2016 Awards Eligibility Post for Richard Thomas

rt_2016award_coverSo, I had quite a few things come out this year, and they are all eligible for award consideration. Cat Rambo was encouraging authors to do this, so here I go! (HWA for sure, as well as SFWA, etc.) The short stories were for pro pay, so those markets are definitely eligible. If you are a member of HWA, SFWA or any other organization that nominates for awards and you would like a PDF of any of this work, let me know, at wickerkat@aol.com or richardgamut@gmail.com.

NOVEL: Breaker (Random House Alibi)

Description: Living alone in the dusty apartment where he grew up, Ray Nelson is a mystery to his neighbors and an unbeatable foe to the brutal men he fights in the ring for money. But a life defined by sinister secrets doesn’t stop Ray from trying to do the right thing for his dangerously high-flying sister. Or for Natalie, the young girl living next door. As a sadistic murderer’s ominous white van trolls for young victims throughout the Windy City, Ray is determined to protect Natalie from both predators and a bleak future. When she sees a bruised and beaten Ray return from late-night fights, Natalie spots a kindred spirit. Still, she cannot imagine the darkness just beneath, or what’s hidden in the rooms he calls home. Now, as the horrors of his own past creep back to life with a twisted vengeance, Ray may not even be able to save himself.

Blurbs: “Richard Thomas’s Breaker is a modern noir fever dream: brutal, lyrical, evocative. But it also exhibits surprising tenderness—its shattered characters find strength in one another, and beauty in the pattern of the cracks.”—Chris Holm, author of The Killing Kind / “Gritty, raw, powerful, visceral—that’s all you need to know about Richard Thomas’s novel Breaker. It’s a ‘gotta read this’ book.”—Les Edgerton, author of The Genuine, Imitation, Plastic Kidnapping / “One of the most terrifying, harrowing stories you’ll read all year . . . With a solid mix of heartbreak and action, along with some plot-defying acrobatics not seen on the page too often, Breaker delivers the goods on all fronts.”—This Is Horror

SHORT STORY COLLECTION: Tribulations (Cemetery Dance / Crystal Lake)

Description: In the third short story collection by Richard Thomas, Tribulations, the stories cover a wide range of dark fiction—from fantasy, science fiction and horror, to magical realism, neo-noir, and transgressive fiction. The common thread that weaves these tragic tales together is suffering and sorrow, and the ways we emerge from such heartbreak stronger, more appreciative of what we have left—a spark of hope enough to guide us though the valley of death. Fireflies and wolves, ghosts and golems, tentacled beasts and demonic spirits–these psychological thrillers will hypnotize you as they slide the blade between your ribs, up close and personal, whispering in your ear as you gasp and pull them closer. Tribulations includes 25 short stories–including two that were long-listed for Best Horror of the Year. There are also five original full-page illustrations by Luke Spooner.

Reviews: “Tribulations shows that Richard Thomas not only knows his craft, but excels in it. Readers owe Richard Thomas a letter to thank him for sharing his brilliant work, and Richard Thomas owes readers a letter to apologize for giving them more reasons to never turn off the light”—Cultured Vultures. / “At his best Thomas writes like his life depends on it, while his restraint and careful use of language ensure that these stories hit in all the right places. Whether it’s with a dash of stream-of-consciousness here, a bit of prose poem there, or a starkly minimalist passage, these stories speak to the things that haunt the darkest corners of the mind.”Hellnotes / “Richard Thomas is on the cutting edge of neo-noir fiction and I dare anyone to say different. Tribulations is his best yet: elegantly twisted, superbly creepy, and dripping darkness. This is required reading for anyone into the shadow side of literature.”—Dread Central

