Author Archive

In the Thunderdome: Doc O’Donnell

The seventh installment in the Thunderdome-Warmed and Bound Series (explained here).

Bunnies, Rats, Ferrets and Me

“I’m waiting for Suzannah to get home …”  >> Read more

Introduction for Doc O’Donnell written by Jesse Lawrence:
Doc O’Donnell gets me. Or, I’d like to think he does, anyway. Never mind that time, once, when he was quoting Arrested Development or some such and I just kept flashing back on Dirty Dancing, missing, exactly, what was going on in all this, and certainly not unsticking myself from the eighties, from where I was living for the music, through it, maybe even dreaming those rock ‘n’ roll superstar fantasies, the kind that “didn’t quite work out” for Doc, thus throwing him into the storyteller ring, allowing me to even know of him, let alone get to misquote things with or around him.


Reviews in the Interim

We took a break from promotion, largely to avoid wearing out our friends, but now we’re terribly behind. Apologies to those whose efforts (or emails) haven’t been properly acknowledged yet. Soon, I promise.

Meanwhile, some new reviews are up at Amazon. (One immense review by The Velvet’s own Roger Sarao that I’d like to have notarized)

I can’t express how helpful and wonderful these are for us. If you have a moment to write a quick review or give a star rating, we would be sincerely grateful. Because anything we could possibly say about this book probably sounds better coming from you.

quick links: Amazon (reviews now require purchase–annoying but prevents fudged ratings), GoodreadsBarnes&NoblePowell’s

Lastly, within the Velvet community, a classy place for contributors to review without shame.

Thanks. Updates and Velvet Press news to come. We hope you’ve had a nice summer.

In the Thunderdome: J David Osborne

The fifth installment in the Thunderdome-Warmed and Bound Series (explained here).


“Sepp and Arlo Clancy raised rabbits and chickens but the chickens always died…”  >> Read more

Introduction for David Osborne written by Jesse Lawrence:
J David Osborne has until recently escaped me, and it’s not one bit his doing, but mine. I’ve had his debut novel By the Time We Leave Here, We’ll be Friends since I caught an early ripple in some certain friendly waters. However, I have yet take that Siberian trip. But then

Well, then, I caught “Three Theories on the Murder of John Wily” in Warmed and Bound. That story there, it shook something maybe not, say, familiar in me, but something I saw glimmers of elsewhere, possible futures of other people, snowballing in my brain like the Run Lola Run flash forward snap shot schemes. And now
So, now, I’m thinking on packing myself in a Eastern Europe-bound crate and seeing what, exactly, I have been missing.

—Jesse Lawrence

In the Thunderdome: Amanda Gowin

The third installment in the ThunderdomeWarmed and Bound Series (explained here).

Tin Man

“When you pop your knuckles you can’t wear rings …”  >> Read more

Introduction for the lovely Amanda Gowin written by The Velvet’s own Jesse Lawrence:
Amanda Gowin, like her story “Tin Man,” is a tornado in my mind. She’s caught in this secret history, a lucid dream, the way things very well may have been. Part of her, in this here history, she’s my sister, and another part of her, the flip-side, she’s this swelling platonic twin, the kind that you’d have shed blood with and sworn allegiance to before people then your age knew, even, what “acronym” meant. In all that, that world within me that only imagination and heart can reach, we’re racing—giggling, fingers entwined—her feet two steps ahead of mine, daring adventures out of me, teaching me to dance, and teaching me how to apply eye shadow just so so that Halloween can be that much more real. And when the first step is finally my turn, when I decide that jump is something I can take, she’s right there, going too, future’s possibilities opening up below us.

—Jesse Lawrence

In the Thunderdome: Chris Deal

The second installment in the Thunderdome-Warmed and Bound Series (explained here).

Truckstop Magic

“He had this magic trick, my granddad. …”  >> Read more

Chris Deal worked in a cigar shop before he married his true love. One Christmas he drew my name in a secret-santa gift exchange and I received a non-descript box of books that smelled like a secret-santa cigar exchange. I wasn’t supposed to know who sent it, which made me smile.

Recently someone in my home rounded a corner and caught me at my bookcase inhaling the inside spine of a book. There was a pause and a grimace. He finally asked what I was doing. I said I didn’t know.

