Tag Archive | Calvin Demmer

Double Barrel Horror Vol #3: Review + Excerpt

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Welcome to the blog tour for Double Barrel Horror Volume #3, a collection of thrills and chills by six amazing authors! Hold onto your pants folks!

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Double Barrel (Volume 3)

Publication Date: March 22nd, 2020

Genre: Anthology/ Horror/ Suspense

Brace yourself for another two-barrel blast of unrelenting horror and suspense. Volume 3 of the ‘Double Barrel Horror’ anthology series delivers two chilling tales from each of six talented authors for a 12-story onslaught that will blow you out of your sneakers. This time around, your fate lies in the hands of Christine Morgan, Mark Matthews, Theresa Braun, Calvin Demmer, Glenn Rolfe, and Robert Essig.

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Excerpt

Highway Hunger by Calvin Demmer

It couldn’t be alive?

It was.

Dudley Ellington couldn’t see the animal’s face, but based on the tufts of bloody fur, he thought it might be a rat or a squirrel. He stepped closer, and the creature’s legs shook as if it were attempting to kick-start its body back to life.

Its movements ceased.

Dudley looked around, and all he saw was the long, empty stretch of highway. Why was there never a good stick lying around when you needed one? He tapped his boot on the animal, hoping for a response. He got nothing. Were his eyes playing tricks? He thought its legs moved a moment ago.

He tapped the animal again.

This time, one of its arms stretched out and then down, as if it were trying to push the button to answer a question on a game show. Dudley stepped back—not out of fear, as he assured himself, but to get a better view.

The paw jiggled.

“Yo, Felipe. Come check this out.” Dudley ran his hand over his slicked-back hair. He looked to the white pickup when he got no reply from his coworker.

Felipe sat in the front seat with his orange helmet covering his eyes.

“Felipe, wake up.”

Felipe groaned, slowly pushing open the driver-side door. “What’s it now, Dud? I told you we can always take an extra thirty minutes for lunch. I was just about to get some rest. No one will give a shit.”

“There’s something on the road. I was gonna scoop it up, but it must be alive.”

Felipe’s eyes widened. He climbed out of the vehicle and marched to Dudley.

“Get back,” he said as he passed Dudley.

Dudley did as instructed, oddly reassured by the sudden authority in his coworker’s voice. Felipe would surely help the critter, maybe take it somewhere for injured animals. He was still new to the job and wasn’t sure of the correct protocol.

Felipe hovered over the creature. “It’s a squirrel. At least, it was. Half its body has been smashed.”

“Damn.”

“Yeah, it’s a bummer for sure. But there’s nothing we can do. Best leave it be and let it die in peace.”

“Leave it be? It’s in pain.”

“That’s right. We leave it. It’s not dead, and we only collect the dead.”

Dudley stepped forward. “What about the injured animals? Where do you take them?”

“Injured animals.” Felipe scoffed, staring at the road. “Dud. Now isn’t the time for this. Let it go.”

The squirrel twitched, and Dudley imagined it hearing them talk about how they would simply desert it. That was nonsense, of course, as squirrels couldn’t understand humans, but still, he couldn’t allow it to suffer. He would have to put it out of its misery.

Dudley raised his boot, telling himself this was the most merciful thing he could do.

“No!” Felipe shouted, tackling him to the ground.

“What the fuck, man?” Dudley pushed Felipe off before getting to his feet and dusting his pants, not sure how much good it would do as they already had a stain or two from the takeaway burger he’d devoured for lunch. “Why would—”

“Dud. You need to listen to me.” Felipe glanced around. “We need to get going. I can explain everything once we’re on the move.”

Amazon

Review:

This was such a fun anthology with awesome horror and more! I absolutely loved Theresa Braun’s story so much, and I’ve loved everything she’s written so far! Her story was a true page turner! Never a disappointment! Calvin Demmer has another hit on his hands and I was sucked into his story right away!

This anthology had intriguing writing and was full of awesomeness! I loved how each story was different but they all went together nicely. This was the perfect escape that I needed!