ANTHOLOGY / NOVELLA: The Soul Standard (Dzanc Books) / Golden Geese

Description: Across four different districts of a city that has torn itself to shreds, four different interweaving tales (each written by a different author) play out. In “Four Corners,” a morally dubious banker must keep his employer happy at any cost. The next story, “Punhos Sagrados,” concerns a boxer who finds himself torn between honor and the woman he loves. “Golden Geese” follows a hardened criminal with a terrifying condition who must come to terms with the life he’s led. Finally, “Jamais Vu” provides a stunning denouement as a man searches endlessly for his missing daughter, a task which is complicated by a peculiar condition: his inability to recognize faces. Told in rugged, bare-knuckled prose, The Soul Standard is a nonstop thrill-ride down the darkened avenues and through the shadowed alleys of a nightmare town. MY NOVELLA “Golden Geese” is about a man living in the outskirts, trying to forget the dark deeds he has done, as the consequences of his actions close in around him, one final act of redemption his only way to survive.

SHORT FICTION: “Repent” in Gutted: Beautiful Horror Stories (Crystal Lake) / “The Offering on the Hill” in Chiral Mad 3 (Dark Regions Press)

Gutted Description: From Bram Stoker Award-nominated publisher, Crystal Lake Publishing, and the editing duo who brought you the best-selling and critically acclaimed small-town Lovecraftian horror anthology Shadows Over Main Street, comes Gutted: Beautiful Horror Stories–a disturbing journey into the beauty that rests inside the very heart of darkness. Gutted: Beautiful Horror Stories features the most celebrated voices in dark fiction, as well as a number of exciting new talents: Clive Barker, Neil Gaiman, Ramsey Campbell, Paul Tremblay, John F.D. Taff, Lisa Mannetti, Damien Angelica Walters, Josh Malerman, Christopher Coake, Mercedes M. Yardley, Brian Kirk, Stephanie M. Wytovich, Amanda Gowin, Richard Thomas, Maria Alexander and Kevin Lucia. Edited by Doug Murano and D. Alexander Ward. MY STORY “Repent” is about a father, a bad man, and what he is willing to do in order to redeem himself and save his son.

Chiral Mad 3 Description: The third act in the critically-acclaimed series by Written Backwards, is a symmetrically-structured anthology of psychological horror by Bram Stoker Award nominated editor Michael Bailey, whose previous anthologies include The Library of the Dead, Qualia Nous and Pellucid Lunacy. The anthology contains 45 illustrations by Glenn Chadbourne, over 20 stories by the likes of Stephen King, Jack Ketchum, Ramsey Campbell, Gary A. Braunbeck, Mort Castle, Josh Malerman, Scott Edelman, Richard Thomas, Richard Chizmar and Gene O’Neill, and with 20 intertwined poems by the likes of Elizabeth Massie, Marge Simon, Bruce Boston, Erik T. Johnson, Stephanie M. Wytovich, and also includes an introduction by the extraordinary Chuck Palahniuk. MY STORY “The Offering on the Hill” is a bit of a Dark Tower homage, about a man wandering in a post-apocalyptic setting trying to find his wife and daughter.

THANKS! ENJOY!

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The Soul Standard (Dzanc Books) is OUT TODAY!

TSS

How many years has it been since we started this project? I think at least five, my section, Golden Geese, written at the Writers in the Heartland writing residency that I was awarded back in 2011. The Soul Standard (Dzanc Books) is a dark journey—four novellas written by four authors (myself, Nik Korpon, Caleb Ross and Axel Taiari) across for seasons in four different parts of The City. Think Sin City meets Memento. It was an honor to work on this with Nik, Caleb, and Axel—three very talented authors.

Here is what This is Horror had to say about it:

The Soul Standard is unlike anything else you’re likely to read this year, or this decade. Think Sin City meets Blade Runner meets David Lynch and you’ll begin to have an inkling of what’s in store for you, but only a very small one. These four brilliant authors have brought their collective genius together to paint this unflinchingly violent, oppressively bleak city with the adroitness of world class painters, drawing vivid images on your imagination in varying shades of gray and frequent splashes of red. Dzanc Books has a reputation for only publishing the very highest quality fiction and The Soul Standard does nothing to tarnish that rep.”