I don’t usually go around smelling things. Nor would I ever try to smell Chris Deal himself, unless invited, but occasionally a connection is made; between my memories of funny times, things like cigar-infused gifts, and my fondness of a certain person, and there’s a feeling that no longer relates to writing or books. I talk about Chris Deal’s writing often. He’s a sort of pure talent who knows nothing but honesty and humility. But when I’m in the privacy of my home, and free to stop talking about books, and smell or taste whatever’s nearby, I like Chris Deal the person even more than the writer. Which, from me, all things considered, is quite a claim.


Goodreads Giveaway

>>Enter to win a copy of Warmed and Bound

Courtesy of Richard Thomas
1 copy available, to be signed by authors Richard Thomas and Chris Deal
Contest ends Aug 22, 2011

Additional Links:
Warmed and Bound on Goodreads

Contibutors on Goodreads: Pela ViaSteve EricksonCraig ClevengerStephen Graham JonesBrian EvensonCaleb J. Ross,Cameron PierceNic Young , Paul G. TremblayBradley SandsChristopher J. DwyerBlake ButlerJ.R. HarlanMark JaskowskiEdward J. RathkeGayle TowellBob PastorellaNik KorponKyle MinorBrandon TietzGordon HighlandVincent Louis CarrellaGary Paul LiberoSean FergusonDeLeon DeMicoliRob ParkerJeremy Robert Johnson,Anthony David JacquesChris DealAmanda GowinCraig WallworkMatt BellCraig DavidsonGavin PateTim BeverstockDoc O’DonnellRichard ThomasAxel TaiariJ. David Osborne

Phil Jourdan on Warmed and Bound

 examines Warmed and Bound from a unique angle, drawing parallels between modern online writing communities and the early 20th century “amateur journalism” movement.

Warmed and Bound is selling so well that, even in terms of the market, it has legitimized itself. By virtue of its uncompromising “underground” roots it has broken into the mainstream, and people like it. That should tell us something.”

He brings an interesting perspective and shares why the success of The Velvet anthology hasn’t exactly surprised him.

“What makes the people over at The Velvet more interesting than others is their drive to push things forwards.”

Many thanks to Phil for the encouraging words.

>> Read the article at

The Fuse

What follows is a series of Warmed and Bound sentences as chosen by Richard Thomas. During the week of the book’s release, Richard took his favorite lines to Twitter, where an afterthought of a project suddenly became quite popular. Myself an adoring fan of his idea, I sought permission to use his posts and have since compiled and re-sorted them here. The excerpt from the book’s foreword captures well what these stand-out lines do for us. Many thanks to Richard Thomas for being the hardest worker in Noir. And thanks again to Steve Erickson for eloquently saying what we mean when we grin and sigh. Enjoy. —Pela


“…and the moment you read this sentence you know there’s a fuse attached to it, you can see in the distance its glint and hear in the background its hiss, this fuse that was lit before you ever picked up the book and which burns closer and brighter with every page turned.”
Steve Erickson


“I give her the truth on an ordinary day. It’s the release she’s been praying for.”

“Every move she made was slow and soft like the bubbles in a bath, loving like a mother”

“Lester felt something give deep inside him. Like a Christmas ornament in space”

“Crime-scene slides project themselves onto the wall…dust motes suspended in the lamplight.”

“My head throbs like a beaten heart. My first instinct was wrong.”

“She’s a whore and will always be a whore, he said. Bright flashes lit up the room.”

“Broken glass glitters under the streetlamp, a thousand green eyes tracking me.”

“On this road he had run from the fire. On this road, he was the wind.”

“In the woods they held hands…the trees bent into a portal blowing a voice through their flesh.”
Gavin Pate

“Her body inspired a tactile covetousness: you wanted it to be your hands alone on her body.”
Craig Davidson

“I touched her face and slowly ground my lips into hers…She tasted like bubblegum.”

“The streets glisten and a veil hangs over the sky, blotting the moon, the sun, and stars.”

“Each orgasm a flurry of pixel and data. Patterned chaos. A self-replicating archive”

“Where is the fifth ace?” “The fifth ace?” says the voice. “Sir, you are the fifth ace.”
Brian Evenson

“They came to see her dance, people with money and people with love.”

“You’d find the good gossip downtown…where grass and power lines fight for dominance.”

“From across the bar, I couldn’t stop staring at her, at that breathtaking mouth of hers.”

“She smells like a dryer. She has black hair but wears it like it’s blond.”

“Anarchy fucking rules. Riots in the streets fucking rule. Pee wee soccer games fucking rule.”

“Try to fall on your head when you land…A bloody nose will make it look more realistic.”

