Archive for April, 2012

Blood Moon Rising Magazine reviews WHAT FEARS BECOME

Posted in Book Reviews, News on April 30, 2012 by Christian

Blood Moon Rising Magazine reviews What Fears Become: An Anthology from The Horror Zine, featuring my short story, “Bast,” in its “Bloody Book Reviews” section of issue #48.

WHAT FEARS BECOME, now available at

From the publishers of The Horror Zine comes their anthology of short stories poetry and artwork edited by Jeani Rector. Just from the front cover I had high hopes of this being a great collection and I was not disappointed.

There is a lot to like about these stories. One of my favorites was “A Bad Stretch of Road” by Dean H. Wild. It starts off normally enough where a man is driving home after a bad fight with his wife. Then he starts noticing things aren’t what they’re supposed to be and don’t look familiar. Drivers are acting erratically all around him and he sees strange things. Now he fears for his life and looks for any way to get off this highway to hell. The reason I like this is it starts quietly but one wrong turn and you, the reader, feel like you fell down the rabbit hole along with Alice. The writer really projects the feeling of hopelessness and insanity all at the same time.

Another story I enjoyed was…

Read the rest of the review here.

Movie review: Trollhunter

Posted in Movie Reviews on April 26, 2012 by Christian

A couple of nights ago, I found a movie on Netflix called Trollhunter, a Norwegian horror film written and directed by André Øvredal. Unless you’re a foreign-film buff or a horror nut, you probably haven’t heard of this movie, but its worth watching, even if it wears thin in a few spots. There’s something about hearing a story with a non-English, European sensibility that is both intriguing and elusive. I’ve been trying to put my finger on exactly what it is ever since I read “The Bear of Owl Island” by Norwegian writer Jon Bing, available in Tales from the Planet Earth, edited by Frederik Pohl. (I don’t speak or read Norwegian. The movie has subtitles and Bing wrote “The Bear of Owl Island” in English, but I digress…)

Theatrical release poster

Trollhunter does for the troll what so many (too many?) movies have done for vampires, explaining the ins and outs of the mythos, the reasons behind it, all packaged up in a found-film format that, as I alluded to above, could have benefitted from some more editing. The unknown actors doing their own hand-held camera work add to the gritty sense of realism. I should say that most of the actors are unknown, but apparently Norwegian film goers will recognize Otto Jespersen as Hans. He’s a comedian of some note in that country, and while he doesn’t go for out-and-out laughs, the entire film has a sardonic sense of humor.

The performances by the rest of the cast are convincing, especially Glenn Erland Tosterud as Thomas, who stands in for us–the everyperson–in this movie as a witness to the unraveling of reality as we know it. And yet, like Thomas, we want to know more, in part because we are sucked down the rabbit hole with Hans. And find out more, we do–about Ringelfinches, Mountain Kings, and the dreaded, 200-foot-tall Jötnar. Why are these creatures breaking out of their territories and wreaking havoc on the countryside? That is Hans’s job to find out, sent by Norway’s Troll Security Service.

And don’t think that because it wasn’t backed by a Hollywood studio that filmmakers can’t deliver visually. The troll effects are frighteningly realistic, and Øvredal strikes a Spielbergian Jaws-like balance of showing you just enough to be satisfied, but actually scaring you with what you don’t see. If you enjoyed found-film horror flicks like The Blair Witch Project, Cloverfield, and Quarantine, then add Trollhunter to your Netflix queue.

Written and directed by André Øvredal; cinematography by Hallvard Bræin; edited by Per Erik Eriksen; produced by John M. Jacobsen and Sveinung Golimo. Running time 103 minutes.

STARRING: Otto Jespersen, Hans Morten Hansen, Tomas Alf Larsen, Johanna Mørck, Knut Nærum, Robert Stoltenberg, and Glenn Erland Tosterud.

“Club 27” expected in BLEEDING INK on July 1st

Posted in News on April 25, 2012 by Christian

I just received word from the editors that the release date goal for Bleeding Ink, featuring my short story, “Club 27,” is July 1st.

The stories have all been selected. Now it’s up to the editors to tweak them, order the table of contents, and sort through the material for the author bios as they prepare the ebook for publication. I’m also told to expect a “bloody good cover,” which makes sense, given the anthology is called Bleeding Ink.

Movie review: Swine

Posted in Movie Reviews on April 24, 2012 by Christian

At a mere 43:45 (total running time), Swine could have been much longer. It has all the elements of an epic—which told in book form would have to be a novel—translating to a full-length feature film. What these filmmakers have created feels more like novella on film: a filmella.

I’m sure that he created a trio of shorts as told in three chapters for budgetary reasons, but a longer film could explore and sell the characters better. The music is well-written but performed frugally. The brevity and breakneck speed with which we move through this interesting and surprising concept of a story could make us miss things.

And we don’t want to miss anything, because there is more than one worthwhile surprise packed into this tight little package.

The opening crawl sets the table:

As the colonies of the Motherland increase in both scope and influence,
outlanders have but two choices.

Join the Colonial Legion or stand their ground.

Members of the resistance group known as Vox Populi have chosen the latter.

The writer, Daniel Levitch, does a fine job setting the table…

Read the rest of the review

First review of A FEAST OF FRIGHTS

Posted in Book Reviews, News on April 22, 2012 by Christian

I swear I do not know Vivian Metzger, who holds the distinction of writing the first review for A Feast of Frights from The Horror Zine. While she doesn’t name “Clawed Sod,” she does mention its author.