So if you enjoy my writing, and that of my esteemed peers (Nik is blowing up, with several books out, a new contract with Angry Robot books just announced and Axel Taiari one of the authors in the anthology I edited, Exigencies) then pick this up today.

Here’s the official description:

Across four different districts of a city that has torn itself to shreds, four different interweaving tales (each written by a different author) play out. In “Four Corners,” a morally dubious banker must keep his employer happy at any cost. The next story, “Punhos Sagrados,” concerns a boxer who finds himself torn between honor and the woman he loves. “Golden Geese” follows a hardened criminal with a terrifying condition who must come to terms with the life he’s led. Finally, “Jamais Vu” provides a stunning denouement as a man searches endlessly for his missing daughter, a task which is complicated by a peculiar condition: his inability to recognize faces. Told in rugged, bare-knuckled prose, The Soul Standard is a nonstop thrill-ride down the darkened avenues and through the shadowed alleys of a nightmare town.

Thanks for your continued support!

Excellent Review of THE SOUL STANDARD at This is Horror

soul standard cover(1)

Had to take a moment to share a new review of The Soul Standard (Dzanc Books) which is officially out on July 26th. Not only does This is Horror love the entire novel, but they had some kind words about my novella, Golden Geese. Order you copy today!

Check this out:

The Soul Standard is unlike anything else you’re likely to read this year, or this decade. Think Sin City meets Blade Runner meets David Lynch and you’ll begin to have an inkling of what’s in store for you, but only a very small one. These four brilliant authors have brought their collective genius together to paint this unflinchingly violent, oppressively bleak city with the adroitness of world class painters, drawing vivid images on your imagination in varying shades of gray and frequent splashes of red. Dzanc Books has a reputation for only publishing the very highest quality fiction and The Soul Standard does nothing to tarnish that rep.”

And for Golden Geese:

“The shining star in a collection comprised of shining stars, [Golden Geese] introduces us to a sick man trying to come to some kind of terms with the sins he’s committed. The story is dark, bloody, surreal, and heartbreaking and not one that you’ll soon forget. Thomas’ creative genius lies partly in his ability to build incredibly emotional, beautifully broken characters that you find yourself committed to, living with them for the duration of the story and deeply caring about their fates.”

I mean, it doesn’t get much better than that, right?

Complete List of Stories in Print

Books

Here is a complete list of all of my stories that are in print, or digital only format.
It’s in reverse chronological order. Enjoy!

UPDATED: July 21, 2018

Lost Highways: Dark Fictions from the Road—“Requital” (Crystal Lake Publishing)

LostHighways

Where Nightmares Come From: The Art of Storytelling in the Horror Genre
“Storytelling Techniques” (non-fiction)
(Crystal Lake Publishing)

Deciduous Tales (Debut Issue) – “Nodus Tollens”

DeciduousTales1

Behold: Oddities Curiosities and Undefinable Wonders – “Hiraeth”
(Crystal Lake Publishing)

33400659

The Soul Standard – Golden Geese (novella) (Dzanc Books)

soul standard cover(1)
Blue Monday Review, Vol. 3, No. 2 – “How Not to Come Undone”

BMR copy
Gutted: Beautiful Horror Stories – “Repent” (Crystal Lake Publishing)

Gutted_Cropped
Tribulations (Crystal Lake Publishing / Cemetery Dance)

Tribulations
Chiral Mad 3 – “The Offering on the Hill” (Written Backwards)

CM3_Cover
Blue Monday Review, Vol. 2, No. 3 – “Twenty Reasons to Stay and One to Leave”

BMR
Gaia: Shadow & Breath Vol. 2 – “Asking for Forgiveness” (Pantheon Magazine)

GAIA2

Slave Stories – “From Within” (Omnium Gatherum)