“Tonight in Sector 7, come see The Amazing Asher kill himself for your entertainment.”

“If you love me, she says, you’ll do this. She hands me a razor blade.”

“Like the brain, everything about you will dry up & deplete. Until you’re nothing but bones.”

“You killed me that day. Have you ever had to hold your mouth with both hands?”

“Ernie learns to walk. And soon after, takes to chasing trains.”

“Ralph, What is sex like in the later years? My sweet, have you ever shot pool with a rope?”
Gary Paul Libero

“The baby died. I put it in the trash. Remember to pull the can to the curb tomorrow.”

“Yes, I could see it in the child there, a black door under the confetti of his brains…”

“The thing was hissing and it tried to curl in on itself and Myra started shaking”
Jeremy Robert Johnson

“You were heavier than I expected, and the room felt bigger than it was.”

“They take you at night. Or, they take you early in the morning.”

“What was supposed to be an infant in seven months now sits in the palm of my hand.”
Gayle Towell

“Without Tilly the world was clocks. They hovered with round faces and she scurried away.”

“The moon is full on the horizon, full and dancing along the top of every gentle wave.”

“She flared in the dark like some wild animal’s lone eye in my headlights.”
Craig Clevenger

“I look at her again. I want to see something there…to remember the woman I married. But I can’t.”
JR Harlan

“She bites down hard on my collarbone and my whole body jerks.”
Mark Jaskowski

“For the 15 seconds it takes her to saw through the arm I’ve never loved anyone as much as her.”

“When I came out of that fever dream, stumbling into the sunlight…I had resurrected myself.”

In the Thunderdome: Craig Wallwork

Mr Wadsworth and the Flea Circus

“I noticed it first at the second meeting. His hands were smaller, and when he held the metal high-dive model complete with board and splash, it appeared much bigger than it did in my hand. …”  >> Read more

Craig Wallwork is one of my personal favorites, as humans go. He is fearless in ways that are too rare among writers; he will say anything, if it means making a reader laugh. Or making a friend feel loved. He wins for formidable earnestness, and we win for getting our hands on his exceptional writing.

I love this photo of him. He looks cooler than the rest of us, and knowing him like I do—how he reacts to compliments—I can’t resist trying to say the things that turn such a hard face bright red.

Details are fuzzy now, but in my memory I begged him to be in this anthology, regardless of his perceived difference in writing style. I don’t win many arguments, but I’m quite happy I won that one.


A Month in the Thunderdome

Thunderdome is a webzine founded by the multi-talented Michael Paul Gonzalez.

Michael has a brilliant eye for art, crossing many mediums and platforms. In the fall of 2011 he will edit the Thunderdome print anthology, In Search of a City – Los Angeles in 1,000 Words, with stories prompted by gorgeous Hipstamatic-style photos of LA, and featuring many of Warmed and Bound‘s own contributors.

Through the month of August, Thunderdome will feature two stories a week by Warmed and Bound contributors. It is a unique privilege for us to get a full month of attention from such an awesome magazine. Please help us return the affection by ‘liking’ the Thunderdome Facebook page and returning often to

From the Thunderdome website:
“August will be a bit of a departure from our latest “Writer in Residence” series, and instead present writers, a collection of them in fact! The Velvet, an online literary community, released its first print collection last month to a rousing success – the book sold so rapidly that it temporarily broke Barnes & Noble’s website (which is a very dark story on its own…). This month, we’ll roll out two stories per week from some of the writers featured in the book, concluding the month with Mlaz Corbier’s latest Dispatch from Thunder Road as he tracks down the wily and elusive Pela Via, hard-working editor of the Warmed and Bound collection. Some of these stories are stand alone works, some are previously published in print, but appearing online for the first time, and others are tangential to the stories you’ll see in the book. Enjoy the ride!”

Aug 3: “Mr. Wadsworth & The Flea Circus” by Craig Wallwork

Order Overload

On a less fun note, it’s true Barnes & Noble has canceled orders. We don’t yet know why, or if there are more cancellations to come, but we’re presently seeking a very good explanation.

For readers affected: We wouldn’t recommend placing a new order quite yet, not without a better understanding of where the breakdown occurred. (Especially with regard to Barnes and Noble, whose price is now up to $15.95.) Till further notice—to serve as a temporary and to offset the inconvenience—Barnes and Noble cancellation emails can be forwarded to PELAVIA@THE-VELVET.COM in exchange for a PDF of the book.

Sincere apologies this has happened.

