Friday, October 04, 2019

Global Horror: Local Perspectives Conference, Apr 2020


Horror pervades human experience. It affects us both as individuals and as members of social communities, it is recurrent in pop culture and arguably present in all fields of human knowledge and realms of storytelling, from Cronus eating his own children, to Freddy Krueger’s sadistic murders in A Nightmare on Elm Street to media coverage of war. As a fundamentally paradoxical concept, horror simultaneously repels and fascinates us: we naturally dread it, yet we are drawn to it. We are taught to avoid that which is horrifying, but the appeal of horror, whether in the form of fiction or sensational news, is irresistible.

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

CFP - Vampires: Consuming Monsters and Monstrous Consumption

REVENANT: CRITICAL AND CREATIVE STUDIES OF THE SUPERNATURAL is a peer-reviewed, online journal looking at the supernatural, the uncanny, and the weird. Revenant is now accepting articles, creative writing pieces and book, film, game, event, or art reviews for a themed issue on ‘Vampires: Consuming Monsters and Monstrous Consumption’ (due 18 January 2020), guest edited by Dr Brooke Cameron and Suyin Olguin.

Tuesday, September 03, 2019

CFP: "Women’s Writing" Special Issue on Ghost Stories

Ghosts and the supernatural continue to attract the attention of feminist scholars, though the relationship between gender, genre and haunting has not been fully explored.

In the evolution of the ghost story, women writers of the long nineteenth century have sometimes been overshadowed, their contributions to the genre undervalued or their stories seen as inferior to their novels and poetry.

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

CFP: 9th SLAYAGE Conference in Montreal, July 2020

Slayage: The Journal of Whedon Studies, the Whedon Studies Association, and conveners Lorna Jowett, Cynthia Burkhead, and Kristopher Woofter solicit proposals for the ninth biennial Slayage Conference on the Whedonverses (SCW9). This conference dedicated to the imaginative universe(s) of Joss Whedon and his primary collaborators (e.g., Marti Noxon, Tim Minear, David Greenwalt, Jane Espenson, Maurissa Tancharoen, Jed Whedon, etc.) will be held on the downtown campus of Dawson College, Montréal, Québec, Canada, from 9-12 July 2020. Kristopher Woofter of Dawson College will serve as local arrangements chair. 

Thursday, April 04, 2019

CFP - Evil Women: Women and Evil - December 2019

The second meeting of the global inclusive interdisciplinary Evil Women: Women and Evil project will explore and examine all aspects of the conjunctions between women, the feminine and evil with a view to forming a selective publication to engender further collaboration, research and discussion. What does all of this mean for women, the world they live in and the ways in which ‘evil' can be understood and applied? We invite participants to explore evil women, women and evil from the full range of disciplinary, professional, practitioner, vocational, voluntary sector, NGO and other contexts and perspectives. The aim is to generate an inclusive dialogue which begin to illuminate the cases of individuals whose lives have been impacted by feminine ‘evil'.

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Blood on Black Wax: Horror Movie Soundtracks

Rue Morgue and 1984 Publishing are proud to announce the release of BLOOD ON BLACK WAX, a book-length look at the unique history and artwork of horror movie soundtracks.

Are you obsessed with John Carpenter's iconic music for the Halloween series? Do you thrill to the unforgettable stabs of the Psycho score, or the pounding synth of Goblin's soundtrack to Suspiria? Do you find yourself being pulled into the hair-raising modern scores for the likes of Get Out, Hereditary, and The Witch? You're not alone.

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

British Library Tales of the Weird

In late 2018, the British Library kicked off their "Tales of the Weird" book series with From the Depths and Other Strange Tales of the Sea, edited by Mike Ashley. Spanning thirteen books in total, the first eight are now available, with five more set for release later this year. I've just received the first set of books, courtesy of the British Library, and cannot wait to start reading. But where to begin?

Check out the fantastic covers by illustrator Mauricio Villamayor! So much weird goodness here. Each published title is linked to its corresponding information page at the British Library. These books may also be purchased via other online sellers like Amazon.

