hellraiser: The Toll tells the story of what happened between Clive Barker’s iconic works The Hellbound Heart and its follow up, The Scarlet Gospels.
...
With equal parts economy and eloquence, author Mark Alan Miller brings to life the beginning of the end as The Toll expands the Hellraiser universe, and shows that before Harry D’Amour’s adventures in The Scarlet Gospels, there was a first witness to Pinhead’s infernal plan.

So apparently Clive Barker is having Hellraiser fanfiction ghost-written now, I guess Tom Clancy style. Sounds like they're treating the Scarlet Gospels as canon and now bringing that back to all the previous work that was actually good.

Catfishenfuego
Oct 21, 2008

Moist With Indignation


Pistol_Pete posted:

The BBC always gently caress them up, though. They take a perfectly crafted, stand-alone short story, that James spent the best part of a year polishing and say: "Heyyyyy, this story is good, I guess, but what if we add this to it!" Like, they took Whistle and I'll come to You and added in a subplot where the dude's wife had Alzheimers and he was super-conflicted about it and the haunting all somehow fed into that and it sucked balls. It also completely missed the dry, understated humour that's an essential ingredient of an M R James story by making the protagonist a lonely, regretful old guy rather than an earnest young nerd who totally doesn't believe in ghosts... until he's faced with the evidence of his own eyes! An M R James story is already a near-perfect little tale: all they have to do is translate it into a visual medium but no, every time it's "We're updating this for the modern era!" and they poo poo out a high-budget, star-studded, impeccably produced failure.

Yeah, I'm mad.

They already did that with the previous BBC adaptation, which is good and which you can watch for free.

Ornamented Death
Jan 25, 2006

Pew pew!



Skyscraper posted:

https://subterraneanpress.com/hellraiser-the-toll


So apparently Clive Barker is having Hellraiser fanfiction ghost-written now, I guess Tom Clancy style. Sounds like they're treating the Scarlet Gospels as canon and now bringing that back to all the previous work that was actually good.

Two things:

1.) This was published over a year ago and announced well before that, so you're a bit behind the times.

2.) Why wouldn't Clive Barker want his "collaborator" to consider the stuff Clive Barker wrote for Clive Barker's setting as canon?


In other news, Nathan Ballingrud's new collection is out.

Skyscraper
Oct 1, 2004

Hurry Up, We're Dreaming





Ornamented Death posted:

Two things:

1.) This was published over a year ago and announced well before that, so you're a bit behind the times.

2.) Why wouldn't Clive Barker want his "collaborator" to consider the stuff Clive Barker wrote for Clive Barker's setting as canon?


In other news, Nathan Ballingrud's new collection is out.

1) It wasn't mentioned here, which was why I mentioned it here. Did I imply that this was new?

2) Because it was bad.

scary ghost dog
Aug 5, 2007


just finished Floating Dragon. notes:
- glad i read it after Niceville trilogy. i would have been pretty pissed off at how derivative Niceville is if i hadnt
- big tommyknockers mood from the degradation of the town
- DRG was a really neat antagonistic force, but i think the gideon winter stuff went too far in personifying it as a malevolent dragon man. it mightve been more tense if it didnt have a weird grudge
- the “team” of protagonists was, in my opinion, extremely boring
- best scene: movie night with the police department
- best character: bobo farnsworth. generally dislike cops and honorable cop characters (the one from niceville was especially egregious) but bobo was very believable as a young public servant

overall i liked it but probably wont read more straub. my favorite parts where the sterile after-the-fact narrations about the effects of DRG as a natural disaster, like the segments about the foamy man and his doctor, or the interviews with the cops after movie night. 7/10

Drunken Baker
Feb 3, 2015

VODKA STYLE DRINK


Skyscraper posted:

2) Because it was bad.

Not going to bother with The Toll. Apparently Millar wrote Scarlet Gospels after the first chapter too and that was dreadful in ways I find hard to articulate.

I said this in another thread but my love for Hellraiser is a paradox. I consider myself a massive, massive fan but I hate pretty much everything about the franchise from nearly all the films to the comics to the books. (And other fans... mostly.)

Skyscraper
Oct 1, 2004

Hurry Up, We're Dreaming





Drunken Baker posted:

Apparently Millar wrote Scarlet Gospels after the first chapter too and that was dreadful in ways I find hard to articulate.

Oh, that explains that book, I guess.

Drunken Baker posted:

I said this in another thread but my love for Hellraiser is a paradox. I consider myself a massive, massive fan but I hate pretty much everything about the franchise from nearly all the films to the comics to the books. (And other fans... mostly.)

I feel the same about a lot of Lovecraft. Maybe there are just some universally good ideas that are poorly conveyed by a lot of the actual content?

Drunken Baker
Feb 3, 2015

VODKA STYLE DRINK


Skyscraper posted:

I feel the same about a lot of Lovecraft. Maybe there are just some universally good ideas that are poorly conveyed by a lot of the actual content?

