Books

Giving from the Bottom: a short story from my forthcoming book

Posted on Mar 1, 2015 in Books, Christmas, Interviews & Guest Posts, Published Works | 1 comment

My short story, “Giving from the Bottom” (which at the time was named “Giving from the Broken-Down Bottom”), was published in Spinetingler Magazine in 2011. It is a dark drama about two cousins making a large theft at Christmas time.

This story amongst others (some dark dramas like this one and lots of horror stories) will be featured in my forthcoming book “Growing Dark” which is being published by Blue Juice Press this spring.

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You can read the story for free here and get a taste of my style. You can also read my flash fiction banshee tale “Freckles“, which was just published on Halloween Forevermore.

More news on the book’s official release date coming soon.

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FRECKLES: my flash fiction horror story at Halloween Forevermore

Posted on Feb 28, 2015 in Best of the Best, Books, Featured, Indie Horror, Interviews & Guest Posts, Published Works | 0 comments

My flash fiction horror tale, “Freckles” has just been published by Halloween Forevermore. You can read it totally for FREE on their online magian. Click here to get yourself spooked by your bartender.

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My Book Is Coming….

Posted on Feb 26, 2015 in Best of the Best, Books, CONTESTS & GIVEAWAYS, Indie Horror, Published Works | 0 comments

A cold wind ushers in, warning of the horror that lurks in the cobwebbed corners of our world. A black fate has befallen us all. My book is being unleashed very soon by Blue Juice Publications. It has been a long and grueling labor of love but in under a month it will at last hit bookshelves everywhere.

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A small town is ruined by black rain, and two police officers find themselves face to face with the creatures lurking in the flooded streets. In the Wild West, an aging gunslinger returns to his favorite brothel, only to encounter a fathomless black tar that’s devouring everyone within. Paramedics find a remedy for a zombie virus outbreak — but can the survivors come to terms with their cannibalism? Former high-school sweethearts reconnect for the anniversary of a murder. Two deceased movie legends come back as avenging angels, tracking demons through haunted canyons. 

These stories and more fill Growing Dark, a collection of my darkest short stories. Some have been previously published in magazines such as Spinetingler as well as in anthologies by Post Mortem Press, Dark Moon Books, Wicked East Press and more, while others are being published here for the very first time. Plus, it is already getting some great reviews…

“Triana has a voice unmatched by other writers in his field. His short stories pack more punch than your average novel. Beware of this man’s words, for they are dangerous and contagious.”
—Max Booth III, author of Toxicity

“Triana’s work really brings the thunder!”
—Jon Mikl Thor, musician, bodybuilder and actor (Rock N’ Roll Nightmare, Zombie Nightmare)

“Kristopher Triana is one of the last, true badasses.”
—Tim Morse, drummer of Anal Cunt

“Kris Triana is bound to give the big boys of horror a run for their money! Whether it’s ‘quiet’ horror with a slow build or something incredibly extreme, Triana writes characters you care about, fleshing them out so well that you’ll cringe when he suddenly pulls the rug out from under you and viciously flays them alive. Seeing his name attached to any story guarantees you’re in for a great, ghoulish read!”

—Matt Kurtz, author of Monkey’s Box of Horrors

A macabre collection of lurking dread and bloodcurdling terror, ranging from otherworldly evils to very human nightmares, this powerful collection is sure to keep you sleeping with the lights on.

Stayed tuned for an actual release date as well as your chance to win a free autographed copy!

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What We Talk About When We Talk About Horror: a review of Modern Mythmakers by Michael McCarty

Posted on Feb 26, 2015 in 80's Horror, All Reviews, Best of the Best, Books, Interviews & Guest Posts | 0 comments

When it comes to inside information about the creation of our favorite horror gems, we genre nerds simply can’t get enough. We paw through one magazine article after another regarding the same films and listen in on our DVD director’s commentaries like teenage girls picking up juicy gossip. Being so beloved by us, we thirst for every bit of origin story when it comes to the horrorsphere. We want the scoop on movies we’ve seen a hundred times sometimes even more than we want the scoop on movies just slated for release. We just as feverishly read about a book as we do the book itself.

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Now, thanks to Michael McCarty and Crystal Lake Publishing, we have a book that is the about the book as well as being a definitive guide for horror and sci-fi movie history. In this staggering collection of interviews with some of the world’s greatest writers, directors and film stars, McCarty has crafted a sort of bible for the obsessive fright fan. And when I say the greatest, I mean the absolute goddamned greatest.

How great, you ask?