Barnes & Noble Bestseller

On the day of its release, Warmed and Bound reached seventh in the country on the Barnes & Noble Top Bestseller list. Among all paperbacks, it ranked third. Now into its second day, it remains the number one trending book.

We never knew what to expect with this project. A fledgling press, pulled into existence to create this one book, the objective was to not lose money. We weren’t expecting this.

We feel an enormous debt of gratitude to all those who bought the book or helped spread the word. Thank you.  —PV

Booked Podcast: Richard Thomas Interview

Listen here

From Booked: “Richard Thomas stopped by the Booked virtual studios to talk Warmed and Bound and his story within – Say Yes to Pleasure. We’ve been waiting to talk to Richard for a while, so we had a lot of ground to cover. Along the way we cover Richard’s upcoming projects, what’s so great about the Velvet… and what’s so damn scary about Paranormal Activity.”

Speed Loader – from Snub Nose Press
Richard’s work at The Nervous Breakdown
The Cult

Radiohead – Weird Fishes/Arpeggi

Booked Podcast: Sean Ferguson Interview

Listen here

From Booked: Sean P Ferguson stopped in to chat with the Booked crew for a little bit about Warmed and Bound and his story within – Inside Out. Along the way we talked about everything from writing to the timeless cinematic treasure, Down Periscope.


Sean’s website
Michael Kun – The Locklear Letters
Jesus Angel Garcia – badbadbad
Sean P Ferguson is not Mourning Goats. He’s not. really.

Alkaline Trio – Clavicle
Limp Bizkit – Gold Cobra

Booked Podcast: Amanda Gowin Interview

Listen here


Clown Girl by Monica Drake
Knockemstiff by Donald Ray Pollock
By the Time We Leave Here, We’ll Be Friends by J. David Osbourne

Nina Simone – I’m Gonna Leave You

Booked Podcast: Chris Deal Interview

Listen here

Nefarious Muse
Outsider Writer’s Collective
Crime Factory
Chris’s story A Sliver of Glass at Dirty Noir

Faith No More – Stripsearch

Booked Podcast: Warmed and Bound Sessions

The fine gentlemen behind the Booked Podcast Series, Livius Nedin and Robb Olson, have launched a Warmed and Bound series of interviews, to feature a new interview every day for the next seventeen days. 

This is incredibly kind of them and we like the attention, so please repay the favor: subscribe to the podcast, leave intimate love notes in the comment section, and spread the word. Their show is great, it’s my favorite podcast, easily. (Between us, most of us were fans and listeners before they expressed any interest in our anthology, so we feel beyond flattered.)

Interview line-up:

7.18.11 Chris Deal 7.19.11 Amanda Gowin
7.20.11 Sean Ferguson 7.21.11 Richard Thomas
7.22.11 Pela Via 7.23.11 Caleb J Ross
7.24.11 Anthony David Jacques 7.25.11 Doc O’Donnell
7.26.11 Edward J Rathke 7.27.11 Axel Taiari
7.28.11 Nik Korpon 7.29.11 J David Osborne
7.30.11 Bob Pastorella 7.31.11 Gordon Highland
8.01.11 Brian Evenson 8.02.11 Stephen Graham Jones
8.03.11 Craig Clevenger    

James Frey

Author James Frey blogs about Warmed and Bound: A Velvet Anthology, highlighting a story by our own DeLeon DeMicoli.

Logan Rapp

What isn’t seen, what isn’t associated with this book ad nauseam as is my name, is the involvement of Logan Rapp. He has single-handedly enabled its publication and made us look good. It’s all quiet, all behind the scenes, and without a glance at due credit or compensation. He deserves a medal for what he’s done for this book.

And other medals for having to work with me without fair warning for what this project would become.

It’s difficult to describe right but worth mentioning that our fights were epic. We worked so well together from the start that when one of us was stressed or unhappy, the other heard about it. This has added something, or sealed something already there. The Velvet has always been tightly knit, and when I find people I can fight with like brothers and sisters, I feel at home and everything begins to feel a little more unbreakable. These guys often call each other brother. I wouldn’t, because it’s not the same from a woman. But when you’re ducking vases from my direction and looking at me like you want to kill me, that’s what that is.

Logan is an awesome guy. He has some truly fantastic opportunities opening up for him and I’m looking forward to watching what progresses.

