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Sunday, 21 August 2011

Do you like a good scary read?

I thought that for a change I would give you a wee peep at what I have been up to over the past few weeks. Now, I don’t usually bore you with promotional stuff on my blog. Nor am I prone to saying ‘look at what a good girl I’ve been’, but I’ve had my head down, working hard and couldn’t resist giving you a peek at my two new books of short stories.
Two? I hear you say. You’re churning them out, two at a time? Well, you see I thought I would ransack my hard disk for some short stories to keep my readers amused, not that my writing is in any way amusing, you understand. I also thought I might manage to turn up enough stories to fill a book. So I got hunting and quickly realized that if I put all the short stories that wriggled out of my hard disk into one book, I might have something the length of War and Peace. Nothing daunted I compiled the resurrected short stories into two separate piles. One set was an assortment including crime and a few gentler ones, while the other set was horror. I won’t bore you by describing the revision and polishing process, but the end result was two different books of short stories. So, if you can bear it I’ll include the details below.

The first book, Obsession & Other Stories is a collection of short stories meant to entertain and intrigue. The collection includes dark and gritty crime stories as well as a couple of gentler ones.

These six short stories are a mixed batch which I hope you will enjoy. They include:-

‘Obsession’ - which is a dark story about a stalker, and not recommended for those of a nervous disposition. This was the story which gave birth to the Night Watcher and is the precursor of my novel of the same name.

‘In Zofia’s Footsteps’ - is the story of migrant fruit pickers working on a fruit farm in Scotland. Make up your own mind whether or not there is a hint of the paranormal in this one.

‘Not a Bad Person’ - is a gritty story which introduces Baz, a heroin addict and what he feels compelled to do to acquire money to feed his habit.

‘Ghost of Christmas Past’ - is a gentle ghost story which is not in the least scary, although I’m better known for my scary stories.

‘Sin’ - is a tale of the Magdalene Laundries, the institutions for unmarried mothers which were infamous in Ireland in the not too distant past.

‘Santa’s Little Helper’ - a little bit of nonsense to finish off with.

The second book. Ghost Train & Other Stories is a collection of horror stories, not meant for the faint-hearted.

What you won’t find in this book are zombies and vampires. Nor will you find anyone running around wielding a chainsaw, although there might be some knives and maybe a cleaver. Blood and gore is also missing, although I can’t guarantee you won’t stumble across some body parts.

However, you will find plenty to scare you in these stories unless, of course, you have become hardened to horror.
The four short stories in this book are a mixed batch of horror and paranormal stories which I hope you will enjoy. They include:-

‘The Ghost Train’ - was previously published in issue 39 of Dark Horizons in 2001, and is a dark story set in a fairground.

‘The Gourmet Club' - is a story about a restaurant which features an exclusive, invitation only, gourmet club with rather unusual tastes.

‘Brainpower’ - is a fantasy about what happens to a student who craves more and more knowledge.

‘Déjà vu’ - is another paranormal story with a dark theme.
I am publishing these two books at the lowest possible price that Amazon allows as a reward to my readers and an encouragement for new readers. I can only hope that folks will enjoy them.

A couple of five star reviews which are already on Amazon:-

Obsession and Other Stories by Chris Longmuir is a dark and thought-provoking collection of short stories that touch on the seamier side of life. There's a touch of history, a touch of mystery and a fanciful tale with a very real theme. All six stories are told in Chris's no-holds barred, gritty style.

The featured story, Obsession is a disturbing tale of a stalker told from that viewpoint - the stalker, not the victim. Very creepy being in that head! This is the story that led to the novel, Night Watcher, an excerpt of which follows after the collection.

Also included is an excerpt from Chris Longmuir's latest novel, A Salt Splashed Cradle, an engrossing family saga from a time when livelihoods were made from the sea.

If you like to read but prefer short stories, I don't think you'll be disappointed.

Well done, Chris Longmuir. I look forward to more.

Ghost Train and Other Stories by Chris Longmuir is a collection of short stories that is sure to have you sleeping with the lights on, providing you can get to sleep in the first place. We've all heard horror stories that scare us but we can dismiss them as fanciful. The truly horrible are those stories that take a normal fear well beyond the comfort level where you really don't want to go; to a place where maybe you can see it actually happening.... have fun, horror fans.

If you like the look of these two books of short stories they can be found on Amazon and Smashwords, just search my name and they will come up.

Until the next time.