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Blog Tour Schedule

May 11th

Reads & Reels (Spotlight) http://readsandreels.com

Kim Knight (Spotlight) http://kimknightauthor.wordpress.com

Literary Dust (Review) https://literarydust.wordpress.com/

May 12th

Breakeven Books (Spotlight) https://breakevenbooks.com

The Scary Reviews (Review) https://thescaryreviews.com

Cats Luv Coffee (Spotlight) https://catsluvcoffeez.blogspot.com

May 13th

Entertainingly Nerdy (Spotlight) https://www.entertaininglynerdy.com

The Faerie Review (Spotlight) http://www.thefaeriereview.com

Book Dragons Not Worms (Spotlight) https://bookdragonsnotworms.blogspot.com/?m=1

May 14th

Dark Whimsical Art (Spotlight) https://www.darkwhimsicalart.com/blogs/news

Didi Oviatt (Review) https://didioviatt.wordpress.com

Books Teacup & Reviews (Spotlight) https://booksteacupnreviews.wordpress.com/

May 15th

I Smell Sheep (Spotlight) http://www.ismellsheep.com/

Jessica Belmont (Review) https://jessicabelmont.wordpress.com/

Banshee Irish Horror Blog (Review) www.bansheeirishhorrorblog.com

Tranquil Dreams (Review) https://klling.wordpress.com/

Authors:

Matthew Weber

Christine Morgan

Mark Matthews

Theresa Braun

Calvin Demmer

Glenn Rolfe

Robert Essig

Blog Tour Organized By:

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R&R Book Tours

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What’s your favorite horror story?

Review: Dark Celebrations

Title: Dark Celebrations

Author: Calvin Demmer

Date of Publication: October 2019

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Goodreads Summary:

Each year, people all over the world celebrate special festivals and days, shining light on what they wish to remember and revere. But sometimes, inhabitants of the dark arrive with the desire to disturb proceedings. Dark Celebrations is a collection of twelve short stories. And the holidays will never be the same.

My Review:

This was a great collection and I loved that I could read through each story quickly! My favorite would have to either be Prom Screams or Trick or Death! There was true imagination that went into these stories and the writing, along with the dialogue, was excellent!! Wonderful and horrific descriptions! My favorite kinds of things!

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Do you read short stories?

Review: Trick or Death

Title: Trick or Death

Author: Calvin Demmer

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Goodreads Summary:

Halloween was the perfect time for Barry Steiner to put his plan into action. The only problem was not everyone in the neighborhood wanted to play his victim.

My Review:

I have yet to be disappointed by Demmer’s horror short stories! Seriously loved this one! Also, a hint… there’s one of my favorite creature’s ever in it!!

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What impresses me so much is how Demmer always can put such great characterization in short stories! You get a bit of romance, a bit of horror, and a bit of awesomeness! Barry was a relatable character. I felt I would have done some of the idiotic stuff he did when I was his age!

The writing was on point, the setting was perfect, and I can’t wait to read more short stories from the author!!

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What’s your favorite scary story?

Review: The Sea Was a Fair Master

Title: The Sea Was a Fair Master

Author: Calvin Demmer

Date of Publication: June 5th, 2018

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Summary:

The world’s fate lies with a comatose young girl; an android wants to remember a human she once knew under Martian skies; men at sea learn that the ocean is a realm far different from land, where an unforgiving god rules; a school security guard discovers extreme English class; and a man understands what the behemoth beneath the sea commands of him.

The Sea Was a Fair Master is a collection of 23 stories, riding the currents of fantasy, science fiction, crime, and horror. There are tales of murder, death, loss, revenge, greed, and hate. There are also tales of hope, survival, and love.

For the sea was a fair master.

My Review:

I normally am not a big fan of reading anthologies with short stories when they are by different authors because my level of liking the stories fluctuates. However, I have read several stories by Demmer and was excited to see there would be an anthology with only his written words.