BIO: Logan Chance Rapp is an administrator for The Velvet, and a writer in North Hollywood, CA. He graduated from California State University Fresno with a degree in Mass Communications / Journalism. When asked for this bio, he groaned to himself, muttered “fine” in that way where you just know he isn’t “fine,” but wrote the bio anyway, forgetting that the lovely editor who asked him for it is going to read this. You can find his day job writing at

EDITORIAL NOTE: Logan says, “I only allow this sort of attention on me because it might get me dates.”

In One Year

It was this time last year I sent out the first anthology emails. If I remember right, first to JR Harlan, begging for his story “Love,” and to Craig Clevenger, with more unsubtle begging. Then others, Richard Thomas, Gordon Highland and Caleb Ross, asking for publishing advice and whether they liked various titles—one a play on the well-loved existing phrase: The Velvet warms and binds.

I don’t know what happened between then and now. But this photo, and rumors of other people to be similarly inked, tell one part of it better than I could.

The idea of a Velvet anthology existed well before I was involved. And somehow, we still managed to stumble into something incredible with this project. I am in awe. And tempted to frame Doc’s arm in my home. It has come to mean more to me each day I’ve known about it.

The ink makes sense when you see how much these writers care—about the work and about each other. I’m lucky to have been involved. The book is lucky to have these writers.

A Foreword by the Illustrious Steve Erickson

I was there and I’m still confused by our connection to Steve Erickson.

The man makes us go bananas, I’ve tried to tell him—likely to no avail. Perhaps more than any other living author, he personifies what The Velvet’s writers so voraciously adore in fiction.

There is a distinct vitality in his approach to story. An unmitigated and unfeigned desire for freshness. While the need to restore image over and over is lost amid the affection for new beauty or higher language. That he found any part of WARMED AND BOUND favorable speaks to his warmhearted and openminded nature, above all else.

As accidental forewords go, I couldn’t have thought up a more appropriate author to dream into our book.

Cover Art

Table of Contents

Death Juggler by Axel Taiari
Click-Clack by Caleb J Ross
The World Was Clocks by Amanda Gowin
Mantodea by Matt Bell
All the Acid in the World by Gavin Pate
Crazy Love by Cameron Pierce
Chance the Dick by Paul G Tremblay
Soccer Moms and Pro Wrestler Dads by Bradley Sands
Take Arms Against a Sea by Mark Jaskowski
This Will All End Well by Nik Korpon
Midnight Souls by Christopher J Dwyer
The Tree of Life by Edward J Rathke
The Killer by Brian Evenson
Headshot by Gordon Highland
Inside Out by Sean Ferguson
Laws of Virulence by Jeremy Robert Johnson
Bruised Flesh by Craig Wallwork
Bad, Bad, Bad Bad Men by Craig Davidson
Three Theories on the Murder of John Wily by J David Osborne
The Road Lester Took by Stephen Graham Jones
My German Daughter by Nic Young
What Was There Inside the Child by Blake Butler
Seed by Gayle Towell
They Take You by Kyle Minor
The Redemption of Garvey Flint by Vincent Louis Carrella
Blood Atonement by DeLeon DeMicoli
The Liberation of Edward Kellor by Anthony David Jacques
Act of Contrition by Craig Clevenger
Say Yes to Pleasure by Richard Thomas
The Weight of Consciousness by Tim Beverstock
If You Love Me by Doc O’Donnell
Touch by Pela Via
Love by JR Harlan
Practice by Bob Pastorella
Fading Glory by Brandon Tietz
Little Deaths by Gary Paul Libero
We Sing the Bawdy Electric by Rob Parker
In Exile by Chris Deal

It’s all laughter and nervous giggles until the bombs explode for real. Then the audience’s mood short-circuits fast as a brain stroke: a boom louder than staccato lightning strikes eardrums, a body skyrockets into the air, screams zigzag through the big top, people trample over each other for the swiftest way to the exit.

—first page, opening to Axel Taiari’s Death Juggler

Official Contributor List!

At last . . .

Matt Bell is the author of How They Were Found, a collection of fiction published by Keyhole Press in 2010, and Cataclysm Baby, a novella forthcoming from MLP in 2012. His fiction has appeared in Conjunctions, Hayden’s Ferry Review, Gulf Coast, Unsaid, and American Short Fiction, and has been selected for inclusion in anthologies such as Best American Mystery Stories 2010 and Best American Fantasy 2. He works as an editor at Dzanc Books, where he also runs the literary magazine The Collagist, and as the Visiting Writer at Greenhills School in Ann Arbor. He can be found online at

Tim Beverstock uses writing to explore his fascination with all things sweet-natured and dark. His angular, urban narratives feature characters clinging to the edge of their feelings as they dip below the surface of modern life and experience the hidden ambiguities of their existence. Between writing, he enjoys indulging in his passion for boutique beers, volunteering for a food rescue organization and reading noir fiction. He is 32 and lives in Wellington, New Zealand. For news and updates bookmark:

Blake Butler lives in Atlanta and edits HTMLGIANT. He is the author of Ever and Scorch Atlas and There is No Year. In November 2011, Harper Perennial will publish a nonfiction book about sleep, Nothing.

