Ever Have A Dream That Stayed? What’s In You Is Far More Compelling

28 01 2016

Occult and Outsider Imagery – have a look.

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Ever have a dream that made you wake up in a cold sweat? I did once when I was seven. The dream was a melange of Hanna-Barbara cartoons, featuring a waist-up shot of a middle-aged hillbilly woman who had begun to fade to leave the generic wooden shack background. She laughed a deep, cartoony laugh and was joined by other stereotypical rustics laughing unseen. The graphic came up: “Ghoul Gals”. I sat up in bed for the only time in my life, my skin chilled and wet.

A spot of potato? More of the gravy than the grave? Even if dyspepsia inspired the discomfort that made the dream, why that dream? More to the point, what in that dream could be conveyed to others?

You are a consciousness in a body within a society extended by technology. So is everyone else. The fonts and images in your mind will connect with others. Expertise polishes your message until it shines through preconceptions and shows your true, intended meaning. Sometimes, that means seeing your own preconceptions.

Why villains? Why vampires or werewolves? Aliens? Ghosts? Why not rustic Ghoul Gals living in a cartoon?

Okay, to make money, sure. I’ll write those things if I have a neat idea that’ll sell. Or for you, maybe those ideas have a more resounding effect than for most people. What is it that resounds? What does it feel like? What behavior went uncanny?

Have you had a dream that stayed with you?

 





“Body Horror and Psycho-Sexual Transcendence”

12 12 2015
 

CHAPTER TWO: THE MOTHER AND THE WORM

We were in our places, Olivia at the door and I in the wicker basket. The windows were concealed with heavy curtains to keep out the afternoon sun, but oil lamps pushed back the gloom. The lady who entered our study first was the old friend of Olivia’s family, who embraced Olivia, then introduced her guests. The other matron wore black; she was the hopeful patron. The men were young, one balding and mustached and the other dark and intense. They were surprised by her frank smile, by her firm handclasp, and smirked to each other.

The basket that hid me was a cubit square. Within it, I sat naked on a thin cotton mat, waiting for my cue.

After brief pleasantries, Olivia bade everyone sit at the mismatched slat chairs around our worn table. Slowly, not without drama, she turned the gas lamps down.

“Everyone take hands, please. This afternoon, we speak with the spirits. I need for everyone to speak these holy words of the Hindu. Om mani padme hum.”

Her resonance and theatrics gave the others confidence. The older ladies intoned with Episcopalian reserve. The men seemed strangely comfortable with the trappings, and joined in.

The chant rose in pitch.

This was my cue, as thespians say. I lay back and breathed deep, humid air inflating my months-old lungs. As I inhaled, I imagined the proper yantra symbol. I exhaled my own mantra to release my spirit from my misshapen flesh.

“Come to us, Alecsandri. Come to us, spirits.”

I continued my chant and let myself drift, imagining myself in warm black oil. As she implored, the study was swallowed by the warm oil. My spirit rose from the basket. My hands glowed, my fingers lithe.  My spirit body shone golden and tall, like before I had forced myself into Thomas Spalding’s brain and was reborn in the manikin shape.

The bodies of the attendants glowed with auras of life. Rainbows flared along the older women. The bald man’s was a healthy bronze. The young man’s was odd. The flares were violet and tight, like a gas burner pressed by a weight. Olivia’s lavender opened and extended across the room as she entered her trance, so that she could communicate with the spirit realm.

Unseen by the others, I drifted to Olivia and caressed her neck. Touching her spirit was like touching soothing wool on a winter day. Feeling me, her head eased back and magenta sparks streaked her neck after my fingertips.

She said, “My spirit guide is with us. Are you ready to help us, Guru?”

Her head fell forward and she affected a deeper, thicker-tongued man’s voice, an impersonation of me when I was human. “Olivia, I am always pleased to make new acquaintances. These are charming people.”

She sighed and rolled in her seat, as if buffeted by forces within. In her voice: “I sense a presence with you, Guru. Who is with you?”

I had been too distracted by Olivia to notice. A disembodied glow had appeared by one of the women. It was the size of a grown man, and boiled red. It pointed to the older woman.

 

“I love ‘The Flesh Sutra’!” – Nancy Holder, NYT Best Selling Horror Author

My debut novel was on the preliminary ballot for the 2015 Stoker Awards.

