2018 / 2019 Richard Thomas Fiction Writing Course Guide

I’ve decided to teach and write full-time! So that means I’m expanding my catalog of classes, and opening it up to authors of all levels. If you’d like the complete University of Richard Fiction Writing Course Guideclick here to email me now! It includes more information on my classes such as rates, length, overviews, books, and testimonials.

What classes am I offering in 2018 and 2019? Here is the list:

  • Short Story Mechanics (LitReactor.com) two weeks long
  • Keep It Brief: A Flash Fiction Intensive (LitReactor.com) two weeks long
  • Contemporary Dark Fiction (Skype, email, and Facebook) 16 weeks long
  • Advanced Creative Writing Workshop (Skype, email, and Facebook) 16 weeks long
  • Novel in a Year (via Skype, email, and Facebook) 52 weeks long

Come join the fun! And help take your writing to the next level. Class sizes are small, and payment plans are available, so drop me a note today!

Click HERE to get your free copy of the Writing Course Guide now!

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In Defense of The Price

Great column. I was just talking about endings in horror stories on social media. Love what Nadia is saying here.

NADIA BULKIN

I miss high-stakes horror movies.

I miss not knowing who’s going to die. I miss not being able to telegraph the end. I miss protagonists that make bad decisions. I miss last-minute twists. What I really miss are lasting consequences. I miss horror movies where every bet is off save for one eternal rule: The Price.

This is the law of The Price. Imagine that in every horror movie, there is a troll under the bridge who collects the fare – The Price – for crossing over from the so-called normal world, or their ordinary existence, into the world of the dead or the damned or whatever else. Sometimes it’s a conscious decision to trespass across this boundary – a character decides to use a ouija board to contact a dead relative; a character uses a spell to hex a rival – and sometimes it’s not – a character makes…

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BEHOLD!: Oddities, Curiosities and Undefinable Wonders wins Bram Stoker Award!

So excited to announce that BEHOLD!: Oddities, Curiosities and Undefinable Wonders (Crystal Lake Publishing) has won the Bram Stoker Award for Best Anthology. Doug Murano was an excellent editor, always a pleasure to work with him. My story “Hiraeth” was really out there, and Doug worked with me on it, and even accepted the EDGIER version, encouraging me to push it, and take chances with the narrative. It was also the last story in the anthology, which to me, is another honor.

Featuring Clive Barker, Neil Gaiman, Ramsey Campbell, Lisa Morton, Brian Kirk, Hal Bodner, Stephanie M. Wytovich, John Langan, Erinn L. Kemper, John F.D. Taff, Patrick Freivald, Lucy A. Snyder, Brian Hodge, Kristi DeMeester, Christopher Coake, Sarah Read and Richard Thomas. Foreword by Josh Malerman. Illustrations by Luke Spooner. Cover art by John Coulthart.

22 fabulously fantastic stories I read in December

Final love from Maria on Gamut. Much appreciation for all of your support.

Maria Haskins

December was full of wonderful short fiction, and in this monthly roundup I am making space for some special mentions.

  • I’m very sad to say that December 2017 brought us the last issue of Gamut. I’ve really loved the strong voice and vivid dark/noir vibe of this magazine. Gamut published some of my favourite stories last year (and yes, they also published one of my own stories!), and I will sorely miss it. All the best to everyone involved with this publication.
  • This past month I read The Fantasist for the first (but definitely not the last) time. It’s a magazine of fantasy novellas, and it looks rather brilliant to me. Read more about it. Check out their Patreon.
  • Finally, December brought fabulous issues of Lamplight, Anathema, and Capricious. I’ve included stories from all three publications in this roundup, and I highly recommend them…

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14 amazingly awesome stories I read in November

Glad to see “Baby Teeth” getting some love. Great story.

Maria Haskins

November seemed to disappear in a flash. I wrote a lot, and I didn’t read as much as I wanted to read. But then, that pretty much describes any and every month of the year… Here are 14 stories I read and loved.

NOVStoriesAn Unexpected Boon, by S. B. Divya in Apex Magazine. “Kalyani kept Mithraba close over the next few days and nights, watching the lightning beetle’s glow. She decoded his yes and no patterns on the first night: Two light flashes meant yes; one was no.” S.B. Divya tells a gripping story about magic and family and hard choices in a hard world. The perspective switches between Kalyani, a child who sees and experiences the world differently than the other people in her village; and her brother who is trying (sometimes successfully, sometimes not) to understand her, and allow her to be as she is…

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On Writing: Know Your Value

Yep. All of this. Listen to Laird. (He also wrote a BRILLIANT introduction to my first anthology, The New Black.)

In the interest of making a public service announcement:

Best practices are common enough. While not everyone agrees regarding particulars, there is a general consensus among working writers–money flows to the writer; be mindful of boilerplate and your rights as a creator, and so forth.

It’s more difficult to receive guidance in the gray areas of this business. My experience is that at some point, especially after you’ve amassed a portfolio, it’s time to decide, in broad terms, what you’re worth. It’s a perilous assessment–err too far in either direction, you’ll wind up in the rough. Nonetheless, we writers already find ourselves in the tall grass all too often. Mentors can help; agents are useful; but ultimately, it’s on us to make the call, draw the line, and sign it, or not.

Case in point: A while back, I sold a novella to a terrific publisher for a deluxe anthology…

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Two Honorable Mentions for Best Horror of the Year

Thrilled that my stories, “Repent” (in Gutted: Beautiful Horror Stories) and “The Offering on the Hill” (in Chiral Mad 3) were both honorable mentions / long-listed for Best Horror of the Year. Both anthologies were also nominated for the Bram Stoker Award. Wow, what an honor, thrilled. Thank you Michael Bailey, Doug Murano, and D Alexander Ward for the continued support, faith, and guidance. Onward and upward!