Vincent Louis Carrella is an award-winning writer, game designer and father of two girls. His debut novel, Serpent Box, follows the mystical life of a deformed ten-year-old snake handling boy in post-depression Tennessee. Learn more at Follow his Blogazine, Giphantia, at, or on Twitter @theserpentbox.

Craig Clevenger is the author of The Contortionist’s Handbook (MacAdam/Cage, 2002) and Dermaphoria (MacAdam/Cage, 2005). He is currently at work on his third novel. (photo by Timothy Faust)

Craig Davidson wrote the books Rust and Bone, The Fighter, and Sarah Court. His nonfiction has appeared in Esquire and GQ. (photo by Lisa Myers)

Chris Deal writes from North Carolina. He can be found at

DeLeon DeMicoli lives in San Francisco, CA. When he’s not writing, he trains in Mixed Martial Arts.

Christopher J Dwyer is the author of When October Falls and numerous short stories that skirt the edges of noir, horror and science fiction. His work has been featured in numerous magazines (both online and print), including Twisted Tongue Magazine, Pendulum, Colored Chalk, Red Fez, Shalla Magazine, New Horizons, Gold Dust Magazine, Nefarious Muse, and Sex and Murder. His stories have also appeared in several fiction anthologies, including Fried! Fast FoodSlow Deaths, End of Days: An Apocalyptic Anthology, Dead Worlds 5, and more. He is the former writer-in-residence of indie online magazine Dogmatika. He can be reached through his official website,, or Twitter @chrisjdwyer.

Brian Evenson is the author of ten books of fiction, most recently the limited edition novella Baby Leg, published by New York Tyrant Press in 2009. In 2009 he also published the novel Last Days (which won the American Library Association’s award for Best Horror Novel of 2009) and the story collection Fugue State, both of which were on Time Out New York’s top books of 2009. His novel The Open Curtain (Coffee House Press) was a finalist for an Edgar Award and an IHG Award. His work has been translated into French, Italian, Spanish, Japanese and Slovenian. He lives and works in Providence, Rhode Island, where he directs Brown University’s Literary Arts Program. Other books include The Wavering Knife (which won the IHG Award for best story collection), Dark Property, and Altmann’s Tongue. He has translated work by Christian Gailly, Jean Frémon, Claro, Jacques Jouet, Eric Chevillard, Antoine Volodine, and others. He is the recipient of three O. Henry Prizes as well as an NEA fellowship.

Sean P Ferguson is an EMT and a PST for the state of New Jersey. In his off time he reads and writes all he can. His work has been published in the literary journal Cellar Door and in Colored Chalk. He is currently working on a novel, a number of short stories, and reviews. You can follow him at

Amanda Gowin lives in the foothills of Appalachia with her husband and son. Her stories have been published in BlackHeart Magazine and Thunderdome. She has always written and always will.

JR Harlan is from Southern California. He is fond of words, women, and whiskey. He runs Nefarious Muse, a short fiction blog at

Gordon Highland is the author of the novels Major Inversions and the forthcoming Flashover. A member of The Velvet since 2006, he is a site moderator and one of its most frequent posters. Gordon has been directing videos professionally for over fifteen years, and lives in the Kansas City area, where he also enjoys writing, recording, and performing music. Visit him at

Anthony David Jacques has bagged groceries, sold women’s clothing, booked international travel, roasted coffee, repossessed cars, survived cancer and Christianity, gotten married, written a novel, and now he works as a gemologist while slaving over prose. Writing is what he does to make sense of everything else. His short fiction has been published at Colored Chalk, Dogmatika, Troubadour 21, Pulp Metal Magazine and Outsider Writers Collective. He is currently at work on his second novel.

Mark Jaskowski lives in Gainesville, FL, where he works rather strange service industry jobs and writes at the picnic table near his apartment. This is his first published work.