“In this excellent novel, the writing is crisp, the characters sharply drawn, the plot engrossing; as a result, this tightly written and propulsive narrative addresses postmodern angst about humanity and spirituality in the context of body horror and psychosexual transcendence with literary flair and at times deeply disturbing imagery.”

Order it below.

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Visit My New “To Purchase” Page

8 10 2015

Which includes small press anthologies and my novel “The Flesh Sutra”, which made the preliminary ballot for this year’s Stoker Awards.





Links! Horror and Writing Links!

24 07 2015

Five Paranormal Books You Haven’t Read Yet

Classical Monsters You Haven’t Heard Of (Some Are In AD&D, More Are Ready For Your Next Big Masterwork)

Body Horror In Advertising (Lots Of Videos)

Clever and Incisive Reviews Of Classic Horror Novels

 





Alex Gave His Life For Her. Olivia Tested Death For Him.

1 07 2015

He gave the lives of dozens of others to keep her.

A school of mystics failed their test to keep her from him.

Nirvana was not enough for them. Several Hells could not hold them.

Now the world and the spirits are in their way.

 

As heard on Pseudopod.org…

“In THE FLESH SUTRA Tim W. Burke has charted a diabolical, metaphysical odyssey for his main characters, a journey that will take you through Death itself… and back out the other side.”
— Shawn Garrett, Pseudopod

 

Sample “The Flesh Sutra”.

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Love In Doom

24 06 2015

Imagine that couple you know, those two most talented people in your life, and they are in love.

But they’re afraid. Frightened of death and of losing one another.

Jealous of anyone who may catch the other’s attention. Screaming fights. Dishware flung. Punches thrown.

Sometimes they are sorry about bringing other people into their drama. Other times they just want to forget and move on.

Now…imagine they could alter flesh with their touch.

They are sometimes very, very sorry about the drama.

 

As heard on Pseudopod.org…

“In THE FLESH SUTRA Tim W. Burke has charted a diabolical, metaphysical odyssey for his main characters, a journey that will take you through Death itself… and back out the other side.”
— Shawn Garrett, Pseudopod

 

Sample “The Flesh Sutra”.

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The Paris Review Has Visions Of Satan.

21 06 2015

And they mention that mini-meme about the “Kid’s Demon Summoning Game ‘Charlie-Charlie'” which some dumbass thought up to try to go viral. Do NOT use the Charlie game in a story or movie. You will be embarrassing yourself.

Now…here’s some psychotic’s visions of Evil.

https://i0.wp.com/www.theparisreview.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/15759249898_def59c81d3_o.jpg?resize=510%2C661





A Character Bursts From Another’s Eye Socket,

17 06 2015

Other Characters Are Doomed On A Haunted Ship,
Another Plummets From Fathomless Height,
One Becomes A Creature Who Eats His Mother’s Corpse,
Yet Another Bursts Apart Before A Rapt Audience,

Two Are Torn Apart Alive By A Monkey Demon,
One Is Frozen To Death In His Private Hell,
Another Is Drowned In An Illusionary Ocean,
And One Is Shot To Death By A Ghost.

 

This Is How They Die In “The Flesh Sutra”

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As heard on Pseudopod.org…
“Seeds of body horror and jealousy, avarice and desperation all wrapped in fin de siecle city life and the trappings of the Spiritualist movement. This is a beautiful, precision time piece of unease and tension and Tim winds it all the way up, smiling at you as he does so.”
— Alasdair Stuart, Host of www.pseudopod.org, the weekly horror fiction podcast





I Have To Kill A Character! How Do I Tell The Kids?

10 06 2015

I’ve mentioned Unreality Mag before. Here is an older article I came across with advice on giving your characters to a nice farm family where they have lots of room to run and have other characters to play with.

Can you imagine if Martin did that on Game of Thrones? “Joffrey’s got his own yard by a lake where he can chase rabbits and geese and romp with other Grimdark psychopath royalty.”





Obscure Monsters From Folklore: This is such a cool article!

28 05 2015

What’s the most obscure folklore creature you know? That Asian vampire floating-head-with-the guts-hanging? The Icelandic Frozen Baby Chest Crusher? Electric Literature has several severals of little known creatures. This is a great website for any writing in any genre.








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