Nail on the head there, i think mate.

a foolish pianist
May 6, 2007

(bi)cyclic mutation



I finished the Radiant Dawn-Ravenous Dusk pair of novels yesterday, and I'd say they're all right - basically airport thrillers with some Lovecraft mythos crammed in (mostly in the second book). I think I'd gotten them in some humble bundle a while ago?

Next up is the new Ballingrud collection, which I'm much more excited about.

Mel Mudkiper
Jan 19, 2012

It's not a sexual thing. Please don't think this is a sexual thing I just like mudkip and babies need diapers, that's how it works.

So I just got done reading Kwaidan which is a book of ancient buddhist ghost stories and it owned

Bilirubin
Feb 16, 2014

The sanctioned action is to CHUG




Mel Mudkiper posted:

So I just got done reading Kwaidan which is a book of ancient buddhist ghost stories and it owned

link that poo poo up my good man

Skyscraper
Oct 1, 2004

Hurry Up, We're Dreaming





Mel Mudkiper posted:

So I just got done reading Kwaidan which is a book of ancient buddhist ghost stories and it owned

Have you seen the movie, and if so how did it stack up?

Pththya-lyi
Nov 8, 2009

THUNDERDOME LOSER 2020

Mel Mudkiper posted:

So I just got done reading Kwaidan which is a book of ancient buddhist ghost stories and it owned

Best one is either "Hoichi the Earless" or "Yuki-Onna," change my mind

Mel Mudkiper
Jan 19, 2012

It's not a sexual thing. Please don't think this is a sexual thing I just like mudkip and babies need diapers, that's how it works.

Pththya-lyi posted:

Best one is either "Hoichi the Earless" or "Yuki-Onna," change my mind

I realized that Gargoyle story in Tales from the Darkside is literally just Yuki-Onna

I am a fan of how ridiculous Rokurokobi is and how its basically a story of what would happen if Ash from Evil Dead was a Buddhist Monk.

My favorite is probably The Dream of Akinosuke or The Story of Aoyagi

Its funny how many of the stories are "I married this hot chick and whoops she's a ghost"

I mean, Hoichi the Earless is loving great. I am a fan

Bilirubin posted:

link that poo poo up my good man

http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/1210

Skyscraper posted:

Have you seen the movie, and if so how did it stack up?

I am gonna watch it on Criterion Channel here in a few days so I will let you know

Pththya-lyi
Nov 8, 2009

THUNDERDOME LOSER 2020

Mel Mudkiper posted:

Its funny how many of the stories are "I married this hot chick and whoops she's a ghost"

Dudes in folklore are always marrying supernatural women, and always failing to keep the simple precautions that would let them (or force them to) stay

MockingQuantum
Jan 20, 2012






I've been meaning to read this forever and it keeps dropping off my radar, thanks for mentioning it. I think I have a copy somewhere at home that has some (modern) ukiyo-e art for each story and it's pretty cool.


a foolish pianist posted:

Next up is the new Ballingrud collection, which I'm much more excited about.

I'm really curious to hear what people think of it-- I'm about three stories in, and it's good, it has a more cohesive theme than Lake Monsters, but I also think the stories don't have the same impact because of it. I'm curious to see if all the stories sort of lead to something, or if they're just kind of variations on a theme. I haven't read Visible Filth yet, though, so I'm looking forward to that.

Skyscraper
Oct 1, 2004

Hurry Up, We're Dreaming





Mel Mudkiper posted:

I am gonna watch it on Criterion Channel here in a few days so I will let you know

Neat! Thanks!

Mel Mudkiper
Jan 19, 2012

It's not a sexual thing. Please don't think this is a sexual thing I just like mudkip and babies need diapers, that's how it works.

Pththya-lyi posted:

Dudes in folklore are always marrying supernatural women, and always failing to keep the simple precautions that would let them (or force them to) stay

The funny thing is that in most of the stories nothing bad even happens to the dude for marrying a ghost. Like Yuki-Onna is the only bad one and even then not really.

Its more like "We have been happily married for many years bee tee dubs I am a ghost wooooooo" and she disappears the end

Mel Mudkiper
Jan 19, 2012

It's not a sexual thing. Please don't think this is a sexual thing I just like mudkip and babies need diapers, that's how it works.

Mujina is also a really fun story because you can almost envision a bunch of japanese kids telling it around a campfire with flashlights under their faces in the way its paced

Bilirubin
Feb 16, 2014

The sanctioned action is to CHUG





Many thanks, epub transferred to drive, needed a public domain book for the reading challenge

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MockingQuantum
Jan 20, 2012





Interestingly, Tor (or rather, its parent company Tom Doherty Associates) is starting its own horror imprint, Nighfire, in 2021. I'm not sure what that means for the genre but it seems kind of noteworthy that a large publisher is dipping their toes into horror now.

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