Jeremy Robert Johnson is the Bizarro author of the cult hit Angel Dust Apocalypse, the Stoker Nominated novel Siren Promised (w/Alan M. Clark), and the end-of-the-world freak-out Extinction Journals. His fiction has been acclaimed by Fight Club author Chuck Palahniuk and has appeared internationally in numerous anthologies and magazines. In 2008 he worked with The Mars Volta to tell the story behind their Grammy Winning album The Bedlam in Goliath. In 2010 he spoke about weirdness and metaphor as a survival tool at the Fractal 10 conference in Medellin, Colombia, (where fellow speakers included DJ Spooky, an MIT bio-engineer, and a doctor who explained the neurological aspirations of a sponge). Jeremy runs Bizarro imprint Swallowdown Press and is working on a host of new books.

Stephen Graham Jones started writing in 1990, in an emergency room. Ten years later, his first novel came out, and, since then, there have been six more, and two collections. It Came From Del Rio and The Ones That Got Away are the most recent books, and Flushboy and Not for Nothing (both from Dzanc) are up next. Jones has also had some hundred and thirty stories published, anthologized, and included in annuals and textbooks. And he still finds himself in the emergency room more than he really planned. Jones teaches in the MFA program at the University of Colorado at Boulder, and has been a member of the Velvet since 2005. More at

Nik Korpon is the author of the novel Stay God and the noir novellas Old Ghosts and By the Nails of the Warpriest. His stories have ruined the reputation of Out of the Gutter, Do Some Damage, 3:AM and Everyday Genius, among others. He is a fiction editor for Rotten Leaves Magazine, a book reviewer and a co-host of Last Sunday, Last Rites, a monthly reading series in Baltimore, MD. He received a master’s degree in Creative Writing from Birkbeck College in London, England, and now lives in Baltimore. Give him danger, little stranger, at

Gary Paul Libero has been bald since 1997. He is a technology professional living in Middlesex County, Connecticut, with his wife and two toddlers. His short fiction can also be read at Nefarious Muse. He hopes to have a novel completed before his kids are able to read.

Kyle Minor is the author of In the Devil’s Territory, a collection of short fiction, and co-editor of The Other Chekhov. His recent work appears in The Southern Review, The Gettysburg Review, and Plots with Guns, and in anthologies such as Best American Mystery Stories 2008,guest edited by George Pelecanos (Houghton Mifflin, 2008), Surreal South (Press 53, 2007), edited by Pinckney Benedict and Laura Benedict, and Twentysomething Essays by Twentysomething Writers (Random House, 2006). As a graduate student at the Ohio State University, he was a three-time honoree (in fiction, poetry, and nonfiction) in The Atlantic Monthly‘s annual writing contest. Random House named Kyle one of the “Best New Voices of 2006,” and The Columbus Dispatch named him one of their “20 Under 30 Artists to Watch” in 2007. Website:

Doc is a rock ’n’ roll dropout that writes dirty noir from a cramped apartment in Newcastle, Australia. To pay for the bills and booze he looks after the elderly, soaking up their tales/tails. His work has dirtied the pages and screens of Crime FactoryPulp Metal MagazineShort, Fast, and Deadly Nefarious Muse, and Thunderdome. Doc is the editor of, a crime-noir webzine.

He can be contacted at:

J David Osborne is the author of the Lynchian gulag-escape novel By the Time We Leave Here, We’ll Be Friends. His second novel, Low Down Death Right Easy, is due out this winter from Swallowdown Press. He lives in Oklahoma with his dog.

Rob Parker currently lives in Waterloo, Ontario. He has his MA in English & Film Studies from Wilfrid Laurier University and secretly hopes that one day, serious men in dark suits on the university payroll will speak in quiet, horrified whispers about the monster they created.

Bob Pastorella lives in Southeast Texas. He’s published with Outsider Writers Collective, Thunderdome, Nefarious Muse, Troubadour 21, and his short story “To Watch Is Madness” is featured in The Zombist: Undead Western Tales Anthology. He is currently working on a vampire/noir novel. You can visit Bob at

Gavin Pate is the author of the novel The Way to Get Here (Bootstrap), and his short stories can be found in places like The Collagist, Barrelhouse, The Southeast Review, and Dogmatika, among others. He is an Assistant Professor of English at Virginia Wesleyan College, and lately, in the lengthening days of the impending summer, he has been steadily working on what’s now only known to him as The Next Book. His story “All the Acid in the World” was first published by the now no more online magazine Perigee.