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Polidori Vampyre Symposium, April 2019

John William Polidori by F.G. Gainsford
John Polidori published his tale The Vampyre in 1819. It is well known that his vampire emerged out of the same storytelling contest at the Villa Diodati in 1816 that gave birth to that other archetype of the Gothic heritage, Frankenstein’s monster. Present at this gathering were Polidori (who was Byron’s physician), Mary Godwin, Frankenstein’s author; Claire Clairmont, Percy Shelley, and (crucially) Lord Byron.

Byron’s contribution to the contest was an inconclusive fragment about a mysterious man characterized by ‘a curious disquiet’. Polidori took this fragment and turned it into the tale of the vampire Lord Ruthven, preying on the vulnerable women of society.

Friday, February 22, 2019

Review: Gallery of Horror (1967)

Gallery of Horror (1967) presents five horror tales based on stories written by Canadian Russ Jones, of Creepy and Eerie fame. Producer/Director David L. Hewitt was not a fan of horror movies, and this disinterest clearly had an impact on the film, which explains the lack of blood (and horror) one expects from, well, a horror film.

It's a good example of a really bad movie made on the cheap, utilizing an overabundance of stock footage (of varied quality) that was added to make it look like it cost more than $30K to make. It's the kind of movie where classic horror stars of the silver screen went to die, and in this case the poor souls are John Carradine and Lon Chaney Jr.

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

CFP: Monsters, Aug 2019 in Lisbon

This inter-disciplinary and multi-disciplinary conference seeks to investigate and explore the enduring influence and imagery of monsters and the monstrous on human culture throughout history. In particular, the project will have a dual focus with the intention of examining specific ‘monsters’ as well as assessing the role, function and consequences of persons, actions or events identified as ‘monstrous’. The history and contemporary cultural influences of monsters and monstrous metaphors will also be examined with a view to forming a selective publication to engender further collaboration and discussion.

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

The Frazetta You Didn't Know About: A Portfolio

Captain George's Comic World was published by Memory Lane Publications, which was run by 'Captain' George Henderson out of his comic store, Memory Lane, in Toronto. In the late 1960s and into the 70s, Henderson's "Vast Whizzbang Organization" produced this and several other nostalgia publications, including Penny Dreadful, The New Captain George's Whizzbang, and Captain George Presents--which was the second incarnation of Comic World.

This particular issue of Comic World, "The Frazetta You Didn't Know About," was published c. 1969 and features some of Frank Frazetta's early pin-up artwork. Ranging from sultry to sexy, this stunning art is far removed from the fantasy work he's most famous for.

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

CFP - Revolution in the Dead: The Cultural Evolution of the Zombie

Since its arrival on the silver screen in Victor Halperin’s White Zombie (1932), the concept of the zombie has captivated and terrorized mainstream audiences across generations. However, before such low-budget celluloid imaginings, and the legions of undead staggering across the old Deep South plantation landscapes of Robert Kirkman’s The Walking Dead (2003-present), the zombie was already conjuring fear and repulsion. Originating from the mythology and rituals of voodoo practised in late seventeenth and early eighteenth century West Africa and subsequently the French slave-colony of Haiti, the zombie is much more than the brain-devouring bogeyman of early cinema representations but instead a cultural and social marker of the era in which its varied representations are produced.

Monday, January 14, 2019

Canadiana Obscura: Zosma fanzine

I've been casting a wide net while researching Canadian horror, supernatural, and dark fantasy work for inclusion in The Great Fright North. When it comes to fanzines, often I won't know if they're suitable for the book until I actually hunt them down and read through copies, since a title alone doesn't always indicate content.

Such is the case for Zosma, a fanzine published c. 1978-81 by Steve George in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Now that I've had a chance to read through several issues, it does warrant a mention since occasionally it included horror film reviews. But because this is a very rare fanzine, I wanted to write a bit more about it here.

Tuesday, January 01, 2019

CFP - Evil Children: Children and Evil (July 2019)

2018 was a very slow year for new blog posts at MBO. I wouldn't say that "life got in the way" but it certainly demanded more of my spare time. That, and I've been focused on finishing the first draft of The Great Fright North, which will finally be completed this year (hopefully by the spring). The book has become a monster in and of itself, and I guess I wouldn't have it any other way.

To kick off the new year, the first post of 2019 is about an upcoming conference on evil children! :)
Contact information is at the end of the post.