Archive for January, 2018

“Scariest guy in America” dead at 71

Posted in News on January 24, 2018 by Christian

Jack Ketchum, the award-winning author of THE GIRL NEXT DOOR, RED, and THE CROSSINGS has succumbed to cancer at the age of 71. During his career, Ketchum nabbed four Bram Stoker Awards®, a World Horror Convention Grand Master Award, and was dubbed “the scariest guy in America” by Stephen King, who acknowledged Ketchum’s passing this afternoon:

Ketchum was born William Dallas Mayr on November 10, 1946 in Livingston, New Jersey, and worked as an actor, teacher, literary agent, lumber salesman, and soda jerk before his first novel, OFF SEASON, hit bookshelves in 1980.

He also wrote under the pen name “Jerzy Livingston” as an homage to his birthplace and author Jerzy Kosinski. A number of his works were also adapted to screen, including THE LOST...


The news of the author’s passing broke at midday today with a Tweet from Ketchum’s webmaster, Kevin Kovelant:

In 2012, Ketchum’s “Amid the Walking Wounded” appeared in the charity anthology CHIRAL MAD, edited by Michael Bailey. While I never met Ketchum in person, this was where our professional paths crossed for the first time when “Mirror Moments” also made the cut. Ketchum was kind enough to tweet a line from my story:

The next year, I asked Ketchum for feedback on a manuscript I was working on, and he sent me the following email: “Had a chance to read LOSING TOUCH this week. Enjoyed it. It’s an intriguing premise, well executed.”

Everyone needs a little encouragement, and when I saw that email, I thought I might actually have a little talent of my own. So Dallas, wherever you are tonight, I hope you’re resting well. And thank you. I am forever in your debt.

Christian A. Larsen is the author of the novels LOSING TOUCH and THE BLACKENING OF FLESHnow available from Post Mortem Press.

STAR WARS author, THE BLACKENING OF FLESH come to Elgin Lit Fest

Posted in News on January 16, 2018 by Christian

We’re two-thirds of the way through another STAR WARS trilogy (with a “Han Solo” solo movie due at year’s end), but if you’re wondering what happened between the ewok bender and Father Merrin’s showdown with “Matt the Radar Technician”, pick up a copy of Chuck Wendig’s STAR WARS: AFTERMATH and have him sign it at the Elgin Literary Festival, January 26th and 27th at the Hemmens Cultural Center in Elgin.

Wendig also contributed AFTERMATH: LIFE DEBT and AFTERMATH: EMPIRE’S END to the STAR WARS canon, and co-wrote the novelization of THE FORCE AWAKENS, which is pretty cool, and then there’s his non-STAR WARS output: BLACKBIRDS, MOCKINGBIRD, UNDER THE EMPYREAN SKY, BLUE BLAZES, DOUBLE DEAD, BAIT DOG, DINOCALYPSE, BEYOND DINOCALYPSE, and GODS & MONSTERS: UNCLEAN SPIRITS. Gamers out there might also recognize him as the developer of the HUNTER: THE VIGIL game line.

Wendig blogs at about his novels, screenwriting, and game design projects, but he’s kind of all over the map. And the language? It sometimes veers into filthy. You cans see what I mean if you check out his panel presentation on Saturday from 2:30 to 4:00 p.m. Just don’t let the Q&A session devolve into a flame war. He’s liable to unleash a flume of profanity that could blister the paint right off the walls.

My virgin ears!

And did I mention it’s free? Saves you some scratch for the book sale from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. on Saturday. Pick up fresh new reads in genre literature, literary literature, biography, memoirs, poetry, children’s, and humor. I’ll be signing copies of my ghosts and gangsters novel, THE BLACKENING OF FLESH and the Bram Stoker Award®-nominated sci-fi/horror anthology, QUALIA NOUS, featuring my story, “Cataldo’s Copy” and “The Jaunt” by Stephen King.

If that sounds like your bag, check out these exhibiting authors: Donald J. Bingle (FORCED CONVERSION), Justin Hamelin (THICKER THAN BLOOD), Mandy Madrox (NEPHILIM: HOUSE OF MEPHISTO), Georgeann Prochaska (THE CASE OF THE EX WHO PLOTTED REVENGE), Nan Sampson (RESTLESS NATIVES), Gregory M. Thompson (NIGHTCRY), and Bradley James Weber (FEAR AND LOATHING OF THE UNDEAD ’78). And don’t forget Chuck Wendig. He wrote DAMN FINE STORY, BLACKBIRDS, and THE RAPTOR AND THE WREN.


Justin Hamelin and little ole’ me. Literally. He’s that much taller than me.

Click here for an in-depth look at this year’s Elgin Literary Festival itinerary, set for January 26th and 27th at the Hemmers Cultural Center at 45 Symphony Way in downtown Elgin, thanks to the Elgin Cultural Arts Commission, the Blue Box Cafe, SideStreet Studio Arts, and Marquee Media and special thanks to Jamey Bouwmeester, Elgin Cultural Arts Commission, Amanda Harris, Richard Johnson, Karly Kirkpatrick, Roberto Martinez, Tanner Melvin, Jeffrey Pierce, Erin Rehberg, Butch Wilhelmi.

Christian A. Larsen is the author of the novels LOSING TOUCH and THE BLACKENING OF FLESHnow available from Post Mortem Press.