Some of the interviewees include Richard Matheson, John Carpenter, Ramsey Campbell, Elvira, Jack Ketchum, Linnea Quigley, Herschell Gordon Lewis, Ingrid Pitt, Adrienne Barbeau, Ray Bradbury and Mick Garris. All of these talents give thorough and insightful interviews, and they’re only 11 of the 35 conversations we get to enjoy.

The interviews cover varieties of topics as well. Instead of focusing on one specific work, the dialogue flows naturally as the artist’s craft as a whole is broken down, their personal favorites are brought to light, and even their tastes, senses of humor and other intimate details come into the limelight.

We get to read such tidbits as movie starlet Adrienne Barbeau discussing an 80’s horror classic: “I love Billie in Creepshow. She’s one of my all-time favorite characters… I just told George (Romero) I was going to do what I thought would work for her and if he didn’t like it, he’d better send me home immediately.” We marvel as Ray Bradbury discusses how his masterpiece Something Wicked This Way Comes is truly a part of his heart: “The two boys are the two halves of myself – the light half and the dark half. The father is me in the library. The entire book is me.” Jack Ketchum delves into the dark art of the extreme horror novel while Dean Koontz explains the approach of his signature style, and a cavalcade of film legends divulge some spooky little secrets.

What I enjoyed most is that McCarty’s questions are clever and unique. He doesn’t bother with the routine enquires you read in most banal rags. As he puts it, “Every interview is walking a tightrope without a net, with a strong wind blowing as you try to keep your balance.” As a veteran author of non-fiction who has been conducting interviews like this for four decades, McCarty clearly knows more about horror and sci-fi than even the most die-hard, convention-hopping, compulsive collectors and horrorhounds… people like you and me. He has also been featured in our favorite magazines, such as Cemetery Dance, Filmfax and the legendary Fangoria. He is the author of several similar books, but Modern Mythmakers is his latest and perhaps best collection, comprised of years of dedication to the underappreciated art of creepy, crawly creativity.

For a limited time, the e-book edition of Modern Mythmakers is available on Amazon for the steal of only 99 cents, and the paperback edition will be out this Friday.

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WHERE THE HELL HAVE YOU BEEN? An update from your bartender!

Posted on Sep 2, 2014 in Books, Indie Horror, Published Works | 1 comment

It’s been a ghost town here at the Tavern of Terror, and I don’t mean the good kind that come with a jar of ectoplasm and a cool song by Ray Parker Jr. I haven’t posted anything new on the webpage in almost five months whereas it wasn’t too long ago that I did a Weekly Horrorsphere Roundup. It’s been at least a year since I reviewed a fright flick, but let me assure you’ve I’ve still been deeply immersed in our beloved genre. Like many of you, I’m a hardcore horror fanatic – always have been and always will be. I’m a hopeless case that’s happy to be hopeless.

So, you might ask, where the hell have I been?

 

I’m all out of Swedish Fish.

I’m all out of Swedish Fish.

 

The real issue has become one of time; particularly the amount of it that I have to give to the ol’ creative juices. Long before I ventured into horror blogging I was a writer of fiction and I remain an author to this day. I am a horror, western and crime fiction author whose work has been published in many magazines and anthologies by Post Mortem Press, Dark Moon Books, Bloodbound Books, Spinetingler Magazine and more. Most recently I was published in D.O.A II: An Extreme Horror Anthology alongside Jack Ketchum and Wrath James White, and The Ghost is The Machine alongside Joe Hill, and my own short story collection is due for publication later this year by Blue Juice Books. I say all of this not to boast or anything like that, but to give you an understanding of where my true craft lies.

I enjoy reviewing strange flicks that pop up, and I love the idea I came up with for this webpage that reviews scary movies and suggests what beer to enjoy with them. However, the upkeep of running such a site had begun to pull me away from writing fiction. I became so engrossed in having an online audience to share my horror nerdom with that doing posts became an addiction that slurped up all my creative juices and dominated the free time I used to spend writing short stories, novels and screenplays. So, as much as I love Tavern of Terror, I have placed it on the backburner in my quest to create great new horrors of my own.

 

I contributed to this. How could I not?

I contributed to this. How could I not?

 

However, this does not mean that no new material will surface here.

I still plan to keep the site up, and to post articles, reviews and top ten lists when the mood strikes me. It’s just that lately, sadly, the mood of the horror community has left me rather morose. I don’t want to be just another horror nut running a blog that shamelessly praises every DVD release and new slasher toy that pops up. I don’t want to be a shill for big business, which has finally learned that there is a lot of money to be made off of us horror fanatics ($80 dollars for a DVD of Nightbreed? Go fuck yourself). Besides, does the Internet really need another horror-geek’s review of the rerelease of Curtains?