Cameron Pierce (b. 1988) is the author of The Pickled Apocalypse of Pancake Island, Lost in Cat Brain Land, Ass Goblins of Auschwitz, and Shark Hunting in Paradise Garden. His fiction and poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in The Bizarro Starter Kit (Purple), The Nervous Breakdown, Verbicide, Bust Down the Door and Eat All the Chickens, The Pedestal Magazine, Nemonymous, The Dream People, Kill Author, Everyday Genius, Christmas on Crack, Avant-Garde for the New Millennium, and other publications. Cameron also runs Lazy Fascist Press. Visit him online at and

Edward J Rathke is an adventurous dandy wandering space and time. More of his life and words may be found at

Caleb J Ross has been published widely, both online and in print. He graduated with a degree in English Literature and a minor in Creative Writing from Emporia State University. He is the author of the story chapbook Charactered Pieces: stories, the novels Stranger Will and I Didn’t Mean to Be Kevin, and the forthcoming novella As a Machine and Parts. Visit his official page at: Twitter: @calebjross and Facebook:

Bradley Sands is the editor of Bust Down the Door and Eat All the Chickens and the author of Sorry I Ruined Your Orgy, Rico Slade Will Fucking Kill You, and My Heart Said No, But Camera Crew Said Yes! His contribution to this anthology is the first chapter of a forthcoming novel called TV Snorted My Brain.

Axel Taiari is a French writer, born in Paris in 1984. He studied Screenwriting and Modern Literature. After an endless string of shit jobs, he quit everything to focus on writing. His work has appeared in multiple magazines and anthologies, including Dogmatika, 3:AM Magazine, No Colony, and 365tomorrows. He is also the creator and co-editor of the literary journal Rotten Leaves. He has recently finished a noir science-fiction novel and is now trying to sell his soul to the devil. Read more at and You can also stalk him on Twitter @axeltaiari.

Richard Thomas was the winner of the 2009 “Enter the World of Filaria” contest at ChiZine. He has published dozens of stories online and in print, including the Shivers VI anthology (Cemetery Dance) with Stephen King and Peter Straub, Murky Depths, PANK, Pear Noir!, Word Riot, 3:AM Magazine, Dogmatika, Vain and Opium. His debut novel Transubstantiate (Otherworld Publications) was released in July of 2010. He also writes book reviews at The Nervous Breakdown. Visit his blog at For more information about his novel go to (photo by John Geiger)

Brandon Tietz was born in Omaha, NE, (1982) and raised in Kansas City, KS. He studied Illustration and Literature at the University of Kansas and deejayed under the stage name Agent Green while in college. Tietz’s familiarity with nightlife and his fascination with the socialite lifestyle led him to write Out of Touch (2008), a transgressive take on the coming-of-age story in which the main character feels no physical sensation. In 2009, Tietz joined the Chuck Palahniuk Writers’ Workshop, where he now serves as one of the moderators. In 2011, Tietz re-released Out of Touch through Otherworld Publications. He’s currently working on a new book called Vanity, a themed novel-in-stories.

Gayle Towell is a fiction writer living in Hillsboro, Oregon, with her husband and three children. Author of Moron and X, she is currently working on her second novel, a quasi-sequel with the working title Seized.

Paul Tremblay is the author of the weirdboiled novels The Little Sleep and No Sleep Till Wonderland, the short story collection In the Mean Time, and the novella The Harlequin and the Train. His short fiction has appeared in Weird Tales and Year’s Best American Fantasy 3, with stories due to appear in Cape Cod Noir and Supernatural Noir. He’s the co-editor of the anthologies Fantasy, Bandersnatch, Phantom, and Creatures. He still has no uvula and lives somewhere south of Boston with his wife and two kids. (photo by Michael J Maloney)

Craig Wallwork lives in West Yorkshire, England, with his wife and daughter. After leaving Art College he studied to be a filmmaker before becoming a full-time editor for nine years. In his spare time he writes short stories and is working on his fourth novel. His fiction has appeared in various anthologies, journals and magazines. Follow his progress via his website:

Nic Young lives in Cape Town, South Africa. He has packed supermarket shelves in Edinburgh, slept in the open Sahara desert, and broken an inordinate number of bones. He has been writing software since 2005, and stories since 2010. Visit him at (photo by Lillith Leda)


EDITOR Pela Via is the fiction editor at Outsider Writers Collective and a member of Write Club. She has been published in Nefarious Muse, Red Fez—for which she received a Best of the Net nomination, Word Riot and others. She is married to a scientist.