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Calvin Demmer is like the king of horror short stories! Anyway, this was a cool ride through tales with dark stuff, fun stuff and all around cool stuff! Gritty and dark while also being thought provoking! His writing is able to sweep me up and suck me right in. Can’t wait to see what he has up his sleeve next!

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Do you like short stories?

Author Interview: Calvin Demmer

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Book Description:
The world’s fate lies with a comatose young girl; an android wants to remember a human she once knew under Martian skies; men at sea learn that the ocean is a realm far different from land, where an unforgiving god rules; a school security guard discovers extreme English class; and a man understands what the behemoth beneath the sea commands of him.
The Sea Was a Fair Master is a collection of 23 stories, riding the currents of fantasy, science fiction, crime, and horror. There are tales of murder, death, loss, revenge, greed, and hate. There are also tales of hope, survival, and love.
For the sea was a fair master.

Continue reading

Author Calvin Demmer’s Interview with Author S.J. Budd

 

Book Purchase Links:
Spells and Persuasions: https://www.amazon.com/dp/1520940645
Aphotic Realm’s Banished: https://www.amazon.com/dp/1979474532

Calvin Demmer’s Author Interview with S.J. Budd

What sparked your interest in the horror genre?

I’ve always been fascinated with everything out of the ordinary. I think what really sparked my interest in horror was seeing The Labyrinth movie when I was a young girl. At the time I found it terrifying and instantly loved it! It’s still one of my favorite films!

What’s the best writing advice you’ve received?

I think it’s got to be the simplest bit of advice which is to just keep at it and eventually you will get somewhere. I think the piece of advice I would offer would be to have fun with what you write, because if it’s boring to write it will be boring to read.

You have a story called “I am Witch” in the Banished issue from Aphotic Realm. What inspired the tale?

I was heavily inspired to write “I am Witch” after reading “Of Sorrow and Such” by Angela Slatter which is about witches. I came across it by accident and its now one of my favorite books.  Since then I’d really wanted to write a story about witches and this was my attempt.

You released Spells and Persuasions, a collection of short stories, last year. How would you describe it to those who’ve yet to read it?

This is my first collection of nine short stories that have all been published in various magazines. I’d like to think there’s something in there for everyone who loves horror. The stories within draw on many different elements such as fantasy, sci-fi and horror but are all dark in nature.

Who are some of the female horror authors you believe people should be reading?

There’s some really amazing female horror authors out there. I’m a really big fan of Gwendolyn Kiste whose stories regularly appear in places like Black Static and Shimmer. She’s recently released her first novella, “Pretty Marys all in a Row” which is a great read. Of course there is Angela Slatter who I’ve already mentioned. I’ve just discovered Kristi DeMeester and Damien Angelica Walters who are also superb.

These are the female horror writers who are currently slaying it and you can easily find them gracing the pages of all the top magazines such as Black Static, Nightmare, Shimmer and Apex.

 

Sarah

Sarah’s Bio:
S.J. Budd loves writing short stories exploring dark fictional worlds and its mysterious inhabitants, and is currently working on her first novel. Her day job involves working as journalist for www.findahood.com and she also blogs on her site www.sjbudd.co.uk and her twitter is @sjbuddj.
Her work has appeared in Aphotic RealmSanitarium MagazineSiren’s Call PublicationsDeadman’s TomeInnersinsAphelionBewildering StoriesBlood Moon Rising MagazineShadows at the Door, Danse Macabre MagazineThe Wild HuntMorpheus Tales and Freedom Fiction.
Her debut collection of short stories, Spells and Persuasions, is out now on Amazon.
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Calvin’s Bio:
Calvin Demmer is a dark fiction author. His work has appeared in Broadswords and Blasters, Empyreome Magazine, Mad Scientist Journal, Ravenwood Quarterly, Switchblade, and others. When not writing, he is intrigued by that which goes bump in the night and the sciences of our universe. You can find him online at www.calvindemmer.com.
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What did you think about the interview?