SlaveStories
Cemetery Dance #72 – “Chasing Ghosts”

CD#72
XIII: Stories of Transformation – “Chrysalis” (Resurrection House)

XIII_coverLitro UK #138 – “Little Red Wagon”

LitroUK138 LitroSpread

Truth or Dare? – “Shackled to the Shadows” (Perpetual Motion Machine Publishing)

TruthOrDare
22 More Quick Shivers – “Homecoming” (Daily Nightmare)

22MQS
Dead Harvest – “Bringing in the Sheaves” (Scarlett Galleon Publications)

DeadHarvest
Qualia Nous – “The Jenny Store” (Written Backwards)

QualiaNous_crop
Pantheon Magazine (Ares Issue) – “The God of War”

Pantheon6
Penumbra Magazine (Pain Issue) – “Balance Sheet”

Penumbra
Horror 101: This Way Forward – essay,
“The Journey of ‘Rudy Jenkins Buries His Fears'”
(Crystal Lake Publishing)

ThisIsHorror
Shadows Over Main Street – “White Picket Fences”
(Hazardous Press / Cutting Block Books)

ShadowsOverMainStreet
Gaia: Shadow and Breath – “Flowers for Jessica” (Pantheon Magazine)

Gaia
Vignettes from the End of the World  – “This is How It Ends, My Love.”

Vignettes
Pantheon Magazine (Aphrodite Issue) – “Rapture”

PantheonMag
Trouble in the Heartland – “Because the Night” (Gutter Books)

Heartland
Pantheon Magazine (Dionysus Issue) – “Head Like a Hole”

full-cover-dionysus
Chiral Mad 2 – “Playing With Fire” (Written Backwards)

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Fear the Reaper – “The Culling” (Crystal Lake Publishing)

Fear the Reaper FB version
Best of the Horror Society 2013 – “Victimized”

best-of-the-horror-society-2013
Reloaded: Both Barrels, Volume 2 – “Trinity” (One Eye Press)

reloadedfrontcover
Bleed – “Death Knell” (Perpetual Motion Machine Publishing)

Bleed
Cipher Sisters – “Dance, Darling” (Thunderdome Press)

Cipher
Booked Anthology – “Surrender” (Booked Podcast)

BookedAnthologyFrontCover-e1373343973611
Staring into the Abyss (Kraken Press)


Daddy Cool – “Bloodline” (Artistically Declined Press)

Daddy_Cool_Cover_large
Best of Surreal Grotesque – “Vision Quest”

Surreal
Midwestern Gothic – “Garage Sales”

MWG
Arcadia Magazine – “Chrysalis”

“Transmogrify”

transmogrify
Sanitarium Magazine – “Bringing in the Sheaves”

Sanitarium
Weird Fiction Review – “Flowers for Jessica”

WFR
Into the Darkness – “The Wastelands” (Necro Publications)

Darkness
Nova Parade – “On a Bent Nail Head” (Solarcide)

Nova
Terror Scribes – “Transmogrify” (Dog Horn Publishing)

terror-scribes-cover
One Buck Horror – “Wicker Park Pause”

OBH
Gargoyle Magazine – “Tinkering With the Moon”

Gargoyle

Curbside Splendor – “Divining”

Curbside
Slices of Flesh – “Rudy Jenkins Buries His Fears” (Dark Moon Books)

Slices-of-Flesh
In Search of a City: Los Angeles in 1,000 Words – “The Jenny Store” (Thunderdome Press)

LosAngeles
Dark Moon Digest Presents: Vampires! – “Transmogrify” (Dark Moon Books)

Vampires
Warmed and Bound – “Say Yes to Pleasure” (Velvet Press)

warmedandboundwebfront400
Speedloader – “Herniated Roots” (Snubnose Press)

SPEEDLOADER_cover2_167dpi
“Victimized”

victimized
Shivers VI – “Stillness” (Cemetery Dance)

ShiversVI