 

Meh, it’s okay, I guess.

Meh, it’s okay, I guess.

 

I’m not condemning any of the horror bloggers or sites that do any of this; I’m just saying it has never been for me. I’ve always wanted to take a more original approach than just jumping on the Blu-ray of the week and going over the HD transfer and aspect ratios. I enjoy unearthing my own forgotten horror treasures and reviewing them with a personal touch, a bit of humor, and a whole lot of booze. After all, it’s my page, I’m not going to write an article that I don’t enjoy writing, and I can’t enjoy writing what everyone else is writing.

 

Man, this “V/H/S” anthology movie really sucks.

Man, this “V/H/S” anthology movie really sucks.

I’ve had an assload of fun with Tavern of Terror at conventions and festivals – and I’ve met a lot of great, likeminded people at them as well as through the webpage and Facebook (before it started hiding my page’s posts from nearly all of you, as it does with all pages now). I’ve made friends with some great fellow bloggers, artists, and film stars, and the whole experience has been enormously positive. But still I feel that there is a sort of staleness that has befallen the horror-blogging experience in the past year.

I have also failed to find a muse in modern horror films. I’m just an old fuddy-duddy in the respect that I expect horror movies to be… I dunno… good? I rented The Sacrament and thought it was excrement. I watched Discopath and it made me long for Disco Duck. Between these found-footage clusterfucks, uninspired remakes, idiotic shark fests, and the hurricane of staggeringly shitty filmmaking known as Rob Zombie, I feel that the genre is really in the toilet, as least as far as American horror cinema is concerned. All I would do in a review was spit venom at them, so why bother? Sure, I’m jaded fuck, but what can I say? I like my horror old school.

 

Although it doesn’t always have to be THIS old.

Although it doesn’t always have to be THIS old.

 

So, I sit at home and watch Brain Damage, Demons, and The Burning for the zillionth time. In the summer I run through my entire favorite Friday the 13th flicks (parts 1 through 6) and in the fall I savor the first four Halloween movies. I live in a rerun, but what a glorious rerun it is.

I go to conventions and more and more I’m seeing celebrities I don’t care about or don’t even recognize signing autographs. I feel like an old man when teenagers turn on their music.

 

“What the hell is this crap?! You call this horror?!”

 

You’re a bum, Rock!

You’re a bum, Rock!

 

I don’t mean to be so down on things, I just hold everything up to the very high standard set by horror films from the 70s and 80s. Unfortunately most of the time those expectations are met they’re films from Korea or France, and not from my sweet land of liberty. Call it delusional or conceited, but I like to think that I have some good ol’ American horror to put out there into the sphere, and I have simply chosen to put most of my focus into that. I’ve just today finished a new novella and I’m keeping all my toes and fingers crossed that a certain big publisher of horror fiction that I admire will pick it up. And while Wes Craven may not film one of my scripts anytime soon, being in a book with a genre heavyweight like Jack Ketchum is hardly something to scoff at, and neither is being printed by the same publisher that puts out books by scream queen Linnea Quigley.

 

Were Ketchum and I ever that young?

Were Ketchum and I ever that young?

So, there’s your update this fine Labor Day afternoon. Sure, it’s still hot as Laura Prepon out there but at least we know now that summer’s in its death throes and the magic of fall lurks around the corner. I do plan to throw some Halloween-related mayhem at y’all during the coming months, so keep checking back in, and I’ll keep you posted on my fiction writing too. There will be more articles, contests and even interviews in the future – just not as many as there once were, at least for a while.

I hope your frights are serving you well and that your mugs full of brew. Thanks for your patronage. See ya’ next time.

- Kris

 

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UPDATE: What’s Lurking (and some news about a book)

Posted on Nov 14, 2013 in Books, Hardcore Gore, Indie Horror | 1 comment

The autumn wind howls like a distant wolf. The air turns not just cold, but a little bit mean. Winter lurks inward with shorter days and ruthless nights.

 

November.

 

It may seem like a ghost town over here at Tavern of Terror, but trust me when I say that we have incredible things in the works – including interviews, contests, reviews, giveaways and some solid new articles.

But beyond that, your bartender (and head content writer here) Kristopher Triana is hard at work on a forthcoming horror BOOK being published by Blue Juice Comics. Stay tuned for more home-brewed horrors, fright fans!

 

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