I was so pleasantly surprised by the exceptional quality of the stories included in this collection. The scary, scary ideas were rich in quality and uniqueness. This book also includes lots of commentary, interviews with famous authors, articles, poems and artwork. There is really something for everyone, as long as you like horror! Some of the work is reprints, but most is original. Joe McKinney is fast becoming a favorite author of mine. All his writings are chilling and smart. Joe R. Lansdale is also so incredible. I like a lot Jeff Strand and Ed Gorman and others. Oh, the book is a good mix of best-selling authors and young authors, too. There are many in this book that are new writers to watch for success. Eric J. Guignard is really amazing and also Christian A. Larsen and Christopher Nadeau and Taylor Grant.

If you have already purchased A Feast of Frights from The Horror Zine in paperback or Kindle ebook format, please leave your own review, even if it doesn’t mention me specifically, because there are so many talented writers, poets, and artists and they really deserve the praise.

If you haven’t purchased A Feast of Frights from The Horror Zine yet, then you’ll want to go ahead and do that, then.

Got my copy of A FEAST OF FRIGHTS!

Posted in News on April 22, 2012 by Christian

I finally have my copy of A FEAST OF FRIGHTS FROM THE HORROR ZINE! Sure I’ve downloaded it for Kindle, and I’ve had copies of the galley proofs for weeks, but having the finished product in my hands is just too cool.

Just knowing my short story, “Clawed Sod,” is part of the same anthology as the work of Ramsey Campbell, Simon Clark, Graham Masterton, Joe R. Lansdale, Susie Moloney, Joe McKinney, Tom Piccirilli, Ed Gorman, and Earl Hamner, Jr. absolutely makes my day.

A FEAST OF FRIGHTS FROM THE HORROR ZINE is now available from in both trade paperback and Kindle ebook. I prefer paperback. There’s just something about the heft of a book in your hands, and at almost 500 pages, A FEAST OF FRIGHTS has plenty of heft.

But you can download the ebook edition immediately, and its potentially more portable, depending on whether you have a Kindle or not.

A Feast of Frights now available for Kindle at

Posted in News on April 21, 2012 by Christian

A Feast of Frights from The Horror Zine, published earlier this month in trade paperback, is now available on Kindle for just $4.99. Both editions, featuring my short story, “Clawed Sod,” can be purchased through Here are the product details:

File Size: 1029 KB
Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
Publisher: The Horror Zine Books (April 9, 2012)
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services
Language: English
ASIN: B007W4E14I
Text-to-Speech: Enabled
Lending: Enabled

News-Sun: Ex-Grayslake North teacher pursues writing career

Posted in News on April 20, 2012 by Christian

Beth Kramer profiles the anthology A Feast of Frights from The Horror Zine and my short fiction, “Clawed Sod,” in the Lake County News-Sun. The book is now available in paperback through

GRAYSLAKE — Christian Larsen left his job teaching English at Grayslake North High School to pursue a writing career. The decision has paid off.

One of his short stories was published in an anthology this month. Another of his short stories is slated for publication in another anthology this summer. He has also had several of his science fiction, horror and dark fantasy stories published in print and online.

“It was an extraordinarily difficult decision to leave teaching,” Larsen, now of Kenosha, Wis., said. “I needed to put my eggs in one basket and motivate myself to do it. Otherwise, I would always be playing at (writing). I wanted it as a vocation.”

He worked as a radio DJ for a rock station for seven years. He went to night classes to become certified as a teacher and worked at Grayslake North from 2009 to 2011.

He said his wife was supportive of his decision. He started writing, networking and sending out inquiries. Online horror magazine, The Horror Zine, publishes an anthology every year.

Its most recent anthology, A Feast of Frights from Horror Zine, was released this month and includes Larsen’s story titled “Clawed Sod.”

Larsen described his style as “weird science fiction” with horrific elements such as …

Read the rest of the article here.

Tales of the Talisman reviews WHAT FEARS BECOME

Posted in Book Reviews, News on April 19, 2012 by Christian

Shawn Oetzel reviews What Fears Become, including my short story, “Bast,” in the upcoming edition of Tales of the Talisman:

What Fears Become is the latest anthology from The Horror Zine. It is a mixed bag of short stories, poetry, and art all in the horror and dark fiction genres. Edited by Jeani Rector, What Fears Become features pieces from new and well-known writers including such vaunted authors as Piers Anthony.

What I liked about the anthologies The Horror Zine is publishing is they do not conform to simply one media for horror. The inclusion of poetry and art adds another dimension and gives readers a new outlet to get their horror fix. Ms. Rector has an eye for talent which shows with the pieces she includes in her anthologies and What Fears Become is another good example of this.

For me the hardest part about reviewing anthologies is subjectivity. What stories I like or dislike could be completely different from someone else. With that being said my favorite short fiction piece was…

Read the rest of the review in Tales of the Talisman — Volume 7, Issue 4, available here this spring.

Park Ridge J&T: Horror ‘zine features PR native

Posted in News on April 18, 2012 by Christian

The Park Ridge Journal & Topics profiles A Feast of Frights from The Horror Zine and my contribution, “Clawed Sod,” on page 5D of this week’s P’ZAZZ section. The anthology is now available in paperback through