Review: Hardened Hearts

Title: Hardened Hearts

Authors: Gwendolyn Kiste, Somer Canon, Calvin Demmer, Theresa Braun, John Boden, Eddie Generous, Tom Deady, J.L. Knight, Madhvi Ramani, Scott Paul Hallam, Robert Dean, Jennifer Williams, Leo X. Robertson, Laura Blackwell, Erin Sweet Al-Mehairi, Sarah L. Johnson, Meg Elison

Date of Publication: December 4th, 2017

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Goodreads Summary:

17 stories of difficult love, broken hearts, lost hope, and discarded truths. Love brings pain, vulnerability, and demands of revenge. Hardened Hearts spills the sum of darkness and light concerning the measures of love; including works from Meg Elison, author of The Book of the Unnamed Midwife (Winner of the Philip K. Dick Award), Tom Deady, author of Haven (Winner of the Bram Stoker award for Superior Achievement in a First Novel), Gwendolyn Kiste, author of And Her Smile Will Untether the Universe and Pretty Marys All in a Row, and many more.
Hardened Hearts dips from speculative, horror, science fiction, fantasy, into literary and then out of the classifiable and into the waters of unpinned genres, but pure entertainment nonetheless.

My Review:

Honestly, I hate reading most story collections by different authors because the writing styles are so different. Then most of the time I only like a few. This didn’t happen here, though. I definitely liked almost all of the stories! My favorites have to be… Canon’s, Demmer’s Braun’s, Deady’s, Blackwell’s, and Al-Mehairi’s!

What I also liked was that there was a variety in genres, even though I prefer ones that have supernatural stuff, which most of them did!

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40 Ways to Leave Your Monster Lover by: Gwendolyn Kiste – I’ll admit I’m usually not a big fan of second person, like at all. But this one was actually good. I’ll still say that I will never be a fan of second person, though!

It Breaks My Heart to Watch You Rot by: Somer Canon – Loved this one! It even caused me to tear up! The real scenario of when an immortal loves a mortal is a heartbreaking thing.

What is Love? by: Calvin Demmer – Calvin is the master at writing short stories. So, I wasn’t surprised at all that this one was amazing! Loved the ending!

Heirloom by: Theresa Braun – I found this one extremely addicting and kept wanting to know what the heck was going on! Braun’s writing is flawless, and the story is intriguing!

The Recluse by: John Boden – This was a short, fun story and a freaking heck yeah from me!

Dog Tired by: Eddie Generous – Nice character development, and I’ll just say it has my favorite creature ever!

The Pink Balloon by: Tom Deady – Let me go cry myself to sleep after reading this one, no, seriously!

It’s My Party And I’ll Cry If I Want To by: J. L. Knight – This one was extremely relateable, especially if you have lost anyone that means more than anything to you.

Consumed by: Madhvi Ramani – The main guy was ridiculous—which made me like it!

Burning Samantha by: Scott Paul Hallam – I really liked that this put me in Samantha’s head about a boy who feels like a girl. And how the pressure of what other people feel can have an affect on one’s happiness. The thing is, as hard as it is to brush out the world, you have to do what you feel, otherwise, you will live in misery.

Class of 2000 by: Robert Dean – This one felt a little too lifetime for me. I think it was a very important story, but it just didn’t blend in well with the others.

Learning to Love by: Jennifer Williams – Short, but I could feel the emotions from the MC!

Brothers by: Leo X. Robertson – I’m sort of lost by the ending of this one, but it got really, really good with each page!

Porcelain Skin by: Laura Blackwell – This one had a very whimsical feel to it, and I was thoroughly captivated!

The Heart of the Orchard by: Erin Sweet Al-Mehairi – Loved, loved, loved this one! The setting, the tone, the writing—all of it was great!

Meeting the Parents by: Sarah L. Johnson – This one was extremely odd, but equals cool!

Matchmaker by: Meg Elison – I felt this was a good way to end the book!

Overall, a great read where happily ever afters don’t exist, but the reader still feels like they get what they wanted in the end!

 